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In Strategic Mode you build your cities, increase your forces and advance your technology. Tactical Mode is where combat takes place. You can play the game either as a Human (fast units, average firepower, good weapon ranges, low armor for units and buildings) or a Tauran (slower units, high firepower, shorter weapon ranges, good armor for units and buildings). As Human or Tauran you must manage three resources: energy, credits and research. Energy is required to maintain the structures in your cities. Credits can buy structures and units. Research increases the technological level in different technologies.
From the Starting menu you begin a new campaign, choose the race you will play and the difficulty level of the game. Name your colony, click start and the game begins.
Each game starts in strategic mode with the two enemy capitals separated by neutral territory. You may also play the Last Hope Campaign where all the territory other than your home province belongs to the enemy. This campaign is, however, recommended only for the experienced Fallen Haven player.
The graphics in the game are fairly pleasing. Everything is very "modern", maybe futuristic would be a better word. I found some of the buttons for the various modes were not intuitive. At one point I was to click on the "map" button. I clicked on the button that looked like a map but then found myself in the wrong view I was supposed to click on the button that looked like a magnifying glass (which in most games and applications means Zoom). Maybe I was a little unclear on what I was to do.
Movement can be a little annoying. Almost everything in the game can be done with the mouse except moving around the map. Here you have to use the keyboard arrows.
The first thing I did was to turn off the music. I think the zooming sound effect you hear every time you click on a structure would, in time, be grating.
In general I found the game play to be fairly static. I always seemed to be very removed from the game and what was happening. I really didn't feel any stake in what was going on, or personally involved. The one thing that might of spurred more interest in the game for me would be to play against another player. Whenever I play against a computer I feel at a disadvantage. I am starting the game at one end of the learning curve while the computer is at the other. But in this game the two player option doesn't exist. Interestingly enough there is a screen capture of the Starting Menu in the manual that does show a two player option but somewhere along the line it was dropped.
Written by Brian Millward
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