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Posted on Mar 14, 2006 in Electronic Games, Front Page Features

Star Wars: Empire at War – Game Review (PC)

By Russ Clow

The strengths and weaknesses of your units are clearly displayed on the screen. When it comes to taking a planet, you have to actually land the forces on the planet, no "MCV" here to mystically churn out buildings and units…

The actual gameplay itself reminds me a lot of the Command and Conquer series. It’s very straightforward in terms of simply selecting your units and sending them into battle – taking advantage of their “special abilities” such as force push and lightning on the heroes. The greatest fun in Empire at War is the space battles — the size of the battles can be absolutely immense. Nothing brings a bigger smile on my face than to be able to zoom right into my fleet of Frigates and watch as 100 Tie Fighters and 60 Tie Bombers come zooming out of the hanger and fall into formation. To then send them into battle against a force of equal or greater density is fantastic. You’ll suddenly find yourself completely immersed in the amazing animation as ships shoot into flame and spiral into destruction – not to mention the bits that fly off your frigates and cruisers (large ships all have hardpoints which can be targeted and destroyed)!

Where are your tow cables now, Rebel scum? Warning: Prolonged exposure to glowy blue shields have been known to cause certain side effects including…

My major worry with this game is the fact that it is Star Wars. I can’t help but think that if the game was not Star Wars oriented, the score would be at least 10% lower. The sounds, authenticity, and overall excitement of the Star Wars genre bump this game from being average –to very good. If you’re a fan of Star Wars, or you’re looking for an easy to grasp and immersive Real-time Strategy game, this one is definitely for you.

Pros: An immersive title that captures the Star Wars universe perfectly.


Cons: Not enough tactical elements. A bit slow at times.

Bottom Line: If you love Star Wars, you’ll love this game.

Armchair General Score: 79%

47/60 —Gameplay
14/20 —Graphics
09/10 —Sound
09/10 —Documentation & Technical

Star Wars: Empire at War site.

Discuss Empire at War on the Armchair General forums.

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