Total War: Rome Remastered
By David Chapman,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Violent, bloody remade classic solidly mixes both old, new.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
The game touches on some of the politics, military strategies, general lifestyles, and beliefs of ancient Rome. While the battles are exaggerated and the outcomes aren't always historically accurate, the foundation is based on factual information of the time period.
While the campaign gives motivations for the actions of the different factions vying for control of the Roman Empire, the main purpose and message is to conquer the opposition. It's a play for power on an epic scale with history to be determined by the victors.
Positive Role Models
Though the various factions and their leaders have different motivations for battle, they're not really touched on outside of providing a reason for joining the fight for control of the Empire.
Ease of Play
Rome: Total War laid the original groundwork for much of the Total War series, but the gameplay has evolved over the years. This remastered version gives players the option to choose between the original gameplay or more modern gameplay, though both still require a heavy focus on micromanagement of resources and troops.
Violence & Scariness
The game depicts combat in its full brutality, though most of the blood is limited to smaller splashes. Defeated troops stay on the battlefield after death. Although its scale reduces the impact of the violence, players can manually zoom in on the battlefield for a much closer view of the fighting. Also, one specific troop, the Head Hurler, is depicted with several severed heads worn as decoration on its belt.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Various lines in the dialogue make sexual references, including mentions of "necrophiliac monsters," "incestuous breeding," and references to sex work.
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Mild profanity, such as "ass" and "bastard," appear occasionally in the dialogue.
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Products & Purchases
This part of SEGA's popular Total War game franchise and is a remastered version of the original Total War: Rome game, updated with new visuals, gameplay, and extra content.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
The dialogue makes occasional references to drinking alcohol and being intoxicated, and wine is a resource and regularly traded commodity.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Total War: Rome Remastered is historic strategy game available for download on Windows, macOS, and Linux based computers. The game's a remake of the original 2004 Rome: Total War game, updated with new gameplay mechanics, high-definition visuals and sound, and other additional content. Players choose from any of thirty-eight factions, managing resources and troops in an effort to take control of the Roman Empire. The game requires a lot of menu navigation and micromanagement to give orders to units, set up trade routes, and otherwise expand their efforts. Units have a wide range of specialties and use various weapons in battle, including spears, swords, bows and arrows, etc. Players can zoom in on the battlefield to get a closer look at the violence, complete with blood splatter and bodies littering the ground. The game's dialogue makes use of some mild profanity and makes occasional references to sex workers and to drinking alcohol.
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Total War: Rome Remastered
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What’s It About?
Players will conquer the Roman Empire once again with TOTAL WAR: ROME REMASTERED, the fully updated remaster of the 2004 strategy game that laid the foundation for the hit Total War franchise. The game packs all the action and tactics of the original Rome: Total War together with its Alexander and Barbarian Invasion DLCs, along with additional content such as all thirty-eight playable factions unlocked from the start and a brand-new Merchant unit with which to influence the Empire's economy and resources. It's also been updated with improved high-definition visuals, a new in-game camera that allows players to zoom in close to the battlefield, and other features modernizing the classic title for a new generation. Players can choose to play with these new features, including diplomacy and security tactics, or use the rules and gameplay from the original release. No matter how you choose to play, you'll need to prove your mettle on the field of war and earn your place as ruler of the Roman Empire.
Is It Any Good?
This remastered classic manages to meld the best of old and new features to create an enjoyable strategy experience. Total War: Rome Remastered revisits a classic title, but also recognizes how challenging that concept could be. The series has evolved a lot since 2004, which complicates the decision to update the title to today's standards or leave the experience alone for those craving the traditional gameplay. With Rome Remastered, the developers decided to offer both, giving players a checklist of options to choose from, using either the rules and mechanics from the modernized remaster or the standard gameplay from the original. Both have their merits, but for fans that have been playing more recent entries in the Total War franchise, it's difficult not to feel like something is missing when going back to classic gameplay settings.
Time is probably the biggest issue facing Total War: Rome Remastered. When the game was first released, it was the pinnacle of the strategy genre. Now that time has passed and new games have built on its foundation, Rome Remastered feels a bit outdated, even with the addition of the modern gameplay features. While it's easy to appreciate things like the updated user interface, other additions, such as the expanded diplomacy features and the Merchant unit, feel almost tacked on. For the best possible experience, fans will likely need to spend a lot of time in the settings sorting out their own balance between new and classic elements. Thankfully, no matter how they choose to play, the game will look phenomenal. Reworked character and building models look stunning, and the new camera brings players into the battlefield in ways they never could imagine in the original. And thanks to the inclusion of both major DLC (downloadable content) expansions, Alexander and Barbarian Invasion, which have also been remastered, there's no shortage of content to keep the war for Rome raging for some time to come.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about violence in video games. Is the impact of the violence in Total War Rome Remastered affected by the fact that it's trying to present the violence of historic battles? Do games like these accurately reflect the brutality of war? What sort of impact could that violence have on younger players?
What is the appeal of revisiting games, movies, etc. from the past and updating them for today's audiences? What are some games you would like to see revisited in an updated form?
- Platforms: Linux, Mac, Windows
- Subjects: Social Studies: events, historical figures, history
- Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: strategy, thinking critically
- Pricing structure: Paid
- Available online?: Available online
- Publisher: Sega of America
- Release date: April 29, 2021
- Genre: Strategy
- Topics: Adventures, History
- ESRB rating: T for Violence, Blood and Gore, Mild Sexual Themes, Mild Language, Alcohol Reference
- Last updated: May 5, 2021
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