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Zoombie
05-09-2009, 12:15 PM
This is a game that sold me entirely by two things:

Its menu music.

And its plot.

Okay!

Try listening to this without you're head exploding. If you want to REALLY have fun, read the whole thing aloud without take another breath.

In the 1920s a United States major was sent into Russia to try and prevent the turbulent nation from becoming overrun by COMMUNISTS, but while they were there getting boozed up on Vodka and trying to not freeze in the dreaded Siberian winter, they found THE EON, a millennium old time machine surrounded by a bunch of glowing green crystals that they named SIBERITE. With THE EON and what little SIBERITE they could scrounge up in hand, the Americans rushed home and stocked THE EON in Area 51, where it was studied and its true powers were unleashed, BUT unfortunately, the scientests used up all the SIBERITE in the reserch, BUT they found that THE EON always sends whatever is placed into it backwards in time by about 5 million years. AND SO, the Americans decided to launch a mission to go BACKWARDS in time, to use the land bridge between ALASKA and SIBERIA which existed in the distant past, to STEAL the SIBERITE from SIBERIA and bury it in ALASA, giving the United States a huge advantage, because SIBERITE can also be used as a catlyist for COLD FUSION. YOU are chosen to go BACKWARDS in time, as part of this American task force. But when you arrive, you are attacked by RUSSIANS, RUSSIANS who are using a STOLEN time machine to go back and stop the AMERICAN EMPIRE from using ALASKITE to CONQUER THE WORLD! Now you and your fellow soldiers must fight back, stop the Russians, and win the war for the FUTURE OF THE HUMAN RACE


<gasps>

And that is before the Arab Terrorists show up to protect their oil interests!


So, yes, Original War has its tongue so far in its cheek that it has eroded a new mouth, but the real question is...is it any good?

The answer is yes. Very yes. Despite a few flaws, it remains one of the best RTSes I've played in a long while. It combines an RPG system with a unique and entertaining resourse system, customizable vehicals, and fun characters...though their over the top accents can get rather tiring after a few hours (And some of them use rather horrible, brain aching puns).

The storyline only gets more bugfuck insane as the game goes on, and terrorists show up from the future, ape-men are trained in the use of firearms, and the Russians start creating bombs that slow down time, and the Americans...get...sniper rifles.


The basic gameplay revolves around the members of your team: Each one is from the future, ireplacable...and each one has their set of skills which level up as they do various tasks.

Soldiers level up by shooting, engineers level up by building buildings, mechanics build and drive vehicals, and scientests can heal, and study, and train apemen.

If a unit gets to read health, it will catch on fire if its a vehical or building, whilst a human will do the pansy thing and drop to the ground and start bleeding to death. A scientest can heal someone back to yellow health, so they are vital to any attack.

Vehicals are customizable: You can use various kinds of chassies, which fit various kinds of cannon, machine guns, gattling guns, and also some rather useful tools: Cranes to speed construction, bulldozers to get through trees, and trucks to pick up crates.

The resourse system, as I mentioned before, is based entirely on three resourses: Oil, which is easy to find and effective for running your vehicals and your power plants. Siberite, which is rare but also does neat things like screw with time, run power plants forever, create vehicals that never need to refule, and so on. And then you have crates.

See, the Eon has a scattering effect...that means that things come out in random places in a wide spread of time, rather than all localized (no, that would be too EASY). So, the people on one end sent through several billion dollars worth of supplies in crates which appear randomly in the past.

Now, here, some of the flaws of the game show up. Engineers build buildings...and they also gather crates. But gathering a crate is NOT a hugely complex task. So why do you have to switch a character from soldier to engineer (Which is easy, but it means that the character will not have the assult rifle and combat abilities of a soldier, but rather the pistol and building abilities of an engineer) to carry gorramn crates!?

Can't a soldier carry crates without switching jobs entirely?

This is made even STRANGER when you realize this: Any character can HELP BUILD a building, you only need an engineer to START the building...and they help build the building a lot faster than that.

So why can't soldiers and mechanics and scientest help carry crates without shifting jobs!?

It may seem like a small deal, but it means a lot when you're trying to build another vehical to help fight off the damn ruskies...

There are a few other bleghy details that mar the fun: Characters can't run and their ambling pace is rather piddlingly slow. All American characters have the same Texan accent, even if they use a different accent in cut scenes, which leads to some unintentional hilarity when there is a cutscene with the soft spoken Paul Abdul (who is most definitely NOT from Texas). The cutscene ends...and then I order him to go to a science lab and he goes, "Sure thing bawss!" With the thickest, most hillariously over the top Texan accent *ever*.

But these flaws are not enough for me to not fully say that this is a forgotten gem of an RTS.

So if you like original, if campy and insane, stories. Fun gameplay. And, of course, a sense of bloody humor. Then you'll really enjoy this game!

Course, its a bit hard to find now a days...but if you DO find it, its only about 10 bucks.

Ludka
05-15-2009, 06:43 PM
What platform? PC?

Zoombie
05-15-2009, 11:30 PM
PC!

Ludka
05-16-2009, 03:01 AM
Cheapest I could find quickly was 53 bucks. I'll keep looking, though.

Zoombie
05-16-2009, 03:07 AM
Dang, I picked it up for ten bucks, used, at Fries about five years ago...

It should have gotten CHEAPER by now.

Also, if you do get it (and like it) I'd really love to finally have someone to play multiplayer against!