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The Settlers: Rise of an Empire Image

Mixed or average reviews - based on 19 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 34 Ratings

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  • Summary: In The Settlers: Rise of an Empire, the player builds lively, bustling towns in a medieval world. Each settler has his or her own daily routine, with a range of different actions and behaviors that can be observed by the player at all times. This enables the player to get the best out of the settlers, build up a flourishing economy, tend to the settlers’ needs and protect the empire against danger from the outside. By expanding the empire, the player can aspire to becoming a legendary king or queen. The game features an immersive, yet transparent economic system based on the resources, wares and goods produced by the settlers in their various trades and occupations. Create big, bustling medieval cities: Plot your expansion, manage your resources wisely and provide for your people. The Settlers Rise of an Empire offers gameplay that is easy to pick up and allows everybody from newbies to strategy experts to enjoy the game. Protect your citizens and your empire: Build up armies, vehicles and walls to protect your empire. Everything depends on your economy: Is your empire wealthy enough to supply a powerful defense force? Work together with one friend and play against another team: Will your division of labor be efficient enough to beat your opponent? A full living, detailed atmosphere: The RenderWare engine creates an extremely detailed universe with numerous plants, animals and other details that will attract the player. Four climatic zones: The four climatic zones and four seasons have full impact on recourse management and gameplay. Natural interaction of Settlers: All Settlers have their own daily lives and they interact naturally with each other. [Ubisoft] Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 19
  2. Negative: 0 out of 19
  1. As far as city-building and resource management games go, The Settlers: Rise of an Empire is one of the best around.
  2. Ultimately not a bad game, just "too casual". Definitely enjoyable for many, especially younger players, gamers with lives or those who actually prefer the simplicity. For a hardcore reviewer like me, the gameplay is unfortunately just too simple, repetitive and unchallenging.
  3. It's not really doing anything groundbreaking. [Dec 2007, p.76]
  4. 65
    Despite being the best game in the series because of some lovely visuals and good gameplay enhancements, The Settlers: Rise of an Empire still manages to screw enough things up to be aggravating.
  5. It's lighthearted, haunting, soothing, and frenetic. It's too bad that this game is plagued by poor mechanics. The production values are there, but they just can't seem to rise above the glitches.
  6. An enjoyable, quality release that will absorb hours of your time, but there’s no escaping the feeling that Blue Byte appears to be running short of ideas. [Dec 2007, p.125]
  7. 50
    Unfortunately, the creators of Rise of an Empire have managed to make a Settlers game so narrow in scope and so lacking in player control that it's only slightly more interactive than dropping fish flakes in with the Neon Tetras.

See all 19 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 7
  2. Negative: 0 out of 7
  1. ScottDinin
    Aug 26, 2009
    This game is amazing for people who like a city builder RTS. I think it should have gotten a much better rating but i do understand the that most players would, including me, would prefer more action than just fighing bandits. Besides that the game is gorgeous and very fulfilling to see your little settlement turn into a huge city. Expand
  2. Jun 28, 2013
    In the world of media, fans of a genre or a specific franchise can sometimes be more of a hindrance to it's success than the rest of us. I'm saddened to see some negative perspectives on this game. Myself, being new to the Settlers series, and this being the first Settlers game I've played, I was hugely impressed with the scope of Settlers 6. I've been playing PC games since the Ultima days and I can honestly say that I haven't been this addicted to a game since Ultima 7. Not that I'm comparing this to Ultima 7 but, my point is is that this is not just an RTS, or a city building game. In fact I don't really think you can pigeonhole this game.

    To summarize. You have to gather resources before you can build anything, and you're free to control your hero and explore the map to find such resources (and sometimes treasure). Your settlers can harvest wood, stone, and iron. Your settlers can hunt game, fish, and raise livestock including sheep and cattle which, they can sheer and milk respectively. You can then process those materials accordingly, by setting up cheese or tailor shops. You can grow wheat and a baker can turn it into bread. Apiaries, taverns, etc. It's all these little details that, for me, separates Settlers 6 from most RTS or strategy games. It's a little bit Medieval simulator, with some action and exploration built in.

    You can zoom right in watching your settlers as they work, and they will speak to you and give feedback as to their level of comfort. This is not one of those abstract empire building games where the UI is basically a board game played on your PC, against a computer AI. Settlers 6 is real time, and you can see your settlers up close, as well as interact with them. The maps and models are fully rendered, which allows you to not only zoom in, but also rotate the camera or your building models in any direction. People compare this game to Age of Empires, but graphically Settlers 6 looks like a modern game, whereas AoE III looks like a DOS game (with all due respect). Being that Settlers 6 is also less combat oriented, your units are only limited to 2 types, archers and swordsman, but, you also have your knight, who is on horseback, and you can build 4 types of siege engines.

    Another couple of points I want to get out there. I've read some say that this specific installment is less complex than it's predecessors. I straight up disagree. After completing Settlers 6 I went on to try earlier versions and actually found them lacking in comparison. I think sometimes people confuse a less informative and cryptic UI as complexity. I've also played Settler 7 and I still feel Settlers 6 is the winner. Admittedly, missions can get repetitive, but the trick for me was to just take my time on each map, and build up my town and gain he highest rank possible with my knight before rushing to the objective.

    Another happy note. The custom map missions come with a sandbox style map called "free settlement". A great way to enjoy the game once you've completed the campaign.
  3. Excalibur
    Oct 17, 2007
    A nice, entertaining, easy to play, game for the non hardcore fan of the city builder genre!
  4. JM
    Oct 1, 2007
    I would have liked to seen more resources and manufactured goods, other than that a very good game.
  5. Jul 13, 2014
    Really nice game with nice graphics, quite simple mechanics compared to Stronghold 2. Its not to hard core or sth. Campaign is nice to play, its long enough to sit and play for about 30 hours. Expand
  6. Nov 23, 2012
    Basically my first contact with the series and a rather unpleasant surprise. Unbelievably lame story and characters (so infantile) and the gameplay itself is kinda... after 10 missions I feel like i keep doing the same **** so I'm gonna drop this, this is a very weak 6/10. Expand
  7. JoshF.
    Oct 20, 2007
    Not very good at all. It gets repetative after 2 skirmish games. I say buy it used or forget about it. I am cutting my lossed after buyig this dreck and the bug-ridden mess that is The Settlers 2 the 10 Anniversary. Expand