Mac Game Review: Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs

Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs for Mac






It’s been a year since Age of Empires III came to Macs. There are currently two expansion packs available for the PC: The WarChiefs and The Asian Dynasties. The latest one, Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties, was released in late October, 2007. The WarChiefs was released one year earlier. And this expansion pack made it to Macs in late June, 2007.

So what’s new in Age of Empires III? The biggest difference is the game players. In Age of Empires III, you play one of the European nations. In Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs, major players are colonists like the British, the French and German plus Native American Indian tribes including the Iroquois Confederacy and the Sioux Nation. So the technologies available in this expansion pack are a little different. For example, there is a new feature called Fire Pit. It’s a place where villagers perform a holy dance to spawn healers, to speed up villager creation, to increase the attack points of military units, to increase experience points and so forth.   Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs for Mac
A screenshot from Act I: The Battle of Yorktown

Even if you didn’t follow the stories in Age of Empires III, you might sort of remember how the story of Act III (Steel) ended. Amelia Black chased and killed a guy named Pierre Beaumont. In Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs, she appears in Act I (Fire) right at the beginning. She introduces her father Nathaniel Black again. Right… She mentioned him at the beginning of Act III in Age of Empires III. Nathaniel Black grows up in an Iroquois village. The time is such that the American Revolution spreads northward, and the six nations of the Iroquois Confederacy breaks up. When the Mohawk and the Seneca teams up with the British, he becomes concerned about the future of the Iroquois but eventually joins the army of General George Washington to fight the European colonists. So you are to play Nathaniel Black fight European colonists mostly.


Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs for Mac Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs for Mac



The story of Act II (Shadow) is totally different. It’s all about Amelia’s son Chayton Black. He runs the family business, the Falcon Company, which I suppose his grandfather Nathaniel Black founded. He comes to a mining town of Fort Laramie and sees Billy Holme, who runs the mining town, or he introduces himself as quartermaster to Chayton. Chayton Black tries to understand why American Indian tribes are so angry and kill white colonists but later joins the indian tribes and fight the American army.

Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs for Mac   By the way, Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs comprises Act I (Fire) and Act II (Shadow). Act I has 8 campaigns: War Dance, The Rescue, Breed’s Hill, Crossing the Delaware, Saratoga, Valley Forge, The Battle of Morristown and The Battle of Yorktown. Act II comes with 7 campaigns: The Bozeman Trail, Red Cloud’s War, Claims, Ambushed!, Turning Point, Trust and Battle of the Little Bighorn.


Okay. So if you follow the stories, you may have some fun with Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs. But how about the game play in general? First of all, I didn’t even finish all the campaigns of Age of Empires III when I first played it at the beginning of December, 2006. I had trouble completing Act II (Ice): Strange Alliances. So I quit playing. And I wasn’t even interested in playing Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs when it came out last June. But I eventually found some time last week and completed all the campaigns of Age of Empires III. If you have played it, there are some difficult campaigns in Age of Empires III. For example, I found Act III (Steel): Last Stand of the Boneguard a little difficult to complete.   Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs for Mac
A screenshot from Age of Empires III, Act III: Last Stand of the Boneguard



As for Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs, many campaigns are relatively easy. Probably, the toughest campaign is Act II: Turning Point, where Chayton Black changes his sides and fights Holmes. Act II: Ambushed! can be somewhat difficult to complete because it’s a long campaign and you have to take Chayton all the way to the top of mountain while being constantly assaulted by several different groups of American indians.


Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs for Mac
A screenshot from Act II: Turning Point
Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs for Mac
A screenshot from Act II: Ambushed!





Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs for Mac
A screenshot from Act I: The Battle of Morristown
  How about Act I campaigns in Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs? Act I campaigns are rather easier and somewhat boring by and large. Probably, the most interesting campaign is The Battle of Morristown, where General George Washington gives firepower and orders Nathaniel Black to chase the Hessian (Germans). You have to race with the Hessians, who will try to destroy towns one by one.



So what’s the bottom line for those who already have Age of Empires III? A sad truth is that there are not many popular computer games available for Mac OS. Many Mac gamers now play PC games with their Intel Mac computers. Whether or not Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs is popular among PC gamers, it’s still the best game available in 2007 for Mac PowerPC users.

Finally, how about multiplayer in Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs? Now, there are more rooms for Age of Empires III than Age of Empires II at GameRanger. During daylight hours in North America, there are always 2 or 3 rooms for Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs. However, it seems that there are not many players for this expansion pack from Europe or Asia. During night hours in North America, you may not see a single room for The WarChiefs at the same time when there are several rooms for both Age of Empires II and Age of Empires III.






Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs is a game developed by Ensemble Studios and published by Microsoft Game Studios for the PC version and MacSoft for the Mac version.

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