8.5

You'll just wanna keep rebuilding city's till you get it right. Just plain fun. And with patience, a durable game.

After reading a lot of comment online, I firmly believe this game is not beeing given its proper credit. It's a very interessting and lenghty game that is as much fun to play as it is to look at. Because the game has no shortage on great animations. And playing and watching a small town that can -quite literally- grow into a huge prosperous city is just plain satisfying.

I agree to the "been there done that" quote. Surely it's nothing we haven't seen before. But settlers 6: rise of an empire is a great new approach on simplifying the game play compared to its other titles. Or so atleast I personally find this to be the case.
Unlike some RTS games -whom can be very unforgiving to unexperienced RTS gamers- I find this game to be highly recommended to people whom are unfamiliar or unexperienced with the genre. Because the gameplay in rise of an empire is just plain easy to pick up and you'll master, at least the basiscs, within just a half hour of gameplay.

Unit recruitment, building placement, resource gathering. Its all there. But very easy to manage it all.

Another one of the plusses in this game is the trick to find a good balance in your city building. Too much of the same building type...and your settlers become bored, or will find your city "unimpressive".
To much variety and you'll find yourself all over the place gathering those very needy -and sometimes difficult to aquire- resources.
So imagine the satisfaction when you get it right.
And although this might all sound very complicated, in practice, the game plays surprisingly easy. By following the campaign, each mission will take you through the city-development process one step at a time. So you'll always know exactly what to do, and you always know exactly what everything does.

The campaign mode itself is "quite" lenghty I must add. Sit down and play this game quite frequently and you might find yourself still not being able to finish it in just 1 weekend.
Another great thing is that, along the way, you gain experience and eventually you'll get the hang of how to do things. Wich gives the game quite a bit of replay value. You won't be able to resists to skip back a few missions and perfect your game play with what you have learned in the missions there-after.

But as a critic, I have to be fair. It cant be all good news.
So one down side that I am forced to add is that the game struggles with some performance issues. A small crash here and there...or a game freeze.
I find them not common enough to be annoying. But it can be quite frustrating when you spend the last 1,5 hour building up a city only to find yourself back where you started because you game decided to freeze up on the last 15 min before you finish the mission.
But again, the flaws are dwarfed when compared to the great fun this game offers.

To sum it all up; Quite surprised to find this game so entertaining. I never expected I would gain as many hours of fun as I did -and still have- from this game wich I bought for a bargain.
Definitly worth a try that you wont regret. Enjoy.

-Sandy

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