Act of Aggression Game Review


By: Tom Riccardi (@ThomasRiccardi1)

In 2001, my life would change forever as I would land a job that many would love to have. I became a beta tester for Westwood Studios and during my brief time there, I had my hands on three great titles. The best of these three had to be Red Alert 2: Yuri’s Revenge, however, the death of Westwood meant the death of real time strategy (RTS) as we know it. Focus Interactive is dead-set to bring back this genre with its new offering called Act of Aggression.

The game is set in the year 2019 after a massive economic collapse in China (called the Shanghai Crash) plunged the world into another recession. Most countries suffered, although the third world suffered more by organizations that were thirsting for power. The Cartel, seeing an opportunity, decided to swoop in and seize these assets to further their own agenda. In order to investigate what happened in China and in trying to keep the peace, The United Nations hastily signed the Chimera Protocol. Signed behind closed doors, this new task force tries to uncover the truth as well as fight the growing power of the Cartel.

As you first start the game, you can jump into the single player campaign mode. Unlike other games where you can select which faction you want and just play the story, Act of Aggression has an unlock system. At first you will have to play through the game as the Chimera, which is a United Nations task force that is trying to keep the peace. The game starts out as you try to bring the leader of a Cartel to justice and it spirals out of control from there. Once you beat the Chimera campaign, you can then experience the game through the eyes of the Cartel. The Cartel are the bad guys in Act of Aggression, as you will use less than scrupulous tactics and methods to achieve victory on the battlefield when playing as them.

There are many units that you will use to gain dominance on the battlefield and each of the three factions has their own play style and units. The Chimera utilizes ground troops and drones that they can buy with cash and deploy on the battlefield at a moment’s notice. The Cartel focuses on stealth as well as units that are high tech. The US Faction is also represented with veteran units and has the biggest selection of infantry in the game. Depending on which one you decide to play in multiplayer depends on your play style; however, there are unique buildings and units with each faction. Each of the units can be upgraded as well, giving you a better edge on the field of battle. In order to do all these things, you will need to harvest the resources that are scattered around the map. Credits can be obtained by either harvesting oil or capturing banks. You can also gain credits by capturing prisoners of war as well. Aluminum and Rare Earth Elements are a bit harder to come by and you will need these to construct some of the most powerful units as well as super weapons in this game.

Multiplayer is also a big part of Act of Aggression and as of this article, there are 20 maps spread out over five different countries. You can battle on these giant maps from 1 v 1 and 2 v 2 to up to 40 players in a match. Yes, you heard me right – there can be 40 people in an RTS game online! To me, that is amazing in and of itself, as I have never seen another RTS that has even come close to that. Also, there are ladder rankings for 1 v 1 and 2 v 2 as well, so you can see how you are doing and compare yourself to some of the better players in the world.

Graphically, the game is on par with most of the other real time strategy games that are on the market. In fact, while starting up the game, it will do an auto detect to see what kind of graphics at which you can run the game optimally. Granted, this can be changed in the settings, but that was a great option to have as you can just start the game, run this tool, and be playing in a matter of minutes instead of just fiddling with the settings.

I hope Act of Aggression is one in a series of real time strategy games because we need new blood in a genre that focuses on either space combat or fantasy. With slick graphics, a great multiplayer system, and a riveting single player campaign, this is a game you need to check out if you love RTS. For more information on this game, head over to and get ready to rule the battlefield.

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