Dark Reign: The Future of War - Features


Dark Reign featured a number of new concepts that altered the gameplay and flavour of the title. It possessed a complex fog-of-war where line of sight was affected by everything from terrain height and shape to trees and rocks. This allowed for the use of forests for ambushes and limited the effectiveness of recon in densely forested or mountainous areas. Like many RTS titles, structures in the game consumed power and would not function if sufficient power was unavailable. However, Dark Reign was one of the first games to allow players to 'power down' buildings to keep their bases online, giving greater flexibility in base management. The game also featured production queues and where multiple production facilities of the same type existed, they would automatically divide up production, or could be ordered to each focus on particular production queues. The game also featured the ability to steal blueprints for enemy units, allowing sides to neutralise effective units by stealing the plans and producing their own to counter.

One of the more innovative features of Dark Reign was the customisable waypoint system. A player could place any number of paths, each with any number of points, and save each one with a unique name. Units on a path could be assigned to patrol it, loop, or travel it once, and units would automatically carry out behaviours at each point - for example, a resource collector could be given a path to take it around an enemy base to a water deposit and it would treat this route as its standard resource gathering path. Separate from waypoints, units could be given individual orders such as "search and destroy", "harass", or "scout", allowing them to choose their own targets, engaging and occupying the enemy while freeing up the player to work on more significant strategies / development. These tactics could be controlled further with the use of individually customisable AI settings for every unit, allowing the player to set unit pursuit range, damage tolerance (how quickly the unit will seek healing / repairs and flee combat), and independence (how far the unit will stray from orders in order to engage attackers or targets of opportunity). These could be set individually for every unit, and the default setting could be changed, eliminating the need to change every unit if a unified strategy called for particular settings.

Read more about this topic:  Dark Reign: The Future Of War

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