So, when you run it for the first time, you’re greeted to a menu inside the cockpit of a starfighter, as you watch game battle scenes take place via the “cinema vision” camera, available in the game to watch battles take place, as if you were watching it on the big screen. There is a campaign for the game, but as it mostly goes through movie events, much like Stronghold, I’d rather just jump right into the “free mode”, if you can even call it that: Galactic Conquest. After choosing the map, which can focus on different galactic sectors, or the whole thing, you choose the faction you want to be. In the base game, this is either the Rebel Alliance, or the badass, Galactic Empire, my personal favorite. If you have the expansion: Forces of Corruption, you can also play as the Zan Consortium, a pirate faction of criminals, rebels, and smugglers, however gameplay remains the same.
When the galaxy boots up, you’re greeted with the mission screen, and the daunting task you need to complete to win. For the Empire, these tasks are: “the Rebel Alliance must be destroyed”, and “the Death Star must not be destroyed”. Yeah, by the way, the Death Star is very much in the game. If you’re a destroyer, you can build it right away, and just mow down the whole galaxy if you want, but I prefer the old fashioned approach. Keep in mind that the Rebels can also advance in technology by stealing yours, and can even build their own death star to combat your own. Anyway, the game is very much a strategy game, focusing on nearly all aspects of a running a galaxy wide nation. You must manage your economy (which is heavily simplified), defense, population (which effects the number of units you can have), and military presence to keep planets and take over others. There are two types of battles, ground and space. In order to engage in a ground battle, you must defeat the resident space fleet, as well as, the space station, whose strength is represented by a level 1 though five, gauging its arsenal, armor, weapons, and backup forces available. You can then trigger a land battle, start up a blockade (simply by leaving your fleet over the planet), or if you have access to a death star, can destroy the planet and take control of its asteroids, which I would do only under very special circumstances in which you cannot achieve a land victory.
So what’s the score? What’s my rating?
If you’re an average player, then your rating would most likely be a 72/100, especially if you’re not a big Star Wars fan. Because this game is very independent of the Star Wars story, it can stand on its own without need for explanation from the movies or any other source, but still has that strong mythos that connects to it, that if you’re a fan, you will definitely like. The game is fun, and, although not a new concept, it is still technically impressive for the time, and is overall a good experience. Some faults that can be seen are the obvious age, and a lack of new story elements on the games part, but the graphics can all be fixed with modes, and the story with the expansion pack which has all new, never before seen scenarios. An Average rating, for an average game.
For the super fans, and the overall elite gamers out there, tried and tribulated by all sorts of experiences, this game is going to be even more impressive, 80/100 for you. A solid game, with loads of content for fans, but even still, it’s going to give you some troubles. As an experienced gamer myself, who has seen it all, form Sims 1 to GTA 5 (future reviews?), I was still relatively challenged by the AI. I don’t want to hype it up too much, but I’m pretty good at these types of games, and even easy mode gets me every once in a while, so when I switch over to a more difficult level, I can really start to get upset. Why? Because I can barely build a small fleet before the enemy’s coming around again to kick my ass for the seventh time. It may not be perfect, but at times, this game definitely shows that it can be Grand!
For me personally, this game is slightly below the elite rating, coasting along at a 78/100. I like the game just as much as the super fans, as I am one myself, but I’m not quire on the level of the other gamers who appreciate the challenge of the AI, as I’m sure some do, so I have to realize that when I rate myself. I definitely had fun with it, and I keep coming back, but not as much as other games, such as Stronghold. For me, it’s still just an Average experience, but a good one at that!
Thanks for reading, everyone! As I am still a new blogger, if you just so happened to stumble across this page, please leave a like or a comment, so I can see how I’m doing. I’ll be here again today in the next issue of Levengood Today, where I’ll be making some announcements, as well as, reading off today’s headlines, so stay tuned, and I’ll see you later!
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