Mentioning Westwood and -- the Bitmaps in the same sentence, however, is not a clever thing to do. On 24 August 2000, the Bitmap Brothers announced a deal with EON Digital Entertainment to publish a sequel to Z, then given a working title of Z2. Rather than having their game in a real-world environment that will set Steel Soldiers apart and rather than crowbar in new features to list on the back of the box, it seems that less most definitely more. ; Replace the original Z2.EXE file with the one from the File Archive. The frantic non-stop action of the first title has been carried over into the second. Later on you can use snipers to take out helicopter pilots, so that you can nick those. You don't have to go and build a robot, who has to build a cart, which has to go out and collect the rubbish from the rubbish bins. The resource comes from taking territory. But what we've got now is a very advanced A1 system in there well we think it's very advanced. Made of steel. Z: Steel Soldiers (originally released simply as Steel Soldiers in North America) is a real-time strategy game released by the Bitmap Brothers on 15 June, 2001 for the Windows platform. Thing is, the tanks are not on the tech tree for that level, so the only way you can get them is to use your snipers. Far from feeling constrained or frustrated, this adds another level to the strategy as you rally your forces into the right mix in order to grab another chunk of land. "It's just been unbelievable. The enemy only got a light tank and two robots through, one of which was an unarmed construction robot. Few missions were complete, though most weren't far off, the cut-scenes and a few voices had to be added and then came the messy business of tweaking and testing the game on every possible machine they could lay their hands on. So, thought I, a couple of tanks and a half-dozen Psychos should take care of them. Outside, the rain is relentless and, as I decide whether I should go back to work or piss off home, I remember that quite wisely I never let on that I didn't really get on with the original Z at first. "A hero game, which is similar to Regicide in Age Of Empires IIor the Commander in Total Annihilation, resource-based games if you want to fight for territory, deathmatch-style team games, flag games - all of which can be played in Skirmish mode against the Al. Straight away you are thrown into the action, merciless though it may seem; but it's only by flailing at the deep end that you find out how devilishly simple yet incredibly varied the game is. Stealth Bombers and Environment Control Buildings (these send meteorites across the map - neat), were rarely put to use. Not that some of the 3D-accelerated strategy games have been much better. Back when the original Z … Just back from a gruelling press trip across the US, the team were looking forward to an uncharacteristidy quiet Christmas. About This Game “Z”, the classic Real Time Strategy Game by the Bitmap Brothers. Its rich spread of strategies arises not from a bloated cast list of bizarre machinery, but from a complex and almost human-like intelligence on the part of your opponent - fighting, like you, according to simple rules. A new breed of robot with a taste for war and a warped sense of humour. Battle For Dune, Steel Soldiers will be the Bitmaps first full 3D game and as Westwood has repeatedly professed, it's not a step to be taken lightly for a company who've yet to dissappoint its fans. So each set of five maps will have a distinctive style." There are in fact 20 maps available; ten for one-on-one games, a couple each for three, four and eight players and one map each for the rest. Thing is, we didn't want to do six types of terrain that were all basically the same but in different colours, so we have different terrain effects and lighting, vehicles may work better on one terrain than on another. They were losing their voice at one point. To be honest, I failed to notice any significant differences between the way a tank moved across snow or desert, but the way the maps are designed to bring in new units and tactics is very clever indeed. The Bitmap Brothers have never been ones to mess about. The more land, the faster the dollars stack up and therefore the more you can build. Everything in the game is there for the sake of gameplay: the units distinctive so they are instantly recognisable, the land simple so you can make out what is moving across it, and territorial markings painted on so you can tell at a glance who owns what. "It's also a bit darker this time around, less slapstick. "Probably," laughs Mike. Case closed. As to consoles, what we're doing is creating games that we want to play, rather than fit a game to a specific format. Similarly, after each failure, you get to know where certain units might be and have a better idea of what is going on over the next hill. How I didn't piss down my trouser leg, I'll never know. Significantly, as with Westwood's recently announced Dune sequel, Since the original game Z became so popular, the Bitmap Brothers decided to work on a sequel. ", "If you've got a radar net it will show you the positions of the enemy units," Jamie adds. "It's scary when that happens," says Jamie, nodding. It's amazing what an insular world adolescence is. Z:Steel Soldiers. You start off in the first mission only able to build one offensive unit - machine-gunners - which sounds pretty dull until you play it. Shall 1 turn the tape off?" The terrain may not be the most realistic interpretation of what you might find on an alien planet, but it all goes back to gameplay. 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