An early look at Forged Battalion - now on Steam Early Access

Platforms: PC

Forged Battalion has the roots of Command and Conquer throughout the foundation of it's moment to moment gameplay. The game follows all of the same beats - you start by farming resources, then build some power plants, followed by building some unit factories and then sending everything in to see if you did it fast enough, or if you made the right units to take apart the enemy buildings and defences.

All of which is standard RTS stuff from that perspective. The big selling point of Forged Battalion is the customisation of the units and therefore the ability to build your own unique faction. You can alter the weapons you will be using and even the kind of mobility your units have. The unlock grid and the customisation process look a little intimidating at first but if you can focus on what is available to you rather than looking all the way ahead you can find your feet a bit faster.

You can save four different units in four different classes and can have multiple Factions saved at a time to allow for different maps or campaign scenarios, this allows you to really play around with the units you can produce and get a feel for what works best for every situation. It will be interesting to see how the online modes are balanced to stop end game players crushing the hopes of those who are just starting out.

The gameplay is fun but also somewhat linear, the order in which you can build your structures is pretty much set so the begining of each Skirmish will begin the same way. The AI for your own units is a little odd and can lead to a feeling of frustration towards your own troops. The strategy is found more in the way you build your army than anything else so success can usually be found by just building lots of units and sending them in.

The ideas on display in the game are definitely worth a look and it will be interesting to see how it all ends up in the end. The team are aware of a few gripes like the difficulty spike and they are working on them. The game is apparently due to come out of Early Access in about six months so if Petroglyph keep adding content and refining it then the final game could definitely be something special.

You can join the game's Early Access release here.

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