Ah, steampunk. Literary types love this Victorian-inspired setting because it calls to mind an alternate reality lacking electricity, computers or mass production. You love this setting because it reminds you of Final Fantasy III. Nevertheless, the world of simpler machines, steam engines, and craftsmanship is an interesting one to imagine (though most people sort of overlook the increased air pollution and much more rigid class structure that would probably result from it).
Aside from being huge targets, hard to maneuver, and flammable, Zeppelins are perfect for aerial combat.
And an interesting setting can sometimes carry an otherwise average game. But here’s the problem – setting and story are intertwined. If there’s not much story, you don’t pay much attention to the setting. So while a steampunk theme might do a lot to make a mediocre RPG at least somewhat interesting, it adds almost nothing to a shooter like Steel Empire. I really don’t care if I’m shooting down zeppelins, spaceships, or hummingbirds, I just want to see them explode.
And aside from a unique setting, Steel Empire doesn’t really bring anything original to the genre. It’s decent, but definitely not Top 100 worthy.