Tag Archives: war

Haven Editorial: Warhammer 40k Dawn of War 3 – open beta

Haven Editorial: Warhammer 40k Dawn of War 3 – open beta

In the in fourth first century there can be only war and that is one thing Warhammer Dawn of War has always done right. From a visual standpoint the latest installment looks lovely and units are very well defined. The environment looks very bad in a good way. Since the theme is war and destruction., every thing is ruins and mostly gray and brown. With an every increasing pile of broken bodies and bags of blood. As for the music, it’s moody, instrumental with a touch of heroics. With decent sound effects and it’s easy to pick out the different audio ques. Every unit has a heavy British accent that fits the Warhammer universe quite well. Technically there is a rock paper scissor logic going on, where each squad has various active abilities to lob at heretics and xenos alike. Business as usual, it’s also possible to summon various heroes that has abilities of their own and a quite commanding presence on the battle field. Which brings me to a very annoying and very true problem with games such as these. Micro management from a hell. Some units such as the snipers has to deploy, while some are meant purely for close quarter combat. Some are back line and others are mobile. Combine this with a bit sluggish response times and clunky path finding, where you have to rapidly switch between units to gain the best effect. Sure I can just clump them into a big pile and right click, but that only works against stupid people. A rare commodity in a real time strategy game. Combine that with having to click on various buildings to order units, upgrades such. It does become a handful and quite vexing indeed.

In the open beta of Dawn of War 3 there is only one game mode, where the goal is to crush the power core. Where point capture is key to gaining resource acquisition points. Which in turns summons units. No longer can squads be replenished, they have to be near a base building to do that. Each match gives experience points and skulls that can be used to learn new abilities and special orders for the heroic units. Along with some pr-order bonus skins and some skin that unlocks with level. I can’t say anything about the story mode as it is not part of the beta, it’s purely multiplayer at the moment. However I’m not convinced that Eldar has any chance what so ever to with most engagements. Especially since they are not built for defense. For the most part it feels like the Ork stomps all, eventually. It’s not bad game, just not my cup of tea. Too much micro.

Njål Sand

Haven Reviews: Open Transport Tycoon Deluxe

Haven Reviews: Open Transport Tycoon Deluxe

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Open Transport Tycoon, is a ported and improved version of a very old management game. Unlike most such games there is a goal and that is to have the most of everything when the year 2050 has passed. The only way to lose is to file bankruptcy, which can be quite hard indeed.

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In order to start a business all one have to do is to connect a route from something that produce materials, that can be refined into goods. Such as building a railway from a forest onto a sawmill.
Or transporting people between places, everything else is just variations on the formula. However there is a lot more to it than that. Such as the ever so fun multiplayer mode.

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Anyhow I figured out some really fun ways to spice things up. Buying up land in front of someone establishing a railway. A bit costly but it will prevent that player from claiming a good spot.

Raising land under someones boat and watch the ensuing fireball.

But a really really devious one that is very hard to notice, is when someone have trucks going to and from a depot. By building the tiniest railway ever, its about six squares in total. The locomotive will go so fast, it fails to stop at the railroad crossing. Causing the car to get run through by a speeding train. Replacing the car with a pile of ash and a mushroom like explosion. Even more satisfying when your friend fails to notice it.

All is not well in the garden though. The screen will quickly be overrun by pannels and information. Not to mention the horrible scaling text and interface, whihc was made for a different time. In hte options menu the interface can be scaled a little, but it is still very annoying. THe same goes for the blue text at the bottom.

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Aside from that, there is also a fair share of accidents that can occur, such as fires, planes crashing and Xcom blowing up a ufo on your railroad. Trains also have the habit of colliding when more than one runs on the same track, when the signals fail.

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In Tycoon, trains can be use in exceedingly complicated and weird ways, due to the signals. Which is a meta game all of its own. After all at some point, there will be so much money in play that insane things can be built.

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Drawing a line from A to B with a train running on is the icing on the cake. Town that litter the map for example have some personality and limits on what they accept being built. Naturally there are a lot of ways to manipulate the town it self, such as setting up commute. Transportation causes them to expand greatly.

Transport Tycoon graphics are made up of nice and clean isometric sprites. With several environmental themes to pick from, such as the candy land one. A real eyesore, but fun non the less. Meanwhile in game music are composed of loud chip-tunes. With a big variety of styles to pick from.

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Not to mention the scenario editor that’s a vital part of the experience. There are many, many devious maps, but most of them try to recreate real world locations. These can be downloaded directly from the various games menus, along with various AI and a bucket load of custom game settings. Which makes this a lovely cocktail for the grand price of free. Regardless of how fun I find Ottd it’s still a timesink.

.Njål Sand

Haven Review: War of the human tanks – Limited Operations

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The battle screen

War of the human tanks is the name of this here turn based strategy game. The title stay true to name, though I find myself hard pressed to call them human tanks. To me they just look like chibi girls with guns, fighting a war against other armed girls. This is by no means a graphically impressive game, or a very big one for that matter. For the most parts backgrounds are made up of photos with one of those generic Photoshop filter on top and the human tanks are crudely drawn and poorly animated. The small sprites are also very hard to see on the scree, due to the horrid non existent resolution, I can only chose between full screen and windowed. Which really brings down the whole visual representation. The biggest selling point is the decent gameplay. The goal is usually to assemble a team of human tanks, whose job is to navigate around on a map, meet interesting human tanks and kill them. Much like a game of battleship, most of the board is obscured in darkness and until you actually see an enemy, not much can be done. This is where the various classes and their special abilities comes into play.

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The usual F to S ranking system!

Some can scout out hidden areas, whilst other can provide long range fire. It’s the usual rock, paper, war, system, where each class has roles and abilities that complement each other. Combat is quite quick and brutal indeed, as most units can only take one hit and the human tank that shot first wins.  Eventually the side that is left standing will win. Soundwise everything is loud and voices are used sparsely. This is where the game shines, the gameplay is fun for quite some time. There is also steam achievements. Naturally this decision tuns the story into a massive wall of text, where the image on top tells whom is talking. More images would really help to tell the story. Show don’t tell as the saying goes. Luckily the music can be turned down along with all the other effects. The music is actually quite good and can be bought along with the trilogy. On start up, the music was insanely loud and aside from the game crashing on me, the very imposing plot and the odd controller layout, the game work as intended. However the intro song greatly amused me indeed and in theory the concept is fantastic. Just not the execution it need some good polish, therefor I have a hard time recommending it, since you’ll have to enjoy turn based strategy games in the first place.

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Get the trilogy here
http://store.steampowered.com/app/263400/

Disclaimer:  We received this game for review purposes only. As such, all views in this article are our own. No money has been exchanged for this review.

Njål H Sand