21 February 2007 | thepotoo
Great game, you'll need to upgrade to play it.
Let me just say that this game is incredible. It surpasses every bit of hype, and all of my expectations. It's amazingly fun, and the single player alone will have you hooked for a long time. The single-player is well presented, with a throwback to Starcraft (vanilla) in the mix of short pre-rendered cut-scenes, gameplay, and mission-briefings. The story here is above average, and any sci-fi fan will enjoy it.
Multilayer is where this title really shines. Like Total Annihilation, this is all about macromanagement and strategy. We've got features that should have been though up years ago (movable waypoints on patrol routes come to mind), and some seriously bad-ass units. Shields are implemented better here then in any RTS previously, (they block shots that hit them, rather than giving a unit more hit points), making their use critical to success later in game. There are enough different strategies here to keep you playing for a decade at least; patches, easy-to-create mods, and expansions should add even more tactics. Resources aren't the PITA they were in Total Annihilation, as you can quickly build heavy mass or power generators that provide virtually infinite resources.
Now, the down sides. There are a few minor annoyances which a patch should be able to fix (namely an inability to cue up commander upgrades, and the fact that you can't set patrol points from a new factory to match those of an existing one, resulting in a million different patrol routes by the end of the game). All in all, these are minor, and won't bother 99% of people.
The big issue here is system requirements. I've tried running the game on a couple of different computers, and, I can safely say that when Chris Taylor says the game will run on a 6600, he means, it will start up. At lowest settings, the game gets single digit frame rates on a 256 meg 7600GS, on a machine with a gig of ram and a 3 ghz processor. And that's on the smallest map with two players and a unit cap of 250 (the lowest).
If you want to run the game at a mediocre frame rate (20-25FPS), I would say that a 7900GT would be a minimum. Duel core and a few gigs of RAM is a must.
If you enjoyed Starcraft, Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds, Age of Empires II, Total Annihilation, or Dawn of War chances are you'll love this game. It's the perfect blend of civ building and brutal combat combined with excellent strategy, assuming your machine can run it.
Overall: 8/10. This would be a 10/10, had the game not lied about it's minimum requirements.