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Tiberium Alliances review

Command & Conquer Tiberium Alliances


Genre: MMORTS (F2P | Browser Based)

Publisher: Electronic Arts

The Command and Conquer series has long been at the top of the ladder when it comes to the RTS genre, although more recent entries have split fans. This isn’t any truer than with the latest free-to-play entries and especially Tiberium Alliances, which strips the franchise down to its very base elements for an MMORTS entry which does a lot for the genre, but fails to live up to the games that once defined an iconic era of gaming. Franchise obsessives might want to avert their eyes.

C&C: Tiberium Alliances gameplay video [HD]

C&C Tiberium Alliances review - positives

Almost Real Time – I’ve made no secret of my disdain for the MMORTS genre and the way in which many developers rely on simply changing in-game graphics and releasing the same game over and over again. With Command and Conquer: Tiberium Alliances that isn’t an issue at all. The developers have ditched much of what makes the genre annoying – the waiting for everything to complete, the “report” style of combat – and have at least tried to shake things up. They’re not always successful, but at least they’ve tried.

Tiberium Alliances Screenshot 1

Set Your Defences – While I can’t say the combat system is worth much, it is nice how much detail has gone into both your attack units and the defensive objects you can put into place. There are things you’ll recognise from the wider franchise, of course, but being able to build your own defence force AND attack force separately is something I’d like to see more often.

Production Values – Tiberium Alliances is part of the Command and Conquer series, and although fans of the franchise are unlikely to enjoy what EA have done to their beloved games, it’s hard to deny that a lot of effort seems to have been put in to at least making it a higher quality than other MMORTS games and they’ve certainly succeeded on that front.

C&C Tiberium Alliances - What's not so good

Artificial Blocks – Whilst the wait-per-build is gone in Tiberium Alliances, there are still artificial blocks in place to prevent you from playing it all in one go. This is generally in the form of “You must wait 40 minutes to upgrade” messages, although there’s usually other things to do in the meantime. It doesn’t really make sense to me as to why, after ditching the wait time per queue item, EA suddenly decided it’d be a good idea to inflict restrictions on the player. Still, you’ll still play more constantly than you would in any other MMORTS, so it’s difficult to be too harsh.

Tiberium Alliances Screenshot 2

Invasion Force – Command and Conquer is known for its deep strategic gameplay. Tiberium Alliances ditches that for something else entirely. You put together your attack force, which you can upgrade and pad out however you want, and then send them out to wherever you want to attack. Combat takes place on a long map filled with enemy units and buildings and you must choose which part of the map your units will travel. They can only go in a straight line and certain things slow them down. It’s not as utterly frustrating and devoid of user interaction as the average MMORTS combat system, but it’s pretty lifeless. Fans of the series need not apply.

The World at War – The graphics in this game are pretty good. It fills the whole screen and menus are easily accessible and don’t require you to jump from page to page. I thought the loading times could have been better, but that generally only applied when opening something you’d not already used. It only could have been better if they’d had better animation and a nicer battle system. For what it is though, it is difficult to complain.

Tiberium Alliances Screenshot 3

C&C Tiberium Alliances - Negatives

Upgrade Everything to Level 5 – The quests in this game are ridiculously hand-holding and incredibly repetitive. One quest will ask you to upgrade everything a level, then the next quest will ask you to upgrade everything again. New buildings will be placed but a quest can’t be completed until it has been upgraded multiple times (begging the question as to why it wasn’t just a few levels more powerful to begin with). As the game continues, expect to have to fight endless battles and upgrade everything more often than you’d like for a minor return in resources.

Tiberium Alliances Screenshot 4

C&C Tiberium Alliances: The Verdict

Tiberium Alliances is an interesting game, an MMORTS that shakes off many of the constraints of the genre and that can actually be played for more than a few minutes without needing to wait for things to finish. The problem is its IP. The Command and Conquer series is so well known as a very specific sort of game that you begin to question why certain things could have been better or more like the traditional franchise. It’s not bad by any means, and fans of the MMORTS genre would be mad not to check it out, but EA have made some odd decisions on this one and people of a certain age will almost certainly find something to grumble about.

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