Nuclear Strike

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a game by Electronic Arts, and EA Games
Genre: Action
Platforms: PC (1997), Playstation, PSX
Editor Rating: 7.8/10, based on 9 reviews
User Rating: 8.3/10 - 7 votes
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See also: Beat 'em-Up, High Score Games, Shoot 'Em Up Games
Nuclear Strike
Nuclear Strike
Nuclear Strike

People say:


Nuclear Strike involves a terrorist who's stolen a nuclear bomb, and your mission is to retrieve it. The plot unfolds through clips of snazzy, MTV-style full-motion video shown between and during missions. All superfluous things aside, Nuclear Strike is a very in-depth and challenging game. In addition to flying Strike's traditional Apache helicopter, there an more than 10 different vehicles for you to control. These include a tank, a hovercraft, a Harrier jet and get this--a news helicopter (used in covert missions). Knowing when and where to use these vehicles and managing your fuel, ammo and armor makes up much of the challenge in the game. This, of course, is ii addition to just blowing the hell out of things before they do the same to you. Many improvements have been made over the previous Soviet Strike. The graphics are better and scroll much smoother. Although there's still some choppy scrolling, it doesn't detract from gameplay. Also, the mission objectives and map interface are much more intuitive, making it much easier to know what and where to strike. The biggest detriment to the game is the horrible in-game music, which is incredibly cheesy. Thankfully, it's usually drowned out by all the carnage on the battlefield. Nuclear Strike is a very good game; easily the best of the long-running Strike series.


I really liked Soviet Strike, even though it had a few problems, and the sequel comes through being just as good as the first (with a better frame rate). NS looks a bit sharper than the first and even had me "wowing" at some of the explosions. Once again, the game features the same incredible FMV as before (I want a feature-length film), and the missions are incredibly interesting to play through. The sound sucks though.


The 32-Bit Strike series is following the same evolution in gameplay as its 16-Bit originators. Namely, Nuclear Strike looks and plays just like Soviet Strike, except now it packs a huge assortment of vehicles. Aside from the standard Apache, you can command a Harrier, a news chopper--even a tank! Like Soviet Strike, this sucker ain't easy (some missions are downright frustrating). You'll do fine if you take it slow and plan your attack.


Nuclear Strike builds on Soviet Strike's success by addressing most of SS's problems. There are more cool crafts to choose from, the frame rate is smoother and the Map Menu is much more intuitive. The game is still hard as nails though, so fans of the Strike series should have no problems getting sucked into this one. I like Strike too, but the levels got tedious. NS isn't revolutionary but it doesn't tarnish the series either.

Download Nuclear Strike


System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

Game Reviews

The first 32-Bit Strike title. Soviet Strike, was a relatively disappointing game. It clearly suffered technically from Electronic Arts' growing pains as they tried to adapt to developing 32-Bit games. From playing Nuclear Strike, it's apparent that many lessons have been learned as the early preview version of this game is already more impressive than its predecessor.

As is implied by the title. Nuclear Strike revolves around a series of missions geared toward stopping a madman from unleashing a nuclear weapon. The story is well interwoven within the game through a series of quick, well-produced video clips between and during missions. In case anyone really cares, many of the same characters from the previous Strike game will return to the sequel, giving the series a sense of continuity.

One of the major flaws of Soviet Strike (according to EA) was that the missions were a little too hard and drawn out. As a result, Nuclear Strike has been designed with an eye for ease of use. The missions are better defined, more supplies are available and the map and mission interface is more intuitive. The Heads-Up Display (HUD) is also improved, making it easier to locate enemies, objectives and other key locations in the impressively large terrain maps.

Although the game has been made a bit more manageable. Nuclear Strike promises to have increased depth. Thirteen different vehicles are available On addition to the stock Apache including a tank, a hovercraft, a Harrier jet, the A-10 Warthog. the Huey (chopper) and even a news helicopter (we know how important those can be in a war). Some missions will be very complex, involving friendly ground forces and support missions. With so many different combat vehicles and aircraft in the game, the variety of tasks is enormous.

Technically. Nuclear Strike should be a treat for action game fans. The graphics have been improved substantially since the previous Strike game. The terrain now scrolls smoothly (it used to be jerky at times), and the frame rate is much brisker. The explosions are much more spectacular-unfortunate vehicles and buildings are engulfed in flames, which then dissipate to reveal a crater as a sloppy reminder of your handiwork.

With all of the improvements being made to Nuclear Strike, it looks like this (keep your fingers crossed) will be the game that really makes this series of military action titles shine.

  • THEME - Action

This year's addition to EA's "Strike" line of games puts you once again in control of a helicopter with the fate of a planet riding on its successful completion of the mission. The graphics of their latest heli-title Nuclear Strike are really sharp and hold up the reputation built by Soviet Strike. We are expecting the same amount of in-mission fun as in Soviet Strike such as the sporadic rescue of POWs and the insertion of trained troops to take over tanks and complete their part of the mission which in turn reflects what happens in your mission. You can expect to save the planet once again later this year.

It's a rumble in the jungle with Nuclear Strike, EA's latest military action blastfest and the sequel to Soviet Strike.

Really Great Balls of Fire

In addition to improving the game's artificial intelligence and animation frame rate, EA promises to enhance what is arguably the Strike series' most important element: the explosions! Now leave a crater, not just a black stain. The missions themselves are more dynamic--you'll be commanding some of j your forces omthe fly, and the action takes place in real time. Ad-rvance planning and quick thinking are now more important than e ever for success.

With tougher missions come better tools at your disposal. A new heads-up display with a compass helps navigation, and a new short-range radar gives you advance warning of sneak attacks from behind.

By Land, Sea, and Air

Nuclear Strike's action takes place in Southeast Asia, where a madman has stolen a nuclear weapon and threatens to use it--unless you, as a member of the elite Strike corps, can stop him. No longer limited to airborne-only action, players now have a choice of 10 vehicles at their command, including a tank, a hovercraft, a Harrier Jumpjet, an A-10 "tank killer," a news helicopter, and a classic Vietnam-era Huey chopper. Look for new photorealistic terrain, too.


Here we go again. For all of the fans of the Strike series, it is time to jump into your chopper and save the world. I know you are probably thinking that you have saved the world enough times in the first games of the series, but now you can save the world using 15 different vehicles. You are no longer limited to just a chopper.

Nuclear Strike looks to add to the successful series by changing some of the more familiar aspects of the game and giving you control of more than just your vehicle. They added a mini map and a waypoint indicator for those of us who needed help, but still made a pretty cool game to go with the pretty cool features.


I will be the first to admit that I am not very good at flight/combat sims. I don't know why, but I just have a difficult time with all of the complex controls and everything. I like these games, but I just suck at them. Everybody has their weak spots and this type of game is my gaming weak spot. Surprisingly, Nuclear Strike is easy enough to play that even I was blasting tanks into oblivion with minimal effort.

Nuclear Strike is mostly an air-to-ground combat type game. You will get to do some ground-to-ground combat, but for the most part you will be flying above the action in some sort of aircraft. You have different campaigns that are made up of multiple missions inside the campaign. So in order to complete a campaign, you must finish all of the missions as directed. No problem.

Your missions are relayed through FMV cut scenes. These cut scenes are flashing, jumping, flickering and changing faster than you can blink an eye. Most of them have the camera jumping from your intelligence officer to other people. Although this was fairly effective in conveying the mission, it did get annoying after a while. Luckily, you could skip over the FMV scenes and read a written explanation of the mission so you did not have to watch them. The missions usually were made up of destroying a particular target, rescuing pilots or providing air cover for a ground operative. The variety kept the missions fun and exciting.

A big part of the game is picking objects up. EA deserves a big pat on the back for the system they used for picking up objects. Instead of making a complicated button sequence or something, all you had to do was fly over the object and a grappling hook would extend and pick up the object. It was a bit touchy in that you had to maneuver your craft in just the right position in order to get the object, but it was still a great idea and an important part of the game. You will constantly be using this, because you can pick up armor, weapons and fuel, not to mention people and other objects. It was great to just have to worry about finding the objects instead of picking them up.

The action in this game is quite intense, depending on the scenario. You will fight defenses ranging from people-borne surface-to-air rockets to giant multi-missile turrets. There is definitely no shortage of enemies, and you will constantly have one eye looking at the mini map and the other looking at the game. The mini map used a color coded scheme to help you identify objects. For me, this was essential since I use the shoot-first-ask-questions-later method. The color codes help me identify good guys versus bad guys.

One thing that made this game so easy for me to play was the weapons and targeting system. It was so basic that even I could get it right. You used one button for your machine guns, another for missiles and another for rockets. The best part was that it really did not matter which button you hit, because you would do damage regardless. This was great for me because, when in a panic situation, I would just start pushing buttons and unless I was out of that particular weapon, I would launch something good. All I have to say is the simpler the better.

The last thing worth mentioning is the enemy AI. It was sometimes good, other times not good. For example, I picked up a load of hostages. I had to find a landing pad to drop them off to safety. Well, I found a pad and just to the immediate west of the landing pad, the mini map showed a ton of enemies just waiting. Since I came in from the East, I landed without any resistance. It was not until I took off and flew over the first tank that they noticed I was there. We are talking 15 feet from the landing pad. Come on, they should have heard me coming and attacked me, forcing me to kill them before unloading the passengers. This may be trivial, but it would have helped the realism.


This is another shining point for Nuclear Strike. The graphics are pretty darn good. You feel like you are flying through the jungle or over the sea or whatever terrain you are covering. The FMV sequences, as annoying as they are, are high quality. The best part of the whole game, though, is when you shoot a person standing on the ground and watch them try and dive to safety after being shot. For some reason, the bodies would just disappear after making their dive. It would have been helpful to have the dead bodies remain to help you determine if you had already visited the area.

Bottom Line

ally sucks at this type of game, Nuclear Strike is a fun title. After getting used to everything, I was unstoppable (maybe I should have not been playing on easy). The graphics, controls and easy execution should offer casual flight sim/combat gamers some hours of fun. It is nice to see that someone has made this type of game with complex features and stories with easy execution.


Welcome to Strike-net, a government-sponsored, unregulated special ops unit comprised of elite specialists. Your mission: stop all those ruthless terrorists, dictators, and crime lords from taking over the world. If you fail, it's nuke city, baby! You play the role of commander and pilot of the Super Apache, the world's latest advanced combat helicopter, and are constantly supplied throughout the game with information from your fellow Strike team members. General Earle, your commanding officer, assigns your missions, Hack is a computer genius who will periodically interrupt a mission to inform you of some important mission data, and Andrea, a spy by night and an international news correspondent by day, will keep you updated on the conditions of the battle.

It doesn't take long to get up and running and before you know it, you'll be piloting your Super Apache, along with a wide choice of other vehicles, through a very "explosive" arcade game where just about anything you shoot erupts into a huge fireball of flames, splinters, and shrapnel. At various points in the game you can fly an AV-8B Sea Harrier and an A-10X Warthog, just to name a few of the aircraft available. On the ground, you can control tanks and hovercraft. In all, there are as many as 15 vehicles throughout the game, which should keep your interest for a long time.

Gameplay and Controls

Your campaigns take place in southeast Asia beginning in "a simmering jungle kingdom somewhere along the river delta." Your mission is to stop an ex-CIA, ex-KGB bad guy who has stolen a tactical nuclear device. Your mission is explained to you through the use of various Full Motion Video (FMV) cut-scenes. All the FMV scenes are of high quality and Electronic Arts used a full production team to film them, which clearly shows.

The controls are very simple and straightforward. A four button joystick is practically a necessity because of the fact that you have 4 different weapons to fire. You have a color-coded directional compass to help steer you towards supplies and mission objectives. As you fight it out on the battlefield, you will burn fuel, take damage, and diminish your weapons supply. When this happens, you can fly to various locations to winch aboard fuel pods, more ammo, and extra armor. Various readouts on your screen keep track of the status of each.

But still the biggest advantage of Nuclear Strike over the other Strike games is the ability to change vehicles. In the first mission, you can transfer your pilot to control a hovercraft that can traverse though land or water disintegrating practically everything this heavy craft comes in contact with. In later campaigns you can transfer to other helicopters, an A-10X (The "X" indicates this is a prototype of a Vertical Take Off and Landing VTOL aircraft). Basically, it hovers! You will also have the option to transfer your pilot to an M1A1 Abrams Battle tank which gives the game a whole new flavor. The tanks are slow, however one easy shot is all it takes to waste the largest of the enemy tanks. Some of the other vehicles include an AV-8B Sea Harrier, M2 Bradley armored personnel carrier, RAH-66 Super Comanche, and even a news chopper. You are also able to give commands to other units on the battlefield in certain situations. For example, you can fly over a group of M1A1 tanks and give them orders to attack a target, guard a road, or just hold their location until you are ready to give them an assignment. Orders can be given to other choppers, infantry, and anti-tank units. Some missions require you to get these units engaged in the battle in order for you to have a chance of a successful mission.

The game consists of five campaigns with up to 10 missions each, with the decided drawback that you can only save your game once you have completed the campaign. Frequently, I would by playing for 40-50 minutes and get killed off just before the end of the campaign and would then have to go back to the beginning and start over. I agree that the player shouldn't be able to save the game after each mission, but it would be nice to be able to save the game halfway through the campaign.


Nuclear Strike's graphics are average at best for gamers that do not have a 3Dfx card. However, if you do enjoy the visual benefits of the card such as I, prepare to be dazzled. Let me first tell you about the explosions. They come in many shapes and sizes, and are such in this game as to be the outright best I have ever seen grace my monitor. Blow up a building and watch it burst into flames with wood splinters flying out in all directions causing little mini explosions when they hit the ground or ripples if they splash into the water. Many times enemy tanks will be blasted up into the sky only to fall back to earth a few moments later. I could criticize the fact that just about everything blows up including palm trees, telephone poles, wood and chain link fences, but it is just so beautiful, I can never get enough. There are many times I will fly around and blow things up while ignoring the mission orders just to relieve myself of the stress of everyday life.

As far as terrain, Nuclear Strike features photo-realistic landscapes and highly-detailed ships, tanks, and buildings with the 3Dfx card. I tested the game on a friend's P-200 with a Matrox Mystic 3D card and I had to turn down the graphics resolution in order to get the game to run smoothly. However, even at the same graphic resolution, there was no comparison to the quality of the visuals. On my 200MMX with 3dfx, I could run at 640x480 very smoothly with no problems. There is no question this game was designed for use with the 3Dfx accelerator in mind, and suffers considerably without it.


To complement the amazing visual explosions, Nuclear Strike also contains some pretty good audio. The first thing you'll notice is the thump-thump-thump of your helicopter blades. With a little bass adjustment, you can make it even more convincing. The explosions, guns, and missiles are all nicely done, and you can adjust the music and sound effects levels. However, it would also be nice to be able to adjust the volumes of particular sounds, i.e. intelligence reports and low fuel alarms. I needed something that would wake me up out of my "Jeez, I love those explosions" hypnotic state, or before I knew it, my Apache's engine would start coughing and shuddering, thirsting for fuel.

System Requirements

Nuclear Strike requires Windows 95, P-133 or faster without a 3Dfx card or a P-90 or faster with a 3Dfx card. 16 MB RAM, 2 MB video RAM, 4X CD-ROM drive, and a lofty 110 MB of hard drive space. EA recommends a P-166 processor or faster, 32 MB RAM, 8X CD-ROM drive and 216 MB of hard drive storage. Even with 216 MB on the hard drive, the game still requires the Nuclear Strike CD during play.

Bottom Line

There are games that I will buy and play for a month or two and never play again, and there are games that I will come back to play again and again over the years. I believe Nuclear Strike will fall under the latter category. It is very simple, yet fun, with great graphic and sound qualities. There is no doubt in my mind that Nuclear Strike was designed and meant to be played in conjunction with a 3Dfx graphic accelerator. If you have the 3Dfx, put this game on your Christmas list. If you don't, put the 3Dfx on your Christmas list first, because more and more games are requiring this chipset to look the way they do in the box shots, and this is definitely one of them.

Nuclear Strike is bigger, badder, and better-looking this year. You can trade in your Apache gunship for a ride in 13 other vehicles, too.

It's Da Bomb!

A rogue agent has stolen a nuclear device from Russia, and now he's touring Asia to find just the right place to start World War III. Once again, the super-secret Strike team is called upon to save the world without drawing too much attention. Nuke's mission-based gameplay will be familiar to Strike heli-combat vets. This time, however, you also pilot 13 new aircraft and vehicles in addition to your Super Apache chopper, including a hovercraft, a tank, a Harrier jumpjet, a Huey gunship, and an A-10 Avenger. The action goes down in five levels spread throughout Asia, from Indochina to the Korean demilitarized zone, with eight to ten missions per level.

Explosive Graphics

Nuclear Strike looks much like its squadron predecessor, Soviet Strike, but there are some.. .err, striking improvements. Unlike Soviet Strike, Nuclear's terrain is composed of 3D objects, so if you fly around them in a circle they look almost photorealistic. EA also claims Nuke's frame rate is 25 percent faster than Soviet's, and, in fact, the preview version felt noticeably quick and smooth as silk. The story cinemas and tactical screens are awesome.

Striking Gameplay

The gameplay even in the preview version is great, and the heads-up display sports a new waypoint indicator that makes it way easier to navigate across the deadly terrain. Enemy forces will react to your specific attack strategies; however, you'll also be able to command friendly forces (a la real-time strategy games like Command & Conquer) to help you achieve your mission objectives. While it's too early to make the call on whether Nuclear's as nail-bitingly hard as Soviet, EA's aiming for a broader audience with more evenly balanced difficulty.

The second 32-bit Strike title takes place in Asia as the Strike team heads out for another series of deadly missions. This time the world is being held hostage by a group of terrorists with a nuclear bomb. Colleagues General Earle, Hack, and Andrea Grey return to deal out the damage, along with new characters to be introduced. Nuclear Strike features five missions and will use a play scheme similar to that of the 16-bit Jungle Strike--you'll be able to pilot several other vehicles during the missions, including different helicopters, a Harrier jump jet, and assorted ground vehicles. Looks like EA can't miss with this Strike.

In round two of the next-generation Strikes, the Strike team is headed deep into the jungles of China to hunt down a bloodthirsty modern-day pirate. His cargo is as hot as his temper--a nuclear warhead that will fetch a mighty price on the black market. With the aid of recon agents, a feisty female jungle warrior, and even a mercenary cleverly named Cold Harding Cash, you'll fly soirees, blast villages, destroy rockets on the launch pad, and wreak more merry hell in this masterful reworking of the Strike games. You'll also be able to pilot a few other vehicles, like a hovercraft, an Ml Abrams tank, and even a Harrier jet.

Expert Strikers, however, may find the game is simply more of the same. Even with the enhancements, the game plays exactly like the previous Strikes, where missions are piled on top of each other, and managing your ammo, armor, and fuel resources is essential to the mission's completion.

Strike fans will definitely lust for the chopper heroics of this, the newest and best of the Strike games. But newcomers may find the action too involved, while Command & Conquer cadets may find the blast-and-fly-past strategy too simple. Go Nuclear if your heart can take another Strike.

Strike Heroes:

  • Hack: Info heavy, he has the scoop on everyone. A good resource, but you have to decode his hip-hop haranguing quickly.
  • Naja: You have to follow her closely at first, and help her deliver rifles to her compatriots, but afterwards, she'll fight her way out of trouble for you.
  • Cold Harding Cash: A mercenary, and not a stable one at that, Cash will open some heavily guarded ASAT launch bays for you. Just land and let him do his work.
  • Earle: An ass-chewer extraordinaire, your team leader Earle is a tough and grizzled vet of the Strike team. Listen to him closely4ir you can kiss your rank goodbye.


  • Always refuel, re-armor, and re-arm yourself at the end of each mission. And to get a Jump on the next mission, shoot and destroy vehicles and personnel while on your way to other missions.
  • The Huey has much weaker armor than the Apache, and even minor gunfire will heavily damage it Never rush in and blast away; instead, stay on the fringe and blast heavy vehicles with your grenades.
  • You receive free armor upgrades when unloading passengers to a safe landing zone.
  • When picking up Nick, watch out for the trap that's set for you. Rush In, then fly out and sweep back, laying down sheets of machine-gun fire at the soldiers near the cage that Nick is in.


Smooth, polished landscapes and polygon-rich explosions snazz up the graphics, but the backgrounds aren't interactive and actually look fake (especially the frozen whitecap swells in the ocean).


The sound is a definite plus with real voices, lively commentary, and ear-splitting explosions. Even the thwack-thwack-thwack of the chopper's blades is crystal clear.


The same problems from earlier Strike games are back, including imprecise targeting and chopper physics that don't match the arcade feel of the action. However, several new navigational aids keep you on track.

Fun Factor

Although the best in the Strike series, Nuclear Strike doesn't deliver enough original gameplay to set it apart from its predecessors. It's not a Strike out just yet, but it's not batting too well against chart-topper arcade choppers like Black Dawn.

Snapshots and Media

Playstation Screenshots

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