Act of War is a Real Time Strategy game set in the not-so distant future. The World’s oil supplies are running low and the United States has developed a unique fighting force, Team Talon, to fight terrorism and to specifically defend natural reserves from environmental terrorist groups across the globe.
The single player campaign pits the player, as either the US Army or Team Talon, against ever increasing numbers of environmental terrorists. The campaign follows an excellent, very well done storyline. Individual scenarios are separated by excellent animation scenes that provide a breathtaking visual picture of the campaign as it develops. As the campaign advances, players gain access to better units, which keeps the game interesting.
The game itself plays very similar to other Real Time strategy games, with the player needing to develop a base of operations with which to keep units in supply and generate the necessary funding to increase one’s military capabilities. The only resource of note used by the game is US Dollars, which can be obtained either by creating buildings to generate income, capturing enemy combatants, or taking it from banks. The game mechanics are so easy to learn, that a tutorial wasn’t even included, nor was it necessary.
Battlefields are typically set in urban situations, which are almost masterful in the visual layouts of these 3D arena’s. One other item of note is that the campaign game itself doesn’t lend itself to the typical “mash rush” strategy rampant in most Real Time games. Instead, careful advancement of coordinated units will usually prove more successful in overcoming individual objects for each scenario. In this sense, the game puts a little more “strategy” into the Real Time strategy genre.
There is very little to add concerning the multi-player mode for the game, save the ability to choose the third force, the Global Consortium.
Act of War: Direct Action is a must-have for individuals who live and die by Real Time Strategy. Expect a well designed visual game that’s best suited for individual campaign play in a very fluid combat system. Superb graphics, animation, and sound provide for an enjoyable gaming experience.
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