Written by  :  E H (7)
Written on  :  Jul 21, 2007
Platform  :  Windows
Rating  :  4.67 Stars4.67 Stars4.67 Stars4.67 Stars4.67 Stars

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful

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No Flaw - Just Click Right Option

The Good

This game has a super system of resource and economy management, and the AI will trade with you for mutual profit. The mercantile economies of the colonial era are very nicely modeled. You can develop client states that eventually become part of your empire without war. But war is a hoot, especially since if you develop your technology quickly you can outclass the others. If not, you can still create alliances that will lead you to victory against stronger opponents. It is easy to play, but not so simple that you get bored. The classical music score is wonderful, and puts you in a martial mood. Tactical battles are like playing chess and Stratego. Best of all, people play the wazoo out of this game still. On Yahoo newsgroups new games start often, and there are heaps of variants, alternate maps, and scenarios. A good strategy game needs live players !

The Bad

Could use more variation in the land battle maps. It would be super if the sea battles were modeled on a tactical map, too, but they are always taken care of in the abstract. Control of the seas is essential, since you need ships to move armies between continents, to protect your trade in money and resources, and the impose embargoes.

The Bottom Line

It is like playing a cross between Risk, Stratego, and Settlers of Cataan. It is a hoot. The big flaw described in the first review is possible, but easily addressed. When the random scenario ends in your victory, it will ask if you would like to continue "conquering" just for kicks. You can say yes and continue on until you have won the whole map. But if you play a timed scenario it will stop at the allotted time in "history". Also, if you are voted out by the other players or AI as being the weakest power, the game ends for you. So play well !