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The realism of the game does suffer due to the large time span covered.
Empire Earth looks fine for the earlier eras, but towards the more modern
ages, the “cities” don’t look quite right against the environmental settings,
which have a more wilderness like, pre-industrialised look. Some of the
buildings in the early 20th century – around WW1 had a command and conquer-esque
look to them, which were slightly futuristic and not realistic for the
There are also prophets and priests, who can convert enemy units and
cast calamities such as volcanoes or plagues. This is a welcome addition
to the early epochs, which would be somewhat boring with only simple units,
but these units carry all the way onto the current and future epochs, where
it is somewhat unrealistic to see a spell caster cast a plague into the
middle of your 23rd century army.
To avoid each unit becoming redundant after upgrading an epoch, they
can be upgraded every era to a more modern version. For example the clubman
of the prehistoric age will eventually become the long swordsman of the
middle ages, to the marine of the current age, to the guardian (laser trooper)
of the nanotechnology age. Individual aspects of each unit can also be
upgraded up to a total of 5 times max, or 2 per feature, such as weapon
damage, hps, speed, or armour.
There is also a morale bonus featured, this is similar to a “home turf”
advantage, as city Capitols or extra houses boost morale of your troops
within their range and increase their fighting ability.
Another concept is that of heroes – either strategists who heal your
units and can demoralise enemy units, or warriors who are exceptional fighting
units and provide morale bonuses to nearby units. These units are set for
each epoch that you are in, and include figures such as Julius Caesar,
all the way up to the Cyborg Molotov.
Various aspects of your civilisation can also be upgraded, for example
building HPs can be increased through researching concrete, while the development
of the steam engine leads to faster gold mining. There are several dozen
upgrades in total including some creative additions such as Sunday school
to increase the range of the temple.
Some buildings have key purposes, such as hospitals which heal nearby
units, universities which prevent units within their range from being converted
by priests, and temples, that prevent calamities from damaging those in
it’s protective range.
You are also allowed to add “civilisation bonuses” in the campaigns
or deathmatch games. These add a certain percentage to aspects of your
civilisation including resource gathering, or unit attack, speed, build
rate, etc. I was a bit confused at first though, in the ancient Greek campaign
when the game first offered points to be allocated and the options for
cybers and tanks were available to be upgraded.
The concept of Wonders from AOE is brought over, and taken to a further
level. Each wonder has a particular function, for example the Library of
Alexandria, which historically featured much architectural information,
will allow you to see all the enemy structures, while the Pharaohs lighthouse
will illuminate (remove the fog of war over) a large area of water around
where it is built.
The interface is easy enough to use, although one thing I would have
liked is an attack move option. The units have a tendency to make a beeline
to a certain point totally ignoring the damage that they take, or will
all focus on a single target that you click on, crowding round each other
and ignoring the rest of the army until the initial target is destroyed.
Note from Empire Earth Heaven: This problem can be fixed by
using "Control - Right Click" where you would like the units to attack move.
The units also have a habit of running into and blocking each other on
the seas, partly due to some fairly large naval units such as the aircraft
There are various handy features, such as the idle citizen button,
as well as formation options. Unit behaviours, waypoints, and building
rally points are also included.
The game runs smoothly and is able to handle massive battles, with huge
armies of infantry and machinery, and ships, aircraft, and cybers in the
later ages. The realism again suffers though, due to the masses of different
epochs. In reality a few modern day F-15 fighters should be able to maul
a fleet of WW1 Sopwith fighters with superior range, manoeuvrability, and
speed, but in the interests of keeping gameplay a bit fairer for players
who advance at different speeds, with enough numbers some older units can
still hold their own against modern units.
Having said that, it is still quite fun to watch the dogfights as fleets
of units engage, chase, and battle it out in the open skies or to command
the mass land battles where swordsmen and mounted units battle it out,
with archers and siege weapons firing from afar into the fray of the battle.
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