Great sci-fi RTS
This real-time strategy game was developed by the legendary Bitmap Brothers (Xenon, Speedball, Chaos Engine) and plays out like a more action-packed version of Command and Conquer. The game features an engaging narrative campaign as well as plenty of strategy but remains highly accessible for newcomers to the genre. Steel Soldiers expands on its predecessor, Z, by including a lot of background, and takes place in war-torn future where two vast mega-corporations vie for power. The game plays out in traditional RTS-style, adopting an isometric viewpoint which allows players to scroll around, place units and engage in combat with relative ease. Battles take place between two armies of robotic soldiers and vehicles and feature a set of mission specific objectives which define the victor. The focus here is on fast-paced tactical action, and lacks the resource gathering of other similar titles, instead requiring players to seize ground through defeating enemies, while placing bunkers and gun turrets to consolidate their position. As a sci-fi action/strategy game, Steel Soldiers is pretty successful. It is certainly speedy and enjoyable, although the lack of tactical depth and resource management may be offputting for some. The game sports a nice line in stylish design, with detailed environments and plenty of neat visual effects. The range of units on display is wide enough to allow for several replays, while the enemy AI is highly challenging. Perhaps the biggest problem is the slight cumbersome interface, but if you can get around this, there is a lot of fun to be had with Steel Soldiers.