Review by Randomer
"Empire Earth 1.5 more like, but still a great game"
Empire Earth II is a great RTS game, with loads of units and a massive variety of game types. However there are a few annoying things that diminish the playability of this game
Gameplay: This is one aspect that has improved. There are loads of options to enhance what you can do with the men you have and the buildings you have. It can feel overwhelming in large skirmishes but it is an improvement. The new strategy plotting is really cool. Getting all your allies and taking an enemy city by force will never lose its appeal, no matter what epoch you are in. the new territories system does complicate population matters, you can't just build another house to get more units. You have to make sure your not at your house limit or population limit, which I am never sure if I am at. You can build 5 houses and nothing will happen. The new Picture in Picture display also adds something to the Gameplay, allowing you to monitor one area while working in another.
One small thing that disappointed me was that you could not track units like in the previous game. Thanks to a glitch you could make it feel like you were inside any vehicle on the map, this was one of my favourite features, but now it is gone. This has been sufficiently rectified by all the new features. The AI is vastly improved; your allies follow your war plans very accurately. There are many levels of difficulty, that open this game up for all levels of gamer. There are also many options for unit's buildings, like explore, follow, loads of different stances and a small collection of nice formations. You don't have to use them, but they are always there.
Graphics: This game has a lot of graphic options and a lot of levels of detail, from low/off to very high/extreme. It's a game for many systems. However in big 10 player games, there is some slowdown if your graphics card is not a beast. Be prepared for low graphics if your card is at the lower end. One of the nice additions in this game is battlefield ambience. Explosion crates, tank tracks, foot and hoof prints, are nice little effects if you can afford to have them. The blood effects have not improved since the first game, or this games close relative Empires: Dawn of the Modern World. Also the units still sink annoyingly into the ground, as if they were fighting on quick sand.
Sound: Not much to say here, you won't notice any music in the game, if it was any good you would hear it. I think theres music. The SFX sound a bit low quality and get mega annoying after a while, especially when you have lots of tanks and mortars going off in later epochs.
Plot: There are several campaigns that follow a nation through the ages. There are American, German and Korean campaigns. There are also two turning point campaigns. There are also the shamefully un-impressive turning point campaigns. There is a D-Day campaign. (Dot get excited its nothing like any movie you may have seen or any D-Day games.) There is also a Three Kingdoms campaign. Wait! Don't get excited. It's terrible. RoTK and Dynasty Warriors fans should stay away.
Skirmish mode and online play will last a long while, and you may play the campaigns again.
Overall: I prefer Empires Dawn of the Modern World to this game, they are practically the same, however Empires has bigger battles, and more engrossing campaigns. But this game has more strategy and possible better graphics depending on your card. Overall I give it 8/10
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 06/06/05
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