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Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 is a 2008 real-time strategy video game developed by EA Los Angeles and published by Electronic Arts. Announced on February 14, 2008,[11] it was released on October 28, 2008 in the United States for Microsoft Windows-based PCs and three days later in Europe. A version for the Xbox 360 console was released in the U.S. on November 11. The PlayStation 3 version was delayed due to difficulties with the system's architecture.[9] On January 21 2009 EA officially announced Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 - Ultimate Edition,[12] the PS3 version which contains bonus material extra to that of the Xbox 360 and PC versions. The Ultimate Edition has been released on March 23, 2009. Also announced for a late March release is the Mac OS version, converted to that platform by TransGaming.[10] The game forms a part of the Red Alert sub-series within the Command & Conquer series of games. In early January, EA Los Angeles announced a new addition to the game: Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 - Uprising, a stand-alone single player expansion pack that was released for Windows in March 2009. It was offered via digital distribution.

GameplayEdit

Red Alert 3 retains the core RTS mechanics of the Command & Conquer series. Warring factions harvest resources using vulnerable collectors and then use those resources to construct military bases and forces on-site. Structures form a shallow but wide tech tree with a variety of units and elusive superweapons. Weapon types are specialized to the point where a rifleman can withstand direct hits from an anti-tank cannon. Red Alert 3's major refinements are the addition of the Empire of the Rising Sun to the factions of the sub-series, similar to what Tiberium Wars did with the Scrin faction, a co-operative campaign, and expanded naval warfare.

The "single-player" campaign is now fully co-operative. Each mission is played alongside an ally. When played online, this is another human player. Offline it is one of several computer-controlled characters. Teams share income and generally start with the same forces. Computerized characters can be given extremely simple commands, such as an order to take a specific position or to strike a specific target. The campaign has nine missions for each side. Each side's plotlines are mutually exclusive, unlike Tiberium Wars and its preceding and following expansion packs, but like the rest of the Command & Conquer games.

Naval warfare is emphasized as another front. Executive producer Chris Corry has stated that many units are now amphibious, trading effectiveness for increased flexibility. Buildings and entire bases can be constructed on water, save for such things as ground unit production facilities,[14] and players who "ignore the ocean [are] likely forfeiting a significant part of their potential economy to their opponents." Further stressing this is the fact that, despite some campaign maps being entirely land based, all multiplayer maps have significant bodies of water in them.

The use of naval units and various unit abilities also helped players counter attack their oppenents units specific to that units strongpoint, for example a Soviet stingray's second ability Tesla Surge sends a surge of electricity in the tesla boats area damaging units from attack dolphins to terror drones.

Manually controlled secondary abilities are common to each and every unit in the game. Their usage varies: some are toggled on or off, others are targeted, and still others are triggered the instant one presses the button. An Imperial construction vehicle is able to deploy at a specified location, a Soviet conscript can switch weapons at will, and an Allied artillery piece can engage its shields with a button press but with a cooldown period before they can be used again. All abilities are bound to the same key. The game also features experience points that are used to upgrade unit types and to buy "commander abilities," which call in air strikes, recon sweeps, magnetic satellite beams, etc. Commander abilities have no resource costs but do have significant cooldown periods.

Ore fields as resource sites have been removed. These originated in the first Red Alert as a functionally identical equivalent to tiberium, and what were ostensibly strip mines had ore growing out of the ground. Gameplay mechanics haven't changed a great deal since fields have been replaced with stationary ore mines. Strategic ore-refinery placement and covert refining are impacted to an extent.

DesignEdit

The first Red Alert revolved around a down-to-earth World War II between the Allies (including Germany) and the Soviet Union, with some high-tech esoterica, such as weaponized tesla coils linked to Tesla's abortive death rays, limited time travel linked to the rumored Philadelphia Experiment, and force fields. Red Alert 2 featured a Soviet invasion of North America with tanks, conscripts, gargantuan airships, and psychically dominated anti-ship giant squids; its expansion, Yuri's Revenge, escalated matters up to UFOs and Soviets on the Moon. Executive producer Chris Corry stated in a pre-release interview that Red Alert 3 will further differentiate the playable factions from each other and "[play] up the silliness in their faction design whenever possible.

StoryEdit

The central premise of all three campaigns is the same, although each follows a different variation of the storyline. Facing defeat at the hands of the Allies (presumably after the end of Red Alert 2: Yuri's Revenge), Soviet General Nikolai Krukov and Colonel Anatoly Cherdenko use a time machine beneath the Kremlin to travel back to Brussels in the year 1927 at the International Physics Conference and eliminate Albert Einstein. This prevents him from creating the technology that allowed the Allies to defeat the Soviet Union in the previous games. Returning to the present, General Krukov discovers that Cherdenko is the Premier of the Soviet Union and that the Soviets are on the brink of conquering Europe. However, without Einstein's existence, the Empire of the Rising Sun has risen in Japan. They have also decided to declare war against the Allies and Soviet Union. Finding that the Soviets' nuclear weapons don't exist anymore without Einstein's existence, the Soviet Union is forced, along with the Allies, into a three-way war with the Empire. [edit] Soviets

In the Soviet campaign, Cherdenko first sends the newly appointed Soviet commander to expel the Japanese forces from Soviet territory in Leningrad and various Soviet territories, subsequently invading Japan and killing Emperor Yoshiro before continuing the attack against the Allies. The Allies at Geneva and Mykonos research facilities are crushed. Faking an attempt on his life as an excuse to remove his enemies, Cherdenko has the player kill General Krukov at the Von Eisling Airbase. Dr. Zelinsky, the scientist who created the time machine, informs the player that the events that occurred happened only because the Soviets tried to alter the past, and that Cherdenko was originally not the Soviet Premier. Cherdenko tries and fails to kill the player after this, feeling that the player knowing that information is too dangerous. Cherdenko is presumed dead after the player destroys his volcano-fortress after destroying Field Marshal Bingham at Easter Islands. After dealing with Cherdenko, the player follows with an attack on New York in order to force the Allies to surrender. The war ends with the player becoming the next Premier of the Soviet Union, which encompasses the entire world as there is no one left to stop Soviet expansionism. [edit] Allies

The Allied campaign sees Field Marshal Bingham first ordering the player to secure European Allied borders. The player repels the Soviet invasion at Brighton Beach, then recaptures Cannes and destroys the Soviet HQ at Heidelberg. However, these battles leave both sides vulnerable, allowing the Empire of the Rising Sun to send its floating fortresses to blockade the Allies and the Soviets. This prompts the Allies and Soviets to join forces to counter the Empire(despite the protests of American President Ackerman).

The player-led coalition is able to retake the port of Gibraltar. The coalition then mounts an attack on the fortress in the North Atlantic and successfully disables it.At this time, Ackerman becomes angry at Marshall Bingham for his allying with the Soviets, instead of destroying them. He then takes the initiative to destroy Moscow with a laser superweapon controlled in Mount Rushmore. Bingham sends the player to disable the weapon and its defenses, destroy the firebase and kill Ackerman.

With the alliance secured, the Allies plan an attack on Tokyo in order to wipe out the entire Empire military leadership with one stroke. It is a critical battle because the Japanese High Command is about to order the destruction of several Western cities. Around this time, the Soviets led by General Krukov were supposed to bring the "entire might" of the Soviet navy to assist the Allied forces. After many delays, however, the Soviets noted that with their fleet so far away and with them experiencing "personal troubles," they decided not to participate and would leave the player alone to deal with the Empire's forces.

After the battle, Dr. Zelinsky defects to the Allies, informing them of the Soviet Premier having traveled back in time to alter the present, the complications due to the use of the time machine, and warns them of a Soviet invasion force building up in Cuba, proving that Ackerman was right on his belief and that the Soviets have betrayed them. After destroying the invasion force in Cuba, the Allies launch Operation Chronostorm and teleport their forces to destroy Premier Cherdenko's fortress in Leningrad in order to stop Cherdenko from fleeing to outer space. In the end, Cherdenko and his General are placed in a Cryo-prison for life due to crimes against humanity. Meanwhile, Lt. Eva and Tanya both ask the Commander out to a date. The Vice President of the United States, played by David Hasselhoff, then accepts power as the new American President in a public speech. [edit] Empire of the Rising Sun

The Empire of the Rising Sun campaign begins with a full-scale invasion of the Soviet Union, just as the Soviets are pushing the Allies to the brink of defeat. The invasion starts with a disguised transport slipped into a coastal Soviet city of Vorkuta celebrating New Year. When the ruse is discovered, the city is ordered to be sacked. Emperor Yoshiro's tactics initially involve striking at symbolic targets such as important monuments to affect the will and morale of the Soviets - and later, the capturing of broadcasting stations in the United States for use in broadcasting propaganda against the Allies. On the other hand, the Emperor's less-traditional son, Crown Prince Tatsu, advocates the attacking of true military targets - though his father would typically overrule him and instead fight elsewhere. Crown Prince Tatsu is a robotic hedonist, and immerses himself in all things technological in his efforts of modernising the army.

As the Empire of the Rising Sun surges into Allied and Soviet territory the Allies make a desperate pact and try to garner enough forces to counterattack. The Emperor believes he has crushed all hope of freedom for the Allies. The Empire's forces take over much of western Russia and brutally massacre anyone who resists. A Soviet General in the city of Odessa refuses to surrender, and as a result the city is destroyed by a three legged prototype robot named the Shogun Executioner. Landmarks such as a cathedral, an opera hall, and a hospital are targets for destruction. However, the Emperor's complacency soon forces the Empire onto the defensive against the forces of the Allies, who still had enough strength to mount full-scale attacks on Pearl Harbor at the Imperial islands of Hawaii and on one of the Empire's Floating Fortresses. Though both attacks are repelled, a joint Allied-Soviet task force successfully gains a foothold in Tokyo.

Having replaced President Ackerman with an android doppelganger, the Emperor learns of Zelinsky's defection and how he helped Cherdenko alter history through time-travel. This devastates the Emperor, as there can be no Divine Destiny if history can be altered. He surrenders command of the Shogunate (the Empire's military leaders) to his son. Under Prince Tatsu's command, the Allied-Soviet invasion of Tokyo is repelled, and a full-scale attack on the Kremlin results in the deaths of Premier Cherdenko and General Krukov - despite a last minute attempt to airlift the time machine to safety after the Kremlin's destruction. This ends the battle against the Soviets with the Soviet Union (and their allies) surrendering to the Empire. The Empire's continued success allows Yoshiro to overcome his guilt and opens him to Tatsu's idea that the Empire can create its own destiny.

In the final mission, the player is ordered to launch an attack against the remaining Allied forces in Amsterdam as they make their last stand defending the Allied Headquarters as well as the FutureTech Headquarters - the company responsible for much of the Allies' technological advances. Fierce house to house fighting results in destroying all of the city and millions of deaths. Despite the Allies being outnumbered at least four hundred to one, most of the Japanese invasion force is annihilated. Despite Dr. Zelinsky's arrival with Soviet reinforcements and the deployment of a prototype FutureTech ultraweapon that annihilates everything in the city, the Empire succeeds in defeating the Allies and destroying FutureTech and what remains of the Soviets - leaving the Empire of the Rising Sun free to rule the world. At the ending scene though, the glimmer of a chronosphere is seen in the background suggesting that some of the surviving Allies have managed to activate it and possibly go back in time to affect the outcome of the war. The commander is given the title of "Supreme Shogun". The commander's briefer, Intelligence Officer Suki Toyama, invites the commander to a private spot on the north shore of Oahu for some time off, heavily implying that she has romantic feelings for him.

DevelopmentEdit

A third Red Alert game was unofficially announced by Electronic Arts' then executive producer and C&C lead Mark Skaggs in December 2004, shortly after the release of Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle Earth.[21] However, Mark Skaggs left Electronic Arts for reasons unspecified shortly thereafter, and there was no mention of a "Red Alert 3" until February 12, 2008, when the US PC Gamer's April issue cover was published on the Internet featuring the cover story "Red Alert 3".[22] Red Alert 3 was then officially announced by Electronic Arts on February 14, 2008.[11] On May 17 the first trailer was released. [edit] Public beta testing

A public beta test was announced on February 2008, stating that PC users who registered a code contained in Command & Conquer 3: Kane's Wrath or Command & Conquer 3 Limited Collection by September 15, 2008 could participate in a multiplayer beta test. From July 24, 2008, people who registered their beta key started to receive an e-mail stating that the participants would start receiving their Key and Client Download link throughout late-July and August.[24] FilePlanet members were also able to participate in the beta, with keys available on a first-come, first-served basis from August 22, 2008. The Red Alert 3 Beta servers were closed on September 29, 2008.

ReceptionEdit

Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 has received generally positive reviews, citing a strong cooperative and multiplayer component. It has been praised for seamlessly integrating naval warfare into gameplay, generally a neglected feature in real time strategy games, though alternately excessive focus on this aspect has been criticized as well. Also the game has been praised for its less serious story and brighter, more colorful environments than those found in Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars. The decision by developers to use ore "strip mines" instead of the traditional ore field has been met with a mixed response.

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