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In Empire at War, there are two major factions. These factions are diverse and they will deliver different experiences depending on which you play. There are also several indigenous aliens which you may make alliances or enemies with, but gameplay focuses around the main two; The Galactic Empire and the Rebel Alliance.

Galactic Empire

The Galactic Empire was formed based on the ideals of twisted madmen, supported by the rise of a powerful Dark Lord with powers beyond that of any other men, and maintained power through an ideology of strength-through-fear. The Empire took the place of the benevolent Old Republic, which crumbled at the end of the epic struggle between an internal rebellion called the Clone Wars, which as artfully crafted by the dark Emperor Palpatine, master of the evil Sith. The promise of power ensnared many individuals, and the enactment of that power destroyed all that refused to surrender.

You can certainly expect, then, that the Empire reflected in the game will be played in much the same way. The Empire has access to powerful fleets, legions of trained troopers, and access to technologies that will make their enemies cower before them. They have more conventional methods of training their troopers and accomplishing their objectives. Research is conducted in facilities on their planets, and they have access to the powerful Death Star, which has the power to destroy nothing less than an entire planet.

One who plays the Empire will notice that the citizens of the galaxy certainly are not happy to live in terror. Planets under the Empire may rebel and join the Rebel Alliance, either due to the influence of characters or due to their own morale.

The Empire is the ultimate faction, with lots of big and straight-forward units. However, due to their arrogant nature, it is safe to assume that their plans will always be foiled by the courageous rebels that strive to gain their freedom against Emperor Palpatine's government.

Imperial Units
Imperial History

Rebel Alliance

Shortly after the rise of the Emperor's power, the very individuals he trusted began to plot against him, seeing the rush of the dark tide of Palpatine's rule. They quickly saw that negotiation was pointless, and formed the Alliance to Restore the Republic; an innovative cauldron of humans, aliens, droids and anything else that opposed the new order. The decimated Jedi Order, the peace keepers of the Old Republic and enemies of the Sith, also was involved in the formation of the Rebel Alliance. Their goals are nothing less than total restoration of the peace that the Republic once maintained, and putting an end to the tyrannical Empire.

Because of their lack of centralized government or even being able to show their faces on a civilized planet without being killed, the Alliance has to rely on their wits and creativity to win victories against the Empire. Units able to directly oppose the Imperial fleets are few, but the talent of a good X-Wing pilot can outmatch the methodical flight of a group of Imperial TIE Fighters. The Alliance has one thing the Empire doesn't; people that want to gain their freedom and fight for what they believe is right. With this in mind, there will always be uprising against the Empire, and the Alliance intends to never let the Emperor to quench the rebellion.

The Alliance certainly doesn't have the resources or the scientists of the Empire, and must steal most of their technology. Sometimes, this technology is taken right from under the Empire's noses.

In a direct mirror of the Empire's grandness and uniform, the Rebel Alliance is a rag-tag group of idealists that intend to restore the prosperity of the Old Republic. They must steal technology and invent some pretty unique tactics to best the Empire. They won't rest until they're either destroyed, or the Empire lies in shambles.

Rebel Alliance Units
Rebel Alliance History