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Bioware has created some wonderfully intricate worlds for their smash hit RPG titles, including the Mass Effect series, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and Dragon Age. Between KOTOR and the first Mass Effect title, the developer released "Jade Empire," a game that melded eastern philosophies, martial arts and tight, action RPG gameplay. Electronic Arts is releasing the PC port of that game, Jade Empire: Special Edition, for free this month through its "On the House" promotion. Click on the image below to download for free!
To download the game, you'll need to register with an EA account and download the Origin client onto your computer. It's not aesthetically pleasing, but if you've been following this blog you should have already downloaded Command and Conquer: Red Alert 2, Syndicate and SimCity to this point, three great EA classics. Jade Empire is another great entry in the "On the House" promotion. For questions on downloading, check out EA's help page.
Playing as one of seven protagonists chosen at the beginning of the game, in Jade Empire you're tasked with defeating a shadowy menace that attacks a fictionalized empire in ancient China. The developers created an entire language, called Tho Fan, for use in the game. The tongue was created by Canadian linguist Wolf Wikeley.
Jade Empire met with nearly universal acclaim upon its release for the Xbox and PC in April 2005. Bioware has not returned to the setting, after striking gold with the interstellar setting of Mass Effect. The first game of that trilogy appearing in 2007.
Bioware's focus is on its next Mass Effect game, which is tentatively titled "Andromeda" and will be constructed using Battlefield developer DICE's Frostbite engine. It is scheduled for release sometime near the end of 2016.
What's your favorite kung-fu video game (we all know the correct answer is Shaq Fu)? Did you play Jade Empire before diving into the Mass Effect world? Let us know in the comments below, and check back next week for another free title.