Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2 (2000)

Video Game   |  Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi


Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2 (2000) Poster

You play either side of a new Allied/Soviet war when the real villian is an evil master of mind control.


8.6/10
2,596

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Cast & Crew

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Director:

Joseph D. Kucan

Writers:

Jason Henderson, John Hight (story), Donny Miele

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30 May 2007 | TBJCSKCNRRQTreviews
8
| Westwood Goes to Camp
Quite a few games are unintentionally campy. It's difficult to make a game that's both entertaining and has a compelling story, and many efforts wind up with silly-sounding expositionary dialog and characters going out of character. The first Red Alert, admittedly, has some of this camp quality. What Westwood did with this sequel was not only admit the camp, but flaunt it. Every character, every line spoken, everything, campy. Personally, I didn't really care for the humor, but that's my subjective opinion. The game is actually considerably easier to get into than one would think, considering the camp. An interesting new addition was the "par time"... after each successfully completed mission, you'll be told how long it took you, and the par time, and if you did better than it, you'll get a positive statement, based on that, which does wonders for both ego and re-playability(of the player and the game, respectively). It also heightens the pace, knowing that... in fact, one of the first things that I noticed about this, compared to the preceding games of the series, was the high pace. Right from the awesome intro, a great mix of story-telling and action, to the first several missions, and, really, through to the very end, the game is very fast and action-packed. The slowest unit moves at a pace that feels fast compared to the other games, and the music yet again gets the adrenaline flowing(complete with a "HM2", a new, unfortunately shorter, version of the excellent track from the first game, which, again, is in the intro as well as on both sides' play-list). This also means, however, that the game moves through the only twelve missions per side really quickly. In Westwood's defense, all the missions make good sense, they're nicely introduced and explained, and heck, they even all take place at actual locations(complete with famous landmarks). The level design is great, and several missions are quite interesting. Sometimes, though, the objectives are simply "eliminate enemy presence", which, whilst making rather good sense in a game about a war, is something of a cliché within the genre of RTS. Both sides get a satisfying finish. Story-telling isn't bad... before every mission, you get a briefing, and not a single one of them feel as if they were done in a hurry(as they did to varying extent on some of the previous ones). They knew exactly what they were doing, and took the time to get it right. The performances are quite good(for being intentionally campy), and all the actors seem well-cast. Kari Wuhrer *is* Tanya Adams. Corbin does great as a Texan/Southern general, Wise makes a good president, and Kier *rocks* as Yuri. The cut-scenes, in general, are among the best the franchise have seen. The production design is of exceptional quality... sets, props, costumes, everything looks and feels exactly like it should. The CGI elements blend in more seamlessly than ever before. The story evolves reasonably, with just a few unexpected twists. Now for the fun part... the units. They pretty much all rock. The new ones are interesting, powerful and quite even(including a giant squid, an airship that drops bombs, an aircraft carrier and more). You need a varied force to attack, as well as to defend. As far as selection goes, it's interesting how they, for both units(buildings, too... for example, the Allied radar building is also their airfield), mixed a high amount of units with only putting in ones that are cool and fun to use. There is a ton of strategic possibilities. The Soviets get an infantry unit capable of mind-control(who possesses the uber-creepy voice of Udo Kier), which makes for one(but not the only) quite interesting single-player mission. You can now garrison the regular infantry unit inside any building, and they can then fire at enemies from in there, though they will abandon it once it takes enough damage. One Allied unit can even enhance the abilities of just about any infantry unit put inside. The Spy can be put to rather good use, as well. The super-weapons are beefed up, too. The Allies also actually get an offensive one... a thunderstorm(!). The Chrono-Sphere(teleportation device), which was very tentatively used in the first game, almost becomes common-place here... the harvesters now Chrono-Shift back to the refineries to hand in the ore and diamonds gathered(silos, by the way, have also been sacrificed in the name of efficiency), for example. The game is more fun to play than the first Red Alert, however, and not only is the improved Chrono-Sphere cool and powerful, the more uses of Chrono-Shifting also means that an *excellent* infantry unit, the Chrono Legionaire, is introduced. He can Chrono-Shift anywhere he wants(though the longer the distance, the longer time must pass before he can act again), and his attack is to slowly but surely zap whatever he aims at *out of time*. He's just as cool as he sounds. The multi-player is great, very well done. The sound is very well-done, everything sounds just like it should. The graphics are very nice, though the many effects can take a lot of resources. This was the first in this series since Command & Conquer and Covert Ops to kick me out of the game. Some things are kept from Tiberian Sun, others are abandoned. This has several features that really help increase the game-play, including ones that *really* should have appeared earlier in the franchise than the *fourth* game in the series... and unfortunately, it still does lack some. You can still not tell units to hold their position. Still, if you found the earlier games enjoyable and felt that a few features were lacking, chances are that they're present in this game. Most of the new things introduced are incredibly well-done, and the game is almost entirely free of bugs. A very good effort, and sure to eat up many hours of free-time(if more on multi-player than on single-player). I recommend this to any fan of the series. 8/10

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Storyline

Plot Summary


Genres

Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi | War

Details

Release Date:

October 2000

Language

English


Country of Origin

USA

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