The RTS genre has held a special place in my heart since the days of Age of Empires and Red Alert – bringing wonder and strategic dominance into my young life. RTS games have always been the core style for gamers seeking a strategically taxing and pure gameplay experience, and the 90’s were lousy with them. Along the way certain franchises have carried the torch and even advanced the genre in ways we never thought possible – SiegeCraft Commander is not one of those games.
SiegeCraft Commander attempts to breathe new life into the genre by mixing itself with the more mobile style tower defense games, but it is more like the two had a baby after a very inebriated one night stand of shame. One area an RTS game should stand out is its gameplay, this is the best this game gets but still nothing to write home about. SiegeCraft Commander goes deep with its gameplay, allowing players to grow a network of towers tethered by walls that become trees on the battlefield. Multiple different types of towers to use, leaving the strategy open for the field but at the same time it only allows for a narrow way to play this game – you progress forward in order to surround your enemy. The most impressive aspect of this battle system is being able to pick off earlier sections of branches and destroy an entire section, this only goes over looked as the defensive classes and abilities are crippled leaving you to focus purely on offense. A genre that is based on playing the way you desire should not be stonewalled into a slow moving offensive schlub fest.
A possibly grand and abstract love poem to RTS battle systems turns into an absolutely bland and basic experience built as a free to play game – only to be charged a price that doesn’t equal a game with twice the execution. Most RTS games have been returning to the turn based gameplay and yes, SiegeCraft Commander even takes a sorrow driven strike at that as well.
The turn based mode takes an already tactically deprived game and makes it even more boring by slowing down the gameplay to an infants crawl. Nothing, and I mean nothing was more void of fun, excitement and strategy than this turn based mode. This was just a long winded version of the previous mode and all it could accomplish was making you wait immense amounts of time for the most minor pay off. The more I played this game the more I understood that this was not an RTS game for the adoring fan base, but for those that have never entered the genre.
Another obvious ploy is the fun and cheeky tone it forces down your throat as they make a play for something relevant. You can play as a race of humans or…wait for it…LIZARD PEOPLE. Yes, I completely understand the approach you are taking but is it all just for the lol’s? How they strive for something that will appeal to people of all ages is laughable as both campaigns fall apart in almost the exact same manner. In the campaign you can take the role of either the human or lizard faction, both of which are more forgettable than the gameplay of this dull RTS. Reading this article may satisfy your literary curiosity than any aspect of this games story or characters.
Add to this the fact that this game looks like something out of the early PS3 era and you have a full circle of mediocrity. Rough around the edges and character models that are easily mistaken for blurs will leave you wondering what exactly you are commanding at all. The colors are vibrant, albeit a little too much, but it does leave a bright spot for this game.
SiegeCraft Commander is a game I had high hopes for going in, but along the way it just became apparent that this was another failed take on a game with so much potential. They have much work to do if they expect to come off of the mobile market and be taken seriously by the RTS community. It has it’s charms but overall it falls flat onto it’s own sword not being able to make anything work properly. I really hope another shot is taken with this franchise on console because the concept is there and it is impressive, but overall as an RTS fan this game is an embarrassment. Make good use of your time and play something with substance. Halo Wars 2 is not far off…