In this new release from Electronic Arts you become the Emperor of the Solar System. You wield total control over every aspect of society, from military forces to the galactic economy. Evaluate your strategy in dealing with the other empires that make up the universe. The fate of your people, indeed the fate of the entire Solar System rests in your hands. Ah, the power of being Emperor!
Imperium is a mixture of strategy and simulation. Every move you make will have consequences elsewhere. If you decide to build up your star fleet of battleships, other empires (and there are quite a few) might view this as a threat to their existence. However, if you decide to solely concentrate on developing your economic wealth, your Empire will be defenceless against attacks by marauding invaders. The wise Emperor must balance military strength with economic growth, and this is no easy task.
Your ultimate goal is to expand your Empire to the furthest reaches of outer space, and there are two clear ways of doing this. The first (and easiest) is to simply conquer the other existing empires. Maintain a steady economy, and your wealth will allow the Empire to increase its armed forces. Starfleets of Battle Cruisers, Destroyers, Frigates, and Dreadnoughts must be built, which costs time and money. Then you'll need money to recruit and train different levels of troops. Furthermore, you need money to build Ark Ships and fill them with colonists, to populate your conquered worlds. Finally, you may need to make alliances with other empires (before invading them), and alliance treaties often mean economic treaties. Hence the need for a successful strategy in controlling the trade and economy of your Empire.
The second way to win is to live for a thousand years. Yes, a THOUSAND years! Imagine what your breath will be like! How can any mere mortal, though Emperor he may be, survive for such a long time? Simple. Steroids. Really! In this case, Nostrum, a life preserving drug that can halt the aging process. As you can imagine. Nostrum is a much sought after substance. Empires will go to war over it, and so will you. It's vital to find adequate amounts of Nostrum, because without it you won't live long enough to win.
Graphics are nothing to shout about, though they are crisply presented in black and white - but why didn't they use more colour? The game screen consists mainly of a series of icons, representing your options (build spaceships, build spy antennas, obtain the latest news reports, and so on). There's a map icon which switches the game into a "revolving map" mode. Here you are able to collate all the information you have on various empires and planets, as well as viewing a graphical representation of the galaxy (click another icon to "revolve" the map). The emphasis in lmperium is not on flashy graphics, but strategy and gameplay, of which there are heaps. Fair enough.
Imperium is another solid strategy game from Electronic Arts. The number of options available are too numerous to count, and the nature of the game will ensure many, many hours of gameplay. Thank goodness for the Save game option! Included with the game package is a very detailed manual, and an Amiga reference card. Strategy buffs, make a beeline for this one!
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