The iOS port of Rome: Total War – Barbarian Invasion ($4.99), the standalone expansion pack of the cult classic PC strategy title Rome: Total War ($9.99), has been one of the most eagerly anticipated upcoming releases over the past few months. While Barbarian Invasion still retains the meticulous empire-building emphasis of its predecessor, the implementation of some interesting new mechanics, as well as the subtle yet dramatic change in the historical context, gave the expansion its own unique identity that saw it achieve critical acclaim when it first launched in 2005. Feral Interactive did an excellent job in porting the original Rome: Total War to the App Store, and it seems this trend has continued with Barbarian Invasion, which has today launched for only $4.99 on the iPad and should please not only those looking for a more in-depth strategy experience on-the-go, but also any fans of the original PC release.
For anyone unfamiliar with the Rome: Total War — Barbarian Invasion expansion pack, instead of being set at the apex of the Roman Empire’s strength, the game takes place from 363 AD as the Barbarian races fight back in an attempt to reclaim lost frontiers. You have the choice of playing as either one of the aforementioned rebel leaders, or returning to the position as a Roman General in a desperate attempt at perpetuating your empire into its golden era, against the grave challenges that it faces in this difficult new age. As well as this interesting new dynamic, there are clashes between Christianity, Paganism and Zoroastrianism religions, and the debut of the brand new Horde mechanic, which forces your faction to raid and plunder opposing settlements to sustain its nomadic and mobile nature. For only $4.99, there’s a lot of game to Barbarian Invasion, and certainly an essential purchase for any strategy fans with a compatible iPad. Download Rome: Total War – Barbarian Invasion on the App Store now, and let us know your initial thoughts and impressions on the iOS port on our forum thread.