Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Rise of Nations

Well then, my blog appears to be filling up. Third article: Rise of Nations review.

Okay, I'm not about to write an academic thesis here. Rise of Nations is the latest strategy video game from Microsoft and also with assistance from Sid Meirs (of Civilization fame) . With this in mind, it has been hailed as a cross between Age of Empires and Civilization. However, in reality it is much more alike to Age of Empires in terms of interface at least.

You start with a small city, build another city and another and gradually create a nation with a strong economy that can be used to build an army that you will use to battle with and defeat your opponent. To do this, you create citizens that will gather resources of food (from farms), timber (from trees) and metal (from mountains) with wealth being generated by markets and caravans. Along with this, they will also be used to construct the necessary buildings to aid in national development. If you have played Age of Empires, then this will no doubt sound like a familiar format.

Where this game comes into its own however, is with age advances. Unlike the Age of Empire series which deals with ages in separate titles; in Rise of Nations you can work your way up from ancient times (stick and stone armies) right up to the current day Information age (Nuclear weapons, Tanks, Stealth Bombers etc) - all in the space of a single 1 hour game! This adds a considerable amount of depth to the game and a considrably larger variety of units than any Age of Empires title offers.

Along with this, you also have the concept of national borders which expand with cultural influence and number of cities. Providing you have researched attrition, any opposition army that walks within your borders without a supply wagon will suffer damage. No doubt that this is a game concept that has been imported from Civilization 3.

Another game concept from the Civ series is that of Wonders. As you advance through the ages you can construct Wonders of the World from the pyramids to the space program. Each wonder gives you some sort of additional advantage. For example, the space program reveals the entire map for you and enables you to see where all your opponents troops are located.

So, what else does this game offer? Well, you have the nations themselves. You can select from a variety of nations to play with: British, Spanish, Inca, Germans, Russians, Japanese, Chinese, French, Bantu, Mongols etc. Although curiously America is not included within the game. Each nation comes with its set of unique units and special powers - not to mention national architecture.

The graphics are nice, with detailed units and landscapes. With water vessels you can see the reflection of the units in the sea. The sound is of reasonable quality too. You can hear pretty much every gun shot and bomb dropped. Although, I do think the in game music could have been better.

I also feel that a greater degree of strength could have been given to defending nations in the form of city walls or trenches. Once your opponent attacks, there is little you can do to stop his army from waltzing right into your cities. Once your defensive army has been breached then it is pretty much game set and match.

It is a good game but perhaps has been justly criticized for being a little bit like Age of Empires. Although, the different ages give the game a great deal more depth and unit variety. The game would have also benefited from a few more defensive features to aid in defense of nation. The solo conquer the world game (whereby you try and conquer the real world with a nation) is slightly easy with tribute cards and alliances. To defeat any powerful nation you simply invade their capital nation with a lot of armies so that you outnumber them in the actual battle.

But overall, I liked this game. It is a good game but could have been better. You want me to rate it?

Graphics: 8/10

Sound: 7/10

Originality: 6/10

Play ability: 9/10

Difficulty: 7/10

Overall: 8/10


Melanie Alamo said...

Marley Melds Music And SF
SF author Louise Marley, whose novel The Child Goddess has been nominated for an Endeavour Award, told SCI FI Wire that she also sings opera and benefits from both writing and music.
Find out how to buy and sell anything, like things related to private road construction on interest free credit and pay back whenever you want! Exchange FREE ads on any topic, like private road construction!

Matthew said...

Thanks for that. But what has it got to do with Rise of Nations?

Daryl D said...

Blog is informative . Dont't stop. Here is the site so many quietly search for at night; download indian porn movies A great place for download indian porn movies

emily from blog articles said...

Dear Blogger,

I recently launched a blog articles site exclusively for bloggers ... built entirely from articles submitted by bloggers.

We all know that the best content on the web is produced by bloggers ... unbiased first hand knowledge, experiences and opinions. Nothing to sell and no hidden agendas!

As a seeker of information or article content, you have access to this vast source of interesting and informative articles. As a contributor, you get the recognition of having your article published and seen by thousands of web users. The pride and satisfaction of seeing your article published in a prestige directory is hard to beat.

Not all of us are gifted with the ability to write to professional standards of grammatical correctness ... as a result, many bloggers don't bother to have their articles published.

We welcome an informal style of writing that matches your personality and fits in with your article content. We welcome articles that are uniquely based on your personal knowledge, experiences and opinions. All we ask is that your articles do not contain vulgar language, incite hatred or generally offensive.

All this is absolutely free ... please come over and have a look at our blog articles directory for yourself.

Best Regards

Capestone said...

Hey, Just stopped by your blog, Looks great! I just built Loan Site. It's about Pay Day Loan related offers. Please come check it out.

Matthew said...

In response to Emily. Do you want to publish my Rise of Nations review?

adminsupervisor said...

Silverheart A Long-Distance Work
Michael Moorcock and Storm Constantine, co-authors of the new SF novel Silverheart , told SCI FI Wire they wrote the entire 484-page novel without ever having to meet face-to-face, conducting their ...
work from home