News Archives: 2002

Poseidon contest at I-ChallengeU

Posted by Merepatra on December 4, 2002

For December I-ChallengeU is running a Poseidon contest, The Armories

Since we, the Atlantean people, in accordance to the Symphonia Ithikos, begun to avoid internal conflicts, peace started reigning over Atlantis, and our cities became a symbol of glory in the world. We have been trading with our neighbor cities for many years, and these good relations have brought great richness to our people. But now neighbor cities from the North and South of Atlantis have begun to look towards us as their enemies, and the Atlanteans fear that they may attack us at any moment.
Our leader, Atleon, fears that the Atlantean army has not the necessary strength to stop the invading forces if they attack, and asks you to found a city from where you can repel the attacking forces from the south.
In your city you will have access to valuable goods that you may export to afford the imports of the bronze you will need to produce the armour needed by Atlantean army.
‘You must hurry up!’, out leader says, ‘I fear that some of our enemies may attack soon!’.

For those who would also like to play in China this month ICU are also running an Emperor contest, Leantimes, details here

Is that a giggle I hear before me?

Posted by Angel Jayhawk on November 7, 2002

It’s been a while, but the City Builder sites have decided to increase their staff count once more.

We’d like you to welcome someone most of you will know from his designing of fiendishly clever and difficult scenarios. As such he will join us as, how shall we put it, Contest Cherub. With his help we’d like to go back to the days when we could offer you the odd City Builder Contest.

Please welcome Granite Q as the latest addition to an excellent team.

Sacred City @ ICU

Posted by Angel Reckless Rodent on September 8, 2002

There was a message in my inbox this morning from Ben the Vizier:

Just to let you know that September’s competition at is a Zeus game, called Zeus’s Sacred City.

Please note that if you enter the competition, you are not allowed to publish your result or discuss the strategy/tactics you used until the competition is closed.

Sign in, meet the competition and, most of all… have fun!

Wargamer Previews Emperor

Posted by Angel Draco on August 21, 2002

Always a source of well-written, in-depth reviews, has posted their preview of Emperor along with several screenshots. The reviewer was very impressed with the game and summed it up this way:

The Emperor game stands on the shoulders of giants and is the most sophisticated and elegant of its line. The teaming of Breakaway Games (Cleopatra expansion for Pharaoh), with the Impressions Games great city building game engine seems destined to result in a “win-win” product. Emperor is still in beta and has been undergoing significant playtesting by a large community of devoted gamers and testers. When released, it I expect it will exceed the high expectations of players who already enjoy this game system and will hopefully thrill a whole new generation of new city builders as well.

You can read the full preview here.

Emperor Screenshots @ AVault

Posted by Angel Draco on August 20, 2002

The Adrenaline Vault has scored four exclusive–and very pretty–screenshots of Impressions new city-builder, Emperor: Rise of the Middle Kingdom. Click here to see them.

Emperor has “Gone Gold” and will ship September 10!

Downloads & Forums Working

Posted by Angel Draco on August 20, 2002

Incase you didn’t already know, the forums and downloads/uploads are working properly. 😀

Forums down

Posted by Angel Jayhawk on August 13, 2002

The forums will be down until at least 6PM EST for maintenance.

We apologise for the inconvenience.

Transition Time

Posted by Angel Jayhawk on July 30, 2002

You will (or should) have seen yesterday’s message about the Downloads Section being temporarily off line. I promised to tell you when it got better.

Well, the news is, it may get worse.

We are busy moving servers, and have run in some problems of varying severity. The Downloads Sections may be working intermittently. Uploading files is almost certain to fail, so it’s best to wait with uploading until we get everything working perfectly once more.

Worse, even the sites themselves may be down intermittently. We are aware of this and doing out utmost to get everything working as soon and as smoothly as possible.

We apologize to everyone for the inconvenience and thank you for your patience.

Game-Over Previews Emperor

Posted by Angel Draco on July 28, 2002

Game Over Online has posted a new preview of Emperor: Rise of the Middle Kingdom. It’s based on a early build of the game and has 20 new screen shots for your viewing pleasure. Here’s a snippet:

Control of the military is often the Achilles heel of the Impressions city-builders. Emperor lets you wield a good amount of troops, provided you have the economic base and the revenue in city profits to support it. That’s an important issue because in Emperor, you’ll be exposed to more cities than before. You can trade, demand goods, give goods, attack and spy on neighboring cities. If your city is stronger or more powerful in military terms, you can extract tribute, thereby bolstering your economy without really developing it. During the course of the campaign, you’ll play a part in forging imperial dynasties. So it follows that rivals or leaders, like the emperor himself, will make wanton demands. This feature was so necessary in the Caesar games that it’s astonishing to see it implemented to its fullest extent here. In truth, that’s what killed a lot of the Roman governors; unreasonable random demands from Rome. Suffice to say, the empire map is something you will definitely make use of in Emperor. It expands the overall scope of the game irrevocably.

You can read the full preview here, then discuss the new screen shots in our Emperor Forums.

Devs Around The Forums

Posted by Angel Jayhawk on July 19, 2002

There have been a good number of new Emperor screen shots posted around the Internet lately. BAChuck from Breakaway Games stopped by our forums recently to comment on some of the questions surrounding some of the mysterious buildings. Here’s just a little bit of what he had to say:

As mentioned before, the clay pit does need to be inspected, as do all other industry-type buildings. I’ll agree with you that the buildings on that look in screen three appear to be cut off, and all but the farm ones need to be inspected — or collapse/fire will be inevitable.

You can read all of Chuck’s comments in the Moats & Junks? thread of HeavenGames’ Emperor forum: Forbidden City.

GameSpy Previews Emperor

Posted by Angel Jayhawk on July 17, 2002

A new in-depth preview of Emperor: Rise of the Middle Kingdom has been posted at Gamespy, along with 14 new screenshots. Here’s a snippet:

For the first time, BreakAway brings multiplayer to their city-building series. Up to eight players can choose to play either cooperative or competitive in Emperor. Cooperative multiplayer has each player complete an assigned goal, such as completing a section of the Great Wall. Sharing resources is necessary and trade is emphasized. In competitive multiplayer, players race to complete their goal, which are often military in nature. Emissaries can be used to give gifts, form alliances, and open trade. They also carry private messages between players and allow players to see a snapshot of each other’s cities.

You can read the full review here, then discuss it with fellow gamers at Forbidden City, HeavenGames’s Emperor forum.

Emperor Previews & Screenshots!

Posted by Angel Jayhawk on July 10, 2002

Sierra’s next city-building game, Emperor: Rise of the Middle Kingdom, being developed by Breakaway Games (the same people who developed the Pharaoh expansion: Cleopatra), is due out this Fall 2003. There have been a few in-depth previews recently posted now that the gaming news media have gotten their hands on the press beta disks for Emperor.

PC.IGN posted their two-page Emperor preview back on June 15 with lots of screenshots. has just recently posted its in-depth preview and has an impressive number of 55 screenshots for you!

If you’re a member of Gamespot’s subscription service (“Gamespot Complete), the video preview is also worth a look see. At 85MB for the hi-res version and 69MB for the low-res, it will certainly be working your modems into overtime. I have a dial-up myself, but really found the video preview worth it because it shows several clips of actual gameplay. It’s as close as you’re going to get to really seeing the game in action until an actual demo is released.

Be sure to check out the 10 screenshots HeavenGames obtained while at the recent E3 convention and stop by the Forbidden City forum; HG’s temporary home for Emperor located on the Caesar 3 Heaven forums.

New CB site

Posted by Angel Reckless Rodent on June 14, 2002

In the “better late than never” file:

Ogre’s Network, a gaming network developed by PC gamers, for PC gamers, has announced the launch of their latest fan site, City Builders, dedicated to the City-Builder game series, developed by Impressions Games & Breakaway Games, and published by Sierra Entertainment, Inc.

City Builders will offer a community for fello city builders to interact and gain information in regards to the games in the City Building series. City Builders will offer coverage of all games since the 1998 release, Caesar III. We will even offer some coverage of the upcoming City Builder game, Emperor: Rise of the Middle Kingdom, which is slated to be released in Fall 2002.

“Emperor: Rise of the Middle Kingdom represents a huge leap for anyone who has ever played a city-building game,” said Alex Rodberg, brand manager for Impressions’ City-Building line of games. “In online play, gamers control neighboring cities and can form alliances, trade needed goods, send in spies and emissaries, invade each other, or work together on a massive project like the Grand Canal. There has never been a game like this.”
Emperor: Rise of the Middle Kingdom brings city builders inside the Great Wall of China. Leaving the Mediterranean behind, the city-building series makes its first foray into Asia and immerses the player in brand new surroundings. China has existed for over 4,000 years, but its 4,000 year history has been marked with new technologies and ideas replacing – or enhancing – the old. This is the world in which the player will take the reigns of leadership and take their cities through the twists and turns of Chinese history.

Emperor: Rise of the Middle Kingdom offers gamers their first opportunity to play a city building game with their friends, online via the Internet. A great variety of both collaborative and competitive multiplayer games will be offered. Players may need to collaborate in building one of China’s engineering marvels, or they may share a common goal to attain a certain level of affluence. In competitive multiplay, players take sides – or may be a side unto themselves – and fight for sole power over China. “We’re really excited to see what gamers will come up with in multiplayer mode, so we’re leaving options open for them to invent their own types of gameplay,” added Jon Payne, producer for the game at Impressions Games.

Ogre’s Network –
City Builders –

ICU – God’s Feast

Posted by Angel Reckless Rodent on June 2, 2002

Welcome to the I-ChallengeU news page ;).

Cherub bobT dropped me a line this morning (or was it last night…I’ve never gotten the hang of all this time zone malarky) to let me know that ICU has swung the champagne bottle and launched another contest.

This one’s for those of you out there who are Poseidon-enabled, and is entitled God’s Feast. It’s been a while since I posted the blurb on this page, so here we go:

For many years Atlantis has been the focal point of the vast empire of Poseidon. Now it is time to build a small community on the outskirts of the mighty city. Some Gods have not been to thrilled with the activities of Poseidon and have sworn to keep a pact and insure that Atlantis and the Poseidon Empire does not grow any larger.

This is a speed based challenge. All maps will be scored based on the speed in which a player took to complete all in game goals and proceed to the “continue building this city screen”.

You have until June 30th at 11.30pm EDT to get your entries in. Click here for more info.

Poseidon’s Rage Walkthrough at ICU

Posted by Angel Reckless Rodent on May 17, 2002

As promised a couple of weeks ago, ICU has posted Elf’s walkthrough of their recent contest, Poseidon’s Rage.

Click here to take a peek.

Final Day for Beta Signups

Posted by Angel Reckless Rodent on May 12, 2002

Just a quick reminder that today is the last full day in which you can sign up for the upcoming Emperor beta test. No more applications will be accepted from early tomorrow morning, so hurry if you want to be in with a chance of assisting in the development of what promises to be one fo the biggest strategy releases of the year.

Attention to all using

Posted by Angel Jayhawk on May 6, 2002

Notice to forum users:

In short:
If your forum account still lists an email address by 5/19/2002, it will be banned.

Our forum rules require a valid email address; this is especially important since if we need to contact you via email on matters relating to your account, and it bounces, your forum account is auto-banned until it gets straightened out.

As you know, no longer exists, the mailservers are gone, and no longer forwarding emails to their forumer customers’ new addresses. Thus, all forum accounts which have email addresses registered to will be suspended on Sunday, 5/19/2002.

If you have not already done so, please update your profile with your current email address. A new random password will be sent to the address you provide, so please be very careful that you enter a valid, working, non-bouncing email address. If the address you enter is invalid, you will effectively lock yourself out of your account until it’s fixed. Our forum requests backlog is quite backed up, so getting around to fixing your problem will take a long time.

To check if the email you will be using is valid, make sure:
1.) That it hasn’t expired ( is infamous for this)
2.) That it is not full
3.) That it is set to accept emails from (especially users from AOL & Hotmail)
4.) And that there are no typos anywhere in your email address!!

and lastly, send an email to that address, or have a friend send it, to make sure it isn’t bouncing.

Thank you.

ICU: Poseidon’s Rage Results

Posted by Angel Reckless Rodent on May 5, 2002

Cherub bobT let me know that has posted the results of their recent Poseidon contest, Poseidon’s Rage. Congratulations to the winners (Pecunia and Taelia on Mortal and Titan difficulty settings respectively), and well done to all those who took part – Bob tells me that the quality of submissions was extremely high.

Keep an eye on ICU this month, as Elf, who seem to be ever-present on the podium, will be giving out some tips for those of you who want to participate next time.

Hit this link to see the full results in the ICU Hall of Fame.

Beta Test Emperor!

Posted by Angel Reckless Rodent on May 4, 2002

Thanks to homegrown for letting me know that BreakAway Games is accepting applications to beta test the upcoming Citybuilder set in China.

Click here to submit your application.

Note: You have until 13th May to submit your beta testing credentials, so get a move on!

And for this month’s update…

Posted by Angel Reckless Rodent on April 28, 2002

Coming to you this month via Gill Britannica, we have news of GameSpy’s interview with Chris Beatrice, the man behind Zeus (and Pharaoh, for that matter). He’s now off doing his own thing with a few ex-Impressions and ex-Sierra colleagues over at Tilted Mill.

Click here to read the interview and see what they’re planning.

ICU Poseidon Contest!

Posted by Angel Reckless Rodent on March 29, 2002

I just had the following email from Cherub bobT:

Poseidons Rage, our second contest in the citybuilding area of ICU is now available to all for download. The challenge will run the entire month of April so no real rush. Have fun all.

This is kind of a speed and points challenge. 🙂

Emperor: Rise of the Middle Kingdom Interview

Posted by Angel Jayhawk on March 12, 2002

Sir William of Pork found us this interview with Ed Beach, the Producer of Emperor, on Armchair Empires.


Lord of the Best

Posted by Angel Reckless Rodent on March 1, 2002 have got a new competition going. It’s only for those of you who have Poseidon v2.1 installed, but it looks like it might be quite a goodie.

Click here to try your hand at being Lord of the West. The contest closes at the end of the month, so you’ve got plenty of time in which to perfect your city :).

Rich Man’s Blues: Walkthrough

Posted by Angel Reckless Rodent on February 28, 2002

Cherub bobT has come up trumps again, this time with a walkthrough for the Poseidon adventure released by Impressions back in early December. Click here to take a gander.

ICU Winners

Posted by Angel Reckless Rodent on February 13, 2002

Cherub bobT dropped me a line to say that the first Zeus contest at I-challengeU has come to an end. You can find the top 3 here, or hit this link to see the best 5 entries bob received.

Enter the Dragon…

Posted by Angel Jayhawk on February 12, 2002

From my inbox into the news.

Impression’s Jon Payne, dropped a very short email in my mailbox.It said:

Naturally I followed the link and like Alice down the rabbit hole, I found some wonderful news about the new China based City Builder they are working on together with BreakAway Games, with whom they worked on Cleopatra, the Pharaoh expansion.

What I’ve seen sofar looks stunning and will provide endless hours of guesswork as to what does what and how. The most intriguing bit of news, however, is that it will support multiplayer games.

Here’s some more news about it, brought to my attention by Sir William of Pork.

Sad news in Heaven

Posted by Angel Jayhawk on February 6, 2002

Some sad news was posted over on Caesar 3 Heaven. The first is a message from Ironrod/Kraken in which he tells us Impressions (Sierra), well known from producing Caesar 3, Pharaoh and Zeus, has decided to lay off part of their staff. Sadly he was one of the ones that had to go.
Bob Taylor followed up that post by informing us of some of the other known staff that were asked to leave as well, they include Reed, Eugrabades, Balthasar and Nixon. You can find his post here.

A sad day in the history of gaming.

We, the staff of Zeus Heaven, wish them all the best.

This link will tell you more.

New Home for the Citadel

Posted by Angel Reckless Rodent on February 3, 2002

Pecunia Maxima dropped me a line to let me know that her Zeus site, the Citadel of Poseidon, has moved to a new home. You can now find it here.

I-ChallengeU to Zeus!

Posted by Angel Reckless Rodent on January 2, 2002

Resident Zeus Heaven Scenario Maestro Cherub bobT has now started on his latest project, The first contest is a beautification exercise, in which you must try to bring the area aound Mount Olympus back to its former glory.

To check it out, click here. The closing date for entries is the end of January, so you’d better get cracking ;).

Happy New Year!

Posted by Angel Jayhawk on January 1, 2002

On behalf of the Zeus Heaven staff, I’d like to wish you a wonderful:


May you never run out of games to play or time to play them!