Jade Empire™: Special Edition
Gameplay 9
Graphics 7
Sound 8

Having long been an Xbox exclusive Jade Empire finally makes it onto computers with some nice added extras. It might not be as in depth as your average computer rpg, but it’s still a blast to play especially if you favor combat over puzzle solving.

Gameplay: Interesting storyline and entertaining combat.

Graphics: Not the best, but pretty good.

Sound: Some nice voice overs and effects

Summary 8.0 Great
Gameplay 0
Graphics 0
Sound 0
Summary rating from user's marks. You can set own marks for this article - just click on stars above and press "Accept".
Accept
Summary 0.0 Terrible

Jade Empire™: Special Edition

Developer: BioWare Corporation | Publisher: BioWare Corporation, Electronic Arts |Release Date: 2007 | Genre: Action / RPG | Website: Official Website | Purchase: Steam

Like Fable before it, Jade Empire is another X-Box exclusive that finally made it’s way onto computer, and made up for the long wait with some extra content. Made by Bioware, who brought us such classics as the Baldur’s Gate and Neverwinter Nights series, you can be sure that Jade Empire has an interesting story to tell. You start the game as a young fighter training under Master Li in the small town of Two Rivers. It seems that fate as always has a lot more in store for you and it’s not long before you’re on a mission to find your kidnapped master while recruited all kinds of allies along the way. Things don’t stay this simple for long either and by the end of the game you’ll have experienced all the plot twists and turns that Bioware games are famous for. Without wanting to give anything away, I can safely assure you that there are more than enough surprises in store for you to keep you hooked right to the end.

Instead of the usual fantasy or science fiction setting, Jade Empire instead goes for a very oriental look that sets it apart from the rest. This means you’ll be facing off against ninjas, bandits, assassins, golems and all manner of mythological Japanese monsters. The game also has some very lush surroundings and although it’s a console conversion I couldn’t help but be impressed at some of the locations. Each area is packed with color and detail and even with everything cranked up the game still ran very smoothly on even a mid range computer.

Gameplay is a bit more action oriented than the usual computer fare, so puzzle fans might be a little disappointed that their cerebral matter isn’t tested more. Combat is a joy to behold though, as you are capable of a variety of different fighting styles and all kinds of combos and special moves. You can only have one companion at your side at a time, so pick carefully which one will complement you best in a given situation as they each have their own specialties. In typical Bioware fashion each character also has their own back story and you can become quite attached to your companions. Apart from all the combat you can also take to the skies in certain sections for some top down shooting action, but since computer players taste differ from their console brethren you can opt to give these sections a miss if your reflexes aren’t up to scratch.

The audio is also very nice with the usual top notch voice overs found in most Bioware games. One of the reasons that the game is so huge is that virtually every character has full speech, so you don’t have to worry about reading too much. The audio is also suitably oriental sounding and sound effects are very good. You can play the game quite easily with a keyboard even though it’s a console conversion and I had no problem pulling off all the moves and combos with ease. Overall the game was very polished and I encountered no bugs apart from a little glitch sometimes where the camera went a bit screwy but this was rectified easily by just saving and reloading.

If you prefer your role playing games fast paced and action packed then Jade Empire is just what you’re looking for. With a variety of different character types, each of which can be customized further with different styles and weapons, this is a game that can keep you hooked for a long time. It might have taken its sweet time to be released on computer, but it was definitely worth the wait.

*Review originally published December 2007.

System Requirements

  • Windows XP
  • Pentium 4 1.8 GHz or AMD Athlon 1800XP
  • 512MB RAM
  • 8 GB Free HD Space
  • DirectX 9.0
  • NVIDIA GeForce 6200 or ATI 9500 or better (Shader Model 2.0 required)
  • 100% DirectX 9.0 compatible sound card and drivers.
  • 3 GHz Intel Pentium 4 or equivalent processor
  • 1GB RAM
  • DirectX 9.0 February 2006
  • ATI X600 series, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 series, or higher recommended.

Related posts

Velocity®Ultra

Velocity®Ultra

Velocity Ultra doesn't exactly excel in the visual department, but it more than makes up for it with the addictive gameplay. At first glance it looks like a pure vertical shooter, but later levels introduce some nice puzzle elements. With fifty standard levels and plenty of unlockable challenges the game offers more than enough value for money. Gameplay: Blends classic shooting with some modern puzzle solving. Graphics: Functional but nothing outstanding. Sound: Some nice old school style tunes.

Deadpool

Deadpool

Fans of Deadpool will have a blast with this game but the humour should appeal to newcomers as well. High Moon Studios have captured the character perfectly although the gameplay can feel a bit clunky at times. While not without its flaws I had a blast playing this game and can recommend it to all fans of the merc with a mouth. Gameplay: Packed with action and humour. Graphics: Not the best I've seen but it does the license justice. Sound: Superb voice acting by Nolan North coupled with a rocking soundtrack.

Love at First Sight

Love at First Sight

Despite its unique one-eyed love interest, Love At First Sight is not quite as out of the ordinary as you might think. The high school romance story is pretty straightforward, while the visuals are equal parts creepy and cute. Unfortunately, the game is rather short and only features a single route with no choices, but it is still worth checking out if you are a fan of the genre. Gameplay: Short, but quite sweet. Graphics: An interesting mixture of creepy and cute. Sound: Decent tunes, but there are only a few tracks and no voice acting.

Eventide: Slavic Fable

Eventide: Slavic Fable

Unlike other hidden object games that are fond of featuring the usual supernatural suspects like ghosts, Eventide contains plenty of creatures from Slavic fables. Their inclusion, along with the colorful hand drawn visuals, provide the game with a unique look and feel. The story is still a bit clichéd and the game isn’t very long, but it is a lot of fun while it lasts. This makes it a good choice for newcomers to the genre, but the charming visuals and interesting locations will appeal to veterans as well. Gameplay: Definitely an easy title, but also a lot of fun while it lasts. Graphics: Vibrant, colorful visuals and some very cool creature designs. Sound: The voice acting could have been better in spots, but overall the audio is good.

Trapped Dead: Lockdown

Trapped Dead: Lockdown

If you are not tired of killing zombies yet, Trapped Dead: Lockdown invites you to a small American town to get acquainted with the undead locals. The game features five different playable characters, hordes of zombies and buckets of blood, but because it is a linear experience it can also become rather repetitive. The game is still entertaining and features a lengthy campaign as well as multi-player with four players, but if you are not a fan of the genre this is unlikely to sway you. Gameplay: Enjoyable, but repetitive and there are a couple of minor annoyances. Graphics: The visuals are detailed and the locations varied. Sound: Decent voice acting, but the music and sound effects are largely forgettable.

Endless Fables: The Minotaur’s Curse

Endless Fables: The Minotaur's Curse

Play as a descendant of Ariadne and prevent the return of the Minotaur in this hidden object puzzle adventure from Sunward Games. The Greek mythology storyline offers a perfect excuse for visiting some exotic locations and while the game is quite easy, it still offers plenty of entertainment. It shares a lot of similarities with the Secret Order series from the same developer, but overall it still has plenty to offer fans. As long as you don’t expect anything groundbreaking from this title, it will provide you with a couple of hours of relaxing entertainment. Gameplay: A solid, Greek mythology themed hidden object puzzle adventure. Graphics: Varied locations featuring detailed visuals. Sound: Good, but not great.

Leave a comment

two × 4 =