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Force Commander

Saturday, January 01, 2000 by Shamino || [0 Comments]

Overall: 4
Graphics: 4
Interface: 4
Multiplayer: 4
Being a Star Wars geek, I couldn't wait to get my hands on this title. When I first saw it released, I admit, I was skeptical. One of the problems facing Star Wars games is that they always just seem to suck. X-Wing Alliance (the last Star Wars release) bombed big time. I played it for awhile myself but quickly gave up on it for its typical repetitive gameplay.
FC is a Real time Strategy game that attempts to distance itself from the rest of the RTS's out there. Similair to Homeworld, you now have almost a 360 degree camera that allows you to view any battle at any distance from anywhere you like. While I appreciate the effects that this gives me, I found the camera a bit odd to control. Camera movement doesn't seem as smooth as it should and takes some getting used to.
I haven't even come close to completing the game but from what I understand you start out the game as a newly promoted Imperial Officer. You are tasked with commanding your troops through a series of missions to further the efforts of the Empire. Later in the game though, you apparently switch over to the Rebel Alliance. I will have to wait to get through the cutscenes to figure this one out. I do however love the idea of getting to be the "bad guys" first rather than getting stuck with the Rebels.

Graphics/Display:

Good stuff. I've seen this game on a Voodoo 2 and a Voodoo3 and there is a WORLD of difference in the colors and the graphics in general. Textures definantly look better in 800 x 600 on a P3 with the Voodoo3. I haven't pumped the graphics up to 1024 x 768 yet but if your comp can do it, I suggest the highest resolution possible so you can see more of what is going on around you. Note: This game REQUIRES a 3D accelerator and will not run on old generation video cards.

Interface/Controls:

A little shakey at first. Took me awhile to adjust to the camera. Choosing units can sometimes be goofy as your angle will sometimes make your mouse select multiple units OR not select the exact unit you are trying to control. Some adjustment and determination will obviously overcome this design "flaw" in the game.

Multiplayer (if any):

Smooth and easy to set up. Got my butt kicked the first time I played but it WAS my first time. heh. Very enjoyable to blast a friend to kingdom come with the chin lasers of an AT-AT. :)

Summary:

Well while Force Commander Online touts this RTS as a RTS like no other, I think I must disagree. Sure you have some nifty angles with the camera and sure there is no "resource management" but the guys at who created Homeworld beat you last year folks. I don't mind a software developer trying to sell their product, but let's get things straight on who made what type of game first. On top of that, the "resource management" still technically exists. You must still occupy "supply depots" in order to accrue "command pts" so that you can build (or call down) additional units. Sheesh. Do the developers think we are that stupid? My conclusion: This is a RTS plain and simple. if you have played Warcraft, Command & Conquer, or Red Alert, then you will be able to jump into this game and play it pretty quick. For all of my software developer "bashing", I will take a step back and acknowledge that this game is fun to play. A good game for those RTS savy persons who enjoy a good Star Wars storyline. (FC is set on the same timelime of the existing trilogy, not the prequels) I love the sounds and the music though some of the voices can be rather annoying. Overall, a good game for a good price to keep you occupied for hours on end.

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