Engage number One
Star Trek games have always been troublesome. For some reason, many developers get into the niche, and try to make games that end up as pile of junk. In my days as gamer i saw only a handful of titles truly worthy of the franchise. Is it the complexity of the immense sci-fi world or maybe lack of in depth understanding of it, but for some reason most games fail big time. That is why, when i get my hands on a Star Trek title i proceed with extreme caution. I was left disappointed one to many times (there were some good games, don't misunderstand me. Take a look at Star Trek: Starfleet Command). So lets see if this was a different experience. Armada II is RTS game set in Star Trek universe. There are several playable races, that include Humans, Klingons, Borg and Romulans in single player mode, while Species 8472 and the Cardassians (not Kardashians, even though they tend to look alike, don't be fooled) are available in skirmish and multiplayer only. The campaign mode has 30 missions divided among races. Story is set after the events of Dominion wars, and we find the Borg in quadrant Delta and the Federation chasing them in an attempt to rid the universe of them. Somewhat far fetched but i could chew it through as somewhat believable. The gameplay is nicely done, with some extras, but i will let you discover that on your own (no spoilers). The objective in each mission is to develop your base, build up enough ships and eradicate your adversary. Everything is done nice, and the building is rather fast. In order to succeed you must gather resources which are metal, latium, dilithium and colonists. Each resource is found on planets or asteroids scattered around the maps, while colonists come from planets. In order to gain them, you must first colonize the planet. The resource system is very good, because it makes you expand fast in order to secure everything you need for ultimate victory. There are several classes of units, derived from well known ships that appeared in NG and Voyager. Akira class, Intrepid class, Galaxy class and few others including colony ships. This pertains to each race available in game. Battles take place in real 3d with two axis which allows for strategic planning, but i found that there is not much use from it in single player mode. The ships tend to move somewhat stingy, so you get the feeling they are made of cardboard. But other than that, it is good old carnage. If you expect perfection, you will be disappointed, but if you want an entertaining RTS set in a familiar setting try it out. Sound and music contribute to enjoyable playtime.