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Supreme Ruler 2020: Global Crisis

Score: 50%
ESRB: Everyone 10+
Publisher: Paradox Interactive
Developer: Battlegoat Studios
Media: Download/1
Players: 1, 2 (LAN Multiplayer)
Genre: Strategy/ Real-Time Strategy/ Simulation

Graphics & Sound:

Graphically speaking, Supreme Ruler 2020: Global Crisis doesn't really add anything of note to Supreme Ruler 2020, which isn't going to win any awards for detail. What it lacks in detail, however, it makes up for in scope. You have the entire globe at your disposal; if you zoom out, you will see a map view with the entire world awaiting your perusal. Zoom all the way in and you can look at the roads and infrastructure of a particular country. Even at this level, however, it is very much a map, with cities indicated by city-shaped tokens.

The music is sparse; there's mainly a single, military (well, Hollywood military) -sounding main theme. In addition to auditory cues when you have an email, the sounds of weapons firing and vehicles moving gives you something to hear while playing the game. However, the problem that Supreme Ruler 2020: Global Crisis has with audio is that, since you're dealing with a huge map, it's hard to determine where the sounds are coming from. In fact, during one game, I heard shooting and simply gave up before I ever found out where it was coming from.


Gameplay:

Supreme Ruler 2020 is a very, um, in-depth game. Actually, in-depth is a bit of an understatement; the complexity of Supreme Ruler 2020 makes games like Civilization seem more like Pong. You have different advisors for different aspects of ruling your country, but instead of having one advisor for military actions and another for negotiation with other countries, you have an advisor in charge of production, whether it be production of fuel, crops or vehicles - which can be military or not. And, for each advisor you have, there are several different menus of various things to adjust. If you are looking for a game that lets you control everything personally, this is that game.

Personally, I like to be able to vary the level of micromanagement that I use when playing a strategy game. Supreme Ruler 2020 is more geared for the player controlling everything directly. It is possible to indicate to your advisors your general priority of different possible courses of action and you can also "opt out" of certain types of email communication, deferring to your advisors on the matter, but it still seems that the amount of interaction is... unbearable. If it were real life, I would fire all of the advisors and hire new ones who would take care of matters without asking me about every little thing.

Mind you, the above is describing Supreme Ruler 2020... before the expansion. Supreme Ruler 2020: Global Crisis doesn't make any move to simplify the game. At all.

In fact, Supreme Ruler 2020: Global Crisis ups the ante a bit, by providing more, well, everything. Something that, in my mind, the game already had a lot of. You get:

  • 20 new scenarios which more than doubles the number of scenarios that originally shipped with the game
  • Additional new multiplayer scenarios
  • New campaign/sandbox map along a new storyline leading players towards World War III
  • New scenario features including scripted and random events
  • Improved unit control and grouping
  • Expanded tech tree
  • New units and unit meshes
  • Additional game lobby options
  • Graphic improvements
  • A.I. enhancements
  • More tutorials and in-game tips
  • User interface improvements

Difficulty:

The above features may be welcomed improvements for the installed player-base for Supreme Ruler 2020, but for the uninitiated, the game can be overwhelming, both before and after the Global Crisis expansion. The one feature that looked like it could be useful for newcomers were the additional tutorials, but I went through all of the tutorials and, while it did help me from being completely and utterly lost, it didn't seem to get me any closer to being able to win a scenario.

Game Mechanics:

Supreme Ruler 2020: Global Crisis is truly as complex and micromanagement-focused as I would ever hope to see a game. It is definitely not a game for everyone. That having been said, the Global Crisis expansion does give gamers more of what they got in Supreme Ruler 2020, so if you are one of those armchair-dictators and you're looking for a way to log more hours in a country simulator, look no further; Global Crisis may be just what you're looking for.

-Geck0, GameVortex Communications
AKA Robert Perkins

Minimum System Requirements:



Windows(r) 98/Me/2000/XP/Vista, Pentium III 800+, 512MB RAM, 3D Graphics Card with 16MB+ Video RAM, DirectX 8.1 or Higher, DirectX Compatible Sound Card, CD-ROM Drive
 

Test System:



Sony VAIO VGC-R820G:
Intel Pentium 4E, 3.2 GHz (Intel Grantsdale i915), 1 GB RAM, AMI BIOS, Realtek HD Audio, Radeon X300 Series (128 MB), 200 GB 7200 RPM, Serial-ATA/150 Maxtor HD, DVD-ROM, Pioneer DVD-RW DVR-108, Sony SDM-HS73 Monitor, Floppy disk drive, Cable Modem, Razer Viper Mouse.

Sony PlayStation Portable X-Men Origins: Wolverine Windows Larva Mortus

 
Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated