Windows - 2001
Description of Atrox Windows
Atrox is a strategy title of Korean descent, widespread and popular in its home turf, with a surprisingly small amount of coverage in English speaking territories. To be fair, this isn't all that surprising - the title harks heavily after Blizzard's widely acclaimed Starcraft, and has one of those obtuse and bizarre storylines that far-east game developers seem to do so well. In fact, obtuse is a pretty accurate description for the whole game - it wasn't until we loaded it up for the first time that it clicked that it was a real-time strategy title.
So let's start with the storyline, which spirals around itself innumerable times all in order to let us know that it's a game with three sides. The story starts in AD 2334 when a descendent of Albert Einstein manages to separate the good and evil that exists in the human mind into two separate entities. It bangs on for a fair bit about mitochondrion cells and DNA manipulation, but what it all boils down to is that two 'angels' were produced - a white and black version (for good and evil, see). Continuing his research, the good doctor discovers that both entities are beginning to develop potentially threatening powers - he tries to wipe out the black angel, gets killed, and both angels escape after a brief combat. Then all sorts of weird stuff happens involving Deltas (descended from black angels) transforming themselves into electronic waves, humanity turning into cyborgs, then being almost entirely subjugated by the Deltas, who are now called the Createse.
Right, with us so far? Quite frankly, no blame accorded if you're not, because we're lost. Somewhere along the line, the Createse attempt to chase an original descendent (possibly) of the twins produced by the scientist to a different star system, and somehow another species gets involved, the Intellions (possibly the descendants of the white angel - it's really not that clear) . In the meantime, humanity, now called Hominians and a race of partial cyborgs were trapped in the polar region, where the Createse suffer from the cold. [Yeah, that's it. We're totally confused now! - Ed.]
So, whatever, it's all very complicated, and the end result is that there are three equally balanced sides ready to duke it out for, er, whatever there is up for grabs. The future of their civilisations, one presumes. As plots go, it's on the ludicrous end of silly, and we wouldn't be surprised if a reality-altering substance was in use during its penning. But whatever, the stage is set, on to the game itself.
In fact, knowledge of the story is superfluous to the action. The cutscenes serve only to remind you that there's some people fighting each other, and the 'plot' devices employed at the beginning of each mission are flimsy, and frankly unnecessary, since the mission goals in general revolve around such premises as 'survive for X minutes', or 'kill the alien queen, don't let suchandsuch die'. Once you're in the game, updates to the 'story' are given by means of short textual interchanges between the main characters - blink and you'll miss them.
The game itself is a blatant rip-off of Blizzard's Starcraft, only, and it's difficult to say this nicely, not anywhere near as good. Let's start at the top. Visually, the game is miniature and difficult to make out. The viewpoint is fixed, as is the camera height - it's a common situation in low budget RTS games, but irritating should you want a different point of view. Units scuttle across the map at a intense rate of speed, which is also a pain - it's hard to be strategical when every enemy, not to mention your own soldiers, move at a rate of knots. The animation is also stilted and ungratifying - watching it is like being stuck in the early 1990s all over again. To make it worse, your troops' AI is dodgy at best, and if you move them en masse, the resultant chaos as they constantly run into each other is despair-inducing.
Gameplay is your standard RTS fare - direct your various troops to engage the enemy and achieve your goals, and at least there's plenty of variety in the units available. The tech tree for each civilisation is impressive, with units upgradeable to more powerful varieties with careful use of resources. If you're a fan of micro-management, there's certainly enough to get stuck in to. The units for each civilisation follow the theme for the races - humanity being technically minded, Createse using biological weaponry, and so forth.
The problem is, after experiencing similar strategy titles with massively high production values, witnessing one that's so damn flimsy and bizarre, it's hard to get any kind of enthusiasm. There is depth for core RTS fans to enjoy, but why bother, when you can pick up Starcraft cheap for twice the enjoyment? Atrox is a title for the RTS completist only - a poor showing for an already over-populated market.
Review By GamesDomain
Comments and reviews
DemolitionDoener 2019-02-26 0 point
Judging by the screenshots it looks like it *wants* to look like starcraft. But fails.
Rob 2018-10-02 0 point
Try to use older version of Daemon Tools (with DRM-protection emulation).
gterry 2018-07-13 -2 points
downloaded but said need to insert cd to run this app. tried ULtraISO to make a virtual CDrom but desn't work.
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