I just finished my first scenario.
This is a very generous demo. You can play the complete game, with the only restrictions being only 4 of the 18 races and only 3 of the various map types (i.e. Amazon Rain Forest) available.
This Rise of Nations demo is better than most games you’d pay $50 for.
Since the demo installed GameSpy I’m curious if this thing is also fully internet multiplayer functional. :D
As far as the speed of the download it took over an hour (maybe 90 minutes). I note that everyone bragging about their superior connection was downloading it after I was already playing. Perhaps it occurs to you that those of us who grabbed it as soon as it went up were fighting over bandwidth?
Generous is an understatement. Some companies would have shipped this as a game and pushed out the other races and maps as an expansion pack.
Game of the Year: Rise of Nations Demo :D
Just finished a couple of games…I’m picking this up first thing Monday.
It’s a big game but it play very fast. It runs pretty smoothly on my 700 Mhz antique, but I’ll likely run the real thing on a sweeter machine.
Kind of disappointed that the Romans weren’t available for play, and the ages skip by pretty quickly - I think I’d like to see more combat in each individual age. There’s probably a setting for that somewhere.
It took me forever to find the idle villager button, though.
Brian done good.
It comes across as way more “AOE” than Civ. But the national borders do make things interesting…
RoN is my crack of choice these days. I think Age of Mythology is a better game, but RoN is more addictive. About time some of you people started playing!
That’s surprising there’s so much in the demo. Four nations and three map types? Yow. You can get all the way up to the Information Age and even future tech? Are the maps randomly generated or are they pre-made? Which four nations do you get? One of the cool things you start to see after you’ve gotten over the learning curve is how different nations fare on different maps.
Troy, the Romans are one of my least favorite races, so you’re not really missing out on much. :)
If you’re running on an older machine, try setting all the graphics to low as the game progresses. You don’t miss out on much and it can make a big difference when you’re trying to scroll a busy map, which is when it really counts.
As for the idle villager button, assuming all the tooltips are in the demo, you’ll notice about a million different variations on it. It really pays to scroll through the keyboard commands and to read all the hints that come up when you start a game. There’s an amazing amount of interface carefully fitted into this game.
As for the ages whizzing by, I agree that it moves a little too fast. In the full game, you can set variations to make tech more expensive and/or slower. I prefer playing this way so that aging up is more meaningful, but this starts to kick other factors out of whack and I think the balance among the different nations starts to skew. Still, the full game is extremely flexible and I’m still discovering new variations and combos.
Downloaded the demo and started playing the tutorial, next thing I know, my blood lust died down when I finally managed to crush the enemy.
Holy Shit. That was fun. Lots and lots of clicking, but satisfying fun watching my Abrams just roll the mo’fo’s over.
Is it… more fun?
Well, I would have to say…
Hey, wait a minute! Damn you, Sones! You kids and your goddamn fun!
I’m surprised that everyone has a blood lust when playing this game. I mean, what’s wrong with taking the nice, caring approach to winning? You know, wonder victories, cultural victories, can’t we all get along? Do we always have to kill kill kill?
I mean, how cool would it be to win by having the Pyramids, Colossus, Versaillis, etc. How cool would it be to win that way repeatedly? That’s the real way to win. Real men win in wonder victories. Then you gain a reputation. Yeah, man. Then you’ll be a real winner.
Actually, Met_K, most wonder victories take place when cities change hands in battle. It’s unlikely another player is going to let you get away with just racking up enough wonders for a win.*
The more likely scenario is that a player with a fair amount of wonders manages to capture and hold an enemy city with a valuable enough wonder to score the victory. Very manly, with the clash of steel and smell of napalm and what have you.
- The peaceniks you’ve played against at Shoot Club don’t count.
The races in the demo are the Germans, the British, the Bantu and the Egyptians.
The map types are Amazon Rain Forest, Great Lakes and African Watering Hole.
The whole tech tree appears to be accessible (I won my first game right after reaching the “Modern” era so not sure about future techs).
I believe the maps are randomly generated. You can choose all the different sizes as far as I can tell, so they must be randomly generated. I’ve played with up to 3 AI players so far. Will be interesting to see what’s the max AI you can have on the map at one time is (with the demo…and with the game… surely not 18 nations at once??).
The races in the demo are the Germans, the British, the Bantu and the Egyptians.
Ah, the Bantu. Great for early game rushing. The Egyptians are one of my favorites, but their cities are basically a lightning rod for the other nations. “Hey, I’ve got extra farms and two wonders! Come conquer me!”
The British can be an economic powerhouse with their extra commerce and tax bonus. The Germans are good for mid- and endgame.
I won my first game right after reaching the “Modern” era so not sure about future techs.
Once you’ve filled your library by reseraching everything, there are four future techs that get unlocked for you to research. They’re ridiculously expensive. I’ve been involved in some very unpleasant drawn-out slugfest deadlocks, but I’ve never seen all four future techs get researched.
Will be interesting to see what’s the max AI you can have on the map at one time is (with the demo…and with the game… surely not 18 nations at once??).
The maximum players in a game is eight. However, in the Conquer the World campaign, all 18 nations are present. They get winnowed down pretty quickly, though.
“Once you’ve filled your library by reseraching everything, there are four future techs that get unlocked for you to research. They’re ridiculously expensive. I’ve been involved in some very unpleasant drawn-out slugfest deadlocks, but I’ve never seen all four future techs get researched.”
Realistically, you’re not likely to. If World Government wins the game, everyone’s going to leap for that one, otherwise it’s worthless. Missile Shield is handy if you’re facing a nutcase player (and I love the politics of nukes in this game…) , but the only absolutely, positively essential one is Artificial Intelligence. By the endgame, if someone beats you to that little fella, you are so screwed that it’s not even funny (at least in the games I’ve played so far). Unless you get it first. In which case it’s hilarious.
“Kind of disappointed that the Romans weren’t available for play, and the ages skip by pretty quickly - I think I’d like to see more combat in each individual age.”
I’m not sure. In AOE2, I usually found myself sitting back until I had a large army and then steamrollering - in RON I’ve spent much more time trying to keep expanding in order to make use of Attrition and Taxation. In a Capital game, there’s nothing better than having all the invading armies turning up so weak that your peasants just grab a spade and take them all out with a single whack to the noggin.
Just played the tutorial mission. Wonderful game! Much like Age of Kings except better, where “better” means… more fun! :D
Oops, sorry about that, Tom. Actually I meant to say that the unit animations are wonderfully, lovingly, breathtakingly detailed – seen the appropriately dressed Athenian scholars come out of the academy and sit down on the bench in front of the guy who’s gesticulating, and later change wardrobe to medieval monks? Or the peasants actually operating a crane when they’re constructing a building? Cannons placed on top of the Gunpowder fortress that fire at advancing troops? It’s simply incredible.
The game elegantly solves two problems that all Age games suffered from. National borders prevent players from placing resource site halfway across the map (except for undefended merchant sites – very nice idea by the way!), and getting the whole region after occupying the city means you don’t have to fight a huge boring battle of attrition to destroy every last building and peon while the enemy keeps churning out pikemen.
They also increased relative building strength even beyond the level where they were in Age of Kings. I really love that because it requires some coordination for sieges, and I can play defensively without fearing to get rushed while I’m still building an army.
I just finished a game against 3 AI players. I was Egypt.
The guy furthest away from me (Bantu) got a runaway start and conquered the English. I didn’t think I had much of a chance. The Bantu got the Wonder timer started. I was able to build a Wonder in time to turn it off. Then the Bantu threw up another Wonder and got the timer started again. I built another Wonder but it wasn’t gonna make it in time, so I invaded with everything I had and took a Bantu city with a Wonder. Almost simultaneously my guys finished their Wonder, and the Wonder timer started again…for my victory. I thought I was pretty smart, until the Bantu threw up yet another Wonder and turned my timer off.
After that the game turned into a slugfest. After I researched the Missile Shield I started nuking the Bantu (what a guy) and managed to extract victory from the jaws of defeat.
Pretty exciting, back and forth action.
I like the animation when Gunpowder-Age armies are fighting. It looks pretty realistic as far as that goes with the Napoleonic formations, etc.
I played the tutorial once… loved it but was disappointed in how quickly I won, then I found the options and realized it starts you out on easy. Moved it up to moderate and I’ve lost several in a row :P but still having fun. Getting closer each time, but when he beats me to modern it’s over.
I laughed the first time through… a few minutes into building, a dialogue pops up and asks if you’re having fun, or would you rather just kill stuff… 'cause we can do that too, just say the word!
I may play every game in the Napoleonic age (enlightenment?) just to have the musket action. The formations and rolling smoke are nicely done. In my first game I was losing until I got a line of arquebuser’s going. Once again the zulus were getting mauled by the thin red line (we’re talking Zulu, not Zulu Dawn).