I swear, between the noise from the local neighbourhood flotsam hollering from outside, the shriek of the washing maching, the racket in the kitchen and from the crap coming off the television, I could snuff out a dozen lives and nobody would find me guilty. Constant assault, kinda like my game of Civ V earlier today when France, the Iroquois and the Mongols took it in turns to tag team me as Gandhi. Though I did end up winning the game with a Cultural Victory.

I’ve made a mess of my weekend but then again, the only person to legitimately blame is the person who stares back at me in the mirror. Got up in time to go to the bank – didn’t know where the hell my chequebook was (subsequently found) and couldn’t be bothered to leave the house. Though the incessant rain was also off putting. And I sat and sat and sat. Ditto Sunday. I tried to leave the house at 6pm for a walk. At 6.10 the rain restarted.

So whilst I’m sat here feeling all self pitying and miserable, I thought I’d share the sunshine with the rest of the world (my typo said sunshite… Freud anyone)?

At least I was able to continue the consolidation of my DVD/Music/VG collection by chucking away boxes. So something productive came out of the weekend. I found a whole rack shoved down by the side of my wardrobe, including Star Wars Supremacy.

Takes me back to…1999 when I first bought the game from the Game in Victoria Centre, Nottingham. I didn’t actually own a PC at the time but I just had to own the game as it was the first grand strategy Star Wars game. Not having a computer back then didn’t actually deter me, I knew it was only a matter of time. So yeah, ever since I first began playing Star Wars Video Games, I had always wondered what happened if you crossed Star Wars with Civilization. And this was the first result.

It’s based on Masters of Orion (though I’ve not actually played a game in that series) and involves you taking control of either the Galactic Empire or the Rebellion and the aim is to achieve domination by (as the Empire) destroying the Rebel Base and capturing Luke Skywalker & Mon Mothma or (as the Rebels) capturing Coruscant, the Emperor and Darth Vader. You can build starships, ground units, engage in espionage, research and black-ops. There are a host of characters to recruit for each side and of course should you amass enough resources, you can rebuild the Death Star.

Set a day after the destruction of the Death Star at Yavin, each side must (through diplomacy or military might) sway the core systems of the galaxy to their banner and explore the outer reaches of the galaxy setting up colonies and outposts in order to bring in more resources. Naturally the Empire has a predilection towards a military victory rather than diplomacy and Vader/Emperor are powerful Force Users bringing in bonuses through battle. The Rebels start off in an inferior position and lack an initial offensive capability (though through research their ships outclass the Empire) but are masters at diplomacy and “hit-n-run” attacks.

It’s a fairly crude game by today’s standards, nothing like Empire At War, the spiritual successor to the series but at the time, provided a fairly in-depth campaign. Alas the AI was fairly easy to beat as it thought too crudely and relied more on the player making mistakes rather than outsmarting the opponent. I’ve beaten the game on the hardest settings twice, once as each faction and it’s more time consuming than challenging. Keep the opponents off balance in the core worlds whilst setting up massive production facilities in the Outer Rim bringing in the latest death-dealing technology.

Alas the ground battles were missing from the game; troops were sent in and results were calculated automatically. Though Empire at War hardly improved upon this… if only EAW could have been combined with Galactic Battlegrounds given the potential of that game. Missed opportunities and all that but I think that there’s room in the market to squeeze one more game of this nature into an already crowded marketplace. Oh – if you’re American, you’ll know this game as Star Wars: Rebellion…probably shoulda mentioned that earlier.

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