Uprising

a game by 3DO
Platform: PC
Editor Rating: 7/10, based on 2 reviews
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An action/strategy/sim-ulation game about overthrowing imperial forces, Uprising puts you right in the thick of it and leaves the planet's future in your capable hands. From your fully equipped Wraith, which you drive in and out of battle across varying terrain, you control not only your guns but the many citadels that you've built. These are crucial to your success as you need to use them and plan your strategy wisely in order to destroy the opposing troops and citadels. Players will spend much of the game in a first-person perspective from inside the Wraith, but can easily shift to an overhead map. This satellite view will provide the locations of enemy citadels and Command & Con-quer--style citadel-building options. The graphics need a little fine tuning, but the butt-kicking action and strategy are going to take this up-and-comer straight into the hearts of serious gamers.

Game Reviews

Overview

With real-time strategy games a dime a dozen these days, one can't be blamed for shunning the appearance of yet another one in the already too-crowded market. The same can be said for a new first-person game begging for your gaming dollar. "But what if we combined the two genres and made a hybrid?" the developers at Cyclone questioned. And so was born Uprising, a first-person game that is chock full of action, pretty graphics, and strategy elements that can keep you thinking.

You take on the role of a rebel (how novel, eh?) in an ongoing struggle to free the galaxy of [[Imperium]] rule. The Imperium has designed a building that can teleport support groups to anywhere in a planet's hotzone. And on top of that, they've also designed a Wraith, sort of a mobile HQ that packs a punch and serves as a mobile communications link. But, casually enough, the rebels were able to steal the only known design model in existence and destroy its blueprints so it cannot be replicated by the Imperium. After obtaining this new technology, you are sent on a mission to destroy the Imperium and their bases of operations once and for all.

Gameplay/Controls/Interface

Uprising, on the surface, plays much like a first-person game. You use the mouse to turn and shoot, and the keyboard for basic movement such as moving forward and back and strafing. Although you can edit the controls to allow for joystick support, I experienced more sluggish handling with the joystick than with the mouse, so I stuck with the default controller. Once you get into the game and play a few levels, you will begin to discover a new plethora of advanced controls, and while most of the game is controlled from your Wraith, there is a map-overview mode which also plays a major role in controlling the game.

The handling in the game is achieved quite well. Although you don't directly control your troops, you do tell them what to attack and such. Then they teleport in and whack whatever they're after until they're destroyed. Some of the unit types include:

Infantry: This is your ideal foot soldier. Armed with a laser rifle and explosive satchel, these guys are good for taking out buildings and small offensive threats such as other infantry. Don't get too attached to these guys, because their AI isn't all that great. Take, for example, when one man is placing his charge next to a building -- as often as not one of his comrade will place a charge that will blow up right in the first guy's face.

Bomber: Slow and weak, these guys pack a punch. Able to destroy almost any building, they make up for what they lack in armor and speed with sheer power. However, they are very vulnerable to AAVs and SAM sites, so be sure that there are none surrounding the target.

These two are the basics, but as the game progresses more units and weapons become available. All the units in the game can be upgraded to a certain extent, which improves speed, armor and firepower, among other things.

Graphics

From the opening video sequence to the heat of a battle, the graphics in Uprising are nothing less than stunning. Uprising supports the 3Dfx chipset right out of the box, and the visuals are just awe-inspiring. I found myself parking on a hill sometimes just to admire my Citadel HQ and the lush landscape around it. In battle, the explosions are no less than excellent either. It's quite fun to watch your bomber strike blow up a barracks, with pieces flying everywhere and tall flames burning the enemy crispier than cafeteria BBQ.

Audio

The audio in Uprising is about of a "B" class. You can hear the explosions quite nicely, and your troops screaming stuff at each other such as "Hold your ground, man!" The little computer voices that tell you your systems are operational and neat junk like that are also nice, but nothing special like the graphics. The sound effects are backed up by a 6-track CD featuring Redbook Audio that allows you to play the game music from any stereo or CD player. But overall, the sound could have used a little more "kick" in it; something that would really make you want to haul off and kill some enemy ground support.

System Requirements and Comments

Windows 95, P90 (P133 recommended), 1 MB SVGA with DirectDraw (2 MB PCI recommended), 2X CD-ROM drive (4X recommended), 16 MB RAM (32 MB recommended), 50 MB hard drive space, SoundBlaster compatible sound card, and a 14.4 modem or greater for multiplayer

Bottom Line

Uprising is a fresh break from the average strategy game. It really gives you a sense of being in the battle instead of just controlling it from above. And it's all backed up with great graphics, better than average sound, good handling and gameplay, and just a general solid feel. What I found most refreshing about this game, though, was that you get a good amount of strategy and action, without all of the micro-managing that usually accompanies RTS games or the gore that usually accompanies first-person games. Design flaws and bugs are there, but they are hardly noticeable in all the action and entertainment this game delivers. And although _Uprising- isn't a revolutionary new game that will set new standards in and of itself, it is certainly a step in the right direction.

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