Moonbase Commander
Genre Strategy -> Strategy
Today's Rank 15444
USA
Date 2002-08-20
Publisher Atari
UK
Date N/A
Publisher N/A
North America Retail Box ArtEnergy wars. Spy drones. Viruses. This is the world of MoonBase Commander, a place where high-tech battles are fought over scarce energy reserves. This game's constant aerial view of the action and emphasis on targeting and destroying enemy structures feels eerily like watching network news coverage of recent wars. This complex scenario will appeal to strategy-minded gamers. But players who like a little personalization in their fare will find MoonBase Commander a bit chilly. That said, MoonBase Commander gets high scores on the "object of obsession" scale. Dozens of weapons and defense systems, modes of play ranging from single-player skirmishes to multiple-player online tournaments, and a function that allows replay and study of battles, ensure this game's staying power. A steep learning curve adds to the game's mystique. A terrain-editing feature also enhances play: if you grow tired of the environments the computer supplies for you, you can build your own. If you are an average person, expect to suffer total annihilation, over and over and over again, as you attempt to figure out your complex arsenal. The object of the game is to gather energy on different planets using a hub that launches everything from drones to bombs to energy-collection units. Another company, or multiple other companies, attempt to exploit these energy resources at the same time, which is where the cluster bombs, viruses, and yes, electromagnetic pulses come in. The corporate entity that harvests the most energy wins. We have a feeling the designers at Humongous were aiming for a dark type of irony when they created this game. Graphics and sound are tight, but the emphasis here is on the game. You won't find elaborate opening sequences, over-the-top animation, or (thank goodness) swooping camera angles. MoonBase Commander is kind of like a smart bomb: it dispatches its task with unnerving efficiency. (Ages 9 and older) --Anne Erickson
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