Commandos: Behind Enemy Lines (c) Eidos / Pyros

By: Speedy

Eidos brings us this unusual, but yet interesting RTS (real-time strategy) game, Commandos - Behind Enemy Lines. I said "unusual" because this is a WWII strategy game but it's not like most WWII strategies. In this game, you control anywhere from 3 to 6 commandos and are given a mission to complete. This aspect of the game is action. The strategy aspect comes in by having to decide how, and what measures are needed to pull off this mission without getting your squad killed. You must move slowly and carefully if you want to survive and accomplish your task. There are trees/brushes, rocks, buildings, water, and other obstacles that can be of help statically by giving you protection or hiding places so you can overcome your enemies. There are also some vehicles you can use (steal) to help take out big groups of Nazis. Your commandos all carry a handgun, knife, medkits, and each a special weapon, depending on what type of commando you choose to use. Let me warn you, this game is very hard and will probably take you quite a while to complete your missions safely and successfully.

Graphics: 14 / 20

The graphics are pretty good for an overhead strategy game. The terrain is highly detailed and the commandos/enemies are somewhat detailed. There isn't a lot of detail to expect from an overhead game but I thought it was pretty good. The in-game menu screens and graphics were very nice, a lot of games don't put as much effort into those. Though this game doesn't use any extra 3d-card support, I found the graphics in this game pretty decent. The good thing is you get detailed graphics without having to have a juiced up PC.

Sound: 8 / 15

Now there were good and bad points about the sound in this game. The good points were there was full speech, for example it speaks out your mission objective, and the sound effects were precise and realistic. They worked well with the plot. Now, the downfall that I didn't care for was the character's reactions to your movement. What I mean is that every time you click to move the guy or attack something, he would say some phrase such as "Yes sir". After a few times they get very repetitive and even somewhat annoying. Even if you move your guy two inches, he makes some sort of comment. I think they should have cut back on it, but that's just my opinion. Overall, your average sound.

Gameplay: 19 / 25

The gameplay was it's high point for some people and its low point for others. The AI (artificial intelligence) was well made. The enemies reacted realistically to your movements and attacks. Now, this could be good if you're a strategy game fan. You will be well challenged and will require your thinking. Now, if you're here for the action, you will probably be disappointed to the game's difficulty level. The gameplay is not easy, you WILL be up for a challenge, which some people find less enjoyable. You will either like it or hate it...

Fun Factor: 16 / 20

This relates to the above. It all depends on your taste in games. Now, I'm not a big RTS fan but I did find this game quite fun, at least for awhile. If you're just not at all into RTS's, it will get frustrating after awhile. It's just not meant to be beaten in a few days. If you got the time and patience, give it a try.

Multiplayer: 1 / 5

Here is its downfall. Multiplayer is just co-op playing, and not very well integrated. I tried to play with another person and after choosing mission and commandos, it froze as the game started. It was frustrating and too much of a pain.

Packaging: 4 / 5

Overall, a little big but not that big a deal...

Overall Impression: 7 / 10

A fun, but yet challenging RTS. It all depends on your liking. If you're a strategic fan, you will probably find this a good game. If not, its fun for awhile... probably won't stay on your hard drive for very long.


Graphics: 14 / 20
Sound: 8 / 15
Gameplay: 19 / 25
Fun Factor: 16 / 20
Multiplayer Play: 1 / 5
Packaging: 4 / 5
Overall Impression: 7 / 10

Overall Rating: 69 / 100


By: Prolix

As many have noticed, Army arcade/simulation games are coming back into style, and Commandos falls right into that category. In Commandos you lead up to 6 elite commandos across Europe in the World War 2 era. Locations include North African Deserts, Norway, and Normandy. You play as the allied forces and battle over 24 levels trying to destroy the Nazi's. At your disposal are numerous WW2 era weapons, the ability to hijack vehicles, and specially skilled commandos.

The graphics definitely could use some work, I was rather disappointed when I found out there was no 3d card support. I ran the game in 800x600 and didn't notice a great level of detail. The color palette for the most part is bland and sticks to several main colors. The levels tend to look the same after a while.... I thought the water effects were pretty funny, it looked like blue Jello pouring down a shoot over and over. The graphics could really use some improvement, like greater detail on the terrain, 3dfx, and some better level variety.

Sound is average, not above par or below it. One thing I did enjoy was the taunts and responses of the Commandos, it adds atmosphere to the game. Some more explosion and gun effects would have been a nice touch.

Control takes some getting used to, movement consists of highlighting your commando and clicking them in their destination, using right or left mouse buttons to execute special manoeuvers. Each commando has one or more special item in his inventory which can be activated by left clicking it, for example one mission requires you to go across a river and you must inflate one of your scuba commando's rafts to proceed with the mission.

The game play is EXTREMLY hard. If you find yourself giving up in life a lot, don't try this game. Commandos is a very frustrating game and requires you to typically play each mission 5-10 times before you can actually beat it. I beat the first mission, but I couldn't beat the second and I had to use the trainer. Yes I know it's pathetic, but I think most of you will turn to it as well. Throughout my Commando's experience I encountered many severe headaches due to frustration. As for the missions they range from blowing up buildings to interrogation missions. Many key points in the missions require you to steal or "borrow" vehicles, GTA WW2 style, taking cars, trucks, etc. can be quite fun and adds a great deal to the game. I found myself dying a lot due to being shot from a far off range, and I found myself most of the time saying "Where the hell did that come from", this just adds to the frustration of this game.

As for multiplayer, it's slower than a camel without water on a hot Arabian day in the desert. I have a 33.6 dial up and it was extremely slow, so I recommend you have a cable or greater to play Commandos TCP/IP.

My overall impression of the game is 'why bother?'. Personally I feel you shouldn't play a game that drives you nuts, after all what are you getting in return for your anger? I can't stand games like this; no vivid colors, frustrating game play, not enough variety in missions, and simple game design. This game falls in front of Army Men, an equally pathetic game, so that should sum it up for you.

Graphics: 10 / 20
Sound: 10 / 15
Gameplay: 15 / 25
Fun Factor: 8 / 20
Multiplayer Play: 2 / 5
Packaging: 5 / 5
Overall Impression: 6 / 10

Overall Rating: 56 / 100