Empire: Total War
Third party DRM: SteamThis game requires a free Steam account to play.
This game requires Steam(TM) in order to install and run and so cannot be traded or refunded.
"a streamlined work of strategic genius." - GameSpy.com
"the closest thing we have seen to a perfect game in ages on the PC" - GameFocus.ca
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Dominate the 18th century on land and sea. Command the seas, control the land, forge a new nation, and conquer the globe. Empire: Total War takes the Total War franchise to the eighteenth century Age of Enlightenment — a time of political upheaval, military advancements, and radical thought, captured in stunning detail in Empire: Total War.
Empire: Total War introduces a host of revolutionary new features, including true 3D naval combat. For the first time in the Total War series, you will be able to intuitively command single ships or vast fleets upon seascapes rich with extraordinary water and weather effects that play a huge role in your eventual glorious success or ignominious defeat. After pummelling your enemy with cannon fire, close in to grapple their ship and prepare to board, taking control of your men as they fight hand-to-hand on the decks of these wooden behemoths.
In addition, Empire: Total War will see further enhancements to the Total War series’ signature 3D battles and turn-based campaign map. Real-time battles will pose new challenges with the addition of cannon and musket, challenging players to master new formations and tactics as a result of the increasing role of gunpowder within warfare. And the Campaign Map — for many, the heart of Total War — introduces a variety of new and upgraded elements, including new systems for Trade, Diplomacy and Espionage with agents; a refined and streamlined UI; improved Advisors; and a vastly extended scope, taking in the riches of India, the turbulence of Europe and, for the first time, the untapped potential of the United States of America.
- Take command on the high seas. New real-time 3D naval warfare takes Total War's unparalleled battle action to the high seas, with players commanding single ships or vast fleets.
- Become a founding father. Starting in 1700 — The era of warfare across oceans, revolution and the founding of the United States.
- All new graphics engine and technology features staggering real-time seascapes, new advanced landscape and flora systems, and dynamic weather.
Diamond in the Roughlairdjaren | Dec. 7, 2013 | See all lairdjaren's reviews »
The total war series is predicated on (to my mind) a winning format that integrates two kinds of games. The strategy map is a methodical turn-based affair where you build up your infrastructure and armies. But when armies clash, the game switches to real-time where you must direct your troops on a "realistic" battlefield (assuming you are a giant, all-seeing eye that can instantaneously issue orders). Half the fun is just sitting back and watching your cavalry mow into the rear of a numerically larger enemy troop formation causing the lot to flee in terror.
So that being said, if you are new to the total war series, Empire is probably not for you. Empire has all those elements and more; it is is certainly more complex than its predecessors. While certainly not more complex than a Paradox Interactive title, Empire's new elements obscure the core gameplay and probably wouldn't be the best introduction to the series. Try shogun 2, and if you absolutely need firearms, Fall of the Samurai picks up where Empire leaves off in gunpowder based battles.
Still here? For devotees of the Total War, Empire takes the series to its grandest stage yet as befitting the time period. There are three linked campaign maps and a number of oceanic trade sectors. The massive scale and the substructuring of unique trade resources to each sector allows for far more freedom on choosing how you want to play. Most total war games are about expanding as fast as your standing armies can replenish only held in check with "artificial" in-game mechanics (e.g. SPOILER Rome: civil war event; Medieval 2: the pope/excommunication; Shogun 2: after kyoto END SPOILERS). In Empire, you have the flexibility of exploring different strategies, such as staying small and securing trade resources, keeping overhead low and building alliance networks through trade deals. Throw in the government type, class conflicts, and revolution mechanics (no more dull grey rebel cities) and there is a lot more space for campaign strategy.
Empire has its share of rough spots. Focusing on the new ones: Infrastructure improvements are generic (all factions are broadly similar), one-dimensional (few branches mostly just upgrading to max), and worst of all, dispersed. Instead of everything upgradable at the capital as in every other total war game, you will need to check every individual farm, workshop, mine, etc., which becomes a complete chore as you get larger.
Armies too are broadly generic. You will mostly play and fight against similarly equipped armies/navies with only a few unique units with recruitment limits. This blandness is mitigated somewhat in campaign because the tech tree will take a long time develop, so choosing which to branches can lead to some variation at any given point in the game (e.g. one faction developing bayonets, while another goes for rank fire drill). In fact, the tech development is more rewarding because upgrades affect the tactics available to a unit rather than a blanket +attack/+defense.
Also, battles are typically much slower and grueling affairs. Most battles will be about methodically (re)positioning your units to improve your firing position while minimizing your exposure. Cavalry charges will know be about disrupting enemy firing rhythm rather than inflicting heavy casualties. Expect the sea battles to be much the same -- except when your first class heavy lights up an enemy schooner with a full salvo.
A plucky element loss in empire is that your generals and agents will no longer have those wacky awesome abilities or those amusing little cutscenes making things a bit drab.
So there you have it, If your up to trying out a more open and challenging campaign that isn't just about taking over the world as fast as possible, Empire Total War might just be for you.
Good could have been greatGlyndwr | Sept. 21, 2013 | See all Glyndwr's reviews »
I enjoy the setting and timeframe of Empire, it also has a great sense of scale but this does seem to be one of the problems. Improving buildings has become a lot more awkward in this game. With a large empire too much time is spent trying to find all the buildings to upgrade that will be useful and keeping track of what can be trained where. The game can also run slow on the campaign map sometimes with a large empire. Battles are as good as always and a lot of fun with good gunpowder units. Naval battles are a nice addition, although they do take some getting used to at first. The AI on campaign map can be frustrating particularly with regards to diplomacy but this is often a weak part of AI I find in many games of a similar type.
A must for your collectionbala1201 | Sept. 9, 2013 | See all bala1201's reviews »
This game is not the best of the Total wars. Well, they tried something new, shattered maps, travelling between continents, sea routes, colonies. For me it is a bit messy and complicated for the first try, but after a few hours (and some restarts) you will be addicted.
The Least Popular of the SeriesBronYrAurStomp | Aug. 24, 2013 | See all BronYrAurStomp's reviews »
Empire Total War is possibly the largest game in the series in terms of map scale (Including games since). When playing the game you can't help but feel Creative Assembly over-stretched themselves. Most of the bugs the game launched with have been patched out, yet many still remain. Land battles remain entertaining as always, especially now with gun powder however siege battles are a dull affair sadly. Naval battles are extremely boring and you will quickly decide to start auto resolving those, which is a shame. Being able to battle in a variety of continents is the games greatest strength.
A real gemtojeto | Aug. 21, 2013 | See all tojeto's reviews »
Bought this game about three years ago, but never really had the time to really get into it. Recently I started playing it more and it is in fact a really addictive game. Was playing with Maratha Confederacy and watching us spread from India accross the Europe is really something...you will need some time to get used to the in-game mechanics, but i assure you it is worth it. The battlefield part of the game is graphically wise really good and very fun to play. It is really fun watching your cannon crew reloading the cannons from maximum zoom or watching cavalry clashing with enemy troops. I strongly recommend this game