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  • C&C3 is extremely shiny.

    My copy of C&C3 (kane edition) arrived today and I indulged in an 8 hour GDI campaign binge.

    Shiny is definitely a good word for this game, this may be the first game I've played which has hi-res videos, I almost never get new games anymore... the videos are nice.

    The main shininess is the simply omg graphical effects of the weapons! It has some eye-popping special effects. You have to see it in game to know how good it really is, no-way could a screenshot do those effects any justice.

    And although I can't yet pass judgment on whether it's more than just eye candy (having only played GDI, balance can't be assessed yet), it does seem pretty good. The GDI campaign has been enjoyable so far, I'm playing on normal difficulty and I only found one mission to be too hard/frustrating (not as in too hard to complete... but just too hard to be normal difficulty... the mission involves "power management" you'll know it once/if you've played it... yes it's a hellish resource-constrained multitasking mission) .

    Adding to the shiny factor is that performance is good. My PC is no slob (it's basically a "quality gamers rig on the cheap") so it's good that C&C3 runs flawlessly on it, the game thus can't be described as a resource hog. There has been zero slowdown and load times have been very acceptable.

    The interface is also solid enough, being a good and innovative blend of traditional C&C interface (side bar) and more normal RTS interfaces. Unit management may leave something to desire, but it's VERY nice that infantry units now shoot while moving forward which will make moves like flanking VERY powerful in MP also tanks can now be ordered to move in reverse!


    The only gripe I have is that in the campaigns the game occasionally steals your controls for a voiceover thing, but the game continues to play, meaning units die and stuff. This includes the "Congratulations" at the end of the mission silliness where controls are disabled about 5 seconds before leaving the mission, so you get to watch the units (possibly mission critical units) you carefully preserved getting butchered by Nod forces wandering onto the screen. But that's purely just a little suspension of disbelief failure (it happened a lot worse in Generals, I seem to recall, where the congratulations phase could actually fail you the mission when that mission critical unit dies like a doofus!)


    I can also see elements returning from all of the earlier Command and Conquer games. I'd describe it as a fairly equal blend of C&C1, Red Alert 2 and C&C Generals. RA2 has a surprisingly strong influence, in particular for Nod and the Alien race. GDI is of course traditional as always, but it does have some aspects of USA from Generals. There's also some nice new innovative features. I think it should do a good job of pleasing the majority of C&C fans, regardless of which previous version(s) they are familiar with.

    Something curious I noted about the folder structure is that all the game files are inside /1.0/ subfolders, this leads me to speculate that it may be planned to support multiple patch versions for ease of viewing older replays, which would be very nice.

    So far as first impressions go, I'm going to rate it 4.5 / 5. The missing bit of thumb is due to the interface (particularly unit) being slightly clunky (no RTS game can ever get full marks until is has an interface which can hold a candle to TA's...)

    I'm not sure if C&C3 is a game I'll get addicted to, but that may only because I don't have the time at the moment...

  • #2
    Quick question for ya, do you experience an audio/video sync issue with the GDI cutscenes? Like the first one at the beginning of the campaign with Michael Ironside. The audio is a sentence or so ahead of the video. Almost like a hong kong kung fu movie..ha

    I've seen this issue on the EA forums. Alot of people seem to be having it. Some with powerful systems too.

    The rest of the game runs flawlessly though, including the in game briefings (where the mini map is).
    While there might be a physics engine that applies to the jugs, I doubt that an entire engine was written specifically for the funbags. - Cyclotron - debating the pressing issue of boobies in games.

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    • #3
      Picked up my copy yesterday, and I'm about 5 missions in. Really enjoying it so far Runs very nicely on my system, even with higher graphics settings. The cut scene videos look great, and the acting is wonderfully cheesy. Just what I expected
      I make movies. Come check 'em out.

      Comment


      • #4
        Every new C&C game I think, hmm might as well check that out as they might have improved it, but can never stomach getting to the end. I'll probably do the same with this one.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: C&C3 is extremely shiny.

          Originally posted by Blake


          Adding to the shiny factor is that performance is good. My PC is no slob (it's basically a "quality gamers rig on the cheap") so it's good that C&C3 runs flawlessly on it, the game thus can't be described as a resource hog. There has been zero slowdown and load times have been very acceptable.
          What are your system specs?

          Just so I'll have some sort of frame of reference.
          To us, it is the BEAST.

          Comment


          • #6
            Just as an aside, EA says that the audio/video sync issue is indeed known and a patch is in the works.

            blah blah
            While there might be a physics engine that applies to the jugs, I doubt that an entire engine was written specifically for the funbags. - Cyclotron - debating the pressing issue of boobies in games.

            Comment


            • #7
              AMD 3000+
              1GB ram.
              GF6600 GT 128MB.
              Windows Vista.

              By the way, having played Nod now, I have to admit that Nod DOES lag. This is because Nod's units are cheaper, more plentiful (ie the Nod militants cost less and have more individual units in each "squad") and are more detailed (more curves, less blocky), I had absolutely no trouble lagging it significantly with Nod unit spam.

              Since I've played both NOd and GDI I can give a basic balance assessment:


              GDI:
              GDI has tremendous late game power, their Mammoths tank deal a tremendous amount of frontloaded damage, meaning anything which approaches a mammoth mob gets pounded into submission by missiles and railguns and it's up to the followup units, facing only the cannons, to actually do some damage until the missiles and railguns reload, at which point everything in range dies again. Mammoths are also nearly indestructible and hit air. So for GDI winning is as simple as turtling up and massing mammoths, with the support of two other raging imba late game units, the Rigged (repairs GDI units) and the OMG infinite range artillery walker you can mass? Their sonic tower is also murder on massed units.
              GDI's weakness is the early game, with slow, expensive units and abysmal base defenses, especially anti-tank. Their tech is also ungodly expensive.

              Nod:
              Nod on the other hand has wicked mobility and some highly flexible units. Their chopper hits land and air. Their scorpion tank is far better against infantry than the GDI tank (both it's cannon and squishing ability). Nod units are easily and cheaply upgraded, with the chopper and scorpion sharing an attack upgrade. Also Nod can easily mass an effective army with War Factory alone, or from the chopper pad for that matter. This means less resources spent on buildings, more on scorpion/venom mobs.
              The flip side: The Nod late game attack force is horribly ablative, Nod units drop like flies. While Nod's defenses are wickedly strong in the early game, their late game defenses are weak against massed armies, since they don't deal AoE.

              Campaigns:
              This balance is reflected in the campaigns, GDI gets increasingly easy as the missions enter the "Everyone starts off all teched up" stage, Nod gets increasing more difficult. The final GDI missions are a walk in a park and are as simple as massing 20 mammoths and crushing everything, while the final Nod ones are quite hard and require strategy and stuff because everything just dies if you try to go head-to-head.

              Multiplayer:
              The MP balance is clear, Nod has a strong early game which they must leverage into map control to gain a resource advantage, or outright destroy their opponent while vulnerable.
              GDI has a strong late game, if left alone to tech up they will be unbeatable. To win they need to secure enough of the resources to tech up to high tech toys.
              My instinct says that Nod is stronger than GDI because early game is >>> late game, but that does depend on how the maps are designed - if both players have equal god-given resources and there are no significant resources which are contested then GDI is in a very strong position, the other situation of a wide open map with spread out resources gives Nod a significant advantage. The MP balance will thus depend on map quality (a balance between god-given resources and contested resources).

              The Scrin things are somewhere in between these two extremes. They have a strong late game, but it focuses more on increasing defense than offense, likely to be more effective against Nod than GDI (GDI late game toys deal just so much damage that it doesn't matter how damn good your defenses are).

              The final faction balance thus looks something like this:

              Early game:
              Nod >> GDI
              Nod > Scrin
              Scrin > GDI

              Late game:
              GDI >> Nod
              GDI > Scrin
              Scrin > Nod

              Perception:
              GDI: Noob.
              Scrin: Cheese.
              Nod: Skill/Abuse.


              If I do play multiplayer, it'll certainly be as Nod. In fact I'm pretty sure I'd get top 10 on ladder as Nod with some time investment, because I did that with GLA in Generals when GLA was considered damn weak and it didn't even take me long. I'm good at rushing and even better at map control and I can tell that GDI players will be free wins for Nod on most maps, ditto for any Nod player who doesn't know the one true strat is scorpion massing and I'm sure that Scrin will die to mass scorpions too.

              Oh I took some screenshots...


              Mass Mammoth Tanks, part of a balanced GDI army


              Mass Scorpion Tanks, part of a balanced Nod army

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              • #8
                Mammoth tanks look woo
                To us, it is the BEAST.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I always loved my Mammoth Tanks. GDI have always been my favourite.

                  I agree that Nod are stronger than GDI at the start, but once GDI have the higher tech, they surpass Nod, however, I don't think Nod are that much more powerful than GDI at the start because Nods infantry, while plenty and cheap, are weak in comparison to GDI's early infantry.

                  Scrin I have yet to learn about.
                  be free

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I just installed last night, played for about an hour. So far I like it more than any other C&C/Red Alert games (which I never liked in the first place)
                    I can play the game on the highest settings

                    Originally posted by vee4473
                    Quick question for ya, do you experience an audio/video sync issue with the GDI cutscenes? Like the first one at the beginning of the campaign with Michael Ironside. The audio is a sentence or so ahead of the video. Almost like a hong kong kung fu movie..ha
                    Haven't seen this...
                    This space is empty... or is it?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Adagio
                      I just installed last night, played for about an hour. So far I like it more than any other C&C/Red Alert games (which I never liked in the first place)
                      I can play the game on the highest settings



                      Haven't seen this...
                      I like the game alot too. Strangely enough, I can play it with most settings on high flawlessly. The game itself runs great.

                      Just some weirdo sync issue with only the between mission briefings. Kinda disappointing just because i'm sure EA paid the actors a bunch to ham it up.

                      Would like to see it.

                      But, other than that, no problems.
                      Last edited by vee4473; April 1, 2007, 02:26.
                      While there might be a physics engine that applies to the jugs, I doubt that an entire engine was written specifically for the funbags. - Cyclotron - debating the pressing issue of boobies in games.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I'm hearing that the GDI players in MP are massing predators rather then mammoths.

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                        • #13
                          You should join clan IDF. Our record is 6-3 and we have many good players, like myself.

                          Visit our forums at www.clanidf.com

                          I will be posting my very successful NOD rush strategy tomorrow. You can see it if you join.

                          Oh yea and we will be getting a new forum skin tomorrow, so my forum won't look like garbage anymore.
                          "Conservatives are not necessarily stupid, but most stupid people are conservatives." John Stuart Mill

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            EA will need to improve the online aspect of C&C3 (to put it politely, it's a bug ridden pile of crap atm) before I would play online. I have I suppose been spoiled by battle.net, I'm also not sure if C&C3 even runs well with high ping. I have 300ms ping which WC3 deals with gracefully and Generals worked well too, but what I've experienced of C&C3 hasn't been promising - but maybe a few patches in and some network settings tweaking and it'll be usable.

                            However I'm not sure if C&C3 will be that good an MP game... the fact that there's no infantry transports means that it's really all about tanks and the lack of infantry transports wont be remedied by patches. Some of the most fun I had in Generals was with the Technicals and I know those USA players had fun with the flashbang chopper rushes against GLA workers.
                            Scorpion massing vs Paladin massing was in comparison rather boring, but that's basically what it appears C&C3 is, mass tanks with a minimum of light vehicle anti-infantry/air or lose (either outright to rush, or lose control of the map).

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                            • #15
                              Battle.net spoils everyone. And the sad fact is it's been that way for years and years and still sucky interfaces and poor netcode proliferate in other big games. It's quite irritating when you think about it.

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