Solomon's Key for the NES was released in Japan on this day in 1986.

Pharaoh (Windows)

Published by
Developed by
Released
Platform
Everyone
ESRB Rating
Genre
Perspective
Theme
83
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.7
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.

User Reviews

...and they say drugs and smoking are addictive...there should be a government warning for this fine game! Indra is here (19677) 4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars
Fun historical city-building sim Afterburner (477) 4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars
"Caesar III Enhanced" (ENGLISH/GERMAN review) DaHero (868) unrated

Our Users Say

Category Description MobyScore
Acting The quality of the actors' performances in the game (including voice acting). 4.0
AI How smart (or dumb) you perceive the game's artificial intelligence to be 3.4
Gameplay How well the game mechanics work (player controls, game action, interface, etc.) 4.0
Graphics The quality of the art, or the quality/speed of the drawing routines 3.7
Personal Slant How much you personally like the game, regardless of other attributes 3.8
Sound / Music The quality of the sound effects and/or music composition 3.7
Story / Presentation The main creative ideas in the game and how well they're executed 3.6
Overall MobyScore (64 votes) 3.7


The Press Says

MobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
100
PC Gaming World
Fascinating, challenging, and gorgeous to look at, Pharaoh is a sweet treat for strategy gamers looking for a bit of romance with their intense city management. Its wide range of skill settings and accessible interface make it ideal for both hardcore strategists and novices alike. And finally, it's so pumped up with real, honest-to-goodness history that you can confidently explain your sleepless nights away as 'studying a little Egyptology' (which is bound to go down better with significant others than 'alright, I've been playing this cool game'). Pharaoh more than stands up to the test of both its time and ours.
91
Netjak
These problems aside, Pharaoh remains one of the great city building games. It feels like a complete design from top to bottom with every element perfectly integrated into the whole. The beauty of this is that the underlying mechanics remain underlying, while the benefits are on full display at the level of the gameplay with the gameplay itself being not only challenging, but also rewarding: a combination too many games these days fail to achieve. Although the City Building Series is going to have a new entry soon with Caesar IV, it will have to be one great game to supplant Pharaoh as the true gem of the series.
90
Peliplaneetta.net
Pharaon mahtava äänimaailma yhdistettynä hienon grafiikkaan sekoittaa sellaisen tunnelmallisen liimaseoksen, että pelin ääreltä ei noin vain lähdetä pois. Pharaoh sopii mainiosti kaiken ikäisille ja kokoisille. Sanakirja kannattaa pitää myös lähettyvillä, sillä peli sisältää sanoja joita ei esiinny aivan tavallisessa puhekielessä. Kestoa Pharaoon saa vielä läpipelaamisen jälkeenkin tehtäväeditorilla, millä voi rakentaa omia skenarioita peliin. Mitään suuria heikkouksia ei löydy. Vain tasapainoista laadukasta viihdettä. Peliä pelatessa aika huijaa kelloa ja käsite "tunti" saa aivan uuden merkityksen.
90
Svenska PC Gamer
Pharaoh är ett sådant spel som får en recensent att ändra balansen mellan sömn och arbete. Timmarna försvinner oroväckande snabbt vilket alltid är ett gott tecken på underhållning. Det som slutligen avgör ett spel av den här typen är hur fort spelaren tröttnar. Detta är givetvis individuellt men Pharaoh är både varierande och roligt.
90
Game industry News (GiN)
All in all, Pharaoh is an extremely entertaining game. As with all games of this type, a certain level of commitment is required, but in the end it definitely delivers. The missions that come with the game can be extremely challenging, sometimes maddeningly so. But if it were easy, what would be the point, right? The website also provides some other missions and contests to test your skills. Pharaoh's complexity is both its strength and its weakness. It's own successes only brings into contrast its failings. However, because of its excellent graphics, interesting gaming elements and everything else, it certainly deserves 4 and 1/2 GiN Gems. Any game where you get to make beer, rule for thousands of years and become a Pharaoh clearly is something special!
90
Strategy Gaming Online
Sierra’s Caesar III was the crowning achievement of the trilogy, and was praised for it’s challenging gameplay and creative touches. That is why I was looking forward to Pharaoh, the new addition to the Impressions City Building Series. It promised to keep the fantastic gameplay of Caesar and bring with it a new sense of wonder, mystery, and rare beauty that is ancient Egypt. Now that it has been released, I am pleased to say that it is everything I hoped for.
90
IGN
In case you haven't figured it out by now, I loved this game. Pharaoh's blend of addictive gameplay and excellent mission design kept me at my computer straight through many nights, a rare occasion after ten years of writing game reviews. Furthermore, the game's ability to be very historically accurate while at the same time remaining entertaining was a constant source of wonder to me. I highly recommend that every fan of the SimCity or Caesar game line, or anyone interested in day to day life in early Egyptian culture rush right out and pick up a copy of this title. A fantastic example of the genre.
88
Power Play
Gut gemach! Im wesentlichen haben die Entwickler das ohne jeden Zweitel bewährte Spielkonzept von Caesar 3 verwendet und noch etwas verfeinert. Zusätzliche Einstellmöglichkeiten verbessern das Spiel tatsächlich, das Thema Ägypten bringt außerdem genügend neue Elemente ein, so daß Pharao auch für erfahrene Caesar-3-Strategen niemals langweilig wird. Für alle Aufbaufreunde ist es der perfekte Zeitvertreib für die kommenden langen, dunklen Winterabende.
87
GameSpy
Controlling all the aspects of civilization can be quite daunting, but Impressions Games have made a big impression (no pun intended) on me with their elaborate yet entertaining game. It's incredibly cool to be "idolized" by the populace and elevated to "godly" status. Talk about feeding the ego. Give it a whirl; you'll be pleased you did.
87
PC Player (Germany)
Pharao ist die bislang spaßigste, interessanteste und atmosphärisch dichteste Städtebau-Simulation, die selbst den Klassiker SimCity mühelos deklassiert. Es macht einfach Laune, durch die Epochen zu siedeln und den Rhythmus der Nil-Fluten zu beobachten. Motivierender Höhepunkt ist der Pyramidenbau. Alles in allem: Für dieses Meisterwerk hätten sich die Entwickler eigentlich ein Monument im Tal der Könige redlich verdient.
85
Gamesmania
Trotz der immensen Komplexität habe ich das Handbuch nie vermisst. Impressions hat die Frustmomente von Caesar 3 konsequent eliminiert. Ein gelungener evolutionärer Titel. Zwar ist die Grafik nicht auf dem neuesten Stand, die Kampagne motiviert jedoch nächtelang. Neben Anno 1602 ist Pharao für mich das derzeit beste Aufbaustrategiespiel.
85
Jeuxvideo.com
Ce qui frappe d'emblée dans Pharaon, c'est l'authenticité historique. Ce n'est pas prêcher la bonne parole que de dire que les jeux vidéo peuvent être un bien bel outil pédagogique, on s'en était déjà plus ou moins bien rendu compte avec les productions de Cryo (on pense entre autres à Aztec). Ici, les développeurs ont dû recourir à des recherches documentaires remarquables. Une fois le jeu fini, on en sait beaucoup plus sur les coutumes et modes de vie des égyptiens de l'époque. C'est toujours ça de pris.
84
GameStar (Germany)
Im Vergleich zu Caesar 3 sind die Straßen zwar viel belebter, doch die unscheinbare Pharao-Grafik ähnelt immer noch eher dem trockenen Sim City 3000 als einem wuseligen Siedler 3. Das Gleiche gilt für die Komplexität, die durch den Pyramidenbau noch zugenommen hat – versuchen Sie mal, 120.000 Steinquader zu beschaffen, wenn Ihr Volk keine klopfen kann! Aufbauspiel-Fans, die sich am drögen Look und den sehr komplexen Missionen nicht stören, kann ich Pharao ans Herz legen.
84
Power Unlimited
Pharaoh heeft zeker overeenkomsten met Caesar III maar genoeg eigen smoel en uitdagingen om te kunnen boeien. Met name het bouwen van enorme tempels en piramides is een lust voor het oog en verrijkt de gameplay.
82
GameSpot
Pharaoh is only subtly different from its predecessor, but its new elements make it much deeper and more satisfying. Like Caesar III, Pharaoh takes ideas from other games and combines them in a way that is different and entertaining. Unlike Caesar III, the frustrations that accompany some of the game's mechanics are easily dealt with. Pharaoh is slow-paced but addictive and is immensely complex but incredibly easy to play.
81
PC Gameplay (Benelux)
Ik heb alleen de indruk dat er niet bijster veel veranderd is ten opzichte van Caesar III, maar het concept blijft niettemin boeien. Fans van Simcity, Settlers en (uiteraard) Caesar zullen zich beslist geen moment vervelen met Pharaoh. Oh, ja: als er iemand net voor je neus het laatste exemplaar van PcGameplay uit het rek haalt, dan leg je ze toch gewoon zo'n Egyptische vloek op: 'May the fleas of a thousand camels infest your armpits!'.
81
PC Games (Germany)
Pharao ist wie ein neuer Schokoriegel: Modernes Design, 20% mehr Geschmack, aber sonst alles wie gehabt. Tatsächlich fühlte ich mich bereits nach wenigen Minuten Spielzeit im alten Ägypten richtig heimisch, denn nicht nur Grafik, Steuerung und Menüs sind 1:1 von Caesar 3 übernommen, sondern auch viele Gebäude sowie die meisten Klangdateien. Allerdings bringen Neuerungen wie die Gezeiten des Nils, das um nette Details verbesserte Handelsmenü sowie der Bau von Weltwundern Würze ins Spiel und auch der Kampfmodus ist nicht gar so läppisch ausgefallen wie im letztjährigem Impressions-Titel. Spektakulär ist das alles nicht, aber für kurzweiliges Städtebauen vor historisch akkurater Kulisse sorgt Pharao allemal.
80
Computer Gaming World (CGW)
While PHARAOH also contains some of the more irritating elements of the CAESAR III system — such as randomly-wandering service providers, irrational traders, and a relatively constant need to micro-manage warehouses — these tend to come off more as challenges to be overcome than flaws in the game itself. The Egyptian setting provides enough variety to make PHARAOH new arid interesting, while the strong core game of CAESAR III remains intact.
80
Spel för Alla
Farao är ett riktigt bra spel som visserligen inte bjuder på något riktigt unikt, men som är tillräckligt originellt för att vara intressant och värt att pröva. Grafiken, ljudet och känslan skapar en riktigt bra stämning som garanterat kan erbjuda många timmars spelande.
80
incite PC Gaming
If you're interested in a somewhat subdued, single-player cerebral challenge, Pharaoh is among the best strategy games you can slap on your hard drive.
75
Absolute Games (AG.ru)
Кампания в игре довольно любопытна, впрочем, я о ней уже все основное рассказал. Добавлю только, что вы в ней с самого начала выступаете в качестве самого главного правителя, и над вами никого нет. Имеются и одиночные миссии, проходить которые тоже интересно, присутствует и мультиплеер с таким необходимым элементом, как скирмиш. Вообще-то, я мог бы вам рассказать еще много об этой весьма увлекательной и где-то даже оригинальной игре. Однако и так слишком большой обзор получился, опять меня обвинят в излишнем многословии. Так что дам напоследок совет купить игру, не пожалеете.
74
Gamer's Pulse
Overall, Pharaoh is control freak heaven. If you like telling people what to do and controlling almost every little aspect of your life and others’, then you should seek professional help (hint, hint, Scribbler). :~) Oh, and you should also get this game. Unfortunately, I guess my attention span is too short - I really can’t understand how some people can sacrifice months of their life on this sort of thing. My apologies to the die-hard “Sim” fans out there, but I felt it was long and frustrating.
70
Eurogamer.net (UK)
Pharaoh is a deep, involving, good looking, (more or less) historically accurate, educational, fun, and downright addictive strategy game. Unfortunately, given the hideously broken nature of the walker system I just can't recommend it to anybody but the most hardened sim fans. Governing a city when you have little or no control over your subjects is frustrating at best, and more than once I have had to restart a mission due entirely to the stupidity of my walkers.
42
WomenGamers.com
After loving Caesar III by the same companies, I couldn't wait to start Pharaoh, another city-building game. I was excited by the prospect of this game actually allowing me to build the great monuments of Egypt. Learning this game was very easy since I was so familiar with the previous one, but the initial helping-hand scenarios should make it easy for anyone. It isn't just Caesar III with an Egyptian motif, however; there are different challenges, primarily how to get water to your citizens. In the Egyptian deserts in Pharaoh, you may only place wells and water holes where the land allows it. In C3, you could build reservoirs and aqueducts to take water anywhere you wished.