Dark Reign: The Future of War
Looking like a cross between Command & Conquer and, er, Command & Conquer, Activision's Dark Reign is a supremely enjoyable outing. The variable 3D terrain employs elevation and line of sight, both of which you can use to your advantage when planning an attack or building your defence, and you can also assign any number of waypoints to your units as they move across the map.
The Dark Reign control system is superb, and is in essence the Command & Conquer interface on steroids. Structures in the game are built by construction rigs; if you want to build several things at the same time, just have several rigs handy. Simple. Like Age Of Empires, you can choose to upgrade existing structures and open up more production options. Uniquely, Dark Reign gives you an overview of all the units that are currently under construction - a very handy feature indeed.
The network play feature furnishes you with multiplayer options such as alliances, teams and start locations - options which you can also find in StarCraft and Total Annihilation, but which are notably absent from the other games. You can also define special rules for network games, such as not permitted to attack freighter units'.
Although Dark Reign is the archetypal real-time title, it does offer a few features that none of the other games have. For example, you're given full control over each unit's artificial intelligence routines - this enables you to determine how much damage your troops take before they retreat, if they pursue enemy units they encounter, and so on. There are also some useful Cone-click' routines, such as a predefined reconnaissance loop that orders your units to scout out the unexplored areas of the map.
Together with unique multiplayer features, one-click behaviour selection and customisable AI routines, Dark Reign enables you to send your units off by themselves and concentrate more on your grand plan. Because of this, strategy fans will have a whale of a time, and will find that the game keeps them occupied for many a happy hour.
Download Dark Reign: The Future of War
Systems: Windows 9x, Windows 2000 Windows XP, Vista, Win 7, Win 8, Win 10.
Game features: Single game mode
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2019-01-03 Dark Reign: The Future of War game added.