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Empire: Total War demo on Steam - it's a slice of win-cake

Posted on 25th Feb 2009 at 08:41 by Clive Webster with 2 comments

I’m not sure how I missed the Empire demo going on Steam last Friday, but somehow I did. I suspect Harry did too, as I’m sure we would’ve heard him saying "I’m leaving at six on the dot to go play Empire" last Friday. Cliff clearly didn’t miss the news but I only stumbled across it by accident when wondering whether to buy Dawn of War II through Steam or Play (why does it cost £11 more through Steam, by the way?). Anyhoo, I saw the ad for the Empire demo and started it downloading immediately.

Empire: Total War demo on Steam - it's a slice of win-cake <i>Empire: Total War</i> demo on Steam – it’s a slice of win-cake

The following are my initial thoughts on the two tutorials and the land battle that I had time to play before heading off for family funeral. (I’m not pitching for sympathy messages there btw, just explaining why I’ve only had time for a quick initial thoughts blog).

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You Have No Heavy Calvary

Posted on 24th Feb 2009 at 09:29 by Cliff Harris with 17 comments

Cliff Harris
I've just finished my first play of the demo of Empire: Total War, and it reminds me of my original motivation for the design of Gratuitous Space Battles.

I'm a big fan of the Total War games, although I don't devote much time to the campaign game and certainly don't get time to play them as much as their true devotees. They have, for me a single major frustration. Although I might go to great lengths to field a decent army against my enemy, although I may pick a good formation and a decent time and month to fight, the moment the two armies come into contact it becomes an almighty uncontrollable scrum where almost anything could happen.

The basic dilemma is ranged units. If your guns can fire one metre further than the enemies, just ensure you are always at maximum range and shoot at him till you win. This may sound simplistic, but it's how a lot of real world battles were fought. The US & Buddies pulverised Saddam's army because their tanks could fire from further away. In the open tank battles of Gulf War 1 and 2, hardly a single tank shell of Iraqi origin hit anything.

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