When I heard this was on the auction block, I seriously wondered how much it would go for. Was saddened when it disappeared into the maw of Atari, never to be seen again. Until now!
This may be the best strategy game that nobody played, and it just begs for a modern port for touchscreen devices. It's just an awesome strategy game with simple controls, and a depth that really grows on you over time. Yeah, the graphics are nothing special, they looked 10 years old when the game launched 10 years ago. The multi-player is LAN only. The voiceover accents are cheesy. It doesn't matter.
You play by launching one of 18 nodes onto the battlefield, scorched eath style. Every node costs energy, and is connected to the node that launched it by a chain. If a node is destroyed, the nodes launched from it are destroyed in a chain reaction. There's the skill of placement, the tactics of deciding what to launch, and the strategy of resource management and the fog of war. There's never been another game quite like it, before or after. And that's sad. But at least you can still play this, even on Windows 8.1, 64 bit.
Penny Arcade's effusive love for this game is still as relevant today:http://penny-arcade.com/2002/06/11
As this is an old game, there's not a lot of handholding. The challenge mode works as a tutorial, but you really should read the manual. Seriously.
It shows that this was a labor of love by a developer otherwise known for children's games. They must have polished this sucker in the back room for years playing amongst themselves. I've no idea how they made the pitch for this game work, but I'm still glad they did. Personally, I bought this just to convince Rebellion that a modern port is worth their time, this is one of the few game CDs that I've kept on the shelf since I bought it, and carefully re-installed on every new machine.
Posted: February 7th, 2014