Welcome to post-apocalyptic Earth. Governments no longer exist; instead, megalithic corporations now use elite combat forces in a never-ending battle for highly prized mineral deposits and other natural resources.
Three areas rich in these resources (the Badlands, the Fallout Wasteland, and the Tyrakian Territories) have been under the control of one company, Tyrakian Global, for many years. Tyrakian's success has been insured by their use of "gateways," which allow for the transport of large forces instantaneously. These gateways enable Tyrakian Global to always have forces available wherever they are threatened.
However, other corporations are now looking at these territories with new interest due to a recent collapse of Tyrakian power. The battle has turned into a huge free-for-all, involving both corporation warriors and individual privateers who are trying to stake and defend a claim in the newly available land.
Outfitted with a state-of-the-art combat vehicle, you are prepared to enter the contest. Do you have what it takes to fight in a world of Havoc?
Reality Bytes' Havoc is a fast-paced, high-octane 3D shoot-'em-up for both Windows 95 and the Mac. The premise is simple: destroy everything in sight, find the gate keys, and move on. Along the way you will travel through three major worlds and do battle with over eighty types of enemies, including the dreaded Tyrakian Overlord (if you survive that long). Havoc also provides the opportunity to go up against other players, supporting multi-play over both a modem and LAN.
For me, Havoc installed without problems in Windows 95, although systems that already have a newer version of DirectX installed may have problems with DirectX installation in Havoc. Mac installation was even easier than under Win 95; there were no problems. Havoc comes with 2 CDs: one Game Disk, and a second Extra-Player Disk. Both CDs will install on both Win95 and Macintosh.
When you start Havoc you may select one of three attack vehicles: the HyperTank, the HoverCraft, or the BattleCycle.
The HyperTank is heavily armored and boasts more power for weapons, but is also the slowest of the vehicles. It is a good choice for the beginner, as its armor and weapon power allow the beginning player time to learn without being blown away.
The BattleCycle is at the other end of the spectrum, having very little armor and storing less ammunition than the other vehicles, but its overwhelming speed allows you to out-run and out-turn all but a few of your enemies.
The HoverCraft is a blend of the HyperTank and BattleCycle. Its armor is much better than the BattleCycle, but it doesn't have the weapons capability of the HyperTank. However, because it floats above the ground, it is unaffected by many of the terrain difficulties, such as lava and ice, that can hamper or damage the other vehicles.
All three vehicles handle very well. I particularly enjoy taking the HoverCraft up steep inclines to avoid enemies or gain an attack advantage.
Each vehicle has several status displays that give you information about your vehicle and the world around you. They include weapons status, a directional finder for your next goal (a gate key or the gateway to exit the level), and a display that can be switched between a rear view and an image of the currently selected target. The most valuable display is the Recon Map. It is both a radar and a terrain map. While it is not very accurate for locating enemies, it is helpful, and its capacity as a terrain map is indispensable.
Havoc also boasts an impressive arsenal of weaponry. Throughout the game you acquire more than thirty different types of weapons, from simple lasers to EMP cannons and earth-shaking devices that rearrange the landscape.
Havoc can be controlled using either a joystick or the keyboard. If you're going to use a joystick or game pad, I recommend one with at least eight buttons so you don't have to switch between joystick and keyboard. You will want a minimum of four buttons to control primary weapon fire, secondary weapon fire, looking up, and selecting targets.
One major problem with Havoc is the limitations on saving the game. Saves are only allowed after defeating a "Boss" level. Since you must play through several normal levels to reach a Boss, it can become frustrating trying to get to a point where you can save your progress. The game would be improved by allowing saving at least after each level.
Havoc was one of the first 3D action games designed for the Windows 95 DirectX extensions. Players used to the high-end 3D graphics in today's games might find the textured polygon graphics dated (Havoc was released in 1995), but the graphics look good, and the textured enemies are very menacing.
The gameplay is very smooth on both Win95 and Mac. My AMD 5x86-133 had no problems running with all the high-res and texturing options turned on. If you're playing on a slower system, you may need to turn off some of the texturing options to get adequate response. I would recommend playing on a system fast enough to run with all the options on.
The sound FX and music in Havoc are good, although some of the FX during gameplay are disappointing. Havoc's musical score is fun to listen to and enhances the feel of the game.
Havoc boasts over 80 different enemies, ranging from stationary gun turrets to deadly flying attack craft. These enemies are very intelligent. They will charge in to attack, retreat, try to outflank you, and seem to cooperate in groups. There are several difficulty settings for you to choose from, and unlike many games of this type, each level provides you with better tactics for the enemies, not just more to bash through.
Havoc boasts excellent multiplayer action, supporting head-to-head play over a modem and support for up to 32 players over TCP/IP or AppleTalk networks. Each copy of Havoc comes with an extra player CD that lets you get into head-to-head action right out of the box. Both Win 95 and Mac players can join the same game.
PC, Required: 486/66 processor, 8 MB RAM, 2X CD-ROM drive, 256 color display
PC, Recommended: P75 or faster CPU, PCI or VLB SVGA video card, 4X or faster CD-ROM drive
Mac, Required: MacOS 7.x, 33Mhz '040 processor, 8 MB RAM, 2X CD ROM drive, 256 color display
Mac, Recommended: Power Macintosh, 4X or faster CD-ROM drive
Multiplayer (both platforms): 14.4kb or faster modem for head-to-head play, LAN play requires TCP/IP or AppleTalk Protocols
With its smooth graphics, intelligent enemies, and realistic driving feel, Havoc is an excellent addition to the collection of multiplayer 3D games available today. While its plot may not be the most original, it has been put together in a way that works, and it does have a few unique quirks that make it fun to play again and again.
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP