Empire Earth II
There's no doubt in that this title is, or at least was at the time of release, one of the most complete and exciting real-time strategy titles out there. Not only for the way it played but also for how complete it was.
In Empire Earth, you have so much content to explore, that it will take you dozens of hours just to see all the civilizations available. Even with how complete and amazing it was, it seems to be a second place in popularity with Age of Empires. But how come that a game as huge, balanced and interesting as Empire Earth II has been even forgotten by the mainstream masses?
Probably because of the follow-up titles. Not that Empire Earth II wasn't great, but the company merged with Activision and Blizzard later on. On the other hand, we still get HD remasters of the Age of Empires titles, and that brings an entirely new audience. And given that Age of Empires released first by a long time, it's only natural we hear more about it.
Empire Earth II is definitely one of those cases of amazing games that live in the shadows of other similar games. A lot like all the other Dark Souls-like games there are nowadays.
Truth is that Empire Earth II presented a nice looking 3D map, with 14 civilizations available and different ages to play in. Similar to what Civilization games do, but in a real-time strategy game set. Even though it's not mainstream, it is a cult game, with a big online fan base even now, so if you're looking for new tips and info, there are tons of sites you can check with an active community.
Download Empire Earth II
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP
When it was originally released in 2005, Empire Earth II was one of the most ambitious RTS games ever made. Even now it is regarded by some as one of the best RTS games ever made. If you want to take a civilization from the stone age to the future this is a game you have to check out.
Three Stories In One
The first thing I want to mention is just how much bang for your buck you get with Empire Earth II. This game features three different campaigns. There is an American, Korean and German campaign and each one has its own story, side of the war to experience and things that you have to do. The campaign also features special scenarios which let you pick a side and change the course of history.
Empire Earth II actually added quite a few things that were missing from the first game. One that is really cool is a little mini window that allows you to get in closer and micromanage things like building. You can now actually tell one of your people exactly what you want them to do and there is a really cool War Planner system that allows you to coordinate attacks in much more depth than before. Coordinating attacks with your allies and of course the units you have at your own disposal is actually a lot of fun. I did feel like there was a lot of trial and error here, but each time I failed I did feel like I learned something new. Managing your resources, advancing new technologies and trying to walk the fine line of being friendly with other civilizations, but also letting them know you will not be a pushover is a real delicate balancing act. I found the gameplay to sometimes be a little too much and I always felt like I was missing something, but to be fair this could be down to my lack of skill.
From The Stone Age To The Space Age
15 epochs and 14 civilizations are in Empire Earth II! You take your chosen one from the stone age all the way through to the future. It is pretty crazy some of the new technology you can unlock, but what is really cool is how the tactics for battle that you use in the more basic time periods still hold true when you have more advanced weapons. Of course, the more advanced weapons have a greater risk when using them so you have to think before you act, even when you do have a lot of firepower at your disposal.
What About The Presentation?
Everything is in 3D and it does look pretty nice, but the real standout in terms of the presentation is the weather effects. Things like snow, storms and so on look fantastic. Not only that they can actually have an effect on gameplay too. The sound though is a bit of a weak point. All of the civilizations speak English and the voice acting is pretty cheesy and it does take you out of the moment.
I think that Empire Earth II is a very ambitious RTS game and a game that if you are really into this type of game I am sure will have a lot of fun with. For the more casual strategy fan though, I do feel that Empire Earth II asks a little too much of the player in order to get the best out of it.
- Three campaigns to play through
- Lots of different civilizations to lead to glory
- The graphics are quite nice
- Weather effects are very well done
- Go from the stone age to the space age!
- The voice acting is terrible
- Gameplay is deep but pretty complicated