Balance the evacuation of your people and the rebuilding of Atlantis in this race against time
Over the years, quite a few casual games have been released that focus on the mythology of the lost city of Atlantis. Whether the games detail its destruction or later discovery by scientists, there tends to be a focus on how or why the city was ultimately lost. In Legends of Atlantis: Exodus, we don’t have to make guesses or assumptions, as we’re transported directly back to the beginning of the island’s isolated Armageddon, as earthquakes, tidal waves and more threaten to wipe out the culture’s inhabitants, history and even the very land upon which both have been built.
Legends of Atlantis: Exodus plays as a level-based time management game, with a very small selection of mini-games scattered in between. Each level has a different layout and set of goals, but most revolve around you trying to build a road or bridges (out of wood, stone, etc.) to allow trapped Atlanteans to escape their isolation while collecting Atlantean artifacts or plant-life for safe-keeping along the way. There’s a balance between saving and evacuating the island’s inhabitants and trying to rebuild what’s left of Atlantis’ culture that doesn’t make much sense at first (that is, if the island is doomed, why should we work to repair its buildings?), until you realize that the island’s benevolent Queen has yet to give up all hope.
Completing tasks in each level requires strategy and forethought, as you’ll be given a mostly limited supply of resources like water, stone, wood and energy crystals. Many of these items can be recharged over time by building like structures (wood comes from a sawmill, stone from a quarry and so on), but building these structures requires resources as well. It’s entirely possible to spend your finite resources on the wrong things at the beginning of a level, backing yourself into a corner where it’s impossible to move on – but you can simply restart the level and try again if you make such an oversight.
You’ll be able to recruit more workers along the way, upgrade buildings to make them more productive, and even take out robbers who look to loot the city’s remaining resources while you have been weakened. Coincidentally, the entire gameplay setup here is incredibly similar to Monument Builders: Titanic, another time-management game that launched just a few weeks ago, but the requirements here are a bit more repetitive than in the former. Still, you’ll explore different areas of Atlantis in chunks of levels, so while one level might be set in a grassy swampland, the next could be found in the dry deserts or in crystalized caverns.
As for the mini-games, these come in the form of light hidden object scenes (where multiple units of each object are hidden, making them incredibly easy to complete) or match three levels where you’ll need to drop orbs onto others to gather excess energy crystals for future use (as examples). Ultimately, these shallow levels feel more than a bit unnecessary and tacked on, and can therefore be easily passed and forgotten in favor of getting back to the main tasks at hand.
Ultimately Legends of Atlantis: Exodus is a very solid time management game which, while a bit repetitive, comes with incredibly crisp and enjoyable graphics (including support for widescreen play) and a detailed storyline when compared to others in the genre. Levels can be challenging or even impossible to complete if you’re not careful in your actions, but that leads to a real sense of satisfaction when you figure out the pattern or order to achieve overall success. If you’ve played similar titles in the time management genre, or are just a fan of the myths and folklore of Atlantis, Legends of Atlantis: Exodus is an enjoyable experience from beginning to end.