Star Wars: Force Commander

Strategy 2000 Windows LucasArts Real time Top down Science Fiction

Disappointing attempt at a Star Wars RTS

The Star Wars universe has always been ripe ground for video game developers and has produced a mix of games, from the excellent (the Jedi Knight and Rogue Squadron series) to the dire (Yoda Stories anyone?) Unfortunately, Force Commander falls somewhere near the bottom, suffering as it does from some pretty major drawbacks. The gameplay is fairly standard for the genre, and will be familiar to anyone who's played a Command and Conquer game. Players participate in various ground battles in an original storyline that takes place in and round the time of the original trilogy movies. A nice range of units from the films are available, from Imperial walkers to Rebel defence lines as well as copious amounts of infantry. However, while everything sounds good on paper, in reality, Force Commander is something of a let-down. The graphics are dated, and were considered so even at the time of its release, with blocky sprites that are lacking in detail. The game's interface is also ugly and unintuitive, rendering controlling your forces more frustrating than enjoyable, while the camera also proves a major handicap, thanks to its generally wonky placement. Music too is misguided, and attempts to update the classic soundtrack to a modern style that just doesn't work. While the campaign does offer some challenge as well as an interesting plot, ultimately Force Commander is hard to recommend to either fans of Star Wars or the RTS genre and is perhaps best avoided.

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