User Score
9.1

Universal acclaim- based on 899 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 28 out of 899

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  1. AlexG.
    Oct 24, 2004
    7
    While Rome: Total War is one of the most visually impressive strategy games I've played, the AI is rather atrocious; and frankly, that's where it counts when it comes to strategy. For instance, once I was playing as the Greeks, and suddenly the Macedonians laid siege to my city with their entire standing army. Taking the offensive, despite being outnumbered by about 400 men, I While Rome: Total War is one of the most visually impressive strategy games I've played, the AI is rather atrocious; and frankly, that's where it counts when it comes to strategy. For instance, once I was playing as the Greeks, and suddenly the Macedonians laid siege to my city with their entire standing army. Taking the offensive, despite being outnumbered by about 400 men, I managed to destroy their forces with one archer unit and the built-in defenses of the city's stone wall by sending my general out of the city gates to lure them forward, and then pulling him back in. Wash, rinse, repeat, and you repel virtually any siege; since the AI has no concept of self-preservation, it won't even bother to move troops under fire in many instances. Fortunately (or unfortunately), the AI for your troops is no better, so things balance out. Perhaps it's unfair to expect Rome: Total War to set the bar higher for RTS AI; but it's disappointing nonetheless, that in spite of such graphical and aural splendor, even simple tasks like pathfinding have improved little since the days of Ms. Pacman. As for the game's plaudits, the other reviewers have pointed most of those out already, and Rome is everything it should and could be aesthetically; all that remains now is for the developers is to make a game that actually requires a shred of strategem and we'd all be set for life. Expand
  2. Sep 14, 2013
    6
    I am hyped for total war. However, before anything cool happens, I'm thrown onto the campaign map. I'm very much confused what to do. After struggling with the game and learning basic mechanics of how to play I start to understand campaign mechanics. Then a battle happens. Not much is known and I get the basics after a 3 or 4 more battles. However after the repetition of losing battlesI am hyped for total war. However, before anything cool happens, I'm thrown onto the campaign map. I'm very much confused what to do. After struggling with the game and learning basic mechanics of how to play I start to understand campaign mechanics. Then a battle happens. Not much is known and I get the basics after a 3 or 4 more battles. However after the repetition of losing battles over again, I realize the greatest flaw in this RTS. This is the worst gaming A.I. i have ever seen. That is pretty much the heart of the cons in Total War Rome. My platoon moves to fight the enemy and immediately they are thrown out of order in a big blocky mess. All they do is follow my orders. That is the problem. I have a giant wall of soldiers coming towards my enemy and they don't even think to break up formation slightly and walk as a unit rather than a giant wall.When they contact the enemy they don't naturally surround them using their brains and try to flank them. They stand as a block and stare at them. When the fighting actually starts happening. ONE unit swings his sword randomly in the air and someone dies. Then the rest of the group tries desperately to find a target and what happens is a big clunky mess of units walking into to each other. Thats the combat. Walking and Flailing. Its unacceptable, and ruins the game for me. Now don't start calling me and idiot saying I don't know how to play RTS or RTS noob. I've played the original total war shogun. You know? the one with actually battle violence? possible the most violent war game? At least in the unit combat had a clunk to it. At least in that the interface was easier to control.
    Ive played Supreme Commander. That game is a strategic nightmare to master, but not impossible. Because the A.I. hits, the combat is effective, the game interface is accessible. This game does not give you a clear understanding of what the hell is happening on the battle. Your watching an incoherent mess because units don't strike at the first instance they see a unit. If an elephant is attacking spear men those spear men should be spearing the living out of it rather than path-finding like a chicken with its head cut off. Now that is over. The rest of the game offers unique ideas no other RTS can pull off,
    for that it is rewarded but for pretty much everything else it disappears.
    Expand
  3. JackH.
    Nov 28, 2004
    5
    The game is definitely over-hyped. I am a big fan of the MTW/Viking invasion games, and despite the slicker graphics, RTW is not enough of an improvement to warrant the price. Also, the music is a let-down. MTW very effectively used its soundtrack to portray the Medieval period. RTW tried, but its soundtrack is a little too glossy (Hollywood) for my taste.
  4. Sep 29, 2011
    6
    It's easy to pick up and play, but the actual in-game combat is very basic and boring. There's barely any strategy in it and the combat really seems rushed and a 'side feature'. You can even resolve battles automatically, and have no option to fight when it's naval warfare. Overall, the game is pretty accessible but there's nothing exciting about it if you ask me. If you want a realIt's easy to pick up and play, but the actual in-game combat is very basic and boring. There's barely any strategy in it and the combat really seems rushed and a 'side feature'. You can even resolve battles automatically, and have no option to fight when it's naval warfare. Overall, the game is pretty accessible but there's nothing exciting about it if you ask me. If you want a real turn-based STRATEGY game, try Chess.â Expand
  5. JeffD
    Mar 8, 2007
    6
    I'm starting to get pretty sick of the gaming press' absurd hyper-enthusiasm for any even remotely-interesting game. This is the third game I've spent my hard-earned cash on in the last six months which had a Metascore of 85+ and which, nonetheless, was lackluster-to-bad. Coupled with the fact that games can't be returned (a practice which badly needs to end), I'm starting to get pretty sick of the gaming press' absurd hyper-enthusiasm for any even remotely-interesting game. This is the third game I've spent my hard-earned cash on in the last six months which had a Metascore of 85+ and which, nonetheless, was lackluster-to-bad. Coupled with the fact that games can't be returned (a practice which badly needs to end), it's just unforgivable. Hello, journalistic integrity? Where are you? With regard to this specific game, yeah, it's an OK strategy game. Certainly not the godsend that the gaming press and some of the folks around here seem to think. Gameplay is initially rather convoluted and confusing (no doubt due to a less than stellar user interface), then fun for a few hours, then repetitive and tedious. The graphics are OK -- nothing special. I think that folks may be getting off on the "epicness" of the graphics, on the sheer fact that you'll have thousands of soldiers fighting in a battle. But all those soldiers look alike and move exactly alike. And the terrain they're fighting on, as well as the campaign map, and the cutscenes as well, are all pretty lacklustre. Despite this game's general classification as a RTS, the gameplay emphasis is on the campaign (turn-based) play. I say this because all RTS battles can be skipped...and frequently they will be, since the AI will spend a lot of time attacking your armies even when they're badly outmanned. Naval battles can't be fought in RTS mode at all. And as a turn-based campaign game, R:TW is really lacking in depth. About 8 hours into my campaign game (now at about 12 hours, I seem to be about 1/3 of the way through it), I enabled the "Automanage AI" option and never looked back. So, I'm not fighting my battles on the battlefield, I'm not managing my cities. It seems like all that's left is what would be the most tedious part of another turn-based game like Civ IV -- ferrying my troups around the campaign map. Yuck. It's not all bad. I did have some fun with this game in the few intervening hours between figuring out the rather poorly-documented and unusual-but-not-in-a-good-way UI and getting bored with the repetitive gameplay. But was it worth my $30? Hell no. Expand
  6. Coolbreeze3
    Jan 1, 2009
    6
    I can't believe this crap scored so high I feel totally suckered into buying this lame junk. Okay I understand this is old school warfare but it doesn't have to be so freaking dry in the entertainment department. All the action is in the misleading video for the game and not actually when you are playing. Also my biggest gripe is this game having the nerve to be so not pick up I can't believe this crap scored so high I feel totally suckered into buying this lame junk. Okay I understand this is old school warfare but it doesn't have to be so freaking dry in the entertainment department. All the action is in the misleading video for the game and not actually when you are playing. Also my biggest gripe is this game having the nerve to be so not pick up and play but still there is no in game tutorial. What game since the end of the 90's fail to either have an in game tutorial or a manual I mean come on! Expand
  7. BoneCollector
    May 17, 2009
    6
    It is a good game, not the best. I don't know why everyone is giving it a 10 when it clearly is not a 10. First of all if you get it from steam, you are not able to play it online unless you make some modifications inside some hk directories coding crap. I believe that the managing the towns and getting money are pure chance. The fighting is cool but is basically the same thing over It is a good game, not the best. I don't know why everyone is giving it a 10 when it clearly is not a 10. First of all if you get it from steam, you are not able to play it online unless you make some modifications inside some hk directories coding crap. I believe that the managing the towns and getting money are pure chance. The fighting is cool but is basically the same thing over and over, just the uniforms change. I would ask for my money back or part of it since online play is not possible. Expand
  8. HarmL.
    Sep 27, 2004
    7
    Yes, a good game. But the total war has a history allready. Not much added to my opinion.
  9. SpankMonkey
    Nov 27, 2004
    7
    Alex G is a legend. thank you for good tip. now i am a leet noob. R:TW looks nice but not as nice as HL2 or Doom3. it is a lot like the old game Civilization. do not ask why my username is spank monkey. i not tell. ;-)
  10. Jun 29, 2013
    5
    Rome total war is a great game, but online bug, gc error, cant join, and games that dont start becuase someone cannot connect ruins it a lot. really i 9 game, if you think only about battles online, but bugs and gc error makes it a 5
  11. Jul 16, 2014
    6
    Its 2014 and I struggle to understand what exactly this game offered, even at the time when it was released. I see a painfully slow, awkward, restrictive military simulation that is not only uninteresting (outside of the historical context of course), but also immensely lacking as an actual "game." Perhaps time has not been so kind to this stand-alone title, but even I remember "Shogun"Its 2014 and I struggle to understand what exactly this game offered, even at the time when it was released. I see a painfully slow, awkward, restrictive military simulation that is not only uninteresting (outside of the historical context of course), but also immensely lacking as an actual "game." Perhaps time has not been so kind to this stand-alone title, but even I remember "Shogun" being fun to play and less performance annihilating as well. I play on a relatively decent rig and for the life of me I cannot understand why this game has so many performance issues outside of the confirmed fact that it was a fairly CPU intensive game to begin with. Which makes me doubt anyone's ability to have actually played it with a decent framerate in either 2004 or even 2005 and beyond. I'm not claiming that a multi-core processor like the Phenom's are going to be up to the task, but would it have been out of the question (even at the time) to update the game to take advantage of more than one processor? Its embarrassing really. The franchise itself has had better offerings, aside from the "Rome: Total War 2" and even more alarmingly not soon after this game. I understand its a simulation of sorts, a realistic battlefield, taking into account troop movement, troop moral, troop tiredness and other realistic mechanics, but its just feels uninvolved to me. Send army there, they fight, send army here, they fight, and its really not particularly fascinating outside of a siege or some of the larger battles. Those are at least more involved, and planning them out or creating a strategy actually makes sense. If this is essentially a benchmark for single core CPU performance, I get it, but as far as a game that has stood the test of time? I would have to say: "No." Not only no, but it literally hurts a games appeal over time when it is incapable of taking advantage of future technology to some extent. Farcry was built to stand the test of time and though it isn't really anything more than a benchmark itself (as well as including a terrible story and by the numbers first person shooter experience) its still works as intended. As in people can take their rigs now, pump up all the graphical eye-candy (at the time) and still enjoy the game. Rome Total War is incapable of being anymore than a well polished military simulation, but its Achilles heel was the developer not even considering future-proofing to some degree whatsoever. Expand
Metascore
92

Universal acclaim - based on 58 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 58 out of 58
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 58
  3. Negative: 0 out of 58
  1. An epic game in terms of both visual execution and longevity...Campaigns can last for several hundred turns, so prepare for the long haul.
  2. Many games are excellent world-builders, and many are deep real time strategy war games. Rome: Total War sets out to be both and pulls it off wonderfully.
  3. The tactical battles are better than ever thanks to an improved engine and significantly smarter enemy AI. You can now take up to 400 units into battle, leading to some impressive large-scale scraps.