Carrier Command Gaea Mission Review - www.impulsegamer.com -
Carrier Command Gaea Mission
Reviewed by
Cameron Grimes
on
Carrier Command Gaea Mission PC Review. Carrier Command: Gaea Mission suffers from a classic case of ĎDuke Nukem syndromeí.
Rating:
2.25

Gameplay 4.0
Graphics 6.5
Sound 4.0
Value 6.0
Review Date: September 2012
Developer:
Bohemia Interactive
Reviewer:
Cameron Grimes

4.5


Carrier Command
AVAILABLE ON PC (Reviewed), PS3 & XBOX 360

Carrier Command: Gaea Mission is the long awaited and highly anticipated re-imagining of the 1988 groundbreaking PC classic Carrier Command. Instead of being a straight strategy game like its predecessor, this next-generation remake combines the real-time elements that made the original great with first-person shooter segments in an attempt to bridge the gap between the genres? Does it live up to the hype? Sadly, no it doesnít. While Carrier Command: Gaea Missionís ideas are brilliant, they are poorly implemented, and may leave fans of the original game severely disappointed. 

Gameplay 

As Carrier Command: Gaea Mission is a hybrid of a first-person shooter and real-time strategy, itís difficult to comment on the gameplay as a whole. You play as Myrik, a lieutenant of the United Earth Coalition, who leads the fight against the Asian Pacific Alliance to gain control of the planetoid, Taurus, after an apocalyptic war destroyed the Earth and its resources. 

The gameís campaign begins with the first-person level, which may come as a surprise to fans of the original game that were expecting a game solely focused on strategy. Iím just surprised that it was included at all because it is just plain awful. For starters, your character canít jump or sprint, making your efforts to traverse the environment feel sluggish. The cookie-cutter enemies you face go down with one hit, and you only have one gun at your disposal. The radar indicator showing where your enemies are doesnít work half the time, so youíll be constantly hearing bullets and getting hit, but with a fast generating shield and your extremely overpowered rifle thereís no need to worry.  This section of the game has a complete lack of tension and is a terribly poor attempt at setting up the story. 

The strategy section of Carrier Command is where the gameplay shines the most but it too has some major flaws. Like most real-time strategy games, players are given a birdís eye view perspective of the map, showing their units, statistics and the location of resources. What Carrier Command does differently is allowing you to manually take control of your vehicles and switch you to a third-person view of the environment that you are trying to take control of. Itís a really cool idea; I myself have often wondered when a game company would ever have an attempt at making a game like this.  

The main purpose for taking over one of the 30+ islands in the campaign is to improve the quality and quantity of vehicles at your disposal for your next outing. This proves difficult however when the execution of the gameplay is quite disappointing. The vehicle that you control manually works fine, however AI controlled vehicles that follow you act like someone from the 17th century is playing a video game for the first time. Theyíre constantly get stuck in the environment, forcing you to manually take control of them and leave your vehicle prone to enemy fire.

When you finally get your vehicles into a formation you are happy with, I wish you all the best with getting them to do what you want. The gameís broken control system seems to only work when it wants to, your AI teammates feel more like moral support than the brute force you expect, so youíll constantly be fighting waves of enemies by yourself. For the majority of the campaign however, the enemies are just pushovers, making Carrier Command a fairly easy game, but an extremely frustrating one due to its unpolished gameplay. 

Graphics

Carrier Command is a mixed bag when it comes to presentation. The game runs on a brand new engine developed by Bohemia Interactive, and it sports some great viewing distances in the first-person shooter segment of the game. Environmental detail is impressive for the most parts, with the decent variety of locations quite cool to look at and explore.  

Character designs, on the other hand, are quite poor. The walking cycles are stiff, mouths donít synchronise with the voice acting and thereís a limited variety in the character design. Some of the character animations are so bad itís hilarious; one of the female characters canít decide whether to stand like a man or execute an awkward pose that looks like sheís trying to hit on you.  The game seems to lag a bit as well; I regularly noticed that my character would walk faster and then slower at random, and that the frame rate dipped a little in darker environments. Overall itís quite a dated engine, which is rather disappointing for a game with such a long development history.

Audio

You can almost smell the cheesiness when any of the characters speak in this game; the voice acting is so bad itís bad. Your character, Myrik, has a fairly standard British accent, but I doubt whether a British person provided the voice. Heís meant to sound like a badass clearly, but the flat delivery of his lines and terrible dialogue doesnít help the situation. The other characterís voices arenít any better. For a game set in a post-apocalyptic war scenario, they seem pretty chipper about the whole situation; it appears they believe theyíre in a training simulator the whole time.  

Thereís just an overall lack of excitement in what youíre meant to be doing in Carrier Command; thereís little to no ambient sounds while playing through the strategy mode, and the orchestral score during the first-person section is decent but makes it feel like your run-of-the-mill shoot Ďem up like Call of Duty. Thereís nothing truly special about the audio production in this game. 

Final Thoughts: 

Carrier Command: Gaea Mission suffers from a classic case of ĎDuke Nukem syndromeí. This game had a rather extensive development period (news of a remake has been buzzing around for about a decade) and just too much hype for anyone to expect that it would live up to all of their dreams. It sports quite a lengthy campaign so you wonít be finishing it in a day, but with the poor gameplay, bugs and issues youíll face along the way, you may not even end up finishing it.






 
 



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