Extreme Tactics is another Command & Conquer clone. The gameplay and sci-fi theme are all similar to other real-time strategy (RTS) games of the same pedigree. Unfortunately, it does not have enough significant differences to set it apart from its more successful brethren. In some ways, it is not up to the levels set by StarCraft, WarCraft II, or Command & Conquer. The combat mechanics are also uninspiring. The structure building sequence is one-dimensional, and too forced. While Extreme Tactics does possess some interesting touches, these are not sufficient to set it apart from its numerous competitors. Those gamers looking for the next killer RTS game can go elsewhere.
Extreme Tactics does have an interesting design feature, which permits players to design their own specific vehicles based on tech level. Different chassis permit different weapons, sensors, shielding, and specialty mounts such as cloaking devices. Of course, certain propulsion methods don’t work in certain terrain, and only the big, expensive platforms can carry the really fun weapons. Players can also change designs in the middle of a battle, and save the new design. Multiple versions of the same platform with different shields are very useful.
All structures in the game are mobile, but only have effect while stationary. This includes the player’s all-important Mobile Command Center (MCC). This has the effect of making the game potentially fluid, but due to the one-dimensional nature of structure’s effects, isn’t as significant as it appears. Units cause damage to the terrain when they miss, which is common until they gain experience. It is also possible to set certain reactions for your units, such as moving to a destroyed enemy location and awaiting orders.
Extreme Tactics is an attempt to imbue the tried and true C&C model with some gameplay “hooks” to set itself apart from the pack. Unfortunately, these differences are not significant or well-crafted enough to accomplish this feat in a crowded RTS field.
System Requirements: Pentium 90 MHz, 16 MB RAM, Win98
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