Moving towards the dark winter, we get more time to sit in front of the screen. The gaming industries are well aware of this, and a lot of new exciting titles are pumped into the streets these days. One of the first games we’ll take a lot at in these dark times is from a series that have been around for a long time. We’re talking about The Settlers: Rise of an Empire. The first Settlers game was released in 1993, for both Amiga and the PC, in a DOS version of course. Since 1993, 7 more games have been released, along with 5 expansion packs, so we’re dealing with a game from the golden age of games. Now we’ll take a closer look at The Settlers: Rise of an Empire, and see if the game can help us get trough the dark times, we’re about to enter. Ubisoft Nordic has provided us with the game, and the test is done with patch v1.1.
Darion was once a mighty kingdom, stretching around the entire world and brought peace and progress to its people and kings. But those days are long gone. The kingdom is old, worn and brought to pieces by enemy invasions, internal disputes and political intrigues. All there’s left of this, once mighty kingdom, is a confusion of small provinces, fighting for survival in, what’s now a hostile, world. It’s a world of mystery and hidden dangers, a world where colonists don’t know what the morning will bring. A world where the strong have suppressed the weak for too long, and a world where kings fight for power. A world is constantly under attack by Narlandir Vikings from the frozen north, and the old Janub tribes from the south. You are a king in this worn down country, but you’re a king with great ambitions. Because you have the will and strength to reunite what’s left of the old kingdom, and create new alliances to restore the peace that has been missing for too many years.
With the help of your royal knights, you can restore honour and justice to this world, and rebuilt a new kingdom, that will rise from the ashes like a Phoenix. The Settlers: Rise of an Empire, is half strategy, and half simulation, where there’s been put more weight into gathering resources, placing and upgrading your buildings, and keeping your settlers happy, than building huge armies.
Besides that, it’s also possible to trade with the nearby towns, which is a great way of cleaning up your stock if you’ve got too much of a specific resource. You don’t have unlimited amounts of storage space, so you have to collect resource in the right measures. Also, it’s not possible to gather resources in the two hardest winter months, so when the winter approaches, it’s a good idea to save some extra food and clothes in the stock building. While gathering resources, building your town, and making sure the people are happy, you also have to guide your hero trough different tasks, which is a part of the main story.