Our post E3 coverage continues with offerings from EA (including Westwood), and some hardware. We're in the home stretch - we'll finish up E3 coverage this week and this weekend with the rest of Sierra (besides Tribes 2), Lucas Arts, Bungie, G.O.D., and Activision, our game of the show award (and tchotchke of the show), a gargantuan pictorial of the event, and of course, the article and pictures from the Playboy party. All the games in this story were covered by Bob, while Brandon wrote up the hardware sections.
Command and Conquer: Renegade
Release Date: November 2000
The first thing that popped into our minds when we saw C&C Renegade was "Quake meets C&C." Thankfully, Renegade isn't going to just be some cheesy first person port of the venerable C&C license.
You are IN the game
The premise of the game is that you play a commando from the original Command and Conquer game. The goal here is to make the players feel as if they've been sucked into their monitors while playing a game of C&C. There's a whole war going on around you as you make your way around in first or third person. All the vehicles from the original Command and Conquer are going to be there, as will the buildings. It's going to be a whole new experience as you step inside structures like the Hand of NOD and find infantry actually training inside! We were impressed with how easily the engine (made in house at Westwood) was able to transition from outdoor to indoor scenes and back. You can also shoot from inside buildings to the outdoors and vice versa. Still not impressed? Hardcore C&C fans will be happy to know that they can drive many of the original vehicles, including a Mammoth tank, a hummer, and an Orca aircraft!
As a commando, you'll have all the original weapons and abilities. Use your sniper rifle to pick off NOD infantry and liberate hostages. Run inside of the buildings, find the control centers and leave explosives to knock out the building. The commando also has a number of new capabilities of course. We saw as he took out a Harvester by dropping C4 explosives in its path and remote detonating it as the harvester passed over the trap. We stood spell bound as wisps of shattered green tiberium crystals rained out of the sky after the explosion. Other useful weapons include the tiberium gun, a pistol, and a flamethrower.
Looks like fun
Different ways to win
It's possible to go through the entire game just blindly shooting everything you see without stopping to sabotage NOD buildings, but Westwood stressed that you'll make life simpler in future missions if you do take them out. This makes sense considering that Westwood is aiming to make the player feel like he's a smaller part of a larger conflict, like you're the elite trooper wreaking havoc during a mission of C&C. The computer AI will react intelligently to what you do, attempting to bring the buildings you knock out back online. Overall Renegade looks very much like a worthy spinoff of C&C, with a first person/action flavor.