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Platform

PC

 

Genre

Real-Time Strategy

 

Publisher

Electronic Arts

 

Developer

EA Redwood Shores

 

ESRB

T (Teen)

 

Released

March 24, 2008

 

 

- Epic Units are cool

- Many new skirmish maps and sub factions that change-up the action

- A lot of material aimed squarely at fans

 

 

- If you’re tired of tank rushes, Kane’s Wrath will likely raise your own

- Global Conquest mode isn’t quite as filled-out as it could be

 

 

Review: Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars (PC)

Review: Command & Conquer: The First Decade (PC)

Review: Universe at War: Earth Assault (PC)

 

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Command & Conquer 3: Kane's Wrath

Score: 8.0 / 10

 

As far as expansion packs go, Kane’s Wrath, an addition to last year’s Command & Conquer 3, fans will find a lot to appreciate including an assortment of new skirmish maps, sub factions, and a fill-in-the-blanks campaign featuring Nod, Kane, and a cleavage-revealing Natasha Henstridge.

 

kane's wrath          kane's wrath

 

The single-player campaign jumps around a lot in the C&C Tiberium timeline.  From around Tiberium Sun: Firestorm – where Kane sports a bizarre football helmet – through the events of C&C 3: Tiberium Wars and slightly beyond, fans get a neat overview of the Nod perspective, but if you haven’t been paying attention or it’s been a while since you played Tiberium Wars you’ll be wondering 

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what the hell is actually going on.  Story has always been secondary though so it’s not that important.

 

While C&C has never really been about subtle tactics – build up some ground units, stomp into the enemy base then follow it up with a air assault – the action has always been frenetic and for me that’s been enough to keep my

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interest.  Kane’s Wrath maintains that frenzied pace and also mixes up some of the objectives.  For example, one of the biggest fights in Tiberium Wars is the setting for one mission and you’re in command of a saboteur and a commando in the middle of it.  But these kinds of missions are the exception to the rule; most of the time you’ll be tasked with wiping out the opposition or wiping out the opposition and capturing a building.  And that’s just what I want.

 

The limitation of the single-player mode is that the whole thing is told from the Nod perspective, so it’s not until you jump online or play a skirmish game with variable goals that you can experience the new Epic Units of GDI and the Scrin.  All three of the Epic Units can be upgraded by “equipping” them with infantry units but all three play differently enough that it’s not a case of the developers just slapping a different coating on the same unit.  For example, the MARV, GDI’s Epic Unit, is not only a massive killing machine it can also instantly harvest any tiberium it runs over.  (All three should feel slightly familiar if you’ve played Universe at War’s Hierarchy faction.)  Creating defenses to ward off these units is the definition of frantic!

 

kane's wrath         kane's wrath

 

The other addition that Kane’s Wrath brings is Global Conquest mode, which is essentially a Command & Conquer version of Risk, where you go through from tactical motions on a world map.  It doesn’t feel quite as fleshed out as it could have been, but at least it doesn’t feel tacked on.

 

Slightly tweaked versions of the regular factions, the sub factions are included to increase the number of sides from 3 to 9 but when you get into the details each sub faction can be substantially different than the others. (ie. One Nod sub faction features no air support or stealth abilities.)  Really, it comes down to what your play style is when deciding what sub faction to choose, then learning and exploiting the weaknesses of the other sub factions because there doesn’t seem to a be continuum of weak to strong – it’s all in how you utilize your resources and work up the tech tree.

 

A lot of reviews of Kane’s Wrath seem to have knocked the overall expansion pack down a few notches because the 13-mission, single-player game is told solely from the Nod perspective.  But with a roster of fan-pleasing material and future access to the C&C: Red Alert 3 beta, the $30US price tag is justifiable and worth it.

 

- Omni

(April 15, 2008)

 

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