Breach 3 was Omnitrend's attempt to hoist the popular turn-based Breach squad combat series onto the real-time strategy bandwagon, with disastrous results. Players again lead a squad of marines, fighting 16 types of enemies and infiltrating multi-level space fortresses. The first sign things are amiss is that the available portraits for your space hero all look like cheap photos of Omnitrend office employees. The formerly cool space marines now wear garish superhero outfits and keep bumping into each other, due to an awkward interface. And sound effects, so memorable in the first Breach, are now quite abysmal. On the bright side, there's a scenario and campaign editor and you can arm your troops with 34 pieces of equipment. The game can also be used to resolve ship-to-ship troop battles from Rules of Engagement. Sadly, the developer never again explored the intriguing concept of interlocking games.
Breach 3 is a squad-level tactical combat game in a futuristic sci-fi setting. Aliens and robots are some of the enemies you face in battles witnessed from a top-down perspective (contrasted with X-Com's isometric viewpoint). Your squad leader gains experience from each completed mission - assuming he doesn't die, ending your campaign prematurely. Combat is real-time, but pauses automatically when you need to make important decisions.
An added feature of Breach 3 is that the program can link up with Impressions' game Rules of Engagement 2; character attributes and experience can be transferred between the two games.
Breachis an early but detailed simulation of tactical level combat. Breach 2, a newer revision, adds more details and fits as a tactical subset into Rules of Engagement through Omnitrend's innovative "Interlocking Game System." Easy to learn and fun to play, it was definitely ahead of its time. A design-your-own scenario option greatly extended the replay value. 4 years later and after Omnitrend's demise, Impressions picked up the engine and released Breach 3, an excellent update with campaign builder, scenario designer, and VGA graphics. It also integrates into Rules of Engagement 2, release concurrently. Must haves for all armchair commanders who crave complexity and tactical realism.
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