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Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3

Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3

Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3

Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 is a 2008 real-time strategy video game developed by EA Los Angeles and published by Electronic Arts. It was released on October 28, 2008 in the United States for Microsoft Windows PCs and October 30, 2008 in Europe. An Xbox 360 version was released on November 11. On January 21, 2009 EA officially announced Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 - Ultimate Edition, the PlayStation 3 version which contains bonus material extra to that of the Xbox 360 and PC versions and released on March 23, 2009 along with the Mac OS version by TransGaming. The game is a continuation of the Red Alert games within the Command & Conquer series. Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 Uprising, a stand-alone expansion pack, was released for Windows in March 2009. It was offered via digital distribution.

Like the previous entries in the Red Alert series, the game is set in an alternate reality from World War II, in which the Western Allies fought the Soviet Union. In Red Alert 3 the Soviet leadership, facing defeat, goes back in time to kill Albert Einstein and prevent his assistance to the allies, paving the way for Soviet domination in the present. However as an unintended consequence, a third world power, the Empire of the Rising Sun, is created and all three sides go to war. All three factions are playable, with the gameplay involving constructing a base, gathering resources and training armies to defeat other players. Each faction has a fully co-operative campaign, playable with an artificial intelligence partner or with another human player online. The game intersperses strategy missions with full motion video footage featuring an ensemble cast led by Jonathan Pryce, Tim Curry and George Takei as the leaders of the three adversaries.

The game received mostly positive reviews, with reviewers citing the co-operative and multiplayer components as strengths, along with the enhanced role of naval combat compared to other real-time strategy games. Commonly cited weaknesses included aspects such as unit pathfinding.

Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 Plot

Facing defeat at the hands of the Allied nations, Soviet General Nikolai Krukov and Colonel Anatoly Cherdenko use a time machine beneath the Kremlin to travel back to Brussels in the year 1927 at the International Physics Conference and eliminate Albert Einstein, thus changing the future. Returning to the present, General Krukov discovers that Cherdenko is the Premier of the Soviet Union and that the Soviets are on the brink of conquering Europe. However in this alternate timeline a new faction, the Empire of the Rising Sun, has risen in Japan who declare war on the Soviets and Allies desiring complete world domination, something they perceive as their Divine Destiny. The world is then plunged into a three-way war between the Soviet Union, the Allies and the Empire.

Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 Gameplay

Red Alert 3 retains the core RTS mechanics of the Command & Conquer series. Warring factions harvest resources using vulnerable collectors and then use those resources to construct military bases and forces on-site. Structures form a shallow but wide tech tree with a variety of units and elusive superweapons. Weapon types are specialized to the point where a rifleman can withstand direct hits from an anti-tank cannon. Red Alert 3's major refinements are the addition of the Empire of the Rising Sun to the factions of the sub-series (similar to what Tiberium Wars did with the Scrin faction), a co-operative campaign, and expanded naval warfare.

The "single-player" campaign is now fully co-operative. Each mission is played alongside an ally. When played online, this is another human player. Offline it is one of several computer-controlled characters. Teams share income and generally start with the same forces. Computerized characters can be given simple commands, such as an order to take a specific position or to strike a specific target. The campaign has nine missions for each side. Each side's plotlines are mutually exclusive, unlike Tiberium Wars and its preceding and following expansion packs, but like most of the other Command & Conquer games.

Naval warfare is emphasized as another front. Executive producer Chris Corry has stated that many units are now amphibious, trading effectiveness for increased flexibility. Buildings and entire bases can be constructed on water, save for such things as ground or naval unit production facilities (e.g. tank factories are ground-only, but Tsunami tanks are amphibious and can be produced in Naval Yards), and players who "ignore the ocean likely forfeiting a significant part of their potential economy to their opponents." Further stressing this is the fact that, despite some campaign maps being entirely land based, all multiplayer maps have significant bodies of water in them.

The use of naval units and various unit abilities also helped players counterattack their opponent's units specific to that unit's strongpoint; for example, a Soviet Stingray's secondary ability, Tesla Surge, sends a surge of electricity in the tesla boat's area, damaging units from attack dolphins to terror drones.

Almost every unit in the game has a secondary ability. Their usage varies: some are toggled on or off, others are targeted, and still others are triggered the instant one presses the button. Imperial construction vehicles are able to deploy into buildings at any specified location, a Soviet Hammer tank can toggle between an anti-tank gun and a leech beam that can leech HP from enemies, and an Allied artillery piece can engage its shields with a button press but with a cooldown period before they can be used again. All abilities are bound to the same key. The game also features experience points that are used to upgrade unit types and to buy "commander abilities," which call in air strikes, recon sweeps, magnetic satellite beams, etc. Commander abilities have no resource costs but do have significant cooldown periods.

Ore fields as resource sites have been removed. These originated in the first Red Alert as a functionally identical equivalent to Tiberium, and what were ostensibly strip mines had ore growing out of the ground. Gameplay mechanics haven't changed a great deal since fields have been replaced with stationary ore mines. Strategic ore-refinery placement and covert refining are impacted to an extent.


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