Solium Infernum


Solium Infernum is a remake of the acclaimed turn-based strategy game originally released on PC in 2009 and now remade by League of Geeks, the team who previously developed Armello. I haven’t played the original, so I can’t really make a comparison, but what I found in Solium Infernum is a very interesting 4X strategy game with some pretty unique mechanics. At first glance, the game seems like the perfect marriage between Civilization and Game of Thrones with a dark setting and a great focus on diplomacy. The story takes place in Hell immediately after Satan (the Prince of Darkness) mysteriously disappears. In this infernal land multiple factions fight against each other for the control of the throne; these factions are guided by 8 different Archfiends, each one with different stats and playstyles, but also customizable with relics that provide different bonuses and must be equipped before the start of the game. The tutorial is quite lengthy and explains everything in great detail, yet due to the complexity of the game it takes some time to learn mechanics, understand Archfiends pros & cons and how to build an effective strategy, so you will inevitably fail a lot. I’m saying this because if you are not a lover of strategy games, this certainly isn’t an easy game to start with the genre.

You start by picking one of the Archfiends and the goal is to take control of the throne, but there are many ways to achieve it. The standard route, also suggested by the game, would be winning through democratic election. After a certain number of turns, the Conclave declares the player with the highest Prestige (a sort of reputation that can be increased in many ways) as the winner. You can also manipulate the Conclave by lying and cheating, but in this case, you must equip a specific relic which changes the objectives of your entire campaign, essentially pushing you to befriend another Archfiend and betray him at the end, stealing the victory. There are of course less diplomatic options for winning. You can try to take the throne by force and conquer Pandaemonium, the capital of Hell. This isn’t an easy task, because the city is heavily guarded and you only have a chance after becoming strong enough, so probably very late in the campaign. The other brutal way of winning is by eliminating all Archfiends by taking down their strongholds, which is a really difficult job, especially when playing online against real players.

Regardless of your course of action, the gameplay is all about manipulating and gaining an advantage over your enemies. You only have one stronghold during the game and you can capture tiles by ending a turn with a legion standing there. Capturing tiles is a basic but recurrent mechanic because it can block enemies’ access to important places. You can’t really enter into battle against enemies without any reason, but you can easily fake one, for example by insulting your rival or demanding a tribute and then declaring a “vendetta” (essentially a declaration of war), which allows you to obtain prestige by conquering the enemies’ tiles and destroying their legions. Capturing Points of Power on the map (before other enemies) is another effective way of quickly obtaining prestige. At the beginning of the game, you only have two slots available for orders, which for example you can use for moving your legions, performing magic rituals, voting an edict and having diplomatic talks with your rivals. With time, you can unlock more slots (up to 6) and upgrade your Archfiend abilities, expanding the possibilities of your strategy.

Single player offers a skirmish mode where you play against the AI and the Chronicles mode, which is a series of 8 specific scenarios where you play as each of the Archfiend and must face continuously growing challenges. A classic online PvP mode is also available, but one of the best features is the impressive asynchronous multiplayer mode, which allows you to play a game that can potentially last for weeks or even months, but you can close the game and when you open it the next time you can see the consequences of your orders and those from other players. It’s a really a fun alternative to standard multiplayer mode, well suited for those who don’t have enough time to play long sessions but are willing to dedicate some time to play against other players. The game also sends notifications from Steam (client and mobile app) to remind you about your turn, which is really a useful feature.

Graphically speaking, the game looks quite good, even though the Archfiends look a bit cartoonish. The artwork for your units, item and event cards is also very beautiful, better than the actual 3D design. The PC version seems to be greatly polished and fortunately I didn’t encounter any noticeable bugs.

Solium Infernum is one of those strategic games that is better experienced with online players, because the Archfiends’ basic stats and playstyle can be subverted by the individual choices of each player who can keep your stress and paranoia high all the time. The AI isn’t that impressive unfortunately, so single player mode can be less fun, especially after more playthroughs, but still, this is a very particular strategy game that stands out for its charming setting and its complex system.

Review written by Sonic Punk for

Solium Infernum Steam Store Page


+ Offers plenty of choices for different strategies
+ Unique gameplay mechanics for a strategy game
+ The asynchronous multiplayer mode is fantastic
+ Beautiful art and visuals


- It takes time and commitment to learn, especially for less experienced players
- AI should have been way better

Review Summary

Solium Infernum is a pretty unique strategy game with a charming setting and complex gameplay focused on diplomacy and betrayal. Best experienced against other online players.

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Zeepond Rating: 8/10