Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Promising sights over the horizon

Ah... gamers block. That feeling where you want to play something, just nothing seems appealing. I have this craving to play a real-time strategy game (RTS); however all the ones I have, I've played to within an inch of their lives. All the ones on the market have no appeal and now I am stuck.

I've started replaying Relic and THQ's Warhammer 40,000 Dawn of War 2. The main reason for this is  because my housemate just bought the full collection and has started playing it. The game is solid. It has a half decent story, that makes sense (if you know the lore of the Warhammer 40K universe), decent gameplay thanks to an engine transplant from Company of Heroes and lots of guns and things that go boom. What it doesn't have though, is that great satisfaction of spending an hour building up a base that is ridiculously too big, defences that are well over the top and an army that frankly one tenth could complete your objective.

Relic made Dawn of War 2 into a fast paced commando control style RTS. Even in skirmish mode you only have a unit cap of 100. Please bare in mind that 100 is the equivalent to your general, a support hero, 2 basic squads of infantry, 1 tank, 2 heavy weapon squads and an elite assault squad or 2. So, not much really. I long for the days where you could make your opponents computer crash if they even looked at how much badassery you were sending their way.

I guess what I am looking for is another Command and Conquer. Oh wait...

After the complete blunder that was Command and Conquer 4: Tiberium Twilight, Electronic Arts released that they were taking the C&C portfolio away from that particular development team (who all lost their jobs) and were giving it to a "more trusted developer" to continue the series. Today I found out who that developer now is, thanks to the release of the pre-order for Command and Conquer Generals 2 on Origin - BioWare.

I originally started writing this post a few weeks ago and got somewhat lost in the process. So apologies if this becomes horribly disjointed, but meh.

I have been scouring across YouTube; looking for information from the gaming networks on BioWare's foray into the RTS genre. Simply put, there is SFA. So instead of drooling and pining for C&C Generals 2; I have installed Command and Conquer: First Decade.

First Decade is an interesting anthology - comprising just that - the first decade of the now 17 year old franchise. First Decade was released after C&C Generals: Zero Hour around 2005; commemorating 10 wonderful years since the 1995 release of the original and timeless Command and Conquer. One unfortunate thing is that C&C vanilla and C&C: Red Alert vanilla both play up on Windows 7, so I can't relive the nostalgia of being 5 (damn)... However; I have been replaying General and its xpac - Zero Hour.

Both games are surprisingly timeless. They are well  balanced, simple yet working graphics and they have the simple ludicrous twist we all expect from the C&C franchise. I am currently simultaneously playing through 2 general challenges (Alexis Alexander - USA Super-weapon and General Malcolm Granger - USA Airforce); whilst also playing through Generals vanilla campaigns (USA and China).

As I get further into this little walk down memory lane; I will post more. Stay tuned...