The oft-used scenario of Armageddon coming in the form of a gigantic comet or asteroid is the story behind Submarine Titans. The game adds some new elements to the idea that make a lot of sense such as the fact that scientists had advance knowledge about the comet's trajectory nine years prior to impact, thus allowing many people to seek refuge beneath the ocean.
As the story goes, two major powers on Earth collided in brutal opposition before the comet hit, causing the more important crisis at hand to go unresolved. After impact, most of the survivors lived in underwater cities protected from the comet. Due to excessive heat on the Earth's surface, the polar icecaps melted and the sea level rose 15 meters.
Both factions remained intact with their own cities underwater; to complicate matters, though, an alien craft crashed with the comet because it was trying to gain vital minerals required for refueling. With this background, the designers cleverly set up three opposing factions in an underwater world thriving with life.
To start the game, you choose to control one of the three factions: The Black Octopi (passive ecological group with improved technology), The White Sharks (aggressive take-over-the-world types with less in the technology department) and the Silicons (the alien group of silicon-based life forms wanting off the planet).
Each group has different advantages and disadvantages with separate technology to match. In a way, this is much like Earth 2150 combined with Command & Conquer. It uses the same idea of three factions as the former while the graphics more closely resemble the latter. Also, as in Earth 2150, you can only construct vehicles since no troops can effectively swim in the water against the large enemy subs.
The game requires less hardware to run than Earth 2150 because it doesn't use a 3D acceleration. This doesn't negate the fact that Submarine Titans has excellent graphics. The subs from all of the different groups look very unique and the aliens utilize a totally different weapon system. Each group has a completely biased agenda and one of them will surely appeal to most any gamer.
It's difficult not to repeat ideas within the real time strategy format. This game is no exception to that rule and uses many of the exact same ideas that make other games of the genre so popular. So, what makes this RTS game stand out from the rest?
Submarine Titans gives you great graphics, smooth gameplay, a multitude of buildings and units to construct, diplomatic features that allow you to ally yourself with opposing factions, new strategic methods and a detailed storyline that leads up to the events at hand. Many futuristic doomsday-scenario RTS games take place in situations where other forms of life are completely wiped out whereas the undersea world in this game is teeming with life.
You'll see fish, stingrays, octopi, plant life and other undersea creatures throughout the game. 1602 A.D. is another RTS game that did an excellent job of showing other forms of life wandering about the environment and this aspect of both games only serves to enhance the already great visual experience.
Not only does the game play smoothly, you can also rotate the screen or zoom in and out to whatever position you deem fit. While Earth 2150 allows you to tilt the screen, zoom in, zoom out and rotate, Submarine Titans doesn't have as much of a malleable interface but, conversely, it doesn't need it.
Unit construction works in the same fashion as the aforementioned RTS games I've used for comparison. You must first construct a base to build ships, then some Corium collectors, a Corium Silo and a Collector Ship. While the technology is different with each of the three factions, they function in the exact same manner.
With each successive building and research you undergo, you are able to build more powerful units and defense systems (this, as RTS veterans know, is a well-known format). The major difference in functionality of the three groups is that the Silicons' firepower consists of particle beams right from the beginning. The human factions are equipped with missiles as the game starts and only much later on they are able to use particle beam technology.
Submarine Titans has a few new strategic possibilities in the form of cliffs and caves. Many RTS games work on one level with the possibility of air ships attacking above ground. This game operates with five different levels undersea. Any unit can travel the five levels and, when fired on, maneuver up and down to evade enemy attacks. With these additional levels, units have the ability to hide under cliffs and inside small caves, giving them the ability to hide in the area near the enemy without being detected!
The single most interesting aspect of the game is that all three groups have completely different objectives. Earth 2150 has one objective (escape the Earth), while Command & Conquer is simply about destroying the opponents. In Submarine Titans, the White Sharks are working for world domination, the Black Octopi want to create a thriving paradise to repair the damage of the comet and Silicons simply need a way to escape the planet.
Submarine Titans is a well-rounded, involved game for experienced RTS players but is very difficult and not recommended for the weak of spirit. Although the game often seems like an underwater version of Command & Conquer, it has innovative features and offers a world that is slightly more complex.
Give it try -- it's not just another RTS clone!
Graphics: Crystal clear and shiny graphics make for a very pleasing atmosphere. Each group looks very different from the other (that's actually the main difference). The ocean creatures are a great effect and really add to the liveliness of the game. Some more full motion video would have been nice but that's getting a little picky.
Sound: The musical soundtrack drastically changes from slow to fast techno music when the enemy approaches and the sound of the plasma guns is very powerful. The sound effects pertaining to the landscape is, unfortunately, very similar to most other RTS games (e.g., voices saying "construction complete" and similar comments).
Enjoyment: The difficulty of the game might hinder the enjoyment value a bit but the challenge makes it more appealing to the experienced player. Since each individual faction has a different storyline and purpose, gameplay varies based on which you choose.
Replay Value: When you've actually beaten the campaign and battle modes, you are treated to a great scenario editor that allows you create your own levels. It includes complete scripting language that lets you to create player assistants and modify enemy AI. The multiplayer game accommodates an Internet or LAN game against up to 24 human players as well as AI opponents and spectators.
People who downloaded Submarine TITANS have also downloaded:
StarCraft, Stronghold: Crusader, Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds, Sudden Strike, Sudden Strike 2, Starship Troopers: Terran Ascendancy, Total Annihilation, Three Kingdoms: Fate of the Dragon
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