GDI and the Brotherhood of Nod at it againWith gameplay that different if it wasn't for the presentation it would be easy to forget you're playing a Command and Conquer title at all but luckily EA Los Angeles still know what makes the franchise tick in that respect. The graphics, while not particularly spectacular certainly aren't harsh on the eye and the fantastic orchestral soundtrack adds a lot to the games atmosphere as it subtley changes depending on conditions on the battlefield. The campy live action cut-scenes that have been a staple of the series and it's crazy Russian cousin Command and Conquer Red Alert are also back, although there are no performances that quite measure up to the likes of Tim Curry's or Michael Ironside's contributions to previous games.
Unfortunately that's where the good points end and while the story portrayed in the live action sequences is presented with all the usual trimmings it feels stragely lacking and falls short of offering a satisfying ending. For newcomers to the series that might not be a huge deal breaker but for hardcore fans such a lacklustre conclusion to a story that's been bubbling away since 1995 and that gave gamers one of the mediums most iconic villains in the form of the Kane will no doubt be an enormous disappointment.
Against all the odds however, when you take the fight online Tiberian Twilight actually begins to come into it's own. Annoyingly you have to pour some hours in if you want to unlock all the units as they're not all immediately available for online play or even single player skirmishes for that matter, but once you have and the playing field's level there's a lot of good fun to be had with it. Like any real time strategy game it's only as much fun as the people you're playing against and there are a couple of units that feel slightly unbalanced but the changes that feel crippling in the single player campaign are much less of an issue in a multiplayer setting. Where previously it felt limiting having such a small selection of available units, your team mates can choose different walkers giving you access to pretty much everything between you and the faster pace of combat adds to the experience rather than detracts from it really encouraging co-operation.
Overall it's not a bad game and EA Los Angeles deserve a lot of credit for attempting to break the mold and breathe new life into the series but unfortunately it was badly timed and for the most part poorly executed. The radical changes in gameplay combined with a story that fails to offer a satisfactory end to the saga will inevitably leave fans disappointed and the intrusive DRM that requires you to be connected to the Internet at all times does it no favours either. The multiplayer modes offer more but never really capture what was great about the games predecessors and while I can't deny I had some fun with Tiberian Twilight eventually the urge to go back and play Red Alert 3 for a few hours far outweighed my desire to keep playing it.
Fast paced combat
High quality presentation
Good multiplayer experience
Very short single player campaign
Changes to core gameplay will alienate fans of the series