Command & Conquer: Generals
Command & Conquer: Generals V1.04
World opinion is divided between those that think C&C: Generals is a self-righteous piece of US propaganda that plays upon abhorrent and xenophobic stereotypes, and those that think it's a harmless piece of interactive fiction that was released at an unfortunate time. Either way, most would clearly be mad not to agree that, in the graphics department at least, Generals is quite a departure from the likes of vanilla C&C and Red Alert. Seeing as this is a multiplayer review it would be wasteful to pick holes in the game's paper-thin storyline and decade-old Al, or to bemoan the loss of those wonderful FMV cutscenes. Instead, let us examine the one aspect of Westwood's many strategy creations that has been of a constantly high quality - the online multiplayer game.
Unfortunately, finding your way into a game isn't an easy thing to accomplish. Two days after release and already the game had been patched twice, after which thousands have had problems connecting through the in-game interface, including yours truly. At the time of writing, the game is only a month old and EA is still patching the multiplayer game, and although it is getting more reliable to play online, games are frequently laggy, which apparently has to do with running the game in 800x600, which is quite frankly a ridiculous state of affairs and a criminal waste of a very impressive 3D engine.
The Farce And The Furious
As accurately pointed out in last month's review, underneath the 3D-accelerated visuals the classic C&C gameplay is unchanged. The aim, as ever, is to collect resources, build an army and do as much research as you can - all as quickly as possible. It's as insanely fast and furious as C&C of old, with the outcome almost always decided during a split-second of bad luck or poor judgement, rather than a piece of inspired strategy. Games rarely last more than 20 minutes which is precisely why they are so popular and enjoyable.
The three sides couldn't be more finely balanced or distinct, both in terms of weaponry and tactics. One of the most inspired decisions the developers made was to introduce supplies as the game s mam resource, and have it collected by air, truck or on foot, depending on which side you choose to control. Brilliant. Arguably less brilliant is the Generals' feature of the game, which rewards the guy who's winning with special abilities and units.
Despite a large proportion of utterly boring maps, lingering lag and incessant patching, C&C's online game remains as it always has - fast, furious and a lot of fun. This time, of course, the big explosions rather than the bigbudget video take centre stage, and despite the cheapened presentation elsewhere, multiplyer C&C is still an intoxicating experience.
Processor: PC compatible,
OS: Windows 9x, Windows 2000 Windows XP, Vista, Win 7, Win 8, Win 10.
Game Features:Single game mode