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 Home -> Reviews -> Hostile Waters: Antaeus Rising
Hostile Waters: Antaeus Rising By John "Award" Del Percio, July 5, 2001
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Developer :Rage Software
Publisher :Interplay
Release Date :Late June 2001
Demo Available : Yes - Download
Table of Contents

· Introduction
· Closer Look
· Facts
· Final

The Hunt for Red... Oops, Wrong One

The story line of Antaeus Rising is rather gripping. You begin the game with the in-game movies featuring the two "stars" of the game, Walker and Church, who live in a Star Trek-like Earth of replicated everything and complete peace and equality. Unfortunately, a few of the "old guard" who were too used to their dominance and supremacy over everyone else decided to re-institute the concept of money and control at whatever cost. The Cabal constructed several artificial islands and began the assembly of weaponry and missiles with which to attack the rest of the world. You are the captain of the Antaeus prototype 00, the last of a series of decommissioned navy vessels from the last wars on Earth. The cruisers were all sunk, but in the dire need of defense, they needed to raise the Antaues in a last stand against the Cabal. Antaeus is not a normal ship, however; all Antaues vessels were fitted with two unique technologies. The Creation Engines, which are equipped with trillions of tiny "nanobots", can create any vehicle it has a record of in seconds. The second technology is the product of the SoulCatcher project. The entire crew of the Antaeus had their existence stored on a SoulCatcher chip. When integrated into a vehicle they can control it as though they were alive again. Unfortunately, there is a short supply of personalities (and they each do have rather dynamic personalities) so the captain may have to jump in and take command. The story begins to take some very odd turns about a quarter through the game and turns into quite the interesting sci-fi story.

Nightfall
Sunset
Darkened combat
Loading Docks

The way the game play works is fairly simple, in theory anyway. You begin the mission with a tactical briefing from HQ, and a few locations of the map are usually revealed. You have a limited amount of energy (EJ), the only resource in the game, with which to build some units to clear and secure a beachhead to land the rest of your forces on. Once down, you must use a recycling unit to search for some metal to convert into energy. Your recycling vehicle can zap metal from destroyed enemy vehicles and buildings, as well as some scattered "natural" ruins, back to the Antaeus for use as energy to create new units. You may also use a repair vehicle (after a certain point in the game) to patch up your units.

This doesn't look right!
Oops, my bad!
What the?!?
Scanning for enemies

Enemy bases work on the "infinite replication" model ala Descent. Their air and ground production facilities churn out units until destroyed. They do, however, have limitations. Enemy production is dependent upon resources as well, though not in the same way that players are. Woven around the map in areas that are typically heavily guarded from attack are clusters energy production units (oil derricks) as well as some energy storage facilities. Striking at energy production kills your enemy's production speed, allowing you to move in for the kill on the factories. Taking down radar nets also allows a bit more of a hassle free invasion.

Player's units are a bit more diverse than the enemies. You build them "custom" with any add-ons you get in the game, though most of them don't come until late-game, the basic vehicles and weapons you have are Hornet attack chopper, Salamander hover-tank, Rhino heavy tank (mid-late game), and a few other units with more specific purposes. The weapons include the "scalpel" machine gun (best for taking down buildings and ground targets), the rocket launcher (best for taking down air targets), and the laser (best for raged turret sniping.) Though the game has a tendency to use a clear-cut approach to damage and usability, it works out fairly well in this case.

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