Eidos Interactive delivered a glimpse of the upcoming RTS game, Trade Empires, an episodic, economic simulation game based upon creating a merchant empire through trade.
Gamers build vast transport and trade networks that change over thousands of years as new technologies are developed and more modern products are discovered. The rules of the game are simple; the variety comes in through the discovery of new products to trade and new ways to transport those products.
Trade Empires begins at the dawn of human civilization and covers human history up to the 19th century. The game puts a single human player in a world evolving in real time. It is the first trading and transporting simulation to emphasize the effects of technological change over thousands of years on the relatively simple model of producing and delivering commodities to make more money than the other players.
All games are episodes. Each episode spans an area during a time period, such as trade along the Silk Road between the Roman Empire and the Han Dynasty. With each new episode comes a unique list of available products and technologies ranging from the silk, bronze and jade idols of Ancient China to the steam engines, iron plows and rum of the Industrial Revolution.
The time period varies dramatically from one episode to another. Consequently, time passes at a different rate in each episode. Some episodes cover a relatively short time period, depicting a historical situation. Other episodes cover a longer period with more dramatic technological advances. The longest episodes depict periods over 1,000 years.
Play the first trading and transporting simulation to emphasize the effects of technological change over thousands of years on the relatively simple model of producing and delivering commodities to make more money than the competition.
Start out simple, with one merchant and his donkeys. Gradually build up your merchant empire until you control a vast trading web.
Manipulate the supply and demand economy to dominate the other merchant families. Corner the market. Undercut their prices.
Explore and Exploit: Continually discover new markets and products, from silk in the Far East to steel in industrial Europe.
Adapt your family's trading network to an ever-changing economy or instead face defeat when your competitors purchase advanced technology and deliver superior products.
Span the centuries and the world, in regions from Ancient Sumeria to 19th century Europe.
Build vast transportation networks, using anything from dirt trails to railroads.
Compete against other merchant families who are powered by a clever artificial intelligence that plays by the same rules you do.
Beautifully rendered units and buildings on a 3D map.
More than 200 structures and 30 units in 15 different episodes.
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