게시 일시: 2015년 4월 17일
Aeon Command is one of those games that's fun in small doses, and with its low price it's actually worth paying for those doses. The graphics are certainly more than adequate to do the job, and the audio fits the art style and theme of gameplay.
The gameplay, however, won't win any awards for depth or breadth. You spam numbers/clicks to build ships, use different keys/clicks to use special abilities, determine which ships to unlock and/or upgrade, and click on icons in the combat window to get resource, upgrade, or energy bonuses.
Likewise the campaign is nothing to write home about. You get a set number of missions which each introduce a new ship or skill, do the same number of missions for each race, or game mode, and that's it. The campaign is little more than a tutorial for skirmish games.
Skirmish, on the other hand, is where the game both shines and shows its worst flaw. You get to play with all the races, all the game modes, all the range options, and even mix things up so that you and/or your enemy get a random assortment of ships and special abilities. You could, for example, get the mining craft from race A which costs 8 resources to build (the others cost 10), a healer ship, a chain lightning ship, a railgun ship, and so on. It will never randomly assign ships outside of their assigned slot so that you'll never get 2 or 3 ships normally in slot six, but it suffices to provide some variety in gameplay. The game also provides three "difficulty" modes, and that is where the game's biggest flaw comes into play.
The AI cheats, at least on Hard difficulty. It doesn't cheat by being "smarter" or by reacting faster to changes than a human can, nor do AI-controlled ships do any better when run by an AI player than a human. Instead the developers opted to give the AI bonuses to resource acquisition. Either it gets a steady stream of the crystals and energy or it gets a significant boost to how much it gets when it gets it.
This isn't a case of me being a bad player and blaming it on the game, nor is it a case of not understanding how the game works. It's simply a matter of observing the facts. When the AI is producing more ships than I can despite having the same number of collection ships out, and when the AI can use 55 energy skills/powers before I even have 1 energy, the AI is, in fact, cheating.
Over the course of half a dozen games against a Hard AI using the Cyborg race I had one of my first three combat ships mind controlled when I had 0 energy, the ship had just been produced, and while it was in range of my base ship and thus nowhere near enemy lines. Furthermore, during my last play session I used Cheat Engine four times to bump my credits up by 1k, 1.5k, 2k, and 2.5k, and the first three were not enough to build and upgrade enough ships to give me a fighting chance. It wasn't until I did the 2.5k bump that I had enough, and enough upgrades, to fight the AI with some degree of parity. Eventually I won by spamming the slot 6 ship which, more often than not, can be an "I win" button for each race if you get a large enough swarm of them going.
This sort of cheating doesn't completely ruin gameplay, but it does make me want to avoid playing against Cyborgs or playing as Cyborgs on Hard. Still, at $2.99 I'm more than willing to cut the developers some slack on shipping the game with a "difficulty" option that, at least for me, makes certain race/gameplay/side combinations absolute no-nos. It's still something that should be considered if that sort of thing really irritates you. The game is still quite fun up until Hard, and even on Hard as long as I play Human or Exile it's still quite enjoyable and winnable.