End of Nations is a new MMORTS being developed by Petroglyph and published by Trion Worlds. MMORTSs (Massively Multiplayer Online Real Time Strategy) are few and far between and they rarely make an impact on the market due to its specific target audience. So what makes End of Nations different from the few others of its kind? And more importantly, what makes this game better?
Visiting the Trion Worlds booth at E3 was certainly a sight to behold, coupled with their 'Rift: Planes of Telara' presentation, a huge monitor depicting the war machines in End of Nations showed just how serious Trion Worlds are taking this property. Petroglyph are also taking it very seriously, during our demo their representative spoke very passionately about the game. But believing in a game is simply not enough to make it worth playing, so let's see what was.
The game is very much like a classic RTS, base building and unit management are key. As with every RTS, there is a strong emphasis on a tactical approach to challenges, missions and multiplayer. The game is very sociable during these aspects too, friends are only a message away with the help of a friends tab on the game's HUD and with live friend info constantly scrolling down the bottom, they've never been closer, except if they were in the room.
The social features of the game are definitely intentional, this game is supposed to be played co-operatively as Petroglyph have designed the game to be quite challenging. That's not to say it's impossible for the few solo players that will take an interest in the title. It is not recommended to play this way though as the game has been set between two warring factions that players will have to choose between.
As for the war itself? It has never looked so good. The first thing that struck me during the gameplay presentation was just how good the game looked, especially considering how much was happening on screen at any given time. The battles are huge, the vehicle models look phenomenal and combat is fast-paced and with lack of a better word, awesome. It hardly does anything new but then it does everything right, this is expected when Petroglyph's team is made up of some previous Command and Conquer developers.
During combat, players control their troops as expected, tactically. Different units will suit different purposes and can be upgraded throughout the various missions. For example, a tank is great and all but when armed with EMP ammo, it can cause hell for enemies. Another weapon players will have access to is the 'Commander Powers', the only example we were shown was the Napalm strike, flames shouldn't be so pretty. A noticeable new feature that to my knowledge hasn't been used in any other RTS is consumable items.
In the world of End of Nations, consumable items such as the aforementioned EMP ammo and such others like the vehicle repair kit are extremely useful. It is with this help that players will be able to contend against the enemy behemoth guns, gatling towers and un-relentless enemies.
End of Nations is definitely a game to look out for, as an RTS it's deeply involving, fun to play and a must have for fans of the genre. As an MMO, friends lists and information is all there but without a release or even a beta, it has yet to be proven. From what we saw, Trion Worlds has nothing to worry about, the quality speaks for itself, and players will get to see that quality themselves when the game is finally released sometime next year.