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Terra Nova: Strike Force Centauri (DOS)

83
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
4.0
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  Roedie (5226)
Written on  :  Jul 19, 2001
Rating  :  4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars

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Summary

A great squad-based combat game with just one problem

The Good

This is certainly a game that I enjoyed playing, it looks like a mech game (well actually you are in a battle suit equipped with all kinds of lasers, rocket launchers and gadgets, not in a mech) and the controls are similar to most FPS in that you use the mouse to aim and shoot and use the keyboard to go in a certain direction. But you'll have to use your brains in this game, cause there are certain strategic elements like:
  • Which suit should each team member wear (heavy, medium or scout)?
  • How to outfit your suits (which weapons & gadgets)?
  • Which team members to select for the job (technicians, recon, weapon or demolition experts)?
  • Giving orders to your squad members. For instance tell them where they should go. Sometimes it is necessary to split your team into different groups and let them take different routes to certain positions. While one member is repairing something another is busy killing enemy soldiers. Instead of shooting all the time you often engage in short skirmishes.


Some other things that I like about this game:
  • Good looking outdoor environments (far horizons), but close range details are disappointing.
  • The physics modeling, gravity is different on the 3 planets.
  • B movie type of story line featuring a traitor, arguments with your brother, suspiciously acting bosses and mysterious clones
  • Those stressed voices of your teammates whenever you're under attack.

The Bad

You can't play it on modern PC's. When I bought this game I owned a 100 mhz AMD and I had no problems whatsoever running this game. A couple of years later I got a Pentium II 450 mhz and wanted to play this game again. After a flawless installation my monitor went black whenever I wanted to start a mission. The game ran and responded to input from the keyboard & mouse (I could here the sound effects). It seemed like my monitor went into the stand-by mode. Before writing this review I downloaded the demo version, the results were the same. And it's not just my PC cause Ashley Pomeroy mentions the same problem in his review.

The Bottom Line

This is a game that got great reviews when it came out (I checked Gamespot and Gamesdomain and my old magazines) but was ignored by most consumers, mainly because of the hype surrounding two FPS games called Duke 3D and Quake. If you own an old PC, go out and buy it (if you can find it). If your PC is new, play Heavy Gear II or Outwars instead. In my opinion this game is better than Quake and Duke 3D.