"Scores in AT LEAST the top 3 of the genre."

After playing many, MANY RTS's out there, having most of them dealing with resource management, it gets frustrating.

The easiest way to cripple an opponent in most RTS's is to simple take every resource patch except the one your opponent starts with, then beat him down.

Not here.

TA is a game that involves troop commanding. Unlike previous RTS's where you can only select a certain number of units at a time, TA gives you an UNLIMITED supply. This means you can have Rommel on Patton tank wars, easily.

Graphics: 9.7

These graphics, though the units and buildings may be small, the textures of the maps and the variety of the weapon effects are eye candy. To further the point, what other game actually has a category for ''Explosions'' in the loading screen?

Gameplay: 10

As stated before, unlimited amount of unit selection, coupled with the ability to ''fire and forget'' with your resource gathering buildings. Also, unlike other games, this game has a REALISTIC physics engine, i.e if a unit moves away from where the plasma shell hits, the physics engine will actually make it deal LESS damage. Compare that to the Siege Tanks in Starcraft, where if it fires at your Hydralisk, even if you're two squares away from it, you still take full damage. The interface is nicely designed, and the keyboard shortcuts allow you to get any unit when you want it.

Strategic Value: 9.1

This game makes you THINK about your defenses. If you just set up turrets in other games, they'll mow down the enemy. If you set them up in a valley in TA, they'll shoot the valley while the enemy fire from above. You must utilize the terrain to your advantage, as the Kbots can move over everything, but are physically weak when compared to the tanks which can't go everywhere. In other words, you usually can't win just by building 50 of the best unit as you can in other RTS's. Also, as new units are made by Cavedog and other freelancers, your strategy will change. That's right. No more just downloading maps and changing strategies accordingly, now you have to deal with those AND new units who can rip holes through an unwary defense.

Value: 10

It's an old game, so you can find it in a bargain bin somewhere, but even if you bought it when it was new, it still can pull it's weight. The campaign modes are excellent and have three difficulty settings for extra replay. If it's too hard on Medium, lower it to Easy. If you breeze through it, crank it up to Hard and see how much of a man you are. The skirmish and multiplayer modes allow you to never play the same game twice, so it's worth buying no matter what kind of person you are.

I must say this is one of, if not THE best RTS out there. Get it while you can. The expansion packs are also good, not to mention the near infinite number of units out there for download.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 07/08/02, Updated 07/08/02

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