As far as epic sagas go, there are a slight few as memorable as the Swords and Sandals games series. Not a single online game offers a series of games that differ so much in the way they are played, but still keep the same basic premise which made the game popular. In this guide, we will explore why this series is so popular amongst online gamers.
Each of the games in the Swords and Sandals series is uncommonly different from the others. Unlike so many other game franchises, which only improve upon the product with more levels, better graphics, and removal of small bugs. Swords and Sandals creates totally different game platforms for each edition. This lends the franchise to an array of tastes and makes the game appeal to more gamers as a whole. Of course, the series does have a standard theme that plays on the humour of role-playing games and produces a terrifically entertaining battle-style game.
Players create their own Gladiators by combining hair colours, skin colours, physical traits, and fighting abilities to create the Gladiator of their choice. The game makers offer a humorous level of customization that leaves players giggling at their crossbred, mutant-looking Gladiators.
In the Swords and Sandals games 1-4, duels are the main focus of the game. Each duel is a turns-based game of strikes, advances, taunts, and the like. The winner earns money and experience points, while the loser quivers, cries, wets themselves, or, in some cases, perishes. In many cases, players may cash in on their experience points to spread among qualities such as agility, strength, and charisma. Gold goes to the purchase of weaponry, armour, and other unique items to assist the Gladiator in battle.
The first two games in the series, Swords and Sandals 2 appear similar at first. The village is on the same format, with a Sword smith and an Armoury for players to shop with the gold they win in battle. The second game features a Church for purchasing potions and a Magic Shop, which features spells and enchantments for sale. Additionally, in the second game, there are more options for the Gladiators appearance. The Arena in both games hosts duels between Gladiators. The major shift between the two games appears at the arena. In Swords and Sandals 1, players enter the arena and are pitted against a similarly equipped Gladiator to fight to the death, or maim. Players in Swords and Sandals 2, duel against opponents, also, but work their way through the ranks in order to enter tournaments, with the ultimate goal of becoming the highest Champion. In both Swords and Sandals 1 & 2, the duel actions are taunt, move forward and backwards, jump forward and backwards, charge, and strike.
Swords and Sandals 3 offers up something completely different from the first two games in the series, in that there are many more shops to purchase goods at, and each shop has their own personal flair and price bracket. The shopkeepers are hilarious characters that add to the fun of the game. Players shop in the town and then enter the arena for duels. Each set of duels consists of five foes to fell before moving onto the next group. Players use these duels for practice as well as a chance to earn valuable XP (experience points) to spend on armour, weaponry, and skills to defeat the Champions. Once prepared for a real battle, players choose "Challenge Next Arena Champion" to move onto the main battles. The goal of the game is to beat all Champions. The game controls are consistent with Swords and Sandals 1&2, consisting of movements and attacks as well as taunts and distinctive tricks or skills.
The fourth instalment of the Swords and Sandals games takes an entirely different format from the first three in the series. Swords and Sandals 4 offers a multi-player option, allowing players to challenge each other. There are three slots to play as in the game; players can battle against the computer, a friend, or a combination of the two in this three-player game. While the duels are nearly identical, the game is run in an altogether new direction and plays heavily on teasing RPG (role-playing games) players in general. Players are represented by some conceivably "nerdy" characters playing a role-playing-board game in a pub.
The game follows in turns of rolling the dice, taking the move, and responding to the space upon which he has landed. Many spaces involve duels, where players choose which of their opponents they would like to duel for monetary gain or to the death. The game counts duel victories, gold earned, and other notable rewards from the board toward the final score. When one player reaches the end of the game board, these items are tallied, and the winner is revealed. Since the game consists of an infinite number of opponents, the replay factor of Swords and Sandals 4 goes beyond many other online games.
The final edition of the saga of the Swords and Sandals Games is Swords and Sandals: Crusader. The game is vastly different in its approach to battle than its cousins. As the name suggests, this game is not about Gladiators, but about Crusades. The players travel a map in a quest to take over neighbouring lands by defeating their enemy and his troops in battles. Players take turns making moves, digging for hidden gold in newly acquired lands, or challenging their opponent to a battle over land. Players take the reigns as Commander-In-Chief of the armies and direct their every move in battle. Each stage has a goal, be it monetary or otherwise, to accomplish before moving onto the next round.
Swords and Sandals 1-4 and Crusaders are created by 3RDSENSE and are free online games. Each game has a unique format, but all rely heavily on brilliant programming, writing, and artistry. Players come to expect a certain level of humour from the Swords and Sandals pack of games and none of this group will disappoint. The only problem players will face is the inevitable difficulty choosing which game to play.