|System: X360, PC||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: EA Redwood||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: EA||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: March 25, 2008||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-8 (online)||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
the Tiberian Sun
by Travis Fahs
After the more experimental Command & Conquer Generals, EA brought their flagship real-time strategy series back to its roots with Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars, featuring classic C&C gameplay, campy live-action cutscenes, and everyone's favorite cult leader, Kane. It was a smashing success, proving that a shiny new coat of paint can be enough to sell an otherwise nostalgic title without a lot of new ideas. Now, in the grand C&C tradition, it's time to revisit last year's game with a new expansion pack.
If there was any flaw with Tiberium Wars, it was a fundamental lack of anything exciting and new. A new race, the alien Scrin, helped to mix things up a bit, but by and large it was the same game we've been playing for more than a decade. This can be either a problem or an opportunity for an expansion pack, and Kane's Wrath toes the line, offering more of the same and something a little different.
The backbone of the package is still the single-player campaign, complete with a new storyline spanning decades that really helps to flesh out the C&C timeline. There are the usual cheesy movie sequences and overacting, though the story itself is a little disjointed thanks to the epic span of the timeline. You'll play through the usual mission types, with escorts, infiltrations, but mostly a lot of turtling up and steamrolling your opponents. It's as fun as it ever was, but it all feels very familiar. C&C3 felt like a homecoming, but the Kane's Wrath campaign reminds us why we left home to begin with.
There isn't much of it either. Where Tiberium Wars offered three campaigns, totaling 35 missions, this expansion offers only 13, and only follows the Brotherhood of Nod. Sorry, GDI fans, you'll have to sit the single-player mode out this time. It seems especially egregious that EA didn't include the Scrin, since their brief four-mission left us hungry for more.
Luckily, Kane's Wrath offers more than just the paltry single-player mode. This time, you'll have the option to play as three different variants of each side, making for a total of nine choices. Each of the six new factions features new units and abilities that give them unique advantages and disadvantages. These factions come into play as opponents during the single-player mode, but they really add something new for devoted multiplayer fans to explore.