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The long running Army Men series, a Small Soldiers meets Toy Story blend, gets a gameplay twist in the latest edition of the franchise, Army Men RTS. RTS (Real Time Strategy) abandons the third person shooter style previously featured in the series in favor of the real time strategy genre made popular by such games as Warcraft, Command & Conquer, and Starcraft. The result is a game of army intelligence that will entertain for hours.
The real-time strategy genre hasn't really been terribly successful on console hardware, usually because the games have been shoddily ported over from the PC. But with Army Men: RTS, Pandemic has taken 3DO's long-running Army Men franchise and placed it into an incredibly solid and straightforward real-time strategy console game. PC RTS fans will probably find very little of interest in Army Men: RTS, as the mission objectives are no different from what you'd find in the original Command & Conquer, and the game itself isn't nearly as deep as most modern real-time strategy PC games. However, console gamers who haven't been spoiled by the likes of Starcraft or Red Alert 2 are in for a treat.
It seemed like such a great concept. Take those little plastic Army men figures you used to play with as a kid and drop them into a strategy game. You could set it in a real house, complete with real dogs and real moms and real little sisters who drive you really nuts. It would be like playing through a scene from Toy Story, only with fewer cowboys. It sounded very cool.
Un jeu qui prouve que la stratégie temps réel colle parfaitement à l'univers des Army Men. Le jeu offre toutefois une approche simplifiée du genre, et les possibilités stratégiques sont limitées. La version PS2 profite d'une interface optimisée spécialement pour le maniement avec la manette, mais la réalisation ne fait pas honneur à la console. A conseiller uniquement à ceux qui recherchent désespérément un STR sur consoles, même si cette mouture PS2 ne propose aucun mode multijoueur.
Game Informer Magazine
As far as Army Men titles go, this one isn’t so bad. There are a lot of entertaining allusions to some hard-hitting war movies, and a very thinly veiled plotline parallel to Apocalypse Now. The graphics are decent, and the unit handling seems to be corralled onto the Dual Shock without too many problems. However, this doesn’t mean that 3DO has come up with a great gameplay formula. The control of the units and structures is quite rudimentary, and the amount of tactical command you have over your forces leaves much to be desired. Of course, the Dual Shock controller doesn’t lend itself very well to this genre’s pinpoint demands, so it’s not all the game’s fault.
Cheat Code Central
Let's face it, the Army Man series is not for hardcore gamers. After all, there are people out there with a life who may not play games on a full-time basis. Army Men can offer occasional gamers with an entertaining game that will not overwhelm them with challenges. Such is the case with Army Men RTS. This is as basic as a strategy game as you can get, but it's great for beginners and would make a fun rental for those RTS fanatics who want to flex their muscles and complete a game before they even leave the rental store.
You know, finding a good real-time strategy game for the console IS possible. I played at least two of them several years ago in my 16-bit heyday. One of them (Herzog Zwei) is still considered today as one of the greatest Genesis titles ever to grace our shores. The other, (Utopia: Creation of a Nation) was the perfect blend of Sim-City meets Space Combat this side of Asteroids. Unfortunately, the quality for such games has faded into oblivion unless perhaps, you've had yourself a nice keyboard and mouse combination on the PC.
Army Men RTS seemed to be fast and stable, only I found a few bugs (?) such as tanks can't fire at air units, you can create only four unit groups, and some pathfinding bugs when units get into groups, etc. Simply I didn't like it :) Army Men RTS could be a nice your "first RTS" game, but I have no idea why I should to play just this game :)
The Army Men franchise always seemed like the perfect vehicle for a real-time strategy game; unfortunately it took the series several lukewarm missions to get there. Regretfully, Army Men RTS?s cleverly conceived combat units and resource system are quickly overrun by deadlier forces: lackluster controls and frustrating gameplay.
Overall, Blade II is one of the most disappointing titles to come out this year. It can often be frustrating to see a game that could have been a lot of fun turned into an exercise in frustration. Most gamers have now learned that movie licensed games are almost always a bad bet due to the apparent lack of effort put into them. One would think that it would, in fact, be easier to create a game based of a movie, especially since you already have most of the elements in place. However, Activision has sent us a clear message with this game- if you liked the movie, go buy the DVD, and stay away from this game at all costs.
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