Review: Empires & Allies for the iPhone and iPad is a pretty near perfect strategy war game that will have you hooked from the start. Build your base and army and enter the battle.

Empires & Allies is an addictive build and battle game for the iPhone and iPad that puts you in charge of constructing a powerful military base and army, and then saving the world from the bad guys.

This is a free app from Zynga that runs on the iPhone, but I prefer the large high resolution screen of the iPad for playing games. The graphics are great and the game looks good.

The gameplay is familiar and it has been done a zillion times before, but each variation of this build, battle and conquer type of strategy war game game is slightly different and if you are a fan of the genre, you should add this one to your collection.

As is usual, you start off with a small number of basic buildings. These enable you to produce oil and supplies. Supplies are required to construct other buildings and you can add a fuel stockpile, oil derrick, steel factory, and other structures. Each building can also be upgraded using more supplies.

In addition to production and storage, there are also defensive structures to build, using more supplies of course. These include walls, guard towers, domed defense systems, artillery, railguns and other military hardware.

Oil is used for two purposes and researching upgrades and new technologies is one and the other is training army units. There are soldiers, armoured vehicles, tanks, aircraft, missiles and more. You even get a few nukes to play with. They're for those occasions when you can't be bothered with conventional warfare.

Empires & Allies war game for the iPad and iPhone

Build and battle

Games of this type are sometimes very slow and it can take a week of resource collection and construction to build up your base or city before anything interesting happens.

Empires & Allies is not like that. It is fast paced and full of action right from the start.

There is a mission to destroy bad guys calling themselves the GRA. A world map shows their territory and yours, and your mission is to destroy them.

The game cleverly pits you against opponents that are slightly weaker than yourself. Within minutes of starting the game for the first time, you are battling the enemy, destroying their bases and raiding their supplies, oil and steel.

Empires & Allies war game for the iPad and iPhone

As you build your army’s strength and become a better battle commander, your opponents become increasingly harder to beat. It is a fine balance between making a game too easy and too hard, and Empires & Allies manages it perfectly.

Your opponents match your strength and this is one of the game’s strengths too. It challenges you, but not too much. You have to have one more battle.

Training troops, building tanks and other vehicles is easy and quick, so even if you lose, you can retrain a new army in a few minutes and have another battle, perhaps using different tactics this time.

Battle other players

In addition to ridding the world of the dreaded GRA armies and bases, you can battle other players. The game picks someone close to your own level, so you will have a close fought battle which either of you could win.

The game does not let you pick on weak players and you won’t be picked on yourself. Battles are between equals.

You must arrange your base and defenses to foil attacks on it. You don’t take part and your defenses are automatic. You just get a report afterwards saying who won.

Empires & Allies war game for the iPad and iPhone

The best part is that you can view a replay of the battle. By watching how people attack you, you can position your defences better, or add more to a weak spot.

Alliances, leagues wars

You can create an alliance or join one someone else has made. There are many alliances and getting in one isn’t a problem. There is a world chat and private alliance chat facility, so if you are the chatty type you can talk to other alliance members.

Alliances can engage in war, but as with all battles, it is controlled so it is fun. You can’t pick on weak players and you’ll be matched with an equal opponent.

Empires & Allies war game for the iPad and iPhone

You earn medals in battles and you can see your position in your alliance. There are also leagues and you can see how you compare to others in the league.

Conclusion

If you like this type of game, you will like Empires & Allies. It gets everything almost perfect and it is great fun to play and very addictive. It is fast paced and there is always a battle available when you want some action.

The game makes its money through in-app purchases. Gold speeds up pretty much everything and resources enable you to build and upgrade. You can earn them in the game or you can buy them with real money. The game is playable without purchases, so it is up to you.

Empires & Allies is a great game and it is free. I recommend you try it.

Title: Empires & Allies
By: Zynga Inc.
Price: Free
Size: 145MB
iOS: 7.0 or later
Verdict: Near perfect strategy game for the iPhone and iPad