Guest Author - James Shea
"Supreme Commander 2" largely eschews the ground-breaking concepts of scale found in its predecessor, and ends up being a fairly standard RTS game.
Supreme Commander was a game that viewed scale in a whole new light than most games. Each vehicle was meant to be "accurately scaled", and some of your units were the size of skyscrapers. Others were the size of cities. You could zoom far enough out that you would be fighting over an entire country. It was a bit weird, but it worked pretty well. SC2 does away with that in favor of a fairly generic sci-fi plot with standard, boring vehicles.
Supreme Commander 2 revolves around standard concepts of base-building. You churn out vehicles purchased with either "mass" or "energy" (both of which are harvested by building collectors and automatically accumulating stuff). These vehicles include land, sea, air, and "experimental", which all require separate factories. However, the vehicles themselves are pretty boring. There's no voice acting or unit characterization - they're generic tanks, mechs, planes, and ships that make little beeping noises when you select them. Their attacks are underwhelming, as well, so the combat isn't even really enjoyable to watch.
Basically, without the huge scale concepts found in SC1, SC2 is a pretty boring game. The vehicle and building designs are totally unmemorable - they feel more like playing with toys than actual tanks and aircraft and so on. You can zoom out really far, but that just means that you're commanding a lot of dots instead of actual units, and it's nowhere near as much of a zoom-out as you could get with SC1. It just feels more like a generic RTS that tried to fit in SC1's scale and failed totally. There's a tech tree, but the upgrades aren't really anything special, so it's mostly just improving old units and buying new ones.
The graphics and sound are both pretty boring. They look all right, but the designs are totally uninspired and there's no voice acting for the units so the only real "sound thing" is the lackluster explosions. It doesn't really hold up at all - the best I can say about it is that it gets the job done, and it barely even does that.
Ultimately, Supreme Commander 2 just feels like a waste of a game. It's not necessarily bad, but it's extremely boring and lacking any of the innovations that drew people to SC1.
We purchased this game with our own funds.