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Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Computer Game Review: European Escalation

Wargame European Escalation is a "Cold War Gone Hot" game by a relatively unknown developer, Eugen Systems, and it is fantastic.

The game's scale is huge - close to the same scale as RUSE (its based on the same engine) - another fantastic RTS and even borrows some of the same mechanics.

Normal RTS scale map
This is not a command and conquer style RTS. There is no base building (which I personally hate, except for supreme commander) - this game is about real strategy. As you capture zones you gain requisition, which allows you to purchase more units that arrive onto the map via roads. This brings me to my next point: roads are key in this game, as they allow fast travel between zones and fuel efficiency - yes you will have to keep an eye on fuel and ammo.  This game mechanic reinforces the need for zones with in-roads to be captured to save distance of travel for supply trucks and reinforcements. Running your MBT over the map cross country will drain their fuel pretty fast - keep them to the roads and if you need to change position, and make sure you have the fuel.

WG:EE Scale

This game doesn't skimp on detail!

 The developers have done their best to make the game feel as authentic as they can. Ranges are huge (and I assume truer to life then games like company of heroes), infantry are brutal in forests and towns but vulnerable in the open.  The infantry must rely on helicopters and APCs for transport. Cover and height matters and makes ambushes along roads a huge strategic advantage.

You never play as one particular nation but rather a mixing bowel of units from each side, NATO and Soviets. You get to choose from a ton of toys, from infantry to main battle tanks all the way up to helicopters and artillery.

My biggest issue with the game is the Main Menu, which is clunky and confusing, but once you learn how to navigate it and get into the game its one of the best RTS games Ive played in recent years.

Overall, this is a fantastic game! I love it and if you are looking for a realistic Cold War (or any wars) game, this is it.


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