Step into the role of an aspiring martial-arts master and follow the path of the open palm or the closed fist. In this multi-award-winning action-RPG, your choices and actions will determine the fate of the entire Jade Empire. Will you prevent the destruction of this beautiful land, or will you crush it beneath your heel?
Release Date: Feb 27, 2007

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Recommended By Curators

"Great eastern atmosphere, nice story, rich dialog & fleshed out NPCs, simple but fun action combat. A somewhat short, but good game! (see link for mods)"
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About This Game



Step into the role of an aspiring martial-arts master and follow the path of the open palm or the closed fist. In this multi-award-winning action-RPG, your choices and actions will determine the fate of the entire Jade Empire. Will you prevent the destruction of this beautiful land, or will you crush it beneath your heel? Are you a warrior who uses his strength and fighting mastery to bring peace, or will you instead use your power to bring pain and ruin?
The choice is yours.

The Original Award Winning Jade Empire

  • An incredible, engaging story that makes you the noble hero or the treacherous villain!
  • A wealth of fascinating characters to interact with.
  • Beautiful, mysterious lands to explore, discover, and save...or conquer.
  • A rich blend of role-playing and exciting real-time combat.
  • New monsters and enemies.
  • New fighting styles.
  • Customizable, intuitive controls including support for game-pads and keyboard/mouse.
  • Increased graphics resolutions and new visual effects.
  • Improved combat AI and difficulty levels.
  • New world map interface.

System Requirements

    Minimum: Windows XP, Pentium 4 1.8 GHz or AMD Athlon 1800XP, 512MB RAM, 8 GB Free HD Space, DirectX 9.0, NVIDIA GeForce 6200 or ATI 9500 or better (Shader Model 2.0 required), 100% DirectX 9.0 compatible sound card and drivers.
    Recommended: 3 GHz Intel Pentium 4 or equivalent processor, 1GB RAM, DirectX 9.0 February 2006, ATI X600 series, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 series, or higher recommended.
Helpful customer reviews
73 of 77 people (95%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
19.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 26, 2014
Compatability mode Windows XP. Right Click. Run as administrator. May you have less hassle than I did.
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39 of 45 people (87%) found this review helpful
37.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 25, 2014
A link between Knights of the Old Republic and Mass Effect. A rather simple and quick ARPG, Jade Emprie satisfies mainly on its story and setting. The fighting system is very run-of-the-mill button mashing, and the skill system is not very interesting. However, for fans of BioWare and RPGs, there is enough here to satisfy.
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
5.4 hrs on record
Posted: January 15
10/10
It was one of the first games that I played, and I truly can say that is awesome game. You can't see how many hours (or days) I already spend on it because I have this game before steam account, but I went through this game about 20 times, sometimes being good and sometimes being evil. I remember by heart all story and every one secret.
There's a lot of martial arts and characters that you can choose. Story is addictive. And fights are ultra-dynamic. Also despite the age of game, Jade Empire has a beautiful visuals.
Always when I don't know what I want to play I turn on this game - Jade Empire.
Recommended :)
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8 of 12 people (67%) found this review helpful
63.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 27, 2014
Short version: 76%
Jade Empire is a solid BioWare adventure game with an enjoyable world and storyline, complemented by a frustrating combat system and stripped-down RPG mechanics. It probably won’t be your favourite action game of all time, but you definitely won’t regret playing it.

Long version:
Jade Empire was created between the releases of two highly successful titles, which later overshadowed its existence, although not without reasons. At its core Jade Empire is nothing more than an attempt to recreate the success of Knights of the Old Republic with a new world based on a highly fictional version of early Imperial China. For the most part, it works well… just don’t expect much historical accuracy, especially on the shoot-em-up stages against the ancient Chinese Luftwaffe. Yes, you read this correctly.

An RPG usually is as good as its story, and the game won’t let you down in this regard. The plot is solid with a few good twists, the characters are memorable enough, and the mandatory romance subplot doesn’t feel as forced as in most games. But it’s hard not to notice that most quests are recycled from KotOR and Neverwinter Nights.

So, why is Jade Empire so obscure and forgotten? For two reasons. The first is the lack of actual role-playing elements, and the second being the combat system.
This was the first title where BioWare tried real-time player-controled action instead of random-based mechanics, and it’s not working too well. Fighting is just mindless button mashing and the hit detection is beyond horrendous; using hand-to-hand styles almost equals a death sentence. As you can imagine, this creates slight issues in a Kung Fu game.

Still, Jade Empire is a solid title, and highly recommended for those who like BioWare’s KotOR era. Set the difficulty to easy or medium to avoid the frustration over the combat system, and enjoy this little piece of uniqueness.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
56.0 hrs on record
Posted: January 10
I would definitively recommend this game, it starts slowly but as I progressed in the story I appreciated it more and more, despice some flaws in the gameplay and the annoying bioware "black & white" morality system.

Technics:
win 7 + xbox controller, no problems , nothing to complain about.

Gameplay:
The controlls are a bit rusty and at times ungainly, it doesn't respond as well as it should, making it at time very difficult to resolve a fight. The advanced combat style system, while a good idea could do with some streamlining, there are almost too many styles (something between 15 and 20) but you end up using only a couple of them exclusively.
The combat in itself can range from very difficult (even with a controller) to smash a button simple. Bioware should have remembered they are first and foremost a RPG company, action is not their fortes.
Still when you get the hang of it, the fights are usually fun and very kung-fu likes , I only wished it had been a bit simpler and more responsive.
The RPG part is working nicely, although it sometimes feel like we could do with a little less dialogue, but like in many bioware games we feel obliged to go though everything a character has to say just in case something interessting is hiding in the choices.

Graphics and sounds
For a game this age I'm agreably surprised with the nice graphics. The background landscapes are beautifully rendered with a lot of colour , the music and sounds goes nicely with it giving it a distinctively fantasy oriental feeling. Yes it's dated but at anno 2015 I didn't have any problem with it, and as the game went on, I was actually more and more impressed about the nice backgrounds and objects put in the game. The characters look quite nice , maybe a bit boring but nothing too serious. The attention to the details is maybe what impressed me most, everything feel very oriental, from the design of GUI to the music or the decorations, very nice.

Plot
At first it doesn't really engage, but after an hour of two the game become more and more exciting, the characters who start at bit bland become more fleshed out and interesting and the quests and surroundings get better and better. In fact the game get really interessting 1\3 into the story when you reach the capital. In short it might seem a bit boring at first but things get better with time, give it a chance.
Toward the end it get really amazing and I have to say it's one of the most engaging RPG I have played for a long time. The story is much better than NWN2 (expensions included) and the ending is much better than masseffect and even KOTOR 1. The Bioware "morality" system however annoyed me with it's very basic evil and good choices. It's very black and white and counterintuitive , bioware doesn't manage to give us clear motivations to behave like a "♥♥♥♥♥♥♥" , most people will naturally choice the "good-guy" choices especially when being a bad guy doesn't give you any clear advantages. This is not a new problem for bioware RPG however and it's something most of us have learned to live with in those games. Still a bit annoying.
The story start a bit tame, but it very soon become a lot more exciting. In fact towad the end I was really engrossed in it and the game amazed me more and more as I progressed. The story is one of the best I've experienced in a RPG for quite some times and it's very refreshing.

Conclusions
The game has its flaws, but mostly it's great especially if you like a great and engrossing story. The beginning is a bit tame, and take some time to familiarise yourself with the controlls which can feel cluncky at time. But as a whole the great story and interessant characters make it worth your time, I definitively recommend this game.
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5 of 7 people (71%) found this review helpful
5.4 hrs on record
Posted: October 30, 2014
Okay, I really like this game. But it doesn't work right from the install. You need to run notepad as an administrator, create a file called "SystemInformation.xml" with it in the data folder of the Jade Empire game, then set the game to run in compatibility mode for XP service pack 2. Pain in the rear, and there's no real support from the original publishers. But it was worth it, and I got it on sale.
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6 of 9 people (67%) found this review helpful
27.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 19, 2014
Jade Empire is the perfect showcase to Bioware's approach to RPGs. This is the game that helped set the foundation for the Mass effects and the Dragon Ages. 20+ hrs of gameplay. Interesting Combat system. Gongshow cast of Companions. Mutiple endings. Nuff said.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
27.6 hrs on record
Posted: January 1
A sweet action-RPG with some cool martial arts action - combat can be a little repetitive if you exploit certain stun lock combos, but it still stands up as an overall experience pretty well. Story is interesting, will feel right to fans of martial arts films. A fine example of the RPG from BioWare, back before they were owned by EA.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
33.1 hrs on record
Posted: December 31, 2014
It's not a perfect game: I didn't like the combat system and the PC controls suck, half the game is all about wine, and it, sobs, didn't let me romance Dawn Star with my girl. But it explores spirituality and rebirth in the way that very few games do. The baddies aren't all black, the white is something unattainable, and the plot takes you to places you never expected to go to. It's an exceptional game and I, for one, would totally buy a sequel or two.
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2 of 4 people (50%) found this review helpful
39.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 27, 2014
Good game!
Pros:
+ story, I enjoyed the concepts, the growth of your character, the supporters that tag along background and side quests;
+ Various game play styles, fast or slow, magic or weapons, mix them, different characters;
+ male and female protagonists;
+ some romance, it was weak, but I count as a + because it has it;
It worth the bucks on it.

Middle: graphics and experience points are good for the release date, keep in mind that this is a 7 years old game at the time of this review.

Cons:
- enemies die no matter the style you use, so it gets repetitive if you don't change the styles or cast a magic, everyone dies with one style or other, so if you just use one and click a lot you win 90% of the time. Perhaps in hard or other level the game gets more balanced, but I played on normal dificulty level.

I hope you lik the review.
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3 of 6 people (50%) found this review helpful
26.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 9, 2014
Amazing Game...Wish they made a Next Gen Version

I thoroughly enjoyed playing this game. I completed it multiple times as the combat system is incredibily fun! I played the game on a mouse and Keyboard, not using a controller. This added a different level of interacting combat that. In addition, I don't know of any other game that utilize a hand to hand combat system (IF anyone can think of any, please let me know) which places this in my top 10 of action combat games.
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4 of 8 people (50%) found this review helpful
15.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 8, 2014
Pretty good RPG, interesting combat system, entertaining plot and atmosphere. I really hope Bioware still do something new with this IP someday.
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
35.1 hrs on record
Posted: March 26
great game!
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581 of 722 people (80%) found this review helpful
9.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 27, 2013
The game itself is brilliant, unfortunately, Valve is distributing it in a broken, unplayable state for most windows Vista/7/8 users. This requires users to hack the install directory by renaming files, or to seek to resolve the problem by more convoluted and risky means.

It is of course BioWare's responsibility to fix this, but Valve is still selling it, and it's unacceptable that people feel the need to download anonymous executables off the internet in order to play a game they purchased.

If you feel like dealing with the head ache of trying to get this broken product to work, it's actually a very good game. It starts a little slow but you encounter lots of interesting characters, make lots of decisions that impact how things turn out, develop relationships with party members, get multiple endings, and can unlock a lot of cool powers. It's a very good game, it's like a pre-cursor to Mass Effect but JadeEmpireConfig.exe is broken and results in a Can't Find Steam error.

Oh the solution to the Can't Find Steam error? Simple

Make a backup of JadeEmpireLauncher.exe, create a copy of JadeEmpire.exe, and rename that copy to JadeEmpireLauncher.exe. Then run it in XP Compatibility Mode with Run as Administrator checked. For most people, this solves the problem. I'm sorry you had to look for a work around like this to make a game you spent money on playable.
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250 of 298 people (84%) found this review helpful
0.8 hrs on record
Posted: December 23, 2013
Steam Version == BROKEN

I cannot recommend the Steam version in its current state, simply because it's broken (i.e. "non-working") beyond belief. This seems to not only be because of a "we don't care" attitude on Bioware's part, but also on Valve/Steam parts for letting things into the Steam shop that obviously haven't been QA'd AT ALL. This basically forces users to "jumping through hoops" like resorting to running Steam as Administrator, "registry hacking", manipulating broken config game files, renaming game executables and so on, without any guarantee that the game will run in the end anyway. Most of the problems are well-known (i.e. mentioned numerous times on forums here at Steam and Bioware), but there seem to be neither official solutions nor statements nor any signs of pressure from Steam towards Bioware to fix it.

* "Can't Find Steam error" : The most blatant proof that Steam didn't QA the Steam Version. The initial setup will throw this error message at your face unless you start the STEAM CLIENT itself in Administrator Mode (!). As the game requires admin privileges, and Interprocess Communcation between game and steam (with Steam_api.dll for Overlay / DRM) requires both executables to have admin privileges. Basic programming mistake on Biowares part? Non-existing QA on Steam's part?
* Verify integrity of the game cache throws you into a loop: Got "2 files failed and will be reaquired" every time you try from the steam client? In this case: Good luck. (Steam's fault)
* Crashing Game Configuration Dialog: The game configuration laucher crashes while trying to discover your hardware? You're out of luck unless you start renaming files / editing the registry / create a valid xml config file. (Bioware's fault)
* Dead-locking game right at the beginning: You only get the initial loading screen where you only see a background image? Afaik, there is no known solution to this problem at this time. (Bioware's fault)

There are speculations that the last 2 points might be caused by the "Optimus" technology from NVidia (modern Laptops with dedicated graphics cards have 2 cards: One integrated HDxxxx Intel version inside your CPU and one dedicated NVidia / ATI card). If that were true, it would mean that most laptops with dedicated graphic hardware (from NVidia) won't run this game at all. This is only *speculation* though.

TL;DR version: DON'T BUY! Unless Valve / Steam starts putting serious pressure towards Bioware to fix the plethora of issues nothing will be done, and the version offered in the shop will remain broken.
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208 of 254 people (82%) found this review helpful
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: January 12, 2014
I enjoyed this game when I played it on the original Xbox and grabbed this off a Steam Sale. However, this port seems to be broken. I can't launch the game and going to the forums just shows that I am in the company of hundreds of others who also can't launch the game.

The game is good, but the port is broken. Stay away or press your luck, you may be buying a broken game!
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206 of 255 people (81%) found this review helpful
4.7 hrs on record
Posted: March 21, 2014
Broken; you have to hack it or jump through hoops without any guarantee it will even work. Still not fixed to this day. Don't buy it.
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180 of 220 people (82%) found this review helpful
21.7 hrs on record
Posted: March 17, 2014
Waste of money. I've played this game in the past and it's a great game. The game is not the problem, getting it to run is. The host of known problems with the Steam version continues to grow. First you will be greeted by the "Failed to find Steam" error. This can be corrected by running both the Steam app and the Jade Empire game as administrator. Once you get past that you will be greeted by the configuration screen which will crash while trying to detect your hardware. I hear the only fix for this is changing the registry but I could be wrong.

If you manage to get past these errors (and a few brave and knowlegable souls have) You will likely run into the game crashing on you upon launch. In short this is not a game so much as a program designed to crash your computer. I hear there are patches you can download from various sites but you risk downloading viruses too. Make a mistake trying to change the registry yourself and you just might end up reformatting your hard drive. It's far less painful to just stay away from this POS that will fight you at every turn as you try to get it to launch. Sometimes it will even mock you by making you think it's about to run only to crash and laugh in your face. Stay away!
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129 of 158 people (82%) found this review helpful
0.3 hrs on record
Posted: December 22, 2013
Caveat emptor. The game's startup processes are fundamentally broken and refuses to start without a number of hacks in place.
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94 of 123 people (76%) found this review helpful
5.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2013
Played this a few years ago and I loved it. Had troubles starting the game on the steam version, but I found the solution after just a quick search. A rather nice gem from Bioware; one that is not as popular as their other games, but is about as good. Expect the quality story and role playing that Bioware is known for. Don't let an easily solvable compatibility issue keep you away from this experience.
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