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Goblin Commander: Unleash the Horde Package Art
 GENRE
  Real-Time Strategy
 DEVELOPER
  Jaleco Entertainment
 PUBLISHER
  Jaleco Entertainment
 NUMBER OF PLAYERS
  1-2
 CONNECTIVITY
  no
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Goblin Commander: Unleash the Horde

Goblin Commander was one of those games that had been staring at me every time I walked into a video game store. Each time I’d walk by I’d see it and go “huh, maybe… what’s this!” Finally, after awhile of farting around I finally decided to pick it up. Maybe I should’ve left it on the shelf, but… well you decide.

visuals

The graphics in Goblin Commander look nice and detailed and are full of little touches that help bring the environments to life. Unfortunately, when you zoom up on the action it ends up looking like a game that could be pulled off on the N64. The character models look nice but up close they look blocky and generic. The effects on the other hand are pleasing to the eye and keep you entranced for an average person’s attention span, not too long but long enough to have fun.

One of my few major complaints about this game was the lighting. Most areas of a level are so terribly dark it’s hard to see what’s going on and where to go next. The path often gets obscured in darkness and can leave you wandering in circles for a few seconds until you get your bearings. As I’ve mentioned before, from afar, Goblin Commander looks very good, but when you zoom in (which isn’t too often so don’t worry) it looks about average. It’s not the best looking game but it’s enough to satisfy.

audio

The audio in this game is limited at the least. The music doesn’t really fit every situation but it does sound relatively good. It does get annoying on longer missions but for the most part it’s acceptable. Nothing outstanding here, just some patience music. It is an RTS anyway.

Despite the terribly average music the sound effects are the strong point for the audio. Each whack of a ball and chain and each explosion gives you the real “Oomph!” you’d expect. Other than that there really isn’t much to say.

gameplay

Goblin Commander puts you in charge of ten-man goblin team and pits you against other goblin races as you fight to take control of the areas. You will be able to choose from over 25 different goblins and you can power up each one offered during a level by purchasing a higher level armor or weaponry. You can also take control of Titans, giant Ogre’s for example, that can ravage your opponents and tear apart their establishments. Along with the goblins and Titans, you can place certain turrets that will either launch or lob stones and other projectiles at your enemies as the come within range.

In order to recruit goblins and other soldiers you’ll need resources. In order to gain these resources you must take control of certain fountains that will help pump them out. Most of them are relatively easy to capture and will help you lead a stronger horde of battlers to victory. But be careful, if left unprotected for too long they can be taken back.

In order to purchase upgrades you will need to use your gold instead of your resources. Gold is also pretty easily obtained and can be picked up from fallen enemy bases or certain environmental structures such as logs or boulders. Many structures you will come across in Goblin Commander contain gold and most are destructible, so be prepared for some fun destruction.

Each Goblin, Titan, and structure you build has a set health that will slowly be depleted as it is attacked so you’ll need to rely on aspects of certain recruits to pull off jobs that will benefit your current horde. If you leave your base unprotected, naturally if it is succumb to attack you’ll need to protect it. If you run out of troops doing so you may has well call it quits because once home base is gone you fail the missions. If you do run out of troops on the field and your base is still intact you are able to recruit new goblins, assuming you have enough resources, and continue your mission.

The tasks you are required to complete within each mission are pretty much spelled out to you and are fairly straightforward and simple. The only confusion you’ll face is where to go, and that is easily overcome with the help of an on screen map. Also, if you do end up getting stuck, there are help pads in certain areas of the stage that may give you the information you need to finish move forward.

multiplayer

There are over 25 multiplayer campaign levels as well as a “Skirmish” mode where you can play against a friend for rule of each other’s encampments. They seem pretty entertaining and using Titans to gobble up your opponents’ goblins just sounds like too much fun.

overall

Overall, Goblin Commander: Unleash the Horde is a solid title that deserves some attention. What the game lacks in close up visuals and audio it makes up for in its fun, addicting gameplay. It’s definitely a great sleeper title and if you can find it for cheap I’d recommend it to real-time strategy enthusiasts and people who just like to break things, like myself. One issue I did have, and I warn you all, is that the box claims it only takes up one block of memory. It actually takes up 55! What’s up with that? You’ve been warned.



final score 7.0/10





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Staff Avatar Geofferey Winter
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