ReviewGods vs. Humans


Gods vs. Humans

Developer: Artefacts Studio
Publisher: Zallag

Release Date: 11/08/2010

ESRB: E

Genre: strategy
Setting: mythical

Game_27_1191

Whimsical. That’s the word that keeps buzzing around my head when I look to describe Gods vs. Humans. It’s similar to other games I’ve played but, at the same time, holds its own uniqueness, its own quirkiness that, to me, sets it apart and makes it both exciting and fun. You start each level in the guise of a deity within a certain era of human civilization. Of course, with a name like Gods vs. Humans, there’s got to be a little bit of conflict between the two aforementioned groups of beings, yes? If you said yes, which I’m pretty sure you did, then you’re right.

As you soon learn, upon gaining the identity at first of an Egyptian god, the humans are building a tower in order to reach the heavens. This is a bad thing for you and your fellow gods. You can’t have humans simply running amok throughout your kingdom in the clouds. So, instead, you wreak havoc on their building, utilizing your various powers, which range from massive green fireballs (of fiery burning death, of course), to massive rain storms, sandstorms and the like. Game_27_1188

Although, don’t pass this game off as simply a “zap anything that moves” sort of a title. Well, you can, but you’ll find that if you play it that way, you won’t get too far. Since you’re a god, you have followers. And, you also have those who dislike you. Luckily, you’ve got helpful spells at your disposal (aside from the fiery burning death) to gain followers. This, in turn, gains you the ability to cast more powerful spells, which in turn gains you the ability to topple the humans’ tower in that level.

These more peaceful spells range from summoning a lovely lady to walk past builders of the tower and distract them, summoning a mummy to scare away tower builders and putting up scarecrows to force foreman and evil priests to flee. I usually tried to pacify the evil priests or counteract their influence with the summoning of the lovely lady.

Besides the simple fact that evil priests are in fact well ... evil, evil priests should be counteracted because they affect the overall amount that the humans like you. The more humans like you then the slower they’ll work, the more your meter for using spells will increase, and the faster you’ll destroy all that they hold dear. That is, if the sole thing they love in life happens to be the building project they’re working on, the tower leading to the heavens with the purpose of reaching the deities that are trying to rain down architecture-decimating doom. Game_27_1189

Since various spells are at your disposal Gods vs. Humans offers quite a few ways to dismantle each level’s tower. You can choose to avoid attacking any humans directly with spells — a fun challenge and achievement worthy — or go full force and just chuck fireballs in any ol’ section of the construction site. Granted, I normally went with using the lovely lady as a distraction to boost my meter and use the extra spell power to go from there, but you have a lot of options for how to go about the task of demolition.

I really enjoyed that I wasn’t able to resort solely to a single repeated attack and had to think about what spell to use. On certain floors of the tower, I wasn’t able to use certain spells. For example, I couldn’t use a lightning bolt since one dastardly human held up a magnet to deflect the attack while wearing a wicked little grin. That magnitude of a statement (pun intended, although it could’ve been a lightning rod he used) leads me to what I loved most about the game that played into the spell deflection. Game_27_1192

The art style in Gods vs. Humans is fantastically, well, cute. It’s odd to say about a game that deals with blowing things up, deities, scaring off workers, throwing fireballs and hurling lightning bolts, but it’s true. There’s a very cool unique feel about this game that when you look at the art alone, it just says fun. Then you find out that you’re using different powers of the gods to destroy the architecture yet not decimate your followers, and the complexity ramps up to beyond “hey this is cute, it should be easy.”

The overall goal is to destroy the humans’ engineering marvel and use whatever means necessary. But, not every level is the same and isn’t exactly super easy. You’ll come across the previously noted human with the ability to deflect your spell, but you’ll also get to levels that involve defeating one of the human champions. These are humans decked out in armor with a steed ready to storm the heavenly gates with all their might. 617338_20110120_640screen001

On these missions, which I found challenging and a lot of fun, you’ll be simply trying to destroy the champion’s armor, nevermind the tower. This is where you’ll be tasked with using different spells in combination to gain enough power to continue to barrage the champion to oblivion. The little devil’s fast, and sometimes I thought my followers really needed to ramp up their feelings on just how awesome a deity I was just to get enough on the meter to throw a few more fireballs.

Gods vs. Humans looks great, and overall, the art mixes well with the animations, storyline panels, spells, the look of the humans ... it all looks quirky and fun. I really felt this game hit the nail on the head as far as being quick and easy to play (it was pretty much all mouse-driven), and it was a lot of fun finding out what deity would get what spell, how to defeat each level with what spells, etc. Yep, I’d still say it’s whimsical. Whimsical, fantastic fun and a definite recommendation.

Other Articles By This Author

About the Author, Joseph Smits (A.K.A josephsmits)

Joseph Smits always had a passion for games and has been greatly interested in the creation and development of entertainment software. With a BA in Game Design and love for both games and writing, this Colorado native is more at home with RPG and RTS games but doesn't mind getting his butt whomped at Halo and Street Fighter now and then.