Date of publish: 16/11/2020 19:40 CET
American Conquest: Divided Nation is an unattractive RTS game that could have faired better if it had been released a few years ago.
American Conquest: Divided Nation is a real-time strategy game, if can’t notice by the graphics. It is based upon events during the American Civil War, the Texas War, and the Battle for New Orleans. You are probably thinking, “No way, the American Civil war?” You’ve got that right! All the battles pit Americans versus Americans. You know, North vs. South? How fun does that sound? With all this USA talk, you’d think that the developer and publisher would be based from the U.S. right? Wrong! The publisher, CDV, is based in Germany. The developer, GSC Game World, hails from the Ukraine. How much better can you get – you have two European countries rewriting U.S. history centralized on a war against our own selves.
CDV, known for Sudden Strike and Blitzkrieg, is one of the largest German publishers. GSC Game World has already worked on the American Conquest series in the past. GSC’s biggest claim to fame is for a game that may have turned into vaporware – S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl. Could GSC deliver on the merits already set for the American Conquest series? Maybe American Conquest will fall into the obscurity of the RTS realm? Read on to find about my rough time with Divided Nation.
If you don’t own an expensive video card, haven’t upgraded your PC to current hardware standards, or haven’t even bought a PC with Windows XP; American Conquest may be the game for you. Gamers that still haven’t left the year 2001 could play this with no worries.
To begin with, the camera angles in Divided Nation don’t help the player one bit. It’s hard to see your units and when you eventually do zoom in to improve the vision, you will only see about ten percent of the units. The camera isn’t totally useless. You can rotate it around for a few different perspectives. The real problem lies in not being able to see how the units are fairing in the war. Outside of the camera issues, the units on the screen could have used some more attention. I find it hard to see any drastic differences between the original and this version.
The enemy A.I. isn’t superb by any means with its attack, but, their defense isn’t too shabby. They’ll lurk in nearby trenches waiting for the attackers to approach. When the battle is fought in the fields, the A.I. will lessen their strategies and spread out in terms of defense. The enemy A.I. doesn’t take the game above mediocrity, which is a disappointment.
There are two models of gameplay that Divided Nation offers. The standard real-time strategy type has you collecting resources to build up your troops to attack. The other model is where everything is dished out at the start of the battle. This is my particular favorite since the first has been done over and over again.
The second type allows for more strategies, and figuring out where to place your units. No more units are allowed in the game outside of the beginning allotment. What’s missing from the gametypes is the commonly found tutorial mode. There is nothing featured here in any fashion that guides you to learning the basics.
The sound for Divided Nation seemed like it wanted to fade into the background. Without any recognition of what you are listening to, it’s easy to forget that there’s any music at all. The sound effects at least make up for the lack of music. They are crisp with gunshots and cannons being fired. Voice-work could have been added to improve the overall audio department. The audio department doesn’t sound like it was completed.
American Conquest: Divided Nation isn’t a step in the right direction for the series. It isn’t my favorite RTS – that label is placed on Age of Empires II & III. It isn’t even my favorite GSC Game World game, Cossacks is above American Conquest on every level for me. What exactly do I think of American Conquest? It’s a game that could have benefited being released two to three years ago. In 2006 though, heavyweights like Star Wars, Lord of the Rings and Age of Empires are dominating the RTS world. American Conquest: Divided Nation clearly is a minor league game hoping to make it into the big leagues.
It is based around the American Civil War, which is somewhat unique.
Graphics are downright ugly; I wouldn’t want to be caught playing this around my friends; audio is incomplete and bland; no tutorials; lacks excitement.
American Conquest: Divided Nation is a sign that not all developers prefer graphics over gameplay.
Written by Dakota Grabowski
Original date of publish: 01.05.2006