EndWar first shots break cover

Wednesday 2 May 2007
These naughty shots for EndWar, real-time strategy game in the Tom Clancy franchise, give us our first glimpse of the meta-warfare offered by the title. That is, you can see lots of men running around in large battlefields, instead of six men elbowing their way through a casino.

Set in the future-world of 2020, EndWar presents a world where a high-tech missile shield has ended the need for - and the effectiveness of - nuclear weapons. But, inevitably, the peace that follows is ruptured by EU, US and Russian forces being thrust into global war in the aftermath of a rash of terrorist attacks.

Interestingly, EndWar is a console-only game. And the game's director - Michael de Plater, formerly of Creative Assembly and Total War fame - reckons it's necessary to "ban any reference to PC" in order to make the real RTS that consoles have never had before.

This console-centric focus sees the game step towards an unlikely source - Madden. "How can we make Madden War," de Plater ponders, during an interview with US magazine EGM, indicating that to make a console RTS you need to use a much simpler and more straightforward frame for the gameplay than with normal, PC-aimed strategy games.

So expect a mix of high-tempo action, as you rattle first-hand through missions at blistering speed, and a more timed and tactical depth, as you slap 'plays' onto a strategic battlefield view, much like picking offensive or defensive moves in Madden.

Better still, the game will use voice-controls, further enhancing EndWar's console-friendly setup. "Voice command is to a strategy game what a steering wheel is to a driving game," says de Plater. We certainly loved the voice-commands in SOCOM, and the EndWar developers are boasting an even more sophisticated system. EndWar is currently scheduled to launch early next year.

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