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Five Important Things Kane's Wrath Will Fix

By AgmLauncher - 19th January 2008 - 16:35 PM

Kane's Wrath will be doing more than just adding new content to Command and Conquer 3. It will also be improving the core gameplay experience, introducing new units as well as making some important changes which are intended to resolve some of the more outstanding issues present in C&C 3. In no particular order of importance, the five most important changes are as follows:

1. Faction Diversity
Faction diversity is probably one of the most under-rated aspects of an RTS game. Faction diversity is not the same thing as faction quantity, as three really diverse factions can provide a much longer entertainment experience than fifteen nearly identical factions.

Kane’s Wrath’s faction diversity doesn’t come from the fact that it is simply adding 6 new factions, but that the factions are more or less more unique/diverse than the original three factions in C&C 3. When compared to games like Warcraft 3, Starcraft, and Command and Conquer Generals, C&C 3’s three factions don’t offer much diversity. Same basic unit classes, and same basic tech trees.

The new factions in Kane’s Wrath however, have been designed with a little bit more boldness in the diversity department. The Nod Black Hand faction lacks air units entirely, for example. While this may seem like it’s limiting options, it’s actually not. With nine factions to choose from, there is no reason for every faction to an equivalent unit. If you like playing with air units, then there are other factions to choose from to give you this option.

Ultimately faction diversity makes a game more interesting and playable in the long term. There are more options and interesting match-up combinations.

2. Upgrades & Abilities
A major issue with C&C 3 is that some upgrades are great, but too inaccessible to be worthwhile. Dozer Blades, Strato-fighter, and others are just too high up in the tech tree.

Kane’s Wrath will improve the situation by moving some of the less used upgrades to lower tech levels (dozer blades, for example, have been moved to the Operations Center). One of the most important changes is that some of the upgrades will be on the production structures themselves. This is crucial because it forces a player to make a choice between producing units, and getting upgrades for them.

EA is also being a bit less reserved about unit abilities this time around. The Awakened actually start with the EMP in addition to being a tier 1 unit. If Kane’s Wrath was following more closely in the footsteps of C&C 3, this ability probably wouldn’t have been available without a tier 2 or tier 3 upgrade.

The improved access to upgrades and abilities should help create some more interesting gameplay dynamics, that hopefully reward careful micromanagement and quick thinking.

3. Harassment
While this isn’t set in stone (but hopefully remains so), harvesters are much more vulnerable to attack than they were before (all harvesters have the same health as the Nod harvester does in C&C 3, and have an additional vulnerability to rocket damage). What does this mean? Kiss mass econ-booming goodbye. If you think you’ll be able to make a bunch of refineries and harvesters right off the bat, without making any units, you’ll be sadly mistaken when just a handful of bikes, seekers, or pit bulls come into your base and wipe out a huge chunk of your economy. A force that would otherwise be easily shrugged off in C&C 3 is now actually a lethal threat to your economy.

What this means is that the early game will actually start off quicker, as players will build a better mix of early game units (either for offense or defense) and harvesters. It will also help regulate the mid and late game a bit more as both players try to attack and defend, losing either units or harvesters in the process.

Another important change is repair rates are now much slower than they were in C&C 3. This is quite important for obvious reasons. First, it means things like cranes, outposts, and other lightly armored structures can be destroyed by a smaller force of units. Secondly, it means tier 3 defenses can also be destroyed by a smaller force of units, thus the critical mass required to destroy a defense before it has a chance to do much damage, will be smaller.