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Machines at War 3 Review

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RTS’s today seem to be about the Esport community, StarCraft and WarCraft 3’s DOTA mod being some of the most influential games to this market, and it’s clear to see RTS games slowly trying to get into that area. Dawn Of War was a pretty nice RTS though standard in some areas became much simpler and closer to a MOBA with Dawn of War 2, Command and Conquer was another series to get this change to effect a series. Many others have changed with varying degrees of success, so when a new RTS game comes out and the first thing I think is “Damn this looks like Red Alert” I know I’m in for a treat.

screenshot0000It has to be said I am a massive stickler for RTS’s and the new direction they are taking is not one I am enjoying. I want a base, I want resources and I want upgrades, and I am not disappointed, if you have played any Command and Conquer or other RTS you know what’s happening. You have a base, build it up slowly and end up with nukes or some pretty impressive end game units to battle against AI or multi player opponents. There is a massive amount of units in the game too, boasting 130+ units, which you unlock as you upgrade your base, research new technology to go to battle on land, sea or air.

You can choose to go through the 21 mission campaign, where you start off with a few units, typically being the most basic you can get to achieve your objectives, and you are asked to complete tasks that revolve around a specific unit or units they are designed for. This looks like the best way to approach the game, as the training mission is good at outlining how to start the game up, but learning how to use each unit efficiently is much more important if you want to play online. The story is pretty boring, a research centre is destroyed, and all the research was taken – it’s up to you to find out who or what decided to attack the centre and try and recover as much of the screenshot0019mresearch as you can. As with most indie RTS games, and some bigger titles, the story is a little flat, but if you came here looking for a story to pass the ages, this is not the RTS for you, and games such as World in Conflict is probably more up your street.

Resource management is a bit more streamlined, you only have two types. The first being ore, which is constantly mined from your base building, which can be upgraded to generate more ore. You can also find special ore that will just increase the speed of which you gather the ore. Then there is power, or electricity – this resource is gathered via building different power stations. The more costly the station the more power it brings to your base, though unlike ore it brings a specific amount which can be used on buildings or units, but you get it back if they become destroyed. This method is very similar to the way electricity was used in Command and Conquer, only difference is that it is represented in a numerical value here instead of a bar.

When it comes to RTS games, the units are what can ruin a game, or make it so much better, but it all depends on your style, and this games style is to my own personal taste. All the units move slowly but look bulky and look like they will deal damage. You have different units – Ground, Air and Sea, but there is not one unit that can attack all three, unless you count a nuke. You have your defences that can be built to deal with small amount of units if you have only a small force at your base. Of course there would be no fun to a game like this if you didn’t have mega structures to dominate the battlefield with. You want a flying fortress with Air to Ground missiles? Well you got it buddy, but don’t forget to back it up with air units that can take down other air units.

Graphically the game has a very simplistic look, which is reminiscent of older games like Red Alert, the sprite work is very nice and explosions and smoke all play a part in making battles between factions look and feel impressive. Though it is a basic game that does not push many boundaries of the RTS genre, it manages to make it a fun game regardless, and one that should be noted for fans of the genre.

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Disclaimer:All scores given within our reviews are based on the artist’s personal opinion; this should in no way impede your decision to purchase the game.


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A teacher of computer Science, Daniel enjoys spending time gaming to relax when not in the classroom. Gaming over many generations, and enjoys classic style games more than recent AAA titles.

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