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Nuclear Strike

From the Database of Home of the Underdogs

GAME DESIGNER:

GAME DEVELOPER:Gremlin

GAME PUBLISHER:Electronic Arts

Copyright 1997, Gremlin

Nuclear Strike is the last and most fun entry in Electronic Arts’ underrated “Strike” series of helicopter action games. In this release, your job is to fight terrorists in different parts of the globe. While you still fly a trusty helicopter from the previous two games, some missions require the use of other vehicles such as hovercrafts. This time you can also equip your helicopter with different weapons – no more hunting for ammo crates all the time :) This is also the first and last “Strike” game with 3D-accelerated graphics and cutscenes. Games Domain’s review says it all about the good points:

“[In] Nuclear Strike, the latest game in Electronic Arts’ “Strike” series, a particularly unstable bloke by the name of LeMonde does manage to get his hands on a nuke, intending to share its destructive power with the rest of the world – someone has to stop him. And playing a member of Strike, a covert organisation set up to deal with such threats, you get the privilege of taking his toy away from him and saving the world – again. Unsurprisingly, negotiation is out of the question so, piloting one of several well-armed craft, you have to fly off to Southern Asia where he was last seen, and track down the nuke, blowing up vehicles, bases, national monuments and generally causing as much havoc as you can. But don’t worry if you’ve never touched a helicopter or a tank in your life – Nuclear Strike isn’t a simulation. It’s more of a raging missile-lobbing chain-gun firing tank-smashing rocket-dodging blast fest, with just a little bit of strategy thrown in. Sounds fun? It is.

There are a total of five levels to be conquered, and one secret level – though it isn’t just a case of blasting your way from one end of the level to the other. You have to complete a number of mini-missions on each level, which include rescuing prisoners, intercepting enemy convoys, protecting rebels and other such tasks – all of which have to be completed in a specific order. The general aim of all these missions is to find out just where LeMonde has stashed the nuke. And he’s not going to let you just fly in and take it either – each level is filled with an assortment of hi-tech weaponry ranging from soldiers with missile launchers all the way through to tanks, Apache helicopters and even anti-satellite missiles. You’re not entirely on your own though – you’re sometimes aided by willing co-conspirators such as Cash, the British mercenary.

Plot developments and pre-mission briefing are relayed though the Strike TV network – in other words, you get a selection of full motion video clips telling you where to go and what to do. The quality of acting in the FMV clips is pretty good, and the clips are strangely MTVish. The in-game action itself is viewed from a kind of isometric angle, your chopper maintaining roughly the same position on the screen while the camera spins around to give you the best view of the action. The graphics are pretty good, with undulating water, impressive explosions, and lots of other fancy effects. And if you’ve got a 3DFX card, things look even better – if you’re 3D-card less you may end up having to run the game in bog standard VGA mode – although it still looks decent enough.

Nuclear Strike is great fun to play, and extremely challenging. The differing objectives require you to constantly re-evaluate your tactics and there’s never a dull moment. Until you finish the game that is, because unfortunately, Nuclear Strike only has five levels (and one secret level) to play. Compare this to the likes of other games such as Swiv 3D and the earlier Jungle Strike which had ten missions, and you begin to wonder just where all the other missions went. But Nuclear Strike is great while it lasts – and as long as you don’t expect it to keep you going forever, you’ll have a blast.”



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