233 Posts

The Steam Winter Sale is going on, which also means it's time to vote for your favorite games in different categories. While doing so, I noticed I had two gifts in my inventory, so I suggest you take a look at yours. In the main Steam window, you can go to your user name (mine is GregoPeck for instance) and click on "inventory." If "gifts" isn't listed, click the drop down menu button and check for that section. Keep the gifts or send them to your friends. Happy gifting (or collecting)!!

*Edit* I just tried to look for this using the instructions I gave you and now I find it difficult to find the gifts section, whereas before it was quite easy for some reason (maybe because I had gifts to send and I've now sent them).


Here's a quick question for ya: What kind of keyboard do you prefer and why? Mechanical (clicky), membrane (soft), or hybrid (both)? This year, I've gotten to know the difference between the two (I'll explain below). I kind of think I like the membrane (my Cynosa) more than my mechanical/hybrid (my Ornata). From what I've briefly read (mostly on the packaging), it seems "hardcore" gamers prefer mechanical keyboards. I'm not really sure why though. I think it has something to do w/ response time and being able to have a definite, hard feel of pressing a key, being sure that you press it. Since I'm not sure of this preference, perhaps someone here could fill me in, especially if it's there preference. So let me know in the comments! Also, be sure to let me know what your favorite brand of keyboards is! Thanks for sharing!!!

Until this year I'm not sure I knew there were different kinds of keyboards, I thought they all were the same. I was wrong. When Re-Logic announced Chroma support for Terraria 1.4, and I realized what that is, I just had to have one of these keyboards. I don't know how I lived w/out a keyboard w/ keys that light up. I often play in the dark and even though I'm really good at typing, there are some keys I'm less familiar w/ and thus more likely to hit the wrong key. So, I went out and bought a Razer Cynosa Chroma (membrane) and absolutely loved it!!!! Unfortunately, I spilled soda on it this year and even though all the keys seem to be functioning, it still feels bad, so I decided to buy a replacement. I went to Wal-Mart looking for another Cynosa, but instead found a mechanical (hybrid I believe) Razer Ornata Chroma. That's pretty much when I learned the difference between the two and I was disappointed, because I loved that Cynosa so very much. However, a few months or so after getting the Ornata, the "N" key started sticking, as in it wouldn't pop back up after I pressed it. Then another key started doing the same. In the end, I did an RMA w/ Razer. I had to send them the Ornata before they would send me a replacement. I felt like I couldn't go w/out a Chroma keyboard, so I bought a Razer Cynosa V2 Chroma from Amazon. The only problem I've noticed is that the Space Bar sometimes squeaks (I can hear it now as I type). I find this to be a minor annoyance and I've noticed others reporting the same issue (perhaps w/ a different key). I decided I could live w/ it. The replacement Ornata finally came and I switched back to it. Then, I decided to see if there was a simple solution to the squeaky Space Bar on my Cynosa V2. Razer doesn't want end users to remove keys unless their keyboard came w/ a key remover. However from what I've seen on YouTube, it seems easy and safe enough to do, but I dare not do it as I don't want to chance voiding my warranty. So, I reached out to Razer and they decided (automatically) to go through the RMA process. This process starts w/ them deciding whether or not they'll replace it. Unfortunately, they deemed my squeaky Space Bar as damage caused by me, which is absolutely wrong. This Space Bar has been squeaking ever since I started typing on it. Sure, I could have possibly gotten Amazon to replace it or whatever, but again I didn't deem it worthy enough of going through all that trouble. Unfortunately, the replacement Ornata they sent me started doing the same thing a couple of months after I got it, the Back Space key started sticking. This behavior is definitely unacceptable, so I started the RMA process (again). They've decided to replace the keyboard (again). How many keyboards must I go through to get one that isn't faulty or doesn't fail within a few months of using it? Maybe this is a Razer thing, I don't know. I still like Razer, it's hard not to like these keyboards. I know there are others similar. Some are extremely cheap, while some are even more expensive than the Ornata. I believe Razer has one or two models that are more expensive.


GregoPeck gives this an astounding "Must Play" on the Ghost Scale
This achieves something special, and it would be a shame to miss it.
GregoPeck gives this a "Must Play" on the Ghost Scale
This achieves something special, and it would be a shame to miss it.
Final Fantasy VIII is my ultimate, most favorite Final Fantasy of them all. I was introduced to it and the series about 20 years ago and I fell deeply in love with it. I don't know how many times I've completed this game, but I remember when I'd play it annually. Now, it's been remastered and the game looks beautiful! Check them embedded video that will show you the difference (between this and the original) to see for yourself. I haven't completed the game in this play through yet, but I feel like it deserves a strong recommendation (from one of FFVIII's biggest fans).

Aside from some upgraded and now beautiful textures, one slight difference between this and the original (the other version you'll find on Steam) is Chocobo World. I never played this until I played that other Steam version, because I didn't have the extra accessory to play it on the PS1. However, if you're looking for Chocobo World here, you're not going to find it, or at least I'm quite sure of that.

The game does have it's own launcher, kind of. It's fine though, it gives you a chance to tinker with some settings. One thing that this version does include, that was also included in the original Steam version, is a few cheats. You can significantly increase the game speed and turn off random encounters, for instance. I haven't used these and I don't really plan to, but it's still nice to have them.

If you love Final Fantasy VIII, you should definitely check this out. Even though this game hasn't gotten a "remake," having a "remastered" version is still great. I'm so glad my favorite Final Fantasy game got a face lift, it gave me a great reason to play it again!

The embedded video does show some of the negatives, such as lack of rumble and analog support. FPS was also mentioned and attributed to input lag, but as I've been playing, Squall's limit break seems normal.

What do you think about this? Is FFVIII one of your favorites? Are you glad it got remastered? Would you like to see a remake? Feel free to comment!


GregoPeck gives this an astounding "Must Play" on the Ghost Scale
This achieves something special, and it would be a shame to miss it.
GregoPeck gives this a "Must Play" on the Ghost Scale
This achieves something special, and it would be a shame to miss it.
“DOOM” Eternal is a sequel to “DOOM” (2016). However, it doesn’t just add new content, but it also adds some new functionality. Platforming is still a part of the series and DOOM Eternal adds a bit more to getting around. Now there is a mod for the Super Shotgun called the Meat Hook. It will let you grapple onto a demon and shoot or punch it. The new Blood Punch melee attack does some serious damage. If you want to instantly kill a Pinky, Blood Punch it in the face. The gauge for this attack gets refilled when you perform Glory Kills.

One new way to get armor is by using the Flame Belch. It is a new piece of gear that puts demons on fire. While they’re lit, they’ll some drop armor. Another way to get armor is to upgrade the Meat Hook. The demons you grapple on to will then temporarily catch on fire and drop some armor.

Your arsenal also includes Frag Grenades. You can turn them into Ice Bombs, which will temporarily freeze enemies. You can switch between the two modes just like you can with weapons.

The Codex is very resourceful. Along with lore, it contains information about weapons and demons. It will tell you what a demon’s weakness is, since this varies among them. The game doesn’t go about hiding this. It has a great Tutorials section. These can be brief videos that appear in a small window to show how something, like the Ice Bomb, is used. In the very beginning, the game will take you to through a brief tutorial.

One function I enjoyed with DOOM Eternal was Cheat Codes. They are part of the “secret” collectibles you can find on some missions. Using them does not affect your progression. However, you can only use them on a mission you’ve already completed and they disable the Slayer Key in the mission. Slayer Keys open Slayer Gates. These are “special encounters.” They will teleport you to a different battle ground and you have to defeat all of the demons. They can be challenging. I think the only one I didn’t complete was the last one in the Ancient Gods Part 1 DLC. Winning these in the base game grants an Empyrean Key. There are six of them and they unlock a new weapon similar to the BFG.

There are a lot of options within the graphics settings. I was hoping to use GeForce Experience to “optimize” my settings, but the program didn’t detect the game. So, I tried out the different presets. The highest one told me I didn’t have enough VRAM, so I think I chose the one below it. The game ran great, I never noticed any kind of lag. Speaking of issues, the game did crash at least at one point a couple of times, though I did get around it. There was also an issue when I first tried to play, but it was pretty much a network issue that was resolved not long after I encountered it.

There seems to be a bit more of an online part to DOOM Eternal. I didn’t explore the multiplayer parts of the game, but I knew it’s different. For instance, there is a Battle Mode and you can play as a demon. You can connect to your friends and get some experience points when they do. Experience points unlock special customizations for your character, title, weapons, and more. Along with mission and weapon challenges there are now weekly challenges, giving players more opportunities to earn experience points. There are also events that occur like the holiday one going on now. One of the items I got is a skin for a weapon, another is a Santa “Doom Guy” skin.

The central location in the game is the Fortress. You will be able to explore it between some missions. Within, you’ll find some of the collectibles you’ve found on different missions. Music tracks you’ve found are displayed on the walls. You can interact with them and make them your current background music. There are tracks from different id games. You can also visit a room that displays your collected weapons, gear, and toys (“secret” collectibles).

The Fortress also contains different things you can unlock. In some of them you’ll find Suit upgrades, Runes, or a skin for your slayer. In order to unlock them, you’ll need to get Sentinel Batteries, each item costs two. You’ll find these as collectibles on missions and by the end, it seems there are more than you need, so it may not be necessary to collect them all.

I pretty much think DOOM Eternal takes everything that is great (which is pretty much everything) about DOOM and gives it a nice upgrade. I like many of the “quality of life” things, such as being able to change the menu colors (although still limited to a few). The music is still good and being able to listen to tracks from older games is cool.

My biggest complaint with these two DOOM games is the platforming. I think being able to jump and dash around is helpful and can be fun or helpful during a fight. However, sometimes theses platforming instances can be complicated. It can be frustrating trying to make some of the jumps. Sometimes while playing, I’ve just wondered, “why?” As I said in my DOOM review, it’s kind of like a mix between Doom and Super Mario Bros.

If you like Doom, you should check out “DOOM.” Then you should check out DOOM Eternal, I would definitely recommend it. After that, assuming you’ve enjoyed the games, you may want to also check out DOOM Eternal’s DLC.

Also, now that I remembered, I like how DOOM is pretty much like Doom and DOOM Eternal is pretty much like Doom 2 (you may notice some similarities).

(Update) I just remembered that I forgot to mention that DOOM Eternal not only lets you jump and grapple, but it also allows you to actually stick on walls. There are certain surfaces you'll find that allow you to do this. They all look essentially the same, though they can sometimes be difficult to spot. Being able to do this and stay on the surface and look to your right or left before jumping is cool. While attached to a surface, your Dash meter will also recharge, allowing you to double dash in mid-air, as you'll need to do sometimes.

Have you played DOOM Eternal yet? What do you think about it? Feel free to comment.


GregoPeck gives this an astounding "Must Play" on the Ghost Scale
This achieves something special, and it would be a shame to miss it.
GregoPeck gives this a "Must Play" on the Ghost Scale
This achieves something special, and it would be a shame to miss it.
DOOM (not to be confused with Doom apparently) is still a great game, four years later. However, one of my main complaints is the platforming. It’s kind of like a cross between Doom and Super Mario Bros. Still, I think it’s a great game. As someone who’s been playing Doom since the beginning (and even before with Wolfenstein 3D), DOOM is a great addition to the series. There wasn’t much of a story in the original Doom games. Doom 3 had more of a story, and so does this one.

DOOM is a great visual upgrade from the other games in the series. It looks great and apparently performs really well, too. You can play with the Vulkan API, which seems to be pretty awesome. I seem to remember some reporting about the game pushing a lot of FPS (1,000 I think) or something similar. Now DOOM is on the Switch. I don’t know much about that version, but I’m sure it performs well.

One new addition in this game is the Glory Kill. When you attack a demon enough and it’s low on health, it may end up staggering, it will glow with an orange and blue outline (depending on if you’re close enough to perform a Glory Kill). When you’re close enough, you just hit the melee key or button to kill it. This is a great way to replenish your health, especially since there are many weak demons that are easy to stagger. If you want to get ammo, use your chainsaw on a demon. The chainsaw requires gas to use, which you’ll find scattered around like ammo, armor, and health. You can kill a demon with one chainsaw attack. This is a great way to quickly kill a demon and replenish your ammo.

You will mostly find demons in groups. You will usually need to kill all the demons in an area to proceed. Since they won’t respawn, you’re free to explore the area without interruption once you’ve cleared them out. This is helpful for collecting items, including “secrets.” The map will display icons, including Run Trials and other “secrets.” Some of the secrets are collectible dolls, skins of the Doom Guy. For instance, there is one that’s based on Fallout and it’s called “Vault Guy.” You can also collect classic Doom maps. To unlock these, you’ll have to find the lever and pull it, which will open a door to a classic map. There’s usually very little inside them, but you still need to go in them in order for the game to recognize that you completed that “secret.” However, you can play these maps outside of campaign mode. If you don’t get all of these on the first time through a mission, it’s ok, because you can go back and replay missions from the game menu. You can go through a map multiple times picking up different things each time, but the game will keep track of what you’ve collected or done. Likewise, you don’t have to complete each challenge, you can come back later and get one or more, if you like.

Runes are pretty much special abilities. However, in order to get them you’ll have to find the Rune trial and complete it. Some of them are difficult. Not only will you get a cool bonus from this, but it will also help you get some practice and teach you how to effectively use a weapon.

As for weapons, I actually ended up using the Super Shotgun most of the time, but some demons require a much more powerful weapon to kill. You can unlock different weapon modes. For instance, the Rocket Launcher can use a lock on target mode or a remote detonation mode. The game will also show your progress towards the weapon’s mastery, which gives you a certain challenge to complete. This may be something like killing a certain number of demons using a certain weapon mode.

One feature lets you can create your own maps. I think I tried it once, I think there’s at least one achievement for it. I haven’t played multiplayer mode either. I bought the season pass for the game, but from what I could tell, the DLC was multiplayer content that I wasn’t interested in, so I didn’t get much out of it.

I think if you’ve been a fan of the Doom series, you’ll probably enjoy this. I think it’s an awesome game, although sometimes the platforming and some of the challenges are frustrating. I also really like the music, it’s pretty awesome and fits the game well. I think the game does a great job at making you feel like you’re a demon-killing badass.

What do you think of DOOM? I remember the game is one of Cheerful Ghosts Games of the Year.


Here's just a quick announcement about some very exciting news I found in a brief announcement from Studio Wildcard. Apparently, they've announced Ark 2, but haven't released a trailer or details. I believe I read that it's going to focus on Santiago's story (played by Vin Diesel). He's one of the characters you'll only find out about by reading Explorer Notes that are hidden throughout the game. These notes cover a few different characters, but Helena and Rockwell (David Tennant) seem to be the main characters, at least at the moment. They also showed a preview for Ark: The Animated series, which stars actors such as Russell Crow, Vin Diesel, David Tennant, Karl Urban, and more! Check out the trailer in the embedded video. I think this is awesome and exciting. I can't wait to hear more about Ark 2. I was wondering what would happen w/ Ark after Genesis Pt. 2, because that is supposed to be the end of Ark. However, people speculated about Ark 2 and it seems that's what's going to happen. As fan big fan of the game, I find this news to be very exciting, I just had to share it. Perhaps later I'll update this post with details as I find them.

Twitter source: https://twitter.com/survivetheark/status/1337205017762258944

*Update* Here's the latest link with some more info, including an Ark 2 trailer: https://survivetheark.com/index.php?/articles.html/ark-ii-ark-the-animated-series-r1682/


GregoPeck gives this a "Meh" on the Ghost Scale
It’s not amazing, it’s not bad. This is ok but you may want to choose another title.
GregoPeck gives this a "Meh" on the Ghost Scale
It’s not amazing, it’s not bad. This is ok but you may want to choose another title.
I decided to delete my “recommended” review for C&C4 on Steam, because I’m a bit mixed on whether or not I’d recommend it, so I thought I’d just share my thoughts on it here instead.

Skip this if you’re not interested in cheating in the game:
I did enjoy C&C4, but I used Cheat Engine to make me invincible, which may have altered my experience. I’m not too ashamed to cheat in some games, I actually think it makes the game much more fun and much less stressful for me. I really don’t like a challenge. I used this program for many other C&C games. If you want to cheat in the game like I did, download and install Cheat Engine. When you open it up the first time, it will ask if you want to go through the tutorial. That is your choice, but I found it confusing and definitely unnecessary. The tutorial basically tells you how to discover cheats for a game, but I think it’s way easier to just search the web for a cheat table someone else created. I was able to do this simply and easily. When you have the game running, such as when you’re at the main menu, Alt-Tab back to your desktop and open Cheat Engine. Then select the icon under “File” and it will show you a list of processes running on your computer. Select the one that’s obviously C&C4. Next, click the icon to the right of the first one and there you can browse to the cheat file you’ve downloaded and open it. Then, at the bottom of the program, in a big white box, you’ll finally see some text. Click on the empty box near the text to enable the codes. Select the very first one to enable the overall cheat ability and then select the one next to whichever cheat you wish to use. After that, go back to your game and enjoy the cheat(s), it’s simple really.

Skip to here if you’re not interested in cheating in the game:
It seems the main reason that the game gets such a negative review is due to it’s DRM. The game requires you to login with an EA account. It also requires you to use a key to activate the game. It will not accept the code given to you by Steam when you try to log in and register it via Steam. You must visit EA’s website to activate the game in your EA account. This is actually easy to do and I found a video that shows exactly how to do it: https://youtu.be/Ex3tIL5EcjU

Tutorial, MCV, Unit Limitations:
I initially wrote a positive review for the game on Steam. I wanted to share the solution I found so others wouldn’t have to waste their time looking for it. However, I’m not entirely sure the game deserves a full recommendation. First of all, the tutorial is extremely limited, which is unlike some of the other C&C games. C&C3 had a good tutorial and Red Alert 3 has a very detailed tutorial broken up into parts, so you weren’t overwhelmed with it all at once. This game doesn’t really tell you how to do much. For instance, it says to find a point on the map, but doesn’t specify how to move your camera, though this is something you can easily figure out, especially if you’re already familiar with the series. In this game there’s only one building for constructing units and defenses, the MCV, which can be deployed in three different varieties; offense, defense, and support. This makes the game extremely unique in that you don’t have to create buildings for infantry or vehicles or aircraft, it’s all done in the same place. What’s more is that you’re limited to how much you can create by something called command points. I think I saw the max available was 60 and each unit costs at least a few of these, so it’s very difficult to amass a massive army to overwhelm your enemy. I’m not sure how to or if you can increase your command points.

There is also no harvesting of resources. There are red, blue, and green crystals you’ll find on the map, which you can pick up to get points to spend on abilities. There are also blue and green orbs you’ll find that can increase a unit’s rank. The game doesn’t go into much (if any) detail explaining these things.

”Capturing” structures:
There are also some structures that the game will tell you to capture. If you’re familiar with the series, you’ll probably assume this means sending an engineer into the structure, since that is the way every other C&C game has worked. However, this time is different. These structures have a meter which displays GDI, neutral, and Nod influence. To capture them, you need the structure’s influence to be on your side. To increase your influence, you need to be around it for a while and have more units in the area than your opponent. While it’s under your opponent’s influence, it will work for them (if it’s a turret for instance) and you can attack it. If you attack it enough, it will go into neutral influence and you won’t be able to (or need to) attack it anymore. You’ll see arrows that point out which direction the influence bar is going. However, there is at least one mission where you’ll have to use an engineer to capture certain buildings.

Summary:
Honestly, I thought the best part of the game was the very beginning, the intro trailer. I’m still suck on those limiting command points and I think that’s a real drag. I’m not too fond of the deviation of harvesting resources, which is something that’s been in every other C&C game, except for Renegade (which is a FPS). Even using an invincibility cheat, sometimes the missions were frustrating as you have to chase units across the map and also hold onto certain structures with your limited units (due to command point limitations). The story was ok I guess and the FMVs were crisp. The game looked modern.

Anyway, if you like the C&C series, I think you’d be justified in skipping this one. However, if you’re interested you may want to wait to catch it while it’s on sale. Although, if all of this sounds good to you, then go for it. I didn’t include all of this detail in my Steam review, so this is a legit Cheerful Ghost review. 😄

P.S. The trailer I just embedded makes the game look more like a movie, it contains very little game play.


The dev team of Ark: Survival Evolved are currently doing their annual Extra Life charity stream. During these events, they release new info about the next DLC coming to Ark. This year it's about Genesis Pt. 2, which was originally slated for release this winter, but has been delayed (like everything else in the world today) until March 2021. However, they released an exciting teaser trailer and David Tennant is the voice of one of the game's characters named Rockwell! As a fan of David Tennant, I was pleasantly surprised by this. To me it kind of raises the game to a new level, kind of like when Patrick Stewart provided his voice for The Elder Scrolls: Oblivion.

I believe Genesis Pt. 2 is supposed to be the culmination of all of the Ark content released in the last five years. Everything has lead us to this. The game really doesn't throw the lore in your face, so if you want to know what's going on, you'll have to dig a bit. Otherwise, there are some good videos on YouTube covering the Ark lore and there are theories running around on the game's forum. Initially you'll probably be introduced to Rockwell by obtaining notes called "Rockwell Recipes," but you can also open Explorer Notes which are in various locations in each of the game's "story" maps (The Island, Scorched Earth, Aberration, Extinction, and Genesis Pt. 1). However, it isn't until Aberration that the game seems to focus more on the characters of Rockwell and Helena. In Genesis Pt. 1, you have a small robotic companion named HLN-A that follows you around and tells you about being in the simulation. Yes, Genesis Pt. 1 is a simulation, you and HLN-A work together to figure out just what is going on as there are many "glitches" to repair.

There are some cool new looking creatures to look forward to as always. There are also some familiar creatures as well. I saw Pteranodons flying, so I'm hoping that means you can actually fly this time. Strangely enough, Genesis Pt. 1 had flying creatures, but didn't allow you to fly, though you could enable this on your own server or in your single player game. There weren't flying creatures in Aberration either, just something that could jump great distances and another that could glide.

Also in the Ark news today, TLC 3 has been released. This is the third time the devs have taken some creatures, given them a new look and some new abilities. This time the Stego and Mammoth received some TLC. Luckily, you cannot be dismounted on the Stego, as there are Microraptors in the game that can dismount you. They have different "states" in which they can change into with each different attack being beneficial in different ways, for instance one is better for harvesting thatch, another for berries. Mammoths got another seat added to their saddle, which now fits two. The new seat is for someone to play war drums, which have been in the game since the beginning, but they now give a buff. For instance, they make it so that your creatures can't become afraid as is something that occurs with an ability used by the Yutyrannos. Mammoths were also given some extra attacks.

Also included in this TLC is a bit of a taming UI overhaul that helps you better see what's going on while you're taming a creature, such as displaying it's torpor, so you don't have to go into it's inventory and keep an eye on it. Another addition with this TLC is the ability to finally breed insects and bats. You can watch the video released for TLC 3 here: https://youtu.be/bL_d6-jo0yY

For more information on the Extra Life event, Genesis Pt. 2, and TLC 3, check out the post on the website: https://survivetheark.com/index.php?/articles.html/ark-genesis-part-2-teaser-trailer-tlc-pass-3-r1667/

If you're interested in Ark, it's currently on sale. If you want to discuss any of this, feel free to do so in the comments. I've tried to avoid spoilers w/ regards to Rockwell and Helena, but if you want to discuss those, feel free to let me know.

Check out these two videos by Anthomnia for more info on Genesis Pt. 2:
Trailer Breakdown: https://youtu.be/dvkUAmZZcZs
Look at new creatures, biomes, and items: https://youtu.be/MRWkc-rNEfc

If you prefer a more quick look at what was revealed (as shown in the video links above) check out the post on the official forum here: https://survivetheark.com/index.php?/articles.html/extra-life-2020-livestream-reveals-r1670/


This looks like an awesome movie and it's coming out at the end of the year! I saw other smaller trailers for it, but this one added to that. It seems to explain why a modern group of military soldiers are fighting monsters we see in the Monster Hunter games. It didn't make sense, before this trailer, why modern weapons were being used, but now it makes sense. You do get to see some people using weapons that we're used to seeing in Monster Hunter games. One of the main characters, for instance, is using dual blades. She's one of these modern soldiers, but it seems she switches from modern weapons to Monster Hunter weapons. There are other characters we will see wielding other Monster Hunter weapons. I've read a little bit about this movie and how the production team worked with Capcom. This has been in the works for about a decade, I think.

So let me know what you think of this and if you're planning on going to see it (despite the COVID situation). I feel like this looks like something I most definitely want to go see as I've enjoyed playing Monster Hunter: World. For those of you that own a Switch, you should also be aware that the Switch is getting two new Monster Hunter games (lucky!).


GregoPeck gives this an astounding "Must Play" on the Ghost Scale
This achieves something special, and it would be a shame to miss it.
GregoPeck gives this a "Must Play" on the Ghost Scale
This achieves something special, and it would be a shame to miss it.
Command & Conquer (C&C) is one of the very first real-time strategy games. It was released in 1995, although Dune II actually came out a few years before it. C&C, however, made vast improvements and additions to the genre and was perhaps most famous for its full motion videos (FMVs). The acting, music, and gameplay were all great and lead to a very successful series that lasted over a decade. This success led to the game actually being retitled as “Command & Conquer: Tiberian Dawn.” After the success of C&C and it’s expansions, a new game was released called Red Alert (RA). RA takes place in a different timeline in which Einstein creates a time machine and removes Hitler from history. This put the Allies against the Stalin led USSR. Like C&C, RA was followed up with some expansions and sequels. I still own the soundtrack to RA that I got many years ago. I’ve really loved pretty much all C&C/RA music.

Most recently, some of original developers of the games decided to create the Command & Conquer Remastered Collection. They actually found old tapes of the FMVs and were able to remaster them, making them look much better. You can check out Jon’s post (link below) to see a video about how this collection was made, it’s worth watching if you’re a C&C fan.

One of my first reactions to the collection was that I was surprised that it’s priced at only $20. Maybe, I was expecting it to be a little more expensive. However, Limited Run Games did have other, more expensive, copies you could get that came with a lot more extra material, such as the music on a USB drive. I still think $20 is a great price tag for this collection.

The first bug I actually ran into may have been changed by now, but it was difficult to disable subtitles. For some reason, you had to click around the button instead of on the button. It’s been quite a while since I’ve done this, though. I ran into another bug that was actually just a typo in the description of a photo from the bonus material.

The games didn’t just get a graphical overhaul, but the music and other elements were overhauled as well. One of the interesting graphical features is that you can press the Space Bar to switch between the classic and remastered graphics. This gives you a nice view of how the game has been remastered. The collection includes bonus material that is unlocked after completing a mission. Most of it is just videos showing green screen takes of the actors, which I didn’t find to be very valuable. However, you can also unlock bonus music tracks, which I found to be much more valuable.

Speaking of the music, I ran into what I thought was a bug. You can go into the game’s Jukebox, which you can find in the audio options on the main menu or in the menu during a game and create a playlist. It has some good options such as including or excluding original or remastered tracks, bonus tracks, C&C tracks, or RA tracks. One part of this confused me and that is the shuffle feature. I assumed this meant that the game would play a random music track if this was enabled, however this wasn’t entirely correct. What happens is that after adding tracks to the playlist, the game then shuffles them around and then seemingly saves that playlist. It then plays the exact same songs in the exact same order in pretty much every mission. This seemed to persist for almost every mission, although I think it actually changed some times. You can easily switch tracks w/ the “-” and “+” keys, though.

Just like in the original, sometimes there are often multiple areas you can select for the next mission after completing one. In the original games, this meant that you’d probably miss out on one, but this collection has a Mission Select menu option. Once you finish a mission, you can click on the “Main Menu” button. The game will then tell you, pretty much, that your progress is saved and you can select missions from the main menu. This way, you can play every mission. It’s very handy and helps expand campaign gameplay. You can also unlock the secret missions for both games. I couldn't remember how to do this, so I just used Google to find out how.

I was working on Steam achievements, but ran into another issue, which may just be something I was doing incorrectly. One of the achievements requires you to play 10 multiplayer matches, but includes “comp stomp,” which I presume to mean you versus the AI, pretty much like the Skirmish option. However, I couldn’t get this to start and am waiting to hear back about what I may have done wrong with this.

After finishing the C&C part of the collection, I started playing the RA part. RA included a new snow environment, which I liked very much. It also included new units including spies and naval units. One thing I liked was that if you lose a naval unit, the game will specifically tell you, “naval unit lost.” After switching from the first game to RA, I immediately began to notice how it was an improvement over the original game. For instance, in the original game, it was difficult for a tank to shoot at an infantry unit and it was just easier to run them over. However, tanks seem to have gained anti-infantry accuracy in RA. They also seem to have gotten a speed boost. You may also hear the male voice of EVA and think “oh, that sounds like Jarvis from Iron Man,” but I can tell you that they are not the same actor. They most definitely sound alike (to me and some others) though.

If you liked C&C and RA, I would definitely suggest picking this up. I enjoyed being able to play these games again, especially after being remastered. I (along with others apparently) would really like to see more of the C&C/RA games get the remastered treatment. I have these games on a DVD collection known as "Command & Conquer: The First Decade," but the earlier games aren't completely compatible with today's modern PCs as they were designed for 32-bit CPUs. However, with a bit of research and some extra steps, you can get these games to work and stay stable. I've been able to get Tiberian Sun working and am playing it again.

If you have thoughts you want to share about this, please feel free to do so in the comments!

Check out this post by Jon: https://cheerfulghost.com/jdodson/posts/4466/the-remarkable-story-behind-command-conquer-s-remastering


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