A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that although much of the game focuses on military conquest, it's presented in a somewhat historical context. The violence is always displayed in a non-gratuitous manner.
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What's it about?
For teens who like to imagine themselves as the sometime ruler of the world, RISE OF NATIONS provides a way to experiment with strategy. The player's goal is to guide one of 18 great nations through a campaign to take over the world.
Rise of Nations combines the turn-based play of a board game like Risk, with the on-the-move excitement of a Real Time Strategy (RTS) game. In RTS mode the play is continuous, as both the player and the opponent build up resources and strategically attack each other's cities to control territory.
Is it any good?
The game some educational potential, offering specialized units and traits for each nation and following a rough timeline of national development from ancient times to modern ages. These elements could spark a player's interest in a particular nation's history, but the game doesn't take advantage of this by explaining the historical significance between the special units and that particular nation. From an entertainment aspect, the game performs admirably with artificial intelligence that offers multiple levels of difficulty. Players can use a multi-player option to challenge friends.
Although battles are shown fully animated, the violence is tempered by the player only having a bird's eye view rather than being fully immersed. In the end, Rise of Nations is a good game; from an entertainment point of view it is excellent. However, a little more effort could have given players not only an entertaining time, but also an educational one.
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