A demo for SEGA and the Creative Assembly's Empire: Total War is now available to download from Steam. This sampler offers a tutorial on the basics of land and naval command and then lets players tackle two historic scenarios.
Battle of Brandywine Creek
After landing from his transport ships on the American coast, Major-General Sir William Howe led the British troops eastwards, with the intention of capturing Philadelphia.
In preparation, American General George Washington readied most of his units to defend from this frontal assault around the narrow crossing of Chad's Ford on the Brandywine. The Creek flows through the countryside of Pennsylvania, enveloped by sheer cliffs and heavily wooded hills on both sides. Knowing that much of the fast-flowing creek could not be crossed, Washington was confident of holding his position.
However, more detailed surveillance of the terrain would suggest that alternative routes could turn the battle in the favour of the British.
Battle of Lagos
As so often in 18th Century warfare, French plans to invade England during the Seven Years War were reliant on ships from the naval base at Toulon joining ships from Brest. The British had both ports blockaded, and the French had to wait for one of the blockading fleets to withdraw for re-supply before attempting any rendezvous.
The opportunity came when the British fleet under Admiral Boscawen at Toulon withdrew to Gibraltar. The French under Jean-François de la Clue-Sabran left Toulon, and began to make their way towards Brest. Passing the Straits of Gibraltar, the French were spotted by Boscawen's lookout ships.
Giving chase, Boscawen's fleet was only slightly larger than the French force, and caught up with them off the coast of Portugal where battle was joined.
Take control of the British and defeat the French to end the invasion threat to Britain.
The full game will be available on Steam from March 4, 2009.