Supreme Commander: Forged Alliance Review

In just nine months, Gas Powered Games released the first standalone expansion pack for their RTS game Supreme Commander. Wait, just nine months? Doesn’t that sound a bit short to develop a full-blown expansion? Thankfully, GPG knew what they were doing and shoved in plenty of new content that’ll satisfy all SupCom fans.

With over a hundred new units, 12 new multiplayer maps and a new single-player campaign, Forged Alliance certainly delivers in gameplay, and is what an expansion pack should be. Unfortunately, traits from its parent game carry over, namely the associated difficulty.

Story-wise, a new faction — the alien Seraphim — turned on their kickass mode and devastated plenty of planets, including Earth. To combat them, the three factions from SupCom band together and the events in Forged Alliance are what plays out.

The single-player campaign contains six new missions. Like the amount of development time, six missions may sound short, but they’re beefy. SupCom is all about epic and massive battles and Forged Alliance makes sure you didn’t forget about that. Be careful new players, because the expansion introduces several armfuls of the new units early on. This could be a bit confusing but the tweaked user interface helps out a bit.

When playing SupCom I, along with many others, felt the user interface was a bit bulky and cumbersome to navigate. In Forged Alliance things have been rearranged and correctly sized in order to properly accommodate the player. In general, all the menus and alerts just looks better and organized while in-game.

Visually and performance-wise, I was really surprised with Forged Alliance. SupCom chugged a bit on my machine and didn’t really look too astounding (as expected) but in Forged Alliance, performance was noticeably better and visuals were tighter and sharper. While I couldn’t turn everything up due to hardware demands, the game ran pretty smooth and overall looked better.

Unfortunately, something that has carried over from SupCom to Forged Alliance is the escalating difficulty. After spending what appeared to be over an hour trying to destroy an enemy base, I was immediately tasked to destroy another. While this is pretty common, the game proceeded to throw wave after wave of units; literally everything the game had was thrown at me. I felt that there was really no drive to continue on at times because the game can get pretty difficult.

While the single-player campaign can be difficult, the true power behind SupCom and Forged Alliance is the multiplayer. Here, Forged Alliance players have reign over the Seraphim to devastate other players. Thankfully, the entire map is automatically revealed before each multiplay or skirmish round, so players can’t plan tricky surprises! With the new units and more maps, the fight to become the ultimate commander in the online world just got much harder.

Forged Alliance has what every expansion pack should have: plenty of additional content, performance enhancements, changes to the user interface and basically everything a SupCom fan would enjoy. While the difficulty and potential hardware problems may turn folks away, Forged Alliance offers more polished gameplay and plenty of war gaming to satisfy any RTS fan — especially those who enjoyed the original title.


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Author: GamerNode Staff View all posts by

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