Thursday, February 16, 2012

Age of Empire 3 Review

It has been a full 3 years before the stunning Age of Mythology was released; Age of Mythology was already stunning in game play and graphics. Yet Ensemble has again lifted the bar even higher with Age of Empires 3. Age of Empires 3 moves the action to New World, letting players play a variety of 8 powerful nations to conquer this new land, and lead you nation from the Age of Discovery to the glorious achievement Industrial Age! You can fight among the treacherous terrain of Florida or to the icy passes of the rocky Himalayas. A wonderful new feature of Age of Empires 3 is that you can hire the natives to fight in glorious fights and seize control of trade routes to maximize your income.

The 24-mission campaign is very well designed. Divided into three large acts, it tells the story of three generations of the Black family. First Morgan Black, a Knight of St. John races to the New World to stop the Spanish from seizing a powerful natural wonder. Next, Morgan’s grandson John and his Native American allies find themselves in the Seven Year’s War. The final act shows John’s granddaughter Amelia as the head of a railroad company making their way west.

I won’t spoil the particulars of the story here but a common quest and a common enemy unite all three acts. The connections aren’t always clear at first, but the associations start to build as the game goes on. Putting the pieces together isn’t terribly hard but it gives a nice sense of purpose to the whole game and keeps you invested in the action.

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