It’s About Time for a Hostile Takeover… Review

War Inc. Info

genre

  • N/A

players

  • 1 - 6

Publisher

  • Interactive Magic

Developer

  • N/A

Release Date

  • 12/31/1969
  • Out Now

Platform

  • PC

rating

It’s About Time for a Hostile Takeover…

The current trend in the computer game industry seems to be that when a successful

game is released, hordes of cheap copies are produced by competitors with little

more than a extra gimmick to recommend their product. Exactly the same as in

the TV and Movie industries. Rather than make a cheap copy of Command

and Conquer
with a stupid gimmick, the designers at Interactive Magic decided

to take the high road. They looked at the real-time strategy games out there

and decided to address some of the core problems of the genre.

War Inc. puts the player

in charge of a mercenary corporation. You can buy and sell stock in competing

companies, if you are a business fan. Or you can have the computer auto-manage

that if your attitude runs more along the lines of ‘business shmizness’. Your

company is offered contracts by corporations and nations to deal with any little

skirmishes or wars that spring up from time to time. Beyond that, you must ensure

the integrity of the bottom line, and research new technology to aid your troops

in the field.

An annoying trait of most real-time strategy games has been that

there has been little or no potential to increase your

technology. Aside from building the ‘advanced factory’ or

the equivalent, the units you use in play have always been limited to

the dozen or so created by the designers. War Inc. lets the

player hire scientists and assign them to work in eight different

areas of research. Once you have researched technologies, you

can create entirely new units based on your technologies.

Rather than being limited to a few pre-designed unit types, this

design gives the player the flexibility to create a nearly

unlimited variety of units. Haven’t you ever wished you could

somehow increase the range or armor on an artillery unit? This

flexibility gives the player great power to let his or her

imagination run wild, with in the confines of the achieved

technology, that is.

The gameplay in War Inc.

is divided into three segments. First there is the office. From here you make

all research and finance decisions, as well as choosing mission contracts to

play. Next, there is the strategic map. In a mission, you use the strategic

map to move your battle groups and examine the entire area. Finally, there is

the tactical map. It is this part of War Inc. that will be most familiar to

veterans of this genre. Here is where you observe combat, move your troops,

build facilities, and construct units. An interesting facet of war Inc. is that

each mission has four tactical maps. There is one for your headquarters, and

one each for the three mission objectives. You are able to move units around

on the strategic map between the different tactical maps. This allows you to

spend some time at the headquarters to amass an army, send it out to fight,

bring it back to HQ and reinforce it.

I generally liked War Inc. The novelty of creating totally new

units gave me a great degree of freedom and the ability to

experiment. The business aspect of the game meant that gains (or

losses) from one mission are carried over to the next, And the

division of each mission into several objectives help make the

game seem more realistic. I found War Inc. to be quite

fun to play, and I enjoyed the sleek interface, but I was a

little annoyed that garbage pixels sometimes cluttered the

screen. All in all, War Inc. is a much-needed burst of fresh

air in the stagnating genre of real-time strategy games.

REVOLUTION REPORT CARD

4
Rating
+ Real-time Strategy With a Corporate Aspect
+ Very Full-Featured Reasearch
+ Lets You Design New Units
- Garbage Pixels Mar the High-Tech Look
- Lacks a Scenario Editor
- Limited Selection of Troop Movement Orders