Uprising 2: Lead And Destroy
|Editor Rating:||6/10, based on 1 review|
|User Rating:||8.0/10 - 1 vote|
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Although Uprising was single-handedly responsible for the first-person action/real-time strategy genre (or FARTS, for short), there was one tiny problem: it wasn't very good. Or playable. So nobody bought it.
Not long after its release, Activision came up with Battiezone to try and make the FARTS concept a little more accessible. Like Uprising, it promised a delicious cocktail of the two most popular flavours - Quake-style action combined with Bed Alert - style strategy - but the final bottled product tasted like Dutch lager: Quake fans found it too weak, and the Red Alert crowd got addled and threw up In the airing cupboard. Uprising 2: Lead And Destroy attempts to change all that. The focus is now on story-based combat, with the micro-management of troops being handled entirely by the computer. This means that your support units and troops can at last get about by themselves and pick tights without you having to give them the go-ahead.
Candy For The Eye
Your enemy (the oddly named Trichordata Sauraformae Sapiens) aren't human, and your pursuit of them requires a good deal of interstellar trekking, hopping between planets and admiring of exotic alien landscapes. This is perhaps the most obvious departure from the previous instalment, where the bad guys were human and not quite so well-travelled.
With regard to visuals, gone are the plump sprites of old, and In their place are smart new polygonal replacements. The different planets, terrain and individual units are now easily distinguishable from one another, addressing a major criticism of the original game. Multiplayer is more powerful and configurable than before, feeling less of a bolt-on afterthought and more of an integral feature of the game. Up to eight players - twice the old maximum - can bash it out over TCP/IP, IPX, modem and direct serial connection.
The overall architecture of the game, while an obvious improvement, remains on the dull side and doesn't serve to excite or entice you during play. Adverse weather conditions, night effects and gorgeous sky textures are all welcome additions to the overall ambience, but on the whole it's like an early Spielberg flick - too dark and too gloomy. Inexcusably, the developers have built in support tor only Voodoo-based cards, meaning that other chipsets and the popular Riva TNT simply don't get a look in.
Same Name Same Game
Gameplay remains much the same, bar a tew changes to the interface. You still trundle around your customisable Wraith tank, capturing enemy citadels and harvesting their energy tor your own purposes. This is the core task of ail 36 missions and, despite a constantly evolving plot, can get a bit repetitive. A new feature, called Auto Suggestion, sounds like it could take the drudgery out of play, but is the equivalent of cheating: it makes the computer make the next-best move for you. It's a mystery as to why it's there.
In the previous game, you were able to distribute the tank's power throughout the various weaponry and defence systems, much like in the X-Wing series. That functionality has now been removed. And while newcomers won't know it's missing, old hands will bemoan its absence. You can also no longer assign different weapons to different turrets; instead, the first slot is assigned permanently to the first weapon, which can prove to be a bit of a bind.
Overall, Uprising is very playable and reasonably enjoyable, but it's really nothing special. It's too similar to its predecessor, doing nothing to enhance the genre that game created. For that reason we can't recommend it.