What more classic a story can there be when it comes to video games than the age old “stop the alien invader” shoot em up plot? That's exactly what Splash Damage has done with it's latest release, “Enemy Territory – Quake Wars”. In this futuristic war, you can play either as the humans (GDF) or the aliens (Strogg). Either way, you'll get the chance to be on the offensive at times, and the chance to defend others.
Quake Wars isn't about an epic story, it's all about gameplay. Similar to “Battlefield 2”, or “Return to Castle Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory”, Quake Wars pits two teams of players head to head in an all out war.
One team attacks, one team defends in a glorified game of capture the flag (or hack the portal). You compete within a given time limit, and the attacking team wins if it can complete all it's objectives before the time runs out. The defending team will win if it can keep the attacking team from reaching those objectives before the clock hits zero. Things are pretty simple, but like a game of chess... while the rules are simple, the strategies are countless.
In battle, you can choose between five different character classes. For the GDF you can be a soldier, an engineer, a medic, a field op, or a covert op. As an alien Strogg you can be an aggressor, a constructor, a technician, an oppressor or an infiltrator. The classes are roughly the same for each race, offering roughly the same tactical advantages to their respective teams. Different objectives are better accomplished by different character classes, so switching between these classes is sometimes crucial to win if your team isn't very diverse.
Maps span a fairly large area, and add quite a bit to the gameplay of Quake Wars. Different terrain can help or hinder depending on your objective and class. The prominent number of vehicles do a good job helping you traverse quickly over long areas, but don't help much in battles because vehicle weapons are weak, and vehicle defenses are weaker. I rarely used tanks as much more than transport because often times opponents would kill me before I could kill them when they weren't even in another vehicle!
Vehicles aren't really the focus, this game is more about head to head battle. Attack, defend. Do this with a bunch of cool weapons and gadgets. These are the basic ideas behind Quake Wars, and as simple as these ideas are, they work wonderfully.