don't have to be a Star Wars fanatic to enjoy playing
Empire at War, but you will most likely become one
after playing it.
by Mike Chasselwaite
22, 2006 - The
Star Wars universe reaches far beyond the movies,
merchandise and nerd conventions. There is an entire
Star Wars videogame subculture out there in case you
didn't know. Star Wars has been exploited in virtually
every gameplay genre including FPS, RPG, space shooter,
action and RTS. While not really known for its strategy
games, Empire at War is bound to change all of that.
It was only a matter of time until some developer
nailed it and Petroglyph did just that.
as either the Rebellion or the Empire. Both have different
attributes but are evenly matched once you learn how
each operates. The gameplay is in real-time so you'll
have to get used to the fast pace if you're moving
in from the turn-based neighborhood. Each side has
around 10 planets that they can control. These planets
support factories, mining and other resource harvesting
industries in addition to space stations and high-tech
weapons such as ion cannons and super-powered laser
towers. There are different advantages to the various
planets. Some planets are cheaper to build on while
others won't let you build certain items such as large
ships. The object of the game is to control all of
the planets in the galaxy.
take place on land and in space. It gives the game
much more depth. Controlling multiple planets is one
way to generate income which you can use to purchase
more troops, weapons and technology. The Rebellion
knows exactly what systems are in place on the planets
controlled by the Empire but the Empire must send
drones in to recon the Rebellion which is smaller
and capable of reaming hidden. The Empire is able
to secure much more money than the Rebellion which
may seem to give them the advantage to buy their victories
with huge armies, ships and an abundance of weapons.
By comparison the Rebellion is poor and can't generate
as much money as the Empire. For this reason they
are more challenging to play as and I would recommend
playing as the Empire first just to learn the lay
of the land - so to speak. The Rebellion can steal
money and technology away from the Empire. They can
slip under the radar of Empire-controlled planets
and relieve it of treasures and resources. It takes
a bit more work but they are fast and flexible and
add a different dimension to the gameplay.
takes place in space and directly on the planet itself.
Huge Imperial Star Ships and small TIE Fighters and
X-wings battle it out in epic scenarios that look
as good as any of the Star Wars movies. Weapons such
as the ion cannon can be fired from the planet directly
into space and do a lot of damage. The space stations
hovering over the defending planet also take part
in the battle, shooting torpedoes and lasers or whatever
weapons it's outfitted with. The space station can
be destroyed but how much damage it can take is determined
by its armor. The ion cannon however, remains protected
on the planet.
the space station, Capital ships don't have to be
totally destroyed to render them ineffectual. By targeting
specific areas such as the weapons systems, armor
generators and hanger bays you can seriously cripple
your opponent's efforts. If you target large ships'
engines, for instance, you can really slow them down
which can help you to focus on more difficult-to-reach
areas of the ship that you may not have been able
to target at higher speeds. What you choose to destroy,
in what order, plays a large role in your strategy