Ground Control II: Operation Exodus

Strategy 2004 Windows CD Projekt Real time War Science Fiction

Fine but flawed sci-fi action

If you're looking for a real-time tactics game like Shogun: Total War or Full Spectrum Warrior, or are simply a fan of the original Ground Control, then Operation Exodus is a must play. The game is set in the same sci-fi universe as its predecessor but its story takes place many years later and the two games are largely unconnected, so there is no problem for newcomers here and this is good jumping on point. The story revolves around a conflict between several factions, with two playable, and with gameplay following the template set down by the original. Missions focus on fast-paced combat, largely lacking in any resource management elements, and with over 30 different unit types available, including infantry, tanks, aircraft and artillery. While the range of units available is impressive, the lack of customisation options will be disappointing for fans of the original, while the change in pace may also be a surprise as this sequel is noticeably different in style. However, the level of tactics and strategy required here is impressive and is where the game really scores. Battles are certainly hectic and complex, needing careful consideration of your units and their strengths in order to make use of their abilities, and can get quite exciting at times. However, the controls can hinder your progress at times, being sluggish and unresponsive at times, which does get frustrating. The graphics hold up well though, with nicely detailed units and environments, while the storyline is actually surprisingly compelling and should keep players interested. Operation Exodus is certainly a fine game, and although the flaws stop it from being a great one, it provides enough entertainment and challenge to make it worth checking out.

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