The Settlers series is one of the classic city-builder franchises, and The Settlers: Rise of an Empire is the most recent installment in the long-running series. As far as city-builders go, it

No doubt about it; The Settlers: Rise of an Empire is a good looking game. The classic cartoon-y Settlers look has been updated to take advantage of modern graphics capabilities. Buildings and units are nicely modeled and textured, and there are plenty of little details to add ambience to the in-game environment. For example, you

The music and sound effects are used quite effectively, and the voice work is well done. Blue Byte has done an excellent job with the production values here, and they add to the overall experience. The background music is perfectly suited whether you

Unfortunately, controls are where the game starts to get into some trouble. The basic game mechanics are pretty simple, but the game can be a bit fidgety. You won

From a gameplay standpoint, The Settlers: Rise of an Empire is pretty much your standard city-builder. Resource points, like stone and fish, are distributed around the map. By setting up a building nearby, your settlers will begin to harvest resources, which can be converted into usable goods at various shops.

Once you get the fundamental wood and food production needs taken care of, you can start working towards advancing your settlement to the next level. This is marked by a neat little promotion system, where your

Interestingly, this game includes a multiplayer component. This helps a lot, especially in light of the rather passive AI opponents. The quest-driven campaign is fun, but it isn