|All Life magic, all the time.|
Part of the reason that Master of Magic is still an enjoyable game today is work by the community. Some very dedicated fans released a patch to update the AI and fix some bugs back in 2010, which I've used each time I reinstalled the game in the last few years. There's another update that's new this year as well, though I haven't tried that one yet. These patches are largely a way to update the AI for the computer players, who have a hard time properly making use of the complexity available in the game.
|The outcome was never really in doubt, of course!|
The game has plenty of less-than-ideal characteristics as well, of course, even leaving aside the obvious one of its advanced age. The higher difficulty levels are largely implemented as simply giving the AI a whole bunch of extra resources, so a player who can win on Hard might get simply overwhelmed on Impossible. (The community patches help, but it can still be an issue.) There are certain combinations that are way overpowered - Undead War Trolls was always my favorite - so it's necessary to avoid those if you'd like a challenge. And the game can really drag on past the point where you have the obvious victory, since you must either defeat all opposing wizards or cast the Spell of Mastery (which takes a very long time to research and cast).
|Fairly poor score, but then, I wasn't really trying to run it up.|
Revisiting older favorite games doesn't always work well - the technology changes, our perceptions are different, and our tastes change. But Master of Magic has always held up for me, and it was fun to have an excuse to pull it out again.