Here’s my quick take on the Supreme Commander demo.
Runs terrible on my computer and I’m not sure why. My computer can run Age of Empires III, Dawn of War and Company of Heroes just fine. I understand that the whole point of Supreme Commander is scale, but even on the first mission of the campaign I’m getting terrible slowdown and that mission isn’t very big. And this is with the lowest graphical settings, which honestly make the game look like crap. The scale also gives lots of interface problems – just try to target an enemy interceptor on the main view map. Thus, you’ll actually spend a lot of time either zoomed out so you can click on the icons for enemy units or you’ll be clicking on the minimap to give your commands. So why have the close-up view at all? Oh, right – it makes for good screenshots.
And then there’s the fact that the actual gameplay is…Total Annihilation. I understand that Supreme Commander was specifically designed to be the spiritual successor to Total Annihilation, but honestly, all playing the Supreme Commander demo did was make me want to go back and play Total Annihilation again rather than make me want to play Supreme Commander. Because the gameplay isn’t significantly different and TA will actually run on my computer.
Heh, that’s the same feeling I had with Warcraft 3. It was a 3D Starcraft, as far as I was concerned, and I already owned Starcraft. Why bother with Warcraft 3?
I haven’t played Supreme Commander yet, and I was tempted to try the demo. Of course, I won’t be able to play it unless I have a powerful PC with Windows installed, so unless they decide to port it to GNU/Linux, which is unlikely, I may have to pass on it…
…and play TASpring as it matures instead.
Actually, I felt that adding the heroes to Warcraft III made the game different enough to justify picking it up, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Plus four factions, new storyline (and Blizzard does tell their stories well), online play, etc. Warcraft III was definitely worth a purchase IMO.
But if you move the interface for SC to the left side of the screen (which you can do by holding down Alt and pressing the up arrow a couple of times), then you’re effectively playing “very pretty TA”. It’s that similar. And it isn’t even that pretty unless you’ve got a really fast computer.