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Kosumi a Work of Art
By: Blair Morris | Game Data | 3:11pm, January 6, 2006
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For years most gamers have grown accustomed to games venturing into a more mature setting and game-play. At times, most of these games use extreme violence, sexual themes, and vulgar language to hide behind a poorly developed project. However, every so often, a game does come along that is mature in nature, but does not exploit any deviant actions. In Kosumi, you get a mature-minded game, except you won't see any bloodshed, sexual services, and in-game vulgarity (unless through the individual gamer). What you do get with Kosumi is a game that challenges a mature audience to actually think about their immediate actions and plan for the unexpected actions of others.

Kosumi is a strategic game at it's finest. Set in medieval Japan, you'll control one of 15 different clans to gain honor and dominance. With numerous characters of different rank and multiple commands for each at the control of your finger tips, you'll be using any vital skills you have in diplomacy and strategic planning to control ancient land of Japan. Though before I give you the impression that all you'll be doing is taking just conquering cities and villages throughout the land, you will also need to build up any lands you may control in order to conquer others. Using an intertwined system of resources for each command you give, you'll need to make sure anything under your control is producing enough gold and food to keep you army and officers strong and efficient.

When taking control of a clan, you'll be able to perform numerous tasks. From hiring other characters to increasing your production of gold and food, you'll be playing around for weeks or months to best figure out what's best to use in different circumstances. Having a character with great influence over the lands will help to conquer other cities from neutral to ones owned by others. Also you'll be keeping track of the level of each diplomat you have since some level will not be able to do what others can, as well as being successful as others. There are different ranks and titles of the diplomats and characters you'll have, all having unique commands as well, and each having their own unique strengths and weaknesses to certain events.

The game's intelligence is something you'll need to take into account as well. There are various obstacles you'll have to figure out to overcome in order to complete some commands. In example, you obviously cannot cross rivers or lakes on foot, so coming up with a plan to overcome these obstacles to get to a desired destination is needed. Intelligence will be an ongoing theme for anyone playing the game. If it's the actually game itself, to the individual playing, it's more-or-less a new take on the game of chess with an implementation of battle plans, diplomacy, planning for a thriving city, and so on.

With the advance and in depth commands and overall interface within the game, you can easily get lost. Acknowledging this, the developer of Kosumi as spent a great deal of time incorporating a detailed tutorial, hands-on format and video/audio format, which ever best suits you. The tutorial is very useful for those that are just starting out and is highly encourage to anyone just starting out.

In this turn-based strategy, one of the more important skills you'll need to possess is patience. Kosumi is geared for those with busy lives since all the time you'll really need to spend on the game is five minutes setting up your next turns. If you're looking for a fast-paced game with constant action, you'll probably be turned off within a matter of minutes with the game. Though, if you're someone that only has a couple of days in the week to actually play a game, Kosumi was developed for you.

I don't mean to imply that all there is to do within the game is spend five minutes submitting your commands for the next turn day, you'll also be able to communicate with your allies and enemies within the game. You'll also find a solitary game of Kosumi which is basically a training ground to become more familiar with the commands and actions of all the different clans. Also, depending on how open your schedule is, there's more than just one game to play. You'll be able to choose various games that all have different times for their turns. These games range for three times a week to every other week. This will also give you the chance to join a game that best fits your busy schedule.

If you're expecting the game to blow you away graphically, think again. That's not to say the visuals in Kosumi aren't pleasing. The visual look of Kosumi fits its theme and setting, as well as, the nature of the game. The game doesn't need to over load you with visually stunning graphics to impressive you, the game handles that nicely overall. There's also no audio, aside from the video/audio tutorials, but again, there's no need for any.

There is barely any fault to find in Kosumi if you're a fan of its style of play. The best way to describe the game is a work of an art in the gaming community. As movies such as Citizen Kane and Schindler's List are consider works of art in the movie industry, Kosumi can be considered the same in the massive multiplayer online community. Actually, I'd go as far as saying that this is the best strategic online multiplayer game to come out in the past year.

If you're searching for a game of patience, intelligence, and cunningness, then you've found on in Kosumi. With so many "strategic" games out there, this one stands out the most in terms of actual game-play and the ability to use that organ in your head called the brain. Definitely a breath of fresh air for those looking for a mature experience without seeing the violence and adult themes we've grown accustomed to in recent years.

9.4 Gameplay 999 9
Replayability 999 9
Interface 999 9
Community 101010 10
Reviewer's Tilt 101010 10
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