News Archives - October 2008

New unit at
Posted by EnemyofJupitor on October 30, AD 2008 @ 9:47 AM

Freshly updated up on the official site is the 24-pounder Howitzer unit!

By angling the barrel and changing the propellant charge used, howitzers have an impressive flexibility in shell trajectories. Experienced crews can lob explosive shells and incendiary rounds with great accuracy into a “beaten zone”, making life utterly miserable and very short for anyone within it. In close action, they can fire canister rounds directly into enemy formations, like giant sawn-off shotguns

Scary stuff. Go here to see it, and here to discuss.

Empire: Total War on Steam
Posted by Gaius Colinius on October 28, AD 2008 @ 8:08 PM

It's no surprise to see that Empire: Total War is to be made available on Steam but what is something of a surprise is that the game will incorporate Steamworks, even for boxed copies bought in retail stores. It means that we'll get the advantages of Steam for online gaming. Steam WILL need to be running when you play Empire: Total War but you can run offline mode if you wish and this option will require you to connect to Steam online just the once when you install the game. Since all copies of the game will tie in with Steam, all mods will be compatible with Steam too.

Visit the thread on our forums to find out more. Thanks to our resident "Steamster" Hairy Scary Man for the heads up (and no, he isn't all that scary when you get to know him).

Spore Heaven has opened
Posted by Gaius Colinius on October 28, AD 2008 @ 5:19 PM

A new heaven has opened to cover the newly released Spore and it looks very very snazzy indeed. Visit Spore Heaven here and marvel at their banner which directly links the front page and forums (I'm quite envious of that). Best of luck to Silk and his team of dedicated staffies!
New ETW article on Gamespot
Posted by Gaius Colinius on October 28, AD 2008 @ 5:14 PM

Gamespot has posted a new article about ETW on their site. It gives an overview of the new features of the game, as well as providing more insight on battles and on the role of historic characters will play in Empire: Total War.

This latest information one Empire: Total War can be found here at You can discuss the article in this thread on our forums. Many thanks to sskrypteia for the heads-up.

New Empire: Total War Screenshots
Posted by Gaius Colinius on October 23, AD 2008 @ 5:04 PM
I did some hunting for ETW screenshots and turned up a goodly number. See the ETW gallery to see them all. I think you'll agree that some of them are stunning, while all of them are excellent.

My favs:

Discuss them all in this thread on our forums.
Empire: Total War Campaign Map Trailer Released
Posted by Gaius Colinius on October 23, AD 2008 @ 4:19 PM
Eagle-eyed zlack spotted a new trailer over at the Sega Empire: Total War site and it deals with the campaign map. It shows off the lovely graphics and jazzed-up interface. For instance, I really love the look of the new city building & recruitment screens.

CA can't help showing us some battle footage and I note that we're getting Native Americans as well as some distinctly eastern looking units as well as the standard European troops.
I also note star-shaped forts and the cannons that will knock them down in no time!

Visit the thread on our forums to see the video. You can also download it but you need realplayer to view it. As soon as an mpeg or avi is released, it'll be up on our youtube channel.

CA are also starting to fill in their "game info" section and have faction overviews. The first one up is France. There are also three new Developer Diaries. Click on "Jamie Ferguson" and "Mike Brunton" for amusing mini-biographies.

If you go down to the "units" section, Grenadiers are the featured land unit. You get a 3D model that you can spin like a ballet dancer as well as some information on the unit itself. The sloop is the featured naval vessel. We also have some information on the University building and Platoon Firing, which is an unlockable technology.
New land battles FAQ!
Posted by Kor on October 22, AD 2008 @ 7:46 AM
The fellows at the Total War Blog have posted a new FAQ, providing us with many more details on land battles!
Here's a few snippets:

Can we have the option to preview a battlefield before choosing battle?

Generals don’t always get to pick the ground that they fight on and great generals will even take the ground chosen by the enemy and make it their own. Or to put it another way: The current mechanism assumes that the battlefield chosen is the best that could be attained as a result of manoeuvre and counter manoeuvre of opposing forces and the limits of terrain in the area. We give the player time to review the battlefield in the deployment phase and there are a number of cues as to the likely composition of the battlefield obtainable by looking at the campaign map.

Will there be a “fire by rank” system for troops in line formation, e.g. British redcoats? And will you be taking into account that some armies may have better skills than others in some areas e.g. British troops could fire and reload their muskets faster then the French could?

The short answer to all that is yes but with some reservations. It will depend on a nation’s research into tactics, the units deployed, their experience, what system is used and how good they are compared to their opponents. The British were not always the best at everything. If they had been they would have beaten the Americans in the War of Independence, Wellington would not have needed the support of Blucher at Waterloo and he would not have said it was “a close run thing”.

Are different countries’ uniforms, colours and changes in uniforms included?

Yes but as much as we would like to include every uniform, every turn back, every button, every badge and every uniform colour represented by every nation, in the game, and reflect all those uniform changes in detail over the 18th century (100 years), the logistics really aren’t viable for a game made in the time we have.

As a result we chose to select a representative sample of uniforms from throughout the period to reflect that change and variety. Every nation has a “national colour” that we use to represent that nation and is featured strongly in their uniforms. On top of that we add variations, where we think its effective, in their uniforms that are appropriate either according to faction or unit type or in some cases both. That isn’t the end of things though.

Read all about it here, and thanks to Scipii for pointing out this gem! You can discuss it in our forum here.
How to Make New Buildings for M2TW
Posted by Gaius Colinius on October 20, AD 2008 @ 8:34 PM
Mythic Commodore has been a sterling contributor to the heaven so I'm very pleased to be able to unveil his article on How to Make New Buildings, which follows on from his last article, A Guide to the export_descr_buildings.txt file.

Thanks, praise, comments & suggestions should be noted here in this thread.
M2TW AI Modification: An Interactive Essay
Posted by Gaius Colinius on October 20, AD 2008 @ 8:27 PM
CavalryCmdr created a landmark guide to how the campaign AI works on our forums and it's widely referenced throughout the M2TW modding community. We're very proud to be able to unveil it as an article on our modding section. Do drop into the thread on our forums to offer thanks, praise and feedback. The article can be found here.

If you want to mod the AI or simply understand why it behaves the way it does, then this guide is a "must read".

You should also download CavalryCmdr's Medimod where the ideas from the guide above are used to provide an improved AI performance. You can find that here.
Empire: Total War interview!
Posted by Aftermath on October 16, AD 2008 @ 5:02 AM
As the set release date of February painstakingly crawls closer the trickle of information on Empire: Total War is beginning to gain momentum. This time Rock, Paper, Shotgun has conducted an interview with the game's lead designer James Russell. Detailed are aspects of the political environment of the 18th century and how this will effect the game, how AI will be improved and more.

Our member Scipii brought the interview to our attention and has also created a discussion on our Empire: Total War forum regarding the interview.

Got an opinion? Voice it! A new gameplay idea? Tell us! A burning desire to devour opponents in gunpowder fury? Wait with us!
Proposed changes to the ladder
Posted by EnemyofJupitor on October 12, AD 2008 @ 11:42 AM

I have drawn up a change to the ladder system in order to make it more fun for everyone. Unfortunatly, it involves zeroing everyone's scores, so I'd like your input before I go ahead with it. It involves organising the ladder into 'seasons'- for more information, click here

Empire interview: New Interface + 'Prestige' system details!
Posted by Aftermath on October 9, AD 2008 @ 12:49 PM
Gamespot recently conducted an interview with Keiron Bridgen, Creative Assembly's studio communications manager. As before some information is new, some is not. Of particular interest however were details regarding a streamlined interface for Empires; with the intention of making it a little more accessible to new fans and just as easy to set up complex formations for seasoned Total War veterans.

In addition, exciting new information provides an insight on the new 'Prestige' system which will be featured in the game as Empires gain these prestige points based on the strength of their economy, military prowess, achievements and territory!

Read it for yourselves and offer some opinions or maybe just unintelligible rants of excitement and anticipation. While you go ahead and read this, I'm off to tide my hunger with Medieval II musket-only epic battles!

We have a thread on our Empire: Total War forum discussing the ins and outs of the article which can be found here.

If you would like to give the Gamespot interview a read for yourselves look no further than this.
PC Gamer previews Empire: Total War!
Posted by Aftermath on October 3, AD 2008 @ 10:55 AM
The November issue of PC Gamer (UK) features a preview on the highly anticipated Empire: Total War, currently scheduled for release on the 6th of February. Some information included is new, some elaborates more on what we already know - but no matter what type of information it is, we are still excited by it all. The article itself has been summarised on our forums here.

Why not join in the discussions?