One of the things that drew me to Empire and Empire Deluxe way back when was the capability to make your own maps and scenarios. This afforded me countless extra hours of game play as I explored the creations of others. This was pretty rare back then, with only a few other games like Breach/Rules Of Engagement allowing users to make their own scenarios (Games like Doom/Quake had strong communities for modding even without official tool kits to assist, and that really create some fantastic things..). To me it showed the power of creativity is with the fan base. That is why I started the map/scenario page for the 1993 game to collect this creativity.
This 'extra stuff' for game play is why I have always tried to add capabilities within the game to make modifying it a little easier, and this is documented in the manual. This is not an easy challenge in design and development, but hopefully it is rewarding for the community and adding more playtime.
Stepping on the soapbox - I was just watching a promotional video on recent games available and they are actually now just boasting of “at least 15 hours of game play” for $40....the great games give you 100+ hours – stepping off.
I recently received a document from 'Thoba', who has done a lot of Empire modding over the years and is currently working with others on a WWII mod. He shared with me a document he put together about working with Transparency in the game. Here's a link:
I would like to thank those in the community like Thoba that have created maps/scenarios, graphics and shared them with the community. I know they have gotten enjoyment out of doing it, but they have also shared that with others. Their individual creative efforts take things in a direction I could not even imagine. So thank you for sharing. And if you have not shared but have a map or something else you often go to for that extra enjoyment, please think of sharing it with us either by uploading the map/scenario in game or posting about it. It is the player community that makes the game better than I can.
It's a pretty rich game, I continue to enjoy month-spanning gameplay. But I suspect additional excitement will come from new pieces with new capabilities. Imagine loading radar scanners on ships, gliders for silent invasion forces, buzz bombs (but not nukes). I also suspect those are harder to add!
But I've always felt that adding custom maps took away the dark territory exploration which is so central to the game. So pieces with new capabilities always interested me.
Thank you for your dedication to the curation and growth of this game.