Rise of Nations

Grand armies clash with the fate of a nation in the balance in Rise of Nations, the latest Real Time Strategy game based on the popular Age of Empires engine.
Players select a nation and difficulty setting then race to explore, research, build, and advance through eras of technology before your opponent does. With an amazing array of units and building Rise of Nations is a nice progression from other games in the genre, as I took great pleasure in developing nuclear weapons before my opponent and then unleashing a full barrage upon his units.
Rise of Nations wisely includes an Armageddon clock that limits the number of nuclear exchanges in a game increasing the need for strategy over brute force to win.
The artificial Intelligence and path finding in the game is about the same as other games using the Age of Empires engine but Rise of Nations does offer a wealth of animations for the units. I saw soldiers stop fighting to reload weapons and workers lay down to pass the time when not given an assignment. Resource collection was smooth in the game and on the lower difficulty settings I did not have as much trouble gathering enough resources as I have on other R.T.S.
Unit designs are solid and well balanced as is the multiplay, which offers variations of the standard deathmatch modes. My biggest issue with the game is that aside from nice animations, the game offers little that players have not already seen in previous games such as Empire Earth and Age of Empires II. That being said, if you are a fan of R.T.S. then Rise of Nations is a quality game that will entertain you.
3.5 stars out of 5.