DUDUDF Reviews: Supreme Commander
Hey folks, time for another review by dududf. 'Tis been a while since I've made one, due to my first being horrendous. I've spent some time looking at other peoples reviews (i.e. Pimpeter2, Duplicate value, and official reviews) and I've nutted up and thought I'd give it one more go.
As Usual, a TL;DR is available at the bottom.
Well, lets give some Back Story on Supreme Commander.
First off, it's an RTS that started on the Personal computer a short while back. It primarily focus' on scale of battles and amassing massive armies to unleash on your foes. It's in a Sci-Fi setting, battles ranging from arctic Tundras to worlds thriving on plant life, to place that appear to be in the Middle of Fuck All (like the middle of Australia!).
There are 3 main races (or 4 if you have the add on, please note I'm not covering that in this review) The UEF, you're Standard human race. The Aeon, You're standard religious nut jobs from which due to colour I associate with "Orcs". Then you have the "Cybran" from which you can just call Cyborgs.
The UEF, as mentioned are the basic Humans. They are unmodified, nothing really different or special. Their Story is that as the "Earth Empire" collapsed due to the Aeon Faction, and The Cybran faction rising, the Remnants of "Normal" humans joined together and formed the United Earth Federation. Their function, is to forcefully unite the Galaxy and retain peace. The UEF are portrayed as the standard all white American. Actually come to think of it, I don't recall any black people in this entire game.
Picture of an UEF Commander
The Aeon were formed when the Humans settled on an alien world, and discovered the Seraphim, an alien race that look like your stereo typical little green men. The Seraphim were peaceful, showed the Settlers "the Way" essentially they converted humans into
Catholics Religious zealots. But the Space Navy stepped in, nuked the Aliens to their holy hell due to Humanity having a tendency to be Xenophobic. The Aeon rose from the ashes, the human Zealots decided to purge the Galaxy of non believers and spread "The Way" as much as possible. They are shown to seem British due to the on-screen face, and the voice acting (not so much though on the voice)
The Cybran were formed when a scientist by the name of Brackman combined an Artificial Intelligence with a human brain. Essentially Cyborgs (as if the name "Cybran" wasn't to poke fun at that). The Earth Empire acted Xenophobicly as well, and essentially made a "Pacification Virus" that bended the Cyborgs to the Normal Humans will. Brackman would not have any of this, he grabbed his closet Cyborg buddies and fled the planet. Their general goal is essentially to secure freedom for fellow Cyborgs. The Cybrans are shown to be Russian. This is due to the heavy accents, and the portraying of the characters
The Aeon Commander, Ah Firin' his Laser.
The Story is kind of weak. Here's just my quick summary of it.
You take control of one of the 3 factions commanders, you fight for your side. The end is the same as it assumes that all 3 factions were successful at their task. No twists, just "Lets go do this. Ok we did that good job."
And yeah That's about it for story.
But alas this is an RTS not some Drama piece, or riveting book, or some kind of other type of game. No no no, we Gotta focus on the GAMEPLAY.
Supreme Commander, definitely shines when it comes to the gameplay, it takes place on a purely MASSIVE scale.
Lets focus on the Unit control for right now.
The Units come in 4 "Tech" varieties. You have Tech 1 through 3, then you have the "Experimental" Tech from which brings forth absolute kick ass units/buildings. Example, one of the Cybrans Experimental Unit would be the Monkey Lord. It's essentially a massive spider with a massive laser on it.
OOOH OOH AH AH! Monkey Lord is here.
Essentially, the higher the tech you go, the more powerful/effective the units/buildings get. Also, as an added bonus the higher tech buildings/units build lower tech buildings/units much faster. Enabling people who upgrade quick a chance to "Zerg Rush" the enemy.
You gather Resources, by buildings Power generators (from which gather power at no consequence) or Mass, from which is basically raw material to work with. Mass can be generated by building over Mass Deposits (from which are few and spread far) OR make Mass Fabricators, from which uses raw power and converts it to mass. Mass is needed for all buildings, same with power.
The general buildings are, Air Factories, Land Factories, Naval Factories, Walls, land Turrets, Anti air turrets, shields, power generators, mass extractors/fabricators. All of which are self explanatory
The units that actually COME OUT of the factories, are diverse and they have unique visual trends for each factions. Aeon are all UFO flying saucer style, UEF is all tanks and humanoid robots, and Cybrans love their spiders as shown by the Monkey Lord.
The gameYou just lost it's graphics are very nice, everything is nice and shiny. Not very realistic on some accounts, and the Campaigns Faces are very realistic. But it looks good and tries to instill the "It's Sci Fi, where everything is always shiny" feel to it. A good example would be the Monkey Lord picture I supplied, as that's an in-game screen shot and really shows off the unit. The maps themselves are not very visually diverse, some could say that the map is boring as it's simple and nothing very "interesting" or eye poppingly noticeable. It just looks good, but not very diverse (on the same map that is).
Artists interpretation of the Cybran Commander
Apart from upgrading factories, there is no more Tech Evolving features. If you've played Warcraft 3, or Starcraft you'll be surprised that apart from the commander you can't upgrade weapons or research anything.
A Notable Feature for the Game is the ability to zoom in very close, then zoom out to show the entire map, for without a shadow of a doubt shows off how MASSIVE a battle is. Very useful for coordinating large battles.
The music in the game is nice, very climatic. But gets repetitive if you're in a long lasting game.
There is really only one gripe about the game that I have, and that is when moving large amounts of units. The path-finding is horrible, try grabbing a bunch of tanks and tell them to go some where. They will be bumper to bumper, stopping going, slowing down and it will just take forever. It looks highly unorganized, and can sometimes be very frustrating. But they will attack what you instruct them to, and given enough time they'll get their shit together and move.
The Skirmish mode in SupCom, is essentially just a Choose your map, choose your enemies difficulty, teams, and faction. You battle it out on the map of your choosing. Some skirmishes can last an hour, some many many hours. My longest on record is 37 hours ( I of coursed saved and didn't do it in one go) The skirmishes are very time consuming, and depending on your ability and the AI's difficulty, it can last forever. Right here though is where the Experimental Units come in. These units are meant to break past defences, to obliterate all, to destabilize/DESTROY entire bases. Without the Experimental's, I earnestly believe the game would be very boring due to getting in Stalemates with the AI and people. Just a quick note on the Experimental units themselves, they take a very long time to build, as such Spamming them is impossible, and they can only be built when you've made a tech 3 factory, and made a tech 3 engineer. And the units take a CRAP TON of resources to make.
The only way to build one before the entire game ends, is to send multiple engineers to build it at once. Which means more resources being consumed at once, which means that you have to have a very large resource infrastructure to SUPPORT the building. Then you have to consider your defences, your army, the shields. It is incredible hard to make one. As such treat the Experimental is an "Anti Stalemate Unit"
The online play in Supreme Commander can not be Commented upon, as I have not been able to get a game in due to latency issues of my ISP. I can however comment on LAN play as I have played many a game.
The LAN is smooth, and easy to set up. And is essentially the same as Skirmish, but with people. Generally advised if you're doing a LAN game is to have the Host using a computer with a stupid high processing power ,as Supreme Commander is a processing hog.
I recommend this game to all RTS fans that like Resource managing, enjoy massive battles, and don't mind a lack of real story.
Well, I hope you enjoyed this review. I appreciate any and all feedback, and I sincerely hope that in time I can pump out better reviews. Practice and input makes perfect =]
~Computer Exploded, new review won't be out for a while. Will edit in link when computer is fixed and review is finished.
If any of you have any suggestions and anything else I may not know I suffer from please let me know, all feed back is appreciated (hell even "Derp Derp your spelling like fails like your mom! Herp Derp" is appreciated.
Once again thank you for reading.