Star Wars: Empire at War demo - Free download and software reviews - CNET Download.com

Star Wars: Empire at War demo

CNET Editors' review

Building off the success of its recent first-person shooters, LucasArts hopes to further Star Wars' video-game influence with this ambitious real-time-strategy game. This official demo shows off deep gameplay, polished graphics, and classic Star Wars characters we've loved through the years. A well-designed, five-part tutorial teaches the basics of controlling both the Rebel and Imperial units, and the available single-player mission lets you control the Rebel Alliance in an assault on an Imperial space station and a raid on the planet Tatooine.

Basic gameplay will be familiar to many RTS gamers (for example, right-click to attack), but even at a fundamental level you can see the differences between playing as Rebels or the Empire. For example, whereas the Empire gains resources only by planet domination, Rebels can increase their resources (in the form of "credits") by employing smugglers (such as Han Solo), who can then be thwarted by Imperial bounty hunters.

Battles are mostly divided into space and ground melees, with a wide variety of specialized units available for both. Valuable reinforcement areas provide the bulk of the ground strategy, while space battles are a mixture of managing bombers and positioning the bigger gunships. All units in space and on land have a specialized ability or attack, such as thermonuclear bombs (speeders) or ion cannons (Y-Wings). Space units and ground units can sometimes assist each other, the most basic ability being troops calling in bombing runs. The in-game control bar is laid out logically, and all the special space and ground moves have logical keyboard shortcuts. R2D2's holographic projections of mission updates are another nice touch.

Prequel detractors, have no fear! The game is set in the years immediately before the original Star Wars movie (Episode IV: A New Hope), and it's a very familiar environment for fans of the original trilogy. The included mission won't provide countless hours of entertainment, but the valuable tutorial, quality graphics, excellent interface, and sheer fun of directing Tiefighter attacks help the demo easily earn a top rating.

Publisher's Description

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All User Reviews
  • All versions:

    4.2 stars

    out of 81 votes

    • 5 star: 48
    • 4 star: 14
    • 3 star: 10
    • 2 star: 4
    • 1 star: 5
  • Current version:

    4.2 stars

    out of 81 votes

    • 5 star: 48
    • 4 star: 14
    • 3 star: 10
    • 2 star: 4
    • 1 star: 5
  • My rating:

    0 stars

    Write review

Results 1-10 of 55

  • 3.0 stars

    "Verry good if you like tactics"

    February 10, 2011  |   By smillie1

    Version: Star Wars: Empire at War demo

    Pros

    Great game graphics and demo!

    Cons

    Not star wars battlefront! Its just comanding squads!

    Summary

    I have the full version and it is awesome! I also have empire at war forces corupt! also good! great multiplayer in both! I actiully have the gold pack with screen savers and stuff!

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  • 1.0 stars

    "Don't buy the full game without reading my review."

    June 30, 2008  |   By Joan1.0

    Version: Star Wars: Empire at War demo

    Pros

    Fun at first.

    Cons

    Demo takes forever to download, you can't really do much, if you buy the game you not only quickly find out how boring the game is, it screws up your computer. Me and my friends all have totally different computer models, being Star Wars fans we all bought it, and had to delete it within a month cause it was screwing our PCs up. These fan reviews are mostly from people who dont have the game yet. I know. I was reading these reviews before I got the demo, and bought the game. I thought it would be just as good as youre thinking it will be. If you like space battles buy Homeworld 2. These land battles suck majorly. It's really painful, as a Star Wars fan, to be assaulting Hoth with AT-ATs and full battalions of snowtroopers, and have fifteen rebels with blaster pistols and three with rocket launchers destroy your entire force. Ask someone reasonable who has had the game for a little while if it's fun. If they've had it for well over a week they will probably know how good it is. Sincerely sorry everybody for bursting your bubble.

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  • 5.0 stars

    "i will love it"

    May 27, 2008  |   By assason

    Version: Star Wars: Empire at War demo

    Pros

    i love this softwars

    Cons

    nothing

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  • 4.0 stars

    "good"

    May 24, 2008  |   By Linhngadracula

    Version: Star Wars: Empire at War demo

    Pros

    cool

    Cons

    cool

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  • 5.0 stars

    "its awesome"

    April 5, 2008  |   By .-DEFENDER-.

    Version: Star Wars: Empire at War demo

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  • 5.0 stars

    "very challenging experience"

    April 5, 2008  |   By bardots_white

    Version: Star Wars: Empire at War demo

    Pros

    graphix

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  • 5.0 stars

    "it is so beautiful"

    March 25, 2008  |   By akramalkhazraji

    Version: Star Wars: Empire at War demo

    Pros

    great grafics

    Cons

    it is big size software

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  • 4.0 stars

    "Truly Star Wars"

    November 28, 2006  |   By mauro_vos

    Version: Star Wars: Empire at War demo

    Pros

    +Extremely cool looking space battles with nebula, asteroids and moving planets (!).

    -Somewhat borring though, after a while.

    +Loads of mods to be downloaded.

    +Map editor. -Doesn't work on my pc.

    +Lots of maps can be uploaded from other players, created with the map editor. Units that 'auto-spawn' won't be counted in the pop cap, this should compensate the cap in space.

    +Land battles are fun anyway.

    +Darth Vader and Obi-Wan (and others).

    +Galactic Conquest, just like in Battlefront.

    +Very simple to create a new account, all you need is a nickname and a password.

    +Star Wars fans MUST get this game.

    Cons

    +Map editor. -Doesn't work on my pc.

    -Small scale land battles, so you won't exactly be able to reproduce the battle of Geonosis from episode II.

    -Also because of the pretty low population cap. Annoying in space.

    I thought my full game review could help you deciding about downloading the demo version.

    -No Super Star destroyer or playable Death Star. (you need the expansion)

    -Poor construction capabilities on both land and in space.

    -Larger amounts of infantry woud make the game more realistic. (battalion of 9)

    Reply to this review Read reply (1)

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  • 5.0 stars

    "Very fun, and quite a large demo"

    October 30, 2006  |   By jouno53

    Version: Star Wars: Empire at War demo

    Pros

    This demo besides being Star Wars (the best thing every) if very fun. You get to play 90% of the tutorials and 1 skirmish mission. I would highly reccomend this to anyone interested in buying this game.

    Cons

    The only thing I don't like is that the download speed was about 65kb/s instead of the usual 150.

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  • 2.0 stars

    "Fair, Not Great but fair."

    October 22, 2006  |   By megarollman

    Version: Star Wars: Empire at War demo

    Pros

    Realistic models of Star Wars ships and characters. Great cinematic mode.

    Cons

    In cinematic mode ships fly through each other and space stations. Random camera placement without user input.

    VERY SLOW PLAY!! Limited troop and/or ship count available during battle. Extrememly small maps.

    Reply to this review

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Results 1-10 of 55

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Star Wars: Empire at War demo