Don't let the screenshots fool you, this is actually a lot funnier than staring at an Excel spreedsheet.

User Rating: 8.5 | Empires of Steel PC
EOS can be best described as a mix of old games, blended together to form a deep yet easy to pick up game experience.

And when I say old games I really mean it. "Command HQ" comes into mind, as well as "The lost Admiral". No idea what I'm talking about? Yeah, sometimes I forget about being the dinosaur around here, so I'd better tell you what to expect right away:

Your basic foundations in this game are the cities. They can be improved in a few ways, but their main task is to build units for your army, navy and air force.
And as every "Starcraft" player could tell you (I leave the question about the version number open for now) you need resources to do so.

Without money, steel and oil you cannot build anything but infantry, and even those grunts run on a stomach which you must provide for them.
So one of the game's key concepts - besides resource rushing early on - is to build small armies... or task forces... or... well, you get my drift. No zerging here.

Instead, all 3 branches of your military might have to work together to get stuff done. It doesn't matter it you prefer banzai charges over blitzkrieg style or vice versa, the basic concepts of rock, scissor and paper are all around: Tanks beat infantry on open ground, subs can scare you to death and so on.

Yet there is some imbalance to be found, both in good and bad ways. The good news is that even a single Battleship can reduce your city defenses to rubble with ease. What, that's not good? Sure it is for game balance, as it forces you to invest into your navy - in this game, you cannot win by neglecting key units. You win by employing them efficiently.

Now for the bad news. The game is centered on aquiring resources early on, and too much fo my taste. If you're starving for oil fields for example, there is no way to prevent your war machinery from coming to a complete stop. Game over.

Fortunately those shortcomings may only exist temporarily since the game was designed to be very easy to modify. Players are even encouraged to exchange their maps or rulesets via the internet, so the "paying beta testers" might forge the uncut gem into a diamond should there be enough of them.

All in all a refreshing rebirth of the turn based strategy game, good enough for both a quick round of "beer&pretzels" as well as for the demanding armchair general.

"Thumbs up!" as some used to say... :)

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