Warriors of Sword and Spell is an RPG turn-based strategy game. Set in a medieval fantasy world, it presents an engaging story, character development, supernatural enemies, plus all the elements one expects to find in a game of this type. There are two game modes available, Campaign, consisting of a story divided in ten chapters, and Hotseat, a multiplayer mode with goal-oriented levels where you can choose the playing area.
The story starts when your kingdom is attacked by hordes of goblins who destroyed outspots and villages. Your troops are not prepared for combat and the enemy outnumbers your small army, as most part of it is scattered in far away lands. The king decides, nonetheless, to fight with the available men, so you and a small group of footmen and pikemen set off to fight the invaders.
Once the battlefield, you take turns with your opponent to move troops around and explore a vast map collecting treasures, spells, and resources while you attempt to capture castles and defeat enemies. Creatures to defeat include goblins, giant spiders, vampires, shamans, ghosts, skeletons, etc., each one with different powers and some with special abilities. Battles take place in a screen where soldiers fight face to face and the spells gathered come into play.
Your army can be improved in different ways; every time you level up you can choose a new ability for your commander, which can make soldiers more resistant to attacks, make spells more effective, or give commanders more knowledge about tactics. With the resources earned, you can upgrade your castles, recruit more soldiers, and upgrade your commander.
The game is quite easy to learn, and if you're not familiar with this genre the tutorial is the best way to get started. It will teach you how to move around the map, how to collect resources (gold, iron, etc.), and how a battle is carried out. Game controls are quite simple; you select your troop with your mouse and the game will show you the directions where it can move. As you advance, unexplored parts of the area will be revealed, and you can scroll the map using the keyboard arrows or the right button of your mouse. The statistics bar at the bottom of the screen will keep track of collected resources, spells earned, troops, etc. There is also a menu with options to save/load a game and review objectives. Unfortunately, you can't save more than one game, there is only one slot available.
The game is huge and there are plenty of tricks and details that are not covered in the tutorial, and which you should learn along the way, mostly through trial and error. It would have been helpful if there was a guide with extra information and a more detailed description of armies, commanders, spells, soldier recruitment, etc.
According to its developer, WSS focuses on playability rather than on impressive visuals, in fact, it uses some rudimentary drawings and simple animations. However, the game manages to create a medieval, epic atmosphere by means of a nice, fitting soundtrack. If you give it a try, you will discover a challenging game that will surprise you with its absorbing gameplay and story.