Review by TheAm4zingLarry

Reviewed: 02/27/03 | Updated: 02/27/03

A satisfying if slightly unbalenced expansion pack

Yuri's revenge is an expansion pack for the very good Red Alert 2, my favorite RTS. If you liked the original you will probably like Yuri's Revenge. Well anyway onto the review proper.

It looks just as good as the original and that's all I can really expect hence the perfect score. Things are pretty detailed and units move very smoothly. Areas each have their own look, which keeps things fresh.

Each unit has several of his very own response, attacking, fear and dieing lines. These lines are fitting and often entertaining, the GI sounds like a good old country boy, Yuri's units sound sinister and the conscripts sound like enslaved Russian peasants just like they should. A new addition is that all tanks no longer have the same lines, all boats don't have the same lines and so forth, each different unit has an appropriate set of their own. For instance the prism tanks will say something like ''Nobody here but us trees'' and the Soviet miner will say ''Equal share for everyone!'' whereas before they would have just said some standard lines for armor units, pre-existing units such as Tanya have new lines as well. Gunfire and explosions also sound quite good, the only problem comes from the music because it's just awful but since RA's music has always been bad I was prepared for this.

It's a cool story in which it turns out that during and after the second Soviet Allie war (WWIII) Yuri, former leader of the Soviet Psy Corps has been building his own armies to guard devices called Phycic Dominators that will turn every person on the planet into a mindless slave. For whatever reason he decides to call up President Dugan and gloat about it right before turning them on revealing his location and the location of one of the Dominators on Alcatraz Island, (that's a closed island prison in San Francisco for all you uneducated people) Dugan not knowing this is only one of dozens orders an air strike from the base nearby. As an elite group of harriers sprints toward the site they suddenly come under fire from Yuri's extremely effective air defenses, as the brave Marines scramble toward their target they are outgunned and are taken down one by one however one manages to guide his stricken aircraft into Yuri's power plant putting this Dominator out of business. As a result California and some other bits of the U.S. are spared, sadly the rest of the world has been reduced to slaves. Luckily Tanya, you and Einstein were all stationed in San Francisco at the time and Einstein has an untested time machine he's been working on that will allow you to go back in time and fix things. The Soviet story is the same except that you have to steal the Allies time machine. The story seems serious but much of the time it is very silly and Rominov is always good for a chuckle.

The first thing you'll notice is that the camera has been zoomed out substantially. No longer will combat be hindered by being so close in that you can see a bug on a man's shoulder this is a very welcome change. Another welcome change is that you can now build things like grand cannons, British snipers, demo trucks and Tesla tanks in the main game. In fact pretty much every country specific unit will be available to you at least once during the game. One more bit of good news is that you start off with a full tech tree and difficulty is high from the beginning since you'll probably be a good commander by now. New units are available such as the siege chopper or an ultra cool five man IFV driven by Fat Bastard, sadly almost every new unit is relatively unuseful except Boris and the guardian GI. New structures are also available and are a bit more useful. New tech buildings also play a role as they provide you with things like paratroopers and auto heal for your units. Missions are varied and range from saving Microsoft (renamed Massivesoft for legal and comedy reasons) from Yuri to destroying his secret Moon base. However I do have a few gripes, Yuri's base defenses are ridiculously effective and his units use some of the most annoying tactics I've ever seen, in fact many of his units use mind control perhaps the most annoying attack in the series. In general Yuri's forces lack punch and are easily defeated using good tactics but because of the way his units work you'll find yourself using very few infantry or aircraft for anything but defense as his Gattling tech eats them alive. Mostly you'll use tanks since Yuri's strongest tank is a bit weaker than a grizzly tank. Also you'll quickly discover that by putting up a line of deployed GIs near his bases you can systematically dismantle him with prism tanks as their range is farther than his base defenses and you can just pull them behind the infantry whenever he sends a group of tanks. Fighting him with Soviets is about three times harder but the same kind of tactics are still somewhat viable. My main disappointment was that there is no Yuri campaign but what's there is good. Finally I must inform you that the miners are just as stupid as ever and just love to drive into enemy bases to use their ore supplies oblivious to the fact they're being shot at so you'll still have to watch the morons pretty closely.

Just as good as it's always been but it's still kind of laggy, however Yuri's forces are pretty useless against a human opponent.

Once you're done with the missions there are still plenty of skirmishes and multiplayer games to amuse yourself with.


Rating:   4.0 - Great

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