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War Commander Review
Sep 20,2011 03:09 by Sara Lau3
War Commander is a Facebook Strategy game that resembles Army Attack, and Command & Conquer in style and in content. After the registration and login, the game loads less than a minute, with subsequent entry even faster. Yet the frequent requirement of restart is irritating, since the game would automatically time out if one is inactive for more than 15-20 minutes, which is extremely annoying when one is waiting on a long build.
Both the graphic and sound in War Commander are excellent for a game of this type. Buildings are rendered in exquisite detail and the backdrop is a feast to eyes. As to the corpses and bloodstains inevitably littering the screen, some may regard them a little off-putting but a lot more think the other way around, taking them as trophy of victory. Sound effects are reasonably good and foreboding music beats in concord with the fighting scene.
No character creation is required in War Commander. The game begins with players taking back their base. Mixed with build and combat, basic gameplay is by no means foreign to SLG fans, who may quickly notice a strong similarity to Command & Conquer. As with many other web games, it revolves grinding level-ups for facilities, troops and vehicle, higher level granting greater bonus. And a great variety of possible formations calls for strategy.
The game has three resources: metal, oil and electricity. Metal and Oil are required for all units and buildings, and electricity is the power for various buildings. It seems these resources can also be found in Global Warfare, or infinite Realms.
To be successful, players need to balance resource production and base expansion; otherwise, they may find themselves stranded in the plight that insufficient resources are dragging down the growth rate. Besides, wise distribution of the resource is equally important that players need to be aware of the different amount of resource cost by varied buildings and troops.
The fate all players should try to avoid!
There are overall 8 troop types for players to build in the barrack through researches conducted in the Academy. In addition, players also have access to vehicles (built in the War Room and researched in the Tech Centre) and aircraft (build at the airfield and researched at the tech centre as well). Yet the level-up reveals one shortcoming in it: non-paying players take way too long to build up a competitive army, for they can only conduct one research in Academy, one research in the Tech Centre and one build at a time (if only you have the resources). Don’t have the resources? One has two choices: wait for the oil rig and metal refinery to make enough (yawn!) or go to attack the NPCs (you won’t get much) and neighbours (which will stop your beginner’s protection). While to fight is the favoured choice by most players, it nevertheless leaves newbies vulnerable to predation from stronger players.
Approach to attacking a base is of great variety and the basic principle is to recon first before dispatching appropriate troops. One hint: the automated turrets turn out to be very effective in fight. And much to the disappointment of players, this game doesn’t support much teamwork, which all the more decreases the winning odds for newbies and non-paying players.
Facebook credits being in-game currency, War Commander employs the micro-transaction model to make money. Players can purchase resources and a wide range of bonuses, such as greater storage capacity, increased base area, more powerful troopers and the option to auto-complete any build or research, etc., all providing great advantages for premium members. Improvement needs to be made in the pay-to-win mechanic; and a simple modification like allowing for more than one build at a time will do.
Not much online support for War Commander is available at this point that players generally help each other through interactive chat.
Great graphics and satisfactory sound effects win favourable points; a wide range of troops, vehicle and aircrafts adds more weight to the play of strategy; and it is easy to learn, allowing players to get into combat from the very beginning.
One build at a time drags down the growth rate and wears away interests; it is too heavily slanted to favour paying payers; and the lack of alliance or teamwork deprives players of the cooperative pleasure in larger scale of war.
War Commander can be said to be a simplified Command &Conquer, a good game that could be great with a few tweaks, especially in the modification of its pay-to-win mechanic.
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