60 Second Preview of…

The Moon Project

The Specs

Although Earth 2150 was one of last year's better RTSes, its sales were probably hurt by all of last year's other RTSes. GAMES Studios hopes that by releasing this follow-up during a slower season with few RTSes in sight, it will fare better. The Moon Project is a stand alone game that basically brings a new campaign and a few new units to the Earth 2150 engine. For instance, the United Civilized States get a stealth sub to wreak havoc on naval units; the Eurasian Dynasty's transports can carry off enemy units and drop them to their death; and the Lunar Corporation's flighty hovercraft get more teeth: the Fat Girl chassis can hold four heavy weapons, the Super Fighter is a good all-purpose combat unit, and Crystal Armor and Magnetic Shields make their vehicles more durable. The Moon Project also upgrades the camera controls so you can zoom out further for a better view of the battlefield or zoom in tighter to admire the detailed 3D models.

The Speculation

Tom's Comments: When I visited GAMES Studios, I was given a brief demo of The Moon Project by someone who only knew the basics of the game. Then I was sent packing with a beta that turned out to be broken and unplayable. So I learned most of what I know about the details of Moon Project from a mock-up of the manual. Unfortunately, this expansion looks like it's homogenizing the three sides. Everyone gets Earthquake Generators and Anti-Rocket Systems (look, it's George Bush's missile shield!). The UCS is given the ED's heavy 105mm Cannons while the ED gets the equivalent of the UCS's Shadow Generator to cloak its base. Also generously doled out are heavy artillery placements (the equivalent of Total Annihilation's Big Bertha?), "Building Grabbers" (Red Alert 2's engineers?), and "Recyclers" (sell your obsolete units for money). The Lunar Corporation, which almost shattered the balance in Earth 2150, seems more powerful than ever before with stronger units, stronger defense, and no more tunneling restrictions. While The Moon Project might be a great way to introduce Earth 2150 to new players, I'm worried it might also be more weight than the game's already delicate balance can bear.

Publisher: GAMES Studios

Developer: Topware Interactive

Genre: Real time strategy

Release Date: Q1 2001

February 9, 2001

Back to 60 Second Previews