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"As for the AI (Artificial Intelligence), it doesn’t look that different from any of the previous games."

During all of this it’s apparent that the interface and overall game controls are exactly the same as the previous games. When you actually come to play all you need is to know how to move a Mouse or a Joystick and how to press one of two buttons. Additionally you can also select a group of units then assign them to a number, excellent for offensive attacks from all angles where you don’t have time to scroll around. The only really new thing about the controls is the Waypoint system, you can set a waypoint rout and attach a unit to it with a couple of clicks and it will follow that rout (like a guard). Again like previous games you can assign units to guard other units, attack and move in general with simple left and right clicks on the Mouse. Overall the controls are simple yet effective, which is really all you need in a game like this where there isn’t time to think about complicated controls.

As for the AI (Artificial Intelligence), it doesn’t look that different from any of the previous games. The only noticeable bit is that your units don’t go wondering off the wrong way nearly as much as they did before, if ever. They always follow the correct and most intelligent routs so don’t be afraid to send them back to the other side of the map and have them walk around the edge of it instead, they just won’t do it anymore. The AI doesn’t seem quite as good as it was in Total Annihilation; I found it to be a little simplistic when it came to direct engagements. Even in Red Alert, artillery shots wouldn’t always hit the same spot exactly, yet in TS everybody is nearly 100% accurate and it’s just plain silly for a modern RTS. In TA units would move and be more difficult to hit and what’s more it actually looked it. For TS they move to the target and shoot, something I had hoped would be removed for the sequel. Overall the AI is not very challenging and I’m afraid the old saying of, “He who has more units wins”, is indeed true, in TA one unit - even small - could do a lot of damage on it’s own.


Very little in the way of blood inhabits TS for all you Kingpin come C&C lovers out there. I would have liked to see dead units stay dead on the ground as that would have been innovative, but instead as before they just disappear including their tiny patch of blood once dead. Unit wise and TS has been completely re-thought, gone are the tanks, boats and even jets of the past which we all loved and in come small mechs and cyborgs which in my opinion destroyed the whole atmosphere of the game, turning it into something that looked a bit like a degenerate clone of C&C. In fact I believe there to be even less units in TS than in Red Alert and as for Westwood saying, “Quality not quantity”, it may be true but everybody puts effort into their units so that’s not really true. TA had quantity and all their units were different and well made, perfect for their roles. You do get poor excuses for Tanks and aircraft as well as Water based vehicles, but none appear very good. The Hovercraft is nice but won’t replace ships in any way. As for aircraft and all you get are helicopters and if you’re NOD, little fighters that do very little.

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