Staten Island, NY, May 30th, 2007 - Matrix Games (www.matrixgames.com) and Western Civilization Software (www.west-civ.com) are pleased to announce that the long-awaited new update for Forge of Freedom, The American Civil War 1861-1865, is now available for download. This major upgrade includes improvements to the game normally reserved for an expansion pack, free to all owners of Forge of Freedom.
Since the original release, the development team has been listening carefully to customer feedback and improving all areas of the game to improve historicity and gameplay and the result is a change list of over 300 items that mostly consists of gameplay tweaks and improvements. Two new scenarios are included, with more historical orders of battle and historical economic and population levels. A vastly improved AI opponent that is better able to think outside the box now makes both strategic and tactical play much more challenging.
David Heath, Director of Operations at Matrix Games, said â€œForge of Freedom is an outstanding game and simulation of the American Civil War. Wargamers will be delighted with this remarkably comprehensive upgrade, which elevates the gameplay and historical accuracy to a whole new level.â€
All known issues have been fixed, including a retreat bug and a few interface bugs. Seven new game options have been added and a unit history, battle history and animated battle overview are now available, along with a new Replay function for PBEM games. Sieges, Diplomacy and Combat have all been improved with more options and richer gameplay and better reporting. Disease and attrition rules have been improved to scale more realistically. The handling of Generals has been overhauled and the generals database has been reviewed for accuracy and 175 new historical biographies have been added for generals on both sides.
Eric Babe, Lead Developer at Western Civilization Software, stated, â€œWeâ€™ve put roughly five months of development time into the upgrades included in this new version. Virtually every aspect of the game has been improved in response to player feedback and the new scenarios add to the experience. We hope everyone enjoys the new upgraded Forge of Freedom as much as we enjoyed working on it.â€
More than seven-score years have passed since the start of this conflict that pitted state against state, brother against brother and broke the chains of slavery. Forge of Freedom gives you a chance to relive history from either side in a work of grand strategy.
As the leader of the Union or the Confederacy, you will be faced with historical decisions on the military, economic and diplomatic strategies to pursue. The diplomatic and economic systems have been streamlined and improved since Crown of Glory to be more user-friendly and also suited to the period. Rather than multiple minor nations, each state has its own Governor and they will make demands on you and shift their attitudes according to events. In addition, you will have to manage diplomacy with the European powers to try to sway them towards or against intervention. Over 1,000 historical generals are included along with an option to know their abilities ahead of time or have to find out the hard way, as happened historically. Railroads, rivers and cities all play important roles, as do elections which occur at both state and national levels. Every effort has been made to bring you as thorough a simulation of the American Civil War as is possible, from 1860 to 1865, from the skirmishes and raids in the West to the pitched in the East and the Naval blockade.
Grand Strategy combined with Detailed Tactical Battles
Highly customizable gameplay via dozens of in-game options
Military, Diplomatic and Economic Decisions
Research Logistics, Tactics, Weaponry and other areas
Quick, Instant or Detailed Resolution of Battles
Detailed Combat supports Historical Leaders, Unit Morale, Diverse Unit Types, Command and Control, Weather, Smoke, Reinforcements, and more!
Streamlined Economics include Money, Labor, Horses, Iron, Guns and Railroads
Naval and Land Combat, including Sieges, Raiders, Partisans, Plundering, Interceptions, Fleet Combat, Port Attacks and Blockades
National Will and a historical Victory Point system
Computer Opponent plays either side
Diplomacy with Britain, France and Europe for trade and possible military intervention
Weather, Logistics, Fog of War
Play against the AI, via PBEM, LAN or hotseat
Standard Campaign from 1861-1865 as well three other historical scenarios with starting dates from July, 1861 to November, 1861, each balanced for a different playstyle.
For more information, check the main Matrix Games page at www.matrixgames.com and the Western Civilization Software website at www.west-civ.com.
The v1.9.23 Update is a Comprehensive Update which can be applied to all previous versions of Forge of Freedom. It can be downloaded from the Matrix Games Latest Downloads section at http://www.matrixgames.com/games/latestfiles.asp.
ABOUT MATRIX GAMES
Matrix Games produces, markets and publishes historical wargames as well as other computer gaming products. Since 2000, Matrix Games has published over three dozen titles and several award-winning games, including War in the Pacific, Conquest of the Aegean, Gary Grigsby's World At War: A World Divided, Crown of Glory, Battles In Normandy, Harpoon 3 Advanced Naval Warfare, Starshatter: The Gathering Storm and The Operational Art of War III. Matrix Games is based in Staten Island, New York. For more information, visit the Matrix Games website at www.matrixgames.com.