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Haven Review: Warzone 2100

Warzone 2100

Why is a doomed future always a featureless desert with murder machines? The world has ended and a bunch of survivors found an abandoned army base and made the place their home. After dealing with some local raiders, they came in direct conflict with something called the “Paradigm”; more war happened.

The future is brown and desolate
The future is brown and desolate

Warzone 2100 is a strategy game where war is a battle of research and resources, a veritable arms race. Machine gun research leads to rotating turrets, and that research leads to the option of making rotating canons. These can be combined with various chassis and turrets. This is the crux of the game play. Researched parts are assembled by the player into whatever configuration is needed and available at the time. This includes heavy cannons, which are not a very good thing to put on a squishy hover-tank. However, laser guns and artillery work great.

The sheer amount of weaponry, upgrades and research is simply staggering. This in turn means that matches can go on for ages. It all depends on the path each player takes, and the strategy used. It can turn into a pretty cool case of bouncing artillery shells back and forth due to various countermeasures. It was one of the first games that introduced the concept of units getting experience in combat, giving them an extra edge if they survive long enough. Luckily this experience can be transferred to other newer, shinier units.

War is noisy, brutal and not very flashy!
War is noisy, brutal and not very flashy!

After some time, those pesky all old units will become obsolete, rusted buckets of bolts. Back in the day I played this on a Playstation demo disc and the most interesting thing was the ability to manually navigate units with the controller. This is extremely helpful, since the path-finding is atrocious. Incidentally, this is also the biggest downfall to an otherwise great game; that and the horrid timer on each mission. Luckily there are cheats to disable these.

The other feature that set the game apart from other strategy games is in the way the campaign is set up. Each area has a main base and a limited map. As events occur, the map expands. Eventually you have to put units into a drop ship and ferry them to the next combat area. This makes the main base a staging point, which might be attacked during or after a mission.

Watch giant armies duke it out!
Watch giant armies duke it out!

Haven Review: Warzone 2100

Aside from a Playstation version, a PC version also exists, and dedicated people still play it. The game keeps up to date with newer Windows releases. However no one has yet had it in their mind to remake the game with better path-finding and more refined graphics. Most of the game is brown. The soundtrack is quite good and composed of several very long tracks which are most enjoyable outside the game itself. Personally I find the title very enjoyable, even though the path-finding is terrible. But by now you already know this.

Here is the page where the current version of the game can be acquired for free. Open source is awesome like that, and same goes for dedicated fans whom keep the game running on new systems.
http://wz2100.net/

Disclaimer: We received this game for review purposes only, and as such all opinions in this review are our own. No money has been exchanged for this review.

Njål H Sand