EA and the Command and Conquer series

Electronic Arts, the company responsible for destroying Westwood Studios, is yet another example of capitalism controlling creativity in order to prioritise destined profits above all other imaginative concerns. The company is so rich you’d expect them to give their most imaginative development team some free reign, but this is of course too much to ask. EA bought Westwood for the popular Command and Conquer name, only, it seems.

I recently read an interview with Eric Gooch, the guy who played the role of Seth in the original Command and Conquer. You remember Seth right? He was the guy who had his brains blown out of the side of his head by Kane right before our very eyes in the Brotherhood of Nod campaign. Anyway, he went on to describe how EA had discontinued the Command and Conquer games set in a world infested by a rapidly growing form of poisonous plantlife called Tiberium. Despite the fact Tiberian Sun (yes, the name was changed from Tiberium Sun to Tiberian Sun by EA for whatever reason) sold over a million copies and actually had a riveting continuous story, the series was put on permenant hold in favour of more juvenile real time strategy C&C games. Eric Gooch went onto describe how EA canceled the sequel to C&C Renegade for no apparent reason (a first person shooter set in the same world originally envision by Westwood Studios). When asked how he would summarise EA, as a company, he said it was “a large company”, leaving the rest up to our imagination.

On the lighter side of things, a sequel to Tiberian Sun (which was the direct sequel to the first Command and Conquer) called Tiberium Twilight was heavily rumoured to have been in the works before the release of Tiberian Sun. EA (“challenge everything”) has since put the game on the back burner.

The original Command and Conquer story always fascinated me, especially when the prequel, C&C Red Alert, was released. Kane, the leader of the Brotherhood of Nod in Command and Conquer, was present in Red Alert even though the game took place some 30 years earlier in the series timeline. He manipulated the events of the time before he rose to prominence in Command and Conquer, looking no older! Of course, we later learn he had he reverse engineered the technology found in an alien ship that had crash landed on Earth before the Tiberium infestation began (Tiberium was his discovery too, naming it after a Roman named Tiberius).

I could write about the story forever but I’ll spare you for now.

Btw, if anyone’s wondering how Kane survived the ending in the Saturn and Playstation versions of Command and Conquer, know that the ending was changed. Kane was crushed beneath a pile of falling debris in the PC game, not vaporised by an Ion Cannon. His return in Tiberian Sun was nothing short of epic and if Nod defeats the forces of the Global Defense Initiative (what’s left of the United States and her allies) he converts the entire planet into a sphere of pure Tiberium by lanching a Tiberium enriched ICBM into orbit. And thus, evolving humanity to the next level.

Wonderful storyline. The Panzer Dragoon world could do with an evil genius like Kane.

If you’ve never heard of the Command and Conquer series before Red Alert 2 (a game not developed by the original Westwood Studios), I’d like to know if EA’s greed-driven presence has been felt anywhere else.

Yeah Command and Conquer Generals was a C&C title in name only. I was very dissapointed. Red Alert and Tiberian Sun were great games despite being so unbalanced.

Although i did feel General was more balanced in terms of units - with every side being more or less equal, its just to bad the story was so lame and not trrue to the command and conquer franchise.

Oh well at least Blizzard still releases quality titles true to thier roots.

I didn’t know you were a fan of the C&C games, Aitrus.

Hopefully, EA will let Westwood Studios continue the story they began all those years ago. It really was a great story and I wanted to find out how Kane managed to manipulate the past (whether he prolonged his life with Tiberium, or travelled back in time, like Einstein did to kill Hitler). And the huge alien ship you find in Tiberian Sun was left a mystery.

EA banished the continuity of the story as soon as Red Alert 2 was developed.

Maybe the setting of Tiberium/Tiberian Sun doesn’t have mass market appeal or something. I swear I’ll never understand EA.

Renegade wasn’t that good…I don’t blame them for not wanting to make a sequel, the idea of a FPS set in the C&C world is good and another game that attempts that would be nice but a sequel to renegade wouldnt be a good thing unless it’s just in the name and not in the gameplay.
The single thing that makes hating EA for all eternity easy is the ruination of the Ultima series…

I also felt that Generals was a weak game - i mean C&C is a major franchise so we expect a new, huge release, and then we get Generals? what? The game was just so bland, it wasn’t bad but it honestly didn’t do anything new for the series or offer anything cool.

I guess i was expecting to much, more like a transition in the series like the jump from Warcraft 2 to Warcraft 3. But instead we got Generals. Oh well, perhaps the next C&C game will better single player wise, i do enjoy its multiplayer aspect but as i have said single player was lacking.

How was Red Alert 2?, i never got to play it. It looked cool and seemed to fit with the C&C universe.

Renegade was ok, and it sold quite well. Don’t sales come first for EA?

Red Alert 2 used the same game engine as Tiberian Sun but everything flowed a hell of a lot smoother.

The story and units were ridiculous… almost childish in comparison to the ideas of the first Red Alert. Still, because the first game was so popular for so long, EA demanded a sequel.

Red Alert was set before the first Command and Conquer, but now the Red Alert games are set in another world entirely. There was only meant to be one war with Russia before Kane emerged.

America wasn’t even involved in Red Alert (the whole game was fought across Europe), and yet America became the central focus of the sequel. With armies of clones, mass mind control, mass time travel, and a Hollywood actress playing the role of Tanya Adams, the story went in a direction that wasn’t true to the first Red Alert.

Yeah the C&C series was EXCELLENT. I loved it. Of course - i plyed the Saturn version and not the PC version - i didn’t know the endings were different!

Red Alert (1) was a great game, and I still play Tiberiun Sun now. Red alert 2 was good in my opinion but required no strategy to win at. GD - do you have RA2? I’ll play you online if you like :slight_smile:

EA did destroy Westwood - i think the first C&C will always be the best - superb music too.

Also your rights - the RA2 storyline had almost nothing to do with the rest of the series. It was a good individual game - just not good being connected to C&C

I hope those rumours of Tiberium Twilight turn out to be true.

Sorry Scott, I can’t stand Red Alert 2 anymore. It wasn’t bad online but the game constantly reminds me of what the C&C series has become.

What a waste.

C&C suked IMO.I haven’t played them but I don’t like that kind of game so :stuck_out_tongue:

You are bashing a game you havent even played? You dont really have a basis to say it sucked just because you dont like the genre!

I liked C&C and Red Alert although I didnt play Tiberium Sun. Contrary to Geoffry’s views I can see why EA would want to change the story to remove Tiberium. The reason Red Alert appealed to me was because it was a modern day/slightly futuristic combat game. The Tiberium was an interesting quirck but i saw it as a way to get around complex resource collection rather than an element of the story. I also played C&C, Red Alert in reverse order so I had no idea who Kane was and his role in Red Alert seemed to me like a cameo to connect the games. Frankly the appearance of alien ships and tiberium populating the world is a bit of a turn off for me to want to play tiberium sun, I think that the strength of the C&C series is in it’s gameplay, not it’s story. Uncomplicating the story and returning it to standard 2 enemies fighting returns the appeal of a basic modern day RTS to the game and I can see why EA would do it.

On another note, yes EA are b@stards for wrecking the Ultima series of which I was a great fan. I also played UO for a couple of years, anyone play that?

It wasn’t a cameo role. If you completed the Russian campaign you’d know that. Nadia is a member of the Brotherhood of Nod who poisons Stalin at the end (in Buckingham palace after they’ve invaded England, no less!).

The forming of the Global Defense Initiative is mentioned during the Allied campaign and in the secret missions you use GDI units painted in standard GDI colors.

Trust me, Red Alert 2 was not meant to be a part of the original series Westwood Studios created.

Sacrificing the story was a bad decision and the C&C games have suffered ever since.