Hello again! It has been awhile and rather than get into all of that, I’m going to just jump straight back in and do a review of a game that I am currently playing… welcome to the Nova Empire Review.
What is it all about?
This is an online, massive multiplayer strategy game set in space. There are many similar games in style and theme. I’ve tried a few but this one I keep coming back to. I have been playing for roughly eight months now and have done quite well in advancing up in development and strength.
Like most of these games, there are many who pay for the ability to advance quickly but this is one of those games, that, with patience, you can get there without spending any dollars. Having said that, I do spend money on it. I pay for the monthly bundle which works out to about $20 Aus but is less for European or US markets. This bundle gives a few bonuses that do help over time but are not an immediate advantage for a new player.
The idea of the game is that you are part of a group of people that have been sent into deep space to find habitable planets for new colonists. Unfortunately, there are other alien races already here and now you need to fight to survive. Not a new concept but a great opening story to get you interested. Well it worked on me, lol.
So you’re a commander of a fleet who has to contend with other competing commanders (players), pirates (AI controlled, basically ships that fight back when you attack) and special events held on weekends which usually involve either pirates or alien races. Your first task is to learn to survive so you don’t get wiped out to easily. This involves collecting resources so you can build your fleet, upgrade your station, and generally improve your condition. and it pretty much continues from there with much of the same thing.
I think the real key to this game is the alliance system. Like most of these games, if you can surround yourself with a good bunch of like minded people, you will keep coming back. Even when you have advanced to a point where everything takes days, weeks or even months to build or research, it’s the camaraderie you have with your alliance (or a select few within it) that will keep you logging in every day.
Game-play / Controls – 9/10
Being on a touchscreen device, the controls are pretty easy – point at what you want or where you want to go, a menu pops up and you select what you want to do. It’s pretty easy to pick up but can take a bit of time to truly master. I find that sometimes I need to press twice. This may be my device/s though and not the game itself.
The game-play is pretty easy. Like most of these games, there is a short tutorial style introduction that leads you through the basics… how to collect resources, how to attack, how to build/research etc. Then there is also a daily list of tasks that is 75% the same each day with only two or three tasks that can change and they are pretty easy to achieve if you are prepared to put in the time. There is an in-game currency, called GEC, which you do earn every day without spending money but a monthly pack supplies you with 150 every day which helps get through the daily tasks easier. This can take anywhere from one to two hours in one session or over several visits throughout the day, which would still add up to at least one hour.
This is my process of moving through the daily tasks, donate to the alliance, check my fleets – add/remove/repair ships, check the Naval Academy for rare Admirals, check station status – upgrades of buildings/research/ship building/speed boosts, then join my group for legions (group events like destroying a set amount of pirates), collect the debris resources dropped by the dead pirates, scan planets and collect additional mineral resources from moons and asteroids. And that’s a daily take on game-play.
As mentioned earlier, there are other special events that are held every weekend and sometimes during the week too. The regular ones are Pirate Invasions and Kraken Portal. These are alliance events so not something you can do on your own as the rewards received are alliance based. These generally require you to team up and attack special targets and then defend them for a period of time, usually 3 hours, to gain a special reward. These rewards go to the alliance as special increases to building, research or resource collections or even as special types of ships you can build for a few days. One person can do the event but would not receive the rewards if they are not part of an alliance.
Graphics – 8/10
I like the way this game is displayed. I’ve tried a few others that come across as either a side scroller type design or have too much information displayed on the one screen. Which, as a new player, is totally overwhelming at first. I found this to have just enough on screen to tell you what was happening without making you feel overloaded or lost. Somethings could use more explanation but if you are with a good alliance, there are people on there who will answer questions and guide you on some of the finer points of the game, including how to read the display better.
This is the main game-screen. You have planets, asteroids, pirates and stations visible in the middle section with information in the top left on how much resources you have and quick link buttons around the top, sides and bottom. This is one system out of many and they come in different colours too. Some are a bit harsh on the eyes but all are clear and readable.
This is a close up of one of my fleets flying towards a doomed pirate. I think some of the graphics are a bit simple but overall it works and get’s the idea across as to what is what and who is who.
Overall – 9/10
I was surprised when I first started to find that they did have a story to kind of follow but there has been no continuance of that. I didn’t expect a story in an MMO so the fact that it hasn’t continued is not really disappointing but at the same point, being a player that likes a story, kind of is. Having said that, I find the game enjoyable still and really like the way that you can get involved with other players. As I mentioned earlier, I think half my enjoyment of this game is thanks to my fellow alliance members and how we work well together. Do I recommend it, definitely! So much so, you can expect a different kind of blog next… a guide to how to play this game!
Do you play Nova Empire? Or something similar? Why not tell me about it bellow!