Fallen Haven [PC]
January 8, 2009
It just so happened that while away visiting relatives as has become the typical custom during the festive season, I came across an old game I had been given a long time ago. Upon playing, my proverbial gaming appetite had returned once again!
Fallen Haven: A Turn-Based RTS by Interactive Magic, was released in 1997 for Windows 95. It followed what seemed like an epic story of New Haven being colonized by humans from Old Earth, however there is some strange alien marsupial race (Tauran) also trying to claim ownership over the various territories.
However with no real important videos or any real effect on the storyline whatsoever, if felt like you can just get rid of the storyline altogether. All you really need to know is that there are thy Enemies; Smite Them!
There are two different campaigns, each of which you can play as either Human or Tauran, and with 15 different territories in both campaigns to be able to be taken over, the game provides endless fun.
Each race has unique units, and evidently unique; not just re-skin after re-skin.
In fact the game graciously provides an encyclopaedia on all the stats behind every building, every unit, which is important because the way each unit interacts with one another is one of the main mechanics of the game.
Game play on first glance seemed standard; get thy Money; get thy Energy. Granted it is never as simple as that; not only are you worrying about defending one base and attacking another on the same map; you literally have to pack your army into drop ships and travel from one territory to another in order to attack the enemy. Your energy, money, and research points are collated from all your territories so that after each turn you gain more and more. Research points allow you to upgrade all your units through improving their Rate of Fire, Movement, Armour, and so on.
Get this; it’s all completely Turn-Based. Used differently in both Gaming Styles. The game has 2 distinct styles, one is Strategic; setting up your units, building them, building up your bases on the various territories though once you go to attack a neighbouring territory the game play shifts into a Tactical style. Move your units when it’s your turn, and blow your enemies into clouds of smoke and debris. Not as easy as it looks, as it reminds us why it’s called ‘Tactical’ game play. Planning is everything, and with the ability to scan other bases you can get an idea of the opposition you may get. Though once you are in Tactical and attacking a territory, you can’t send for more units, hence why you need to be prepared for any circumstance.
But wait, just when you don’t think it can get any better, here come the nukes. Nuke an adjacent territory if your nuke technology is more advanced than the enemies Anti-Nuke Defences.
That reminds me, what ever happened to Turn-Based RTS games? Fallen Haven is a perfect example of how to use it and use it well.
Take over territories, unlock new unique units and eventually conquer your enemy. Fallen Haven is a tightly designed RTS. Though lacking a storyline it has portrayed the strategic and tactical elements that have made the RTS genre popular. Graphics wise, well consider it was designed for Windows 95, but that being said it’s still surprisingly visually appealing. It harnesses the Turn-Based system very well and although lacks a Multiplayer System, still provides endless hours of entertainment.
All-in-All, Fallen Haven is a great RTS with a truly great strategic edge to it. Even though being 12 years old, it is still rated in my books as one of the better RTSs you will find, so much so it probably deserves a sequel. However with it only able to be played on Windows 95 & 98 it may be one for the history books; unless you have an old machine lying around, in which case you can probably pick it up for $5.00.