Sunday, December 6, 2009

The best video game ever


Howdy all,

I don't often post about video games, unless it is one I've worked on, but I just have to post once about the Take Command: Civil War series.

It is, without any shadow of a doubt, the greatest video game ever made.

I just played a game today... three Federal corps against roughly the same from the Confederates. I was in command of one corp, and advanced my two divisions to a secondary objective. After about five minutes of marching through the lush American countryside, one division arrived at the objective, a large wooded hill, while the second deployed in fields to the right of it. But... where was the enemy?

Then, in the woods to my front, I saw the head of a Confederate column. Quickly my right-most division got into line, and a ferocious firefight ensued... the Confederates pushed up with a great number of men, but close in artillery support, as well as some cavalry used as a flanking element, helped hold the Confederates back and, eventually, push them off.

It seemed the Southerners had been defeated, so I began to move the Division holding the objective towards a distant, Confederate held objective... only to run into the second Confederate corps, which had flanked me through the woods while the first attacked me! Half of my division was smashed to pieces before I could bring up more men, holding the hill against wave after wave of Confederate infantry! A good number of Federals ran, and one entire brigade had to make an emergency withdrawal after being caught flat-footed...

Eventually, using my entire corps, I was able to hold the determined Confederate attack back, only to have ANOTHER Confederate corps appear in the woods in my initial front! Thankfully my computer allies engaged them, allowing me to move what remained of one division up and to their flank, where I was able to get the attacking southerners in enfilade... they almost broke my allied troops, but at the last minute, we pushed them back, even though a number of my men ran out of ammo and had to withdraw to be resupplied.

The game lasted a solid two hours, and included at least two BRILLIANT flanking attacks by the AI, something which happens with great frequency with Take Command.

If you have never had the opportunity to play this positively amazing game, I cannot recommend it enough. Best video game ever made.

19 comments:

Gunfreak said...

As you know, Norb is working on Scurge of war Gettysburg, the game looks great, same gameplay but with lots of updates.

It also has a 1:4 sprite ratio instead of 1:10, so regiments looks like brigades did in the old games, brigades looks like divisions, and divions look like corps ect.

Anon said...

Your enthusiasm reminds me of my own in 2000 after I played my first ever Total War game: Shogun: Total War. I have bought and enjoyed each successive instalment in the series, and though I am in no position to claim 'best ever' status for the Total War games (or any other series for that matter) I feel that it deserves to be highly recommended to all wargamers.

Cheers,
Aart

Author said...

I rather enjoy the Total War series, obviously, especially since I helped make NTW1 and ATW!:D However, it will never really be able to compare to Take Command... NTW is great because it is MP, but the Take Command series most accurately replicates combat... from the time spent before hand marching your vast columns up the roads to the ideas of flanking and pushing... it is a GREAT game:)

Anon said...

That settles it. Note to self: look into Take Command.

Cheers,
Aart

Carl said...

I've seen this game at the store a few times and always wanted to give it a try, next time I'm out I'll pick it up cause of your recommendation.

Author said...

Great! I cannot recommend it enough. You can actually download it via the internet if you have a fast enough connection... only ten bucks! Ridiculous, it is an incredible, incredible game. Plus, there is a one-click mod that will install the American War for Independence AND the Napoleonic Wars!

http://www.gamersgate.com/DD-PDX11ENG/take-command-2nd-manassas-eng

Stryker said...

I agree that it is a great game and very atmospheric as well. I haven't played it for a while but am I right in thinking it can only be played against the AI and not a live oponent?

Ian

Gunfreak said...

Yes, single player only, but the new game, scurage of war will have multiplayer,

Author said...

Yep, as Gun says, this is purely vs AI. Personally I really enjoy that; there is none of the tension of the negative kind that I often feel competing against another player... while I enjoy MP, I find SP to be a much more relaxed and enjoyable experience!

Great game though, I cannot possibly recommend it enough. The first time your long columns are marching along, canteens clanking, cicadas whirring, drums playing, your cavalry scouting far out of sight, looking for the enemy... ahh such satisfaction! And that initial encounter, when you first round a wood or a mountain and find the head of an enemy column marching down the road, and you start to recognize commanders like Lee and Longstreet and realize that this isn't just an enemy division, but the enemy ARMY is coming up that road... man. And, of course, when you have deployed and engaged the enemy, throwing him back, only to realize that the majority of the enemy actually took a flank march and is just now appearing in the rear of your army, the rear you didn't cover with cavalry because you figured the computer would never figure it out... yikes:)

Brilliant game.

Gunfreak said...

Yupp it's one of those games thats love at first sight.

I tried the demo to the first game, never heard of it before, the demo is kinda fun you have to march your regiment here and there and finnaly there is a small battle.

I was hooked, I then found it very hard to find the game, I had to order it from specialty shop in the states.

I then joined the forum for the game, and has stayed there, I was lucky enough to try a beta of the second game for free. When the second game came out it was even better, better graphics, better ai ect.

As good as the first one is, the second is sevral times better.

The game is devided into campaign, that takes you around the battle of second manassas, from small skrimishes realy on to full battle later, you see the battle from all points, from brigade commanders to army commander.
It's like beeing there.

The second part is a free open battle, you can download the OOB from any battle of the war, so you can be both grant or sherman, lee and longstreet and everybody els.

You also have mods as Ash have said, both AWI, Napoleincs and many diffrent ACW mods

Allan (AJ) Wright said...

I've been VERY impressed with Company of Heroes. I know it's not black powder, but the graphics are excellent and the historical accuracy of the models is quite good too.

Victor said...

I would like to try this but alas they don't have a MAC version so I will just have to pass on this one.

James said...

Looks like a cool game, but only AI ??? Ah man, the best part is playing v. someone :) Especial when you can get multi-players going. Team v. Team kind of thing.

J

Beccas said...

I bought this game on the Lords recommendation. It's was only $20!

Lord Ashram. Quick question. I can't workout how to give brigade orders. ie select a whole brigade and march up a road in the tutorial scenario. How do you do it?
Cheers
Paul

Author said...

Hey man!

Great, you will get YEARS of fun out of it!

So; to move a brigade, say up a road... you select the Brigade commander, double click where you want him to go, and then select a formation you want the brigade to deploy in; for example, line, or double line, or march column, and voila! Off they go! If you want them to take the road, then you click on road after all of that, and they will head towards the nearest road!

Lemme know how it goes, I am very curious!

Also, you can always drop by the forums at Madminute Games for help too.

Beccas said...

Thanks mate. That got it working. I am more used to the Command & Conquer style click and drag with the mouse to select units.
Cheers
Paul

Author said...

Just wanted to see if there was any feedback from folks who have picked the game up recently...?

David said...

This and the Nap mod is indeed a great game. Just need to get TW to pick up on a few of the command and structure mechanics.

I love building completely new armies with the stats and numbers I want to use and the uniforms from those available. Especially in the Naps mod.

Max said...

I just bought the game, and am having fun learning the ropes.

But I personally have little interest for ACW, and the Nap mod was actually the prime reason that drove my purchase.

Unfortunately, this mod no longer seems to be supported, and the website that used to host the files is no longer active.

Does anyone know where I can grab the Nap mod files?