The Guild and The Guild II

Genre: Simulation / Economy / Strategy
Developer: JoWood
Gamemode: Singleplayer / Multiplayer

The development of The Guild III gives reason to check back on the quality of The Guild and The Guild II. While The Guild, released 2005, was only a singleplayer and a Lan multiplay, The Guild II, released 2006, could also be multiplayed and featured an open end game play. Both games were about building up your own dynasty and getting rich by crafting, using science, trading, theft and political influence. While the first Guild game was more of a hunt for fame and money with a lot of micromanagement and tasks The Guild II got more expansions, but most of them use the same maps, which makes them kinda stupid. Only the Venice Add-on had very few new maps.

Both games start out with character building and the choice of town. You will also have to choose some useful attributes and level those ongoing while you are gaining experience. Get rid of your competitors, build up your business and expand your home to protect it from fire and theft. Get involved into the development of your city by applying for a political administration job.

On the market you can buy helpful items to level up some of your skills faster and get faster influence at the authorities. While you could gain some extra money in the pub in The Guild, you can't use this option in The Guild II which makes it far harder to start. Both games are time consuming and complex and have tactical social elements. Both games simulate life and your professional success. While dealing with the law you need to handle town politics and rivalries between families. Once you got a kid it can take over your dynasty if you die.

The successor The Guild II plays also in the 15th century. Additionally to the character creation options you could choose now also a sign of zodiac that gave you a bonus on one attribute. You can choose the amount of playing time by the aim you choose. Compared to The Guild this game is missing some missions to motivate the players. The handling of the buildings is more complicated than at The Guild and by this you'll faster decide to let the KI handle them. To expand your business you'll need to buy titles at the town hall.

The graphic is at both games pretty, but meanwhile completely outdated and you'll jump from building to building to take care of everything or will just walk around town. The Guild has far less bugs than The Guild II. One of the problems you'll soon face is to find a partner in town, because if the person is poor and got not even average good attributes it is kinda frustrating to watch how your children are not really upgrading at their talents. Fortunately you can put in both games your character for learning and gaining experience into your home. You can get pretty annoyed by the countless bugs at The Guild II, so either be prepared for that (there is a patch also that was created by the users and the download for it gets meanwhile rare) or don't buy it. The Guild III is still in Early Access right now and people already complain about the bugs they encounter there, so we can not recommend that game yet.

We recommend: If you like economic simulations, The Guild is a must have!