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Ground Control 2: Operation Exodus
game: Ground Control 2: Operation Exodus
posted by: GF! Back Catalogue 10/2004 => 1995
date posted: 12:00 AM Thu May 27th, 2004
last revision: 12:00 AM Thu May 27th, 2004

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By Blaine Krumpe

My first encounter with Sierra's Ground Control was some two years ago. I immediately fell for the lush backgrounds, the dynamic environment, and the first rate story line. Now, Ground Control 2 is set to release the middle of next month, (mid June). The first person story is set on the same planet, now three hundred years after the first game. The new Terran Empire is breathing down your back after slowly destroying all of your (NSA, Northern Star Alliance) colonies. The last planet standing, preventing total victory by the Empire, is Morning Star Prime, and you are set to defend the ground against the newly landed Terran forces. There is another player in this whole ploy of galactic wars, the Viron, an alien race who use high grade nano-organic technology to wage their wars. While details are sketchy about how they fit into the whole plot, I'm told there will be an alliance between the NSA and the Viron later in the game.

The units utilized by each faction vary with form and function. The NSA uses brute force projectile weapons, and their units are among the toughest known to man. They also employ advanced helicopters that serve as either gun ships or transports. The Terran Empire utilizes hover dynes equipped with heavy energy beams and advanced plasma weapons. They have an almost limitless supply of fresh legionaries. The Viron have an unbelievable technology; they are able to meld their units with advanced nano-organic technology. Two infantry units can meld creating a unit with devastating firepower. Regardless of race, every unit throughout the game has the ability to switch into a secondary form that serves as an advantage during fighting or defensive maneuvers. Both primary and secondary forms allow you to utilize a special weapon, similar to the ones found in the original Ground Control.

In the old Ground Control, you went into each mission with all the units that you would be able to call on to fight. Now, GC2 incorporates build credits. If you are able to kill opposing units, you get credits. If you capture a victory location, or a drop zone, you get credits. With these credits you are able to call upon your drop ships and have them bring down fresh units of your specification. It is this new feature that creates a very strategic game with battles that last long into the night.

Your drop ships also serve as aerial fighting platforms. Once one of them enters the atmosphere, you can control them and unleash their massive firepower. However, they are vulnerable to ground fire, and run on a limited amount of fuel. With credits, you are able to upgrade your drop ship's armor, fuel capacity, firepower, and speed.

A new feature in GC2 is that you can now play co-operatively through the single player missions, playing side by side as you battle your way through the story. But bear in mind you will have to share credits with your partner. There will also be a dedicated on-line server run by Sierra, letting all the death and mayhem run rampant over the Internet.

Along with the ability to call down drop ships, you can also call in air strikes, radar platforms, and smoke screens, to name just a few of the new features. You are also able to garrison infantry units into buildings and send sniper units through forests to covertly take out enemy units. Scout units can cloak, and your own fire may kill you, so you have to be careful where you're aiming your artillery. This game is leaps and bounds beyond the first Ground Control; the graphics are spectacular, the new Viron species is intriguing, unit AI is intelligent, and the story plot will engage you just as much, or more, as the first game. This looks like it will be a must have for anyone who enjoyed the first game, or just loves futuristic combat set on a far off planet.