The Alternate History of C&C
For some reason, the RTS games of today just dont focus on a detailed and deep story in the single-player campaign, Verdu says. To fully understand Command & Conquers history, travel back with us to 1946. Albert Einstein, drawing on his brief collaboration with fellow scientist Nikola Tesla during World War II, brought together the theories behind wormholes, black holes, magnets, and electricity to create a time machine he called the Chronosphere.
Feeling heavily the guilt caused by the sheer number of deaths during World War II, Einstein decided he would prevent that conflict from having occurred. He knew that merely interacting with Adolf Hitler would erase the man from history, so he used the Chronosphere to access the year 1924, when Hitler was released from prison after participating in an attempted coup of the German government. Einstein shook hands with the man and returned to 1946, discovering that he had succeeded in eliminating World War II.
However, he had failed to stop any wars from ever happening again. Without Hitler to lead the Nazi Party, it fizzled, and Germany remained a benign nation. By the 1950s, the Soviet Union, since it didnt have to bear the brunt of a German invasion during World War II, had amassed great technological and military power under Josef Stalin. The country soon became aggressive against the European nations.
1953 saw the beginning of The Great World War II between the Soviets and the Alliance of Democratic Nations, which included the United States, England, Germany, France, and others. At the end of the war, the Soviet Union was split into Russia, Ukraine, and the other nations that existed before the communist revolution.
The Rise of the Brotherhood of Nod, the Creation of GDI
Stalin was found dead at the end of The Great World War II. Documents recovered during the dissolution of the Communist Party mentioned a mysterious man known as Kane, who was Stalins top advisor. Extensive efforts to find him turned up nothing.
Meanwhile, the United Nations Security Council established Operations Group Echo: Black Ops 9 in the aftermath of The Great World War II. The low-profile organization was tasked with ensuring that local conflicts didnt spill over into multi-national wars ever again. However, when the group failed to assassinate Saddam Hussein and prevent the Persian Gulf War from happening, losing many top agents in the process, the UN decided to officially reveal its existence.
In 1995, the UN morphed Operations Group Echo: Black Ops 9 into the Global Defense Initiative (GDI). The same year, Dr. Ignatio Mobius discovered Tiberium, which had reached Earth during a meteor shower. The mineral self-replicates and quickly infests the environment, killing humans, animals, and plants that remain in contact with it for too long, but it can be harvested and used as a power source.
The arrival of Tiberium finally revealed Kanes identity. The leader of the fanatical Brotherhood of Nod, which traces its history to 1800 BC, he proclaimed the lethal minerals existence evidence of a new evolutionary period on Earth. The Brotherhood soon had a near-monopoly on Tiberium harvesting, drawing the ire of GDI. Thus began a story chronicled in the first Command & Conquer game, which appeared on Mac OS, MS-DOS, Windows, and a host of other platforms during the mid-1990s.
The Tiberium Wars
Kane embarked on a propaganda campaign against GDI, accusing the organization of turning its back on countries infested with Tiberium. By prodding disenfranchised citizens to revolt against their leaders, he brought those nations under his control, prompting GDI to attack his territories. The First Tiberium War broke out in 1999, with most of the fighting concentrated in Europe and Africa. Three years later, it was over, Kane presumed dead after an Ion Cannon strike destroyed the Sarajevo Temple housing the Brotherhoods headquarters.
Tiberium, however, continued its relentless march across the globe, slowed only in places where the climate was extremely cold or dry. The first manifestation of the alien mineral was green, although blue variants started to appear. New patches of Tiberium also showed up where recent meteor showers rained across the sky. By 2047, only 20% of the Earth was free of severe Tiberium infestation, with 50% barely habitable and the rest rendered useless.
In 2030, Kane sent a greeting to GDI leaders, letting them know he was still alive and that they should prepare for The Second Tiberium War. GDI barely defeated Nod once again, but during the conflict, they discovered the arrival of aliens known as the Scrin, who were drawn to the Earth by Kanes creation of a liquid Tiberium device. The Scrin play a much larger role in The Third Tiberium War, which started in 2047.
We wanted to continue the Scrin thread and also introduce the fact that humans are not the only ones addicted to Tiberium, explains Verdu. I cant go into much more details about how the Scrin play into all of this and what their relation to Tiberium really is. Those are questions that will be answered in future games.
In the meantime, youll be able to play out the events of The Third Tiberium War in Command & Conquer 3, where youll discover new twists to the story.
- Always stay ahead of the resource game, cautions Verdu. Too many times, people build too many things at once and are stuck with no income, only to then get annihilated by an opponent who did a better job of managing capital.
- He adds: A good rule of thumb is to build two refineries for every one war factory. A refinery brings in an average of 50 credits a second while a war factory will spend 100 credits a second, a 2:1 ratio that balances out your production costs. You wont have to dip into reserves or run out of cash.
- Nod armies are typically built around stealth, with several air and ground units that can move across the map undetected. A favorite Nod tactic is to rush opponents early, since the Brotherhoods units are better during the beginning of the game. Opponents should concentrate on building up defenses first.
- The GDIs Ion Cannon is one of the most devastating weapons in the game, but when you use it, follow up with an attack that eliminates any lingering units and buildings. Dont let your opponent immediately start rebuilding.
- The Scrins Tripods and air units are their most powerful, and their wormholes can teleport troops into an enemy base before the opposition knows whats happening. Luckily, the Brotherhood has strong anti-aircraft defenses, although GDIs abilities in that area are lacking.
- All three factions have units that can take control of enemy structures. When you attack, use those units to turn their watchtowers and other buildings against the enemy.
- The Brotherhood is best at rushing, while the Scrin are well-suited to turtling, a tactic in which you build up your defenses and wipe out an assault, leaving your opponent vulnerable because their best units have been destroyed. GDI players can go either way.
- Mac OS X version 10.4.9
- Intel Core Duo processor or higher
- 1GB of RAM
- 128MB video RAM (256MB or higher recommended): ATI X1600, NVIDIA GeForce 7300 GT, or higher (Intel GMA950 chipset not supported)