It has been 500 years and an uneasy cease-fire exists between the two vast war machines of TransGlobal Industries and the MegaCom Corporation. The final phase of the peace initiative is only hours away when an incident takes place, which throws this short-lived truce into complete disarray. War is firmly back on the agenda.
While initial thoughts may be that Z: Steel Soldiers is another recruit to the growing army of real time strategy games, Z: Steel Soldiers should be viewed as an arcade strategy title with the emphasis firmly on action, the players' combat decisions and their subsequent consequences.
The taking of territory is still paramount for victory as buildings can only be constructed on land owned by the player. But now, gamers must also think about which territory will best suit their strategy. Each sector on the map will feature a flag displaying a number from 1 to 5, the higher the number the quicker the game's resource, Xenonite, will be mined. The temptation may well be to secure those territories that will deliver the most Xenonite so forces can be quickly built up.
The action in Z: Steel Soldiers takes place in six very distinct worlds each with its own unique environment. From arid desert to lush forest each throws up its own geographical challenges for the player. In addition each world has its own environmental systems and specific life forms.
But the game's 3D environments mean that some territories will be strategically better than others. So, taking control of high ground with a relatively small yield of Xenonite may well prove more advantageous in the long term than quickly snatching a valley based territory with low strategic value and a high resource yield.
The game's different environments have meant that Z: Steel Soldiers will feature not only land based units but also naval and airforce which includes helicopters and jets. In total players will have access to up to 30 units, the hardware becoming more powerful and destructive as the player progresses through the game.
[[The War Machines]]
The war machine that the player commands has been completely reworked and extended within Z: Steel Soldiers compared to the original. Again due to the fact that highly realistic terrain environments exist within the game, it seemed only fair to give the player a full naval and air force to command as well as the robotic infantry and armoured fighting vehicles from the first game. In total there are 30 unit types and 20 building types for the player to experiment with. In addition to the original array of Robots, there is a new core of elite infantry units that have been introduced; the Technician, Explosives Expert and the Spy.
Designed from the ground up as a true 3D game it comes as no surprise that Z: Steel Soldiers features a state of the art engine that really brings the game's worlds to life. Units will make tracks in soft ground or kick up dust on dry terrain and all objects are subject to real time shadows and reflections. Other natural effects such as weather and transitions from day to night are incredibly realistic thanks to the game's physics system.
Z: Steel Soldiers is more than a number of isolated missions with no structure thrown together to make a game. It features a progressive plot driven story line written by Martin Pond, the man responsible for bringing the world of Medievil and the universe of Imperium Galactica 2 to life. Full of intrigue and conspiracy, the story will be updated
through luscious cut scenes created by leading industry lights AudioMotion.
Cited as one of Z's strongest attributes, the AI in Z: Steel Soldiers is even more complex yet flexible enough to respond to gamers of all levels. It can be passive or aggressive in its nature from reinforcing territories to scouting or manufacturing of units in response to the player's situation.
- True 3D environments spread over six distinct worlds
- Unrivalled AI
- Up to 30 units including naval and air
- 30 single player missions linked by progressive story line
- 20 multi-player levels supporting 8 players across a LAN or via the Internet