is the latest RTS in a long running series of games from Polish developer Reality Pump. Their games have always been a bit ambitious and different when compared to other RTS titles, and this one is no exception. Featuring four extremely different races (and not just in appearance), Earth 2160
has one of the most complicated tech trees and unit construction features out there. Needless to say, it is going to appeal largely to hard core gamers.
Despite this wild ambition, Earth 2160 starts off poorly. The Single Player Campaign is one of the worst in any RTS Iíve ever seen. All of the levels are much longer than they need to be (even the short ones), and you get little direction on how to actually play the game. The story also suffers along the way, as it is mangled by bad writing and horrible plot exposition.
The developers have almost made up for this in Multiplayer. This is where the core of the game rears its head. Depending on what type of gamer you are will determine whether you think itís an ugly one or not. Earth 2160 handles unit construction much differently than other games. Aside from the one "alien" race, each side has a set of chasses that can have various modules added to them. There are literally hundreds of combinations that you can come up with to handle almost any situation. This is the part that will weed the casual from the hard core; the joy of the game comes more from adapting to and outsmarting your opponent, but in order to do this, you have to have a strong understanding of a very complex architecture.
On the upside, this makes for a very "organic" path up the tech tree. Your research decisions will be different almost every time you play the game, and as soon as you discover what the enemy is using, you will invariably have to tweak your research plans. Unfortunately, identifying what your opponent is doing is very difficult, as there is little room for espionage and the only way to visually identify what weapons he is using is through the graphical effect of shooting them.