Empire: Total War is a turn based strategy game that uses real time tactics. The gameplay consists of the player using exploration, economics, politics and religion in order to found and build colonies with a goal of conquering their regions.
The combination of turn based combat and real time works well with this game dues to how it plays out. The player starts off planning in a 4X type strategy game that once a battle commences they take charge of the troops in real time combat.
The AI in the game is not very smart, which can give an upper hand as well as hold one back. If one chooses to not go into a real time battle, but let the AI take charge for their own troops it can lead to disaster. On the other side of things when going into manual controlled battle the enemy AI...
Not having to deal with the poor AI is a good thing, which is what makes the multiplayer stand out as it is now time to use real tactics instead of cheap exploits to get ahead. This can make for really challenging games depending on who your opponent is and can be a real blast.
The game allows for one to make their own choices with there being many "win" conditions in that you can choose to progress how you like. Want to take over all of Europe, that is possible, want to create a successful lineage of family that keeps to themselves, this is also possible.
Crusader King II is a very complicated game that seems overly complex at first and may take a while to really learn as there are quite a lot of things to not only balance in the game but also figure out how to do either through in game tutorials or reading online.
Play straight through on real-time, or pause for as much micro-management as is needed. No rapid attacks and the key here, it is pausable even though it can be a real time system. Basically time can be slowed, sped up and paused with most gameplay taking place somewhere in between.
When you start out, it can be overwhelming. You have a country and three thousand infantrymen -- what can you do? You decide to attack your neighbor -- and they cut you down like reeds. You start over as a bigger country and attack a smaller neighbor -- and suddenly you're in a war against sev...
If one of the players decides to fight in real-time (instead of auto-resolving a battle), the other joins the fight as well. The owner of the army can decide which units the other player might control. (This can be changed any time during the battle.) This system brings a lot of fun and strategy...
The decisions in the game sometimes have little context even though they may result in large consequences, which makes the decisions difficult as there is no way to know the reason to make them or how they will end up.
While this is a strategy game and graphics are not as important as gameplay what is presented here is a bit lackluster and simplistic. While it is one of the devs first games that foray into 3D graphics it does not hold up when compared to other titles.
The user can pause, slow down and accelerate time while playing, which allows for the player to adapt what is happening to their decision making. This is a unique system that the developers have been using in their games for a good while and stands out a great way to manage their games.