Empire Earth developed by Vivendi Universal Games is one of the best strategy turn based games.
When Wonderphone, the proprietor of certain mobile gaming gems such as SWAT Force and Spyro: Ripto quest announced that they would be porting Sierra’s strategy masterpiece, they had a lot to live up to, both in the PC original’s shadow, and strategy games already available on mobile, one of the most memorable being strategy war. But only an idiot would compare a game made solely for mobile phones to a PC game of Empire Earth’s calibre.
As mentioned before, this version of Empire Earth is made-for-mobile, completely from scratch, so don’t be downhearted when you realise that you won’t be carrying a miniature computer in your pocket as a result of this game. Nevertheless, it does try very, very hard. The most noticeable of these attempts would be that font styles, graphic and some other key game elements have been lifted straight from the original.
You’re given a choice of two game modes:
Adventure, in which you will span through 2,000 years of history in ten campaign levels, controlling the stone agers, driving the Neanderthals out of their lands; the Normans, leading an advance against Charles I and his English army; the Generals of WWII and finally, the futuristic armies of the nano age. Some fans of the PC version will be disappointed to find that this game does not feature civilians, or for that matter most of the other buildings available on the original. The second game mode is skirmish, a free-for-all in which you can play any map, on the condition that you have unlocked it on adventure, and any epoch. You can also invite a friend to play a multiplayer game. Not online, but impressive.
What? No citizens? How are you supposed to gather resources? I hear you ask. Well, in this version, a new system has been introduced, which I have called ‘conquest’. Throughout the different maps on each level, you find several symbols, some resembling swords, and some resembling hatchets. Send over your standard, close quarters attack unit to one of these symbols, select the flag icon from the easy to use action interface, and a new barracks or granary will appear. Both you and your enemy will be fighting to get to these symbols first, as you start each map with only a citadel and one barracks.
In total, the game grants you four types of unit: the standard soldier, good at close quarters combat and the only unit able to create new buildings; ranged units which are more expensive and weaker than the soldier, but very agile; the heavy unit, such as the tank and catapult, which have good range but are very slow; and finally the aerial units, which are only available in the modern epochs and have the best attack rate in the game. Upgrades for your units can be found at any of your barracks.
In short, Empire Earth is an interesting new take on strategy. While I would have liked to see citizens, and a more commune atmosphere, it’s not difficult to recommend.