Empire of Ember has been created by Kevin Jenkins and his studio, Poleaxe Games.
At its heart, it’s a first-person action RPG. Character archetypes include melee, bow, and staff equipped warriors, with different gameplay styles depending on your choice. Multi-level dungeons and villages you can attack or defend, as well as bespoke locations, are found all through the game world. So far, so familiar.
The unique selling point of Empire of Ember lies in the city-building tools at your disposal and the large scale combat. Cities you build are fully destructible, and can be shared amongst the community, played and rated by other gamers.
In large scale battles, you have the ability to switch between RTS style control of your troops and dropping into the battle in first-person mode. Each of the combatants on the field utilises the same AI you will face in the single-player dungeons, which means battles should have a far more organic feel than you would find in a typical RTS game.
None of these elements alone is particularly unique, but the way Poleaxe Games has blended these genres together looks like a tantalising proposition.
A secret enemy launches a surprise attack on your home, viciously murdering your wizard master and leaving your city in ruins. No longer an apprentice, you must take charge of a magical kingdom and rule as you see fit.
- Use the environment to crush, trip, impale, or explode enemies.
- Raise up fallen enemies and command the undead to fight on your behalf.
- Fully destructible cities. Use catapults to fire from afar, or blast through the walls and lead your troops through the breach.
- Lead your army in first person, in battles of up to a hundred units.
- Tactics matter. Order your men to hold the line with a shield wall while archers rain death from above. Teleport behind enemy lines to wreak havoc.
- Design, decorate, and defend your own fully destructible 3D city. Strategically place spawn points to rain fire from high towers while melee units defend the gates.
- Integrated sharing. Download, destroy, and rate other players’ cities.
- Make decisions that can change the story and lead to different game endings. Features a story written by Patrick Kevin Day, a former lead writer from Telltale Games.
- Hold court and pass judgement on daily events in the lives of your subjects.