S.W.I.N.E. HD Remastered Review (PC)

S.W.I.N.E. launches today on the PC on Steam and GOG . It was developed by Kite Games and published by Assemble Entertainment. It is a real-time strategy game featuring two armies, Pigs versus Rabbits.

AIR Entertainment obtained a digital copy of the game for review purposes.


STORY

It is eighteen years since the original SWINE game graced pc players. Sadly, I was not one of those that got to play it. However! All that has changed as I take on the latest HD Remastered Edition.

You have two armies that are sworn enemies to each other. The Pig and Rabbit armies are to each other what GDI and NOD were in Command and Conquer. They seek to end each other’s existence. And as the player, you can choose one of two single player campaigns.

Each side has a multitude of stories where your mission is to wipe out the enemy. You will do so by either stopping resource supplies, or making sure villages are defended, or making pork meat out of the swines.

And then there is the multiplayer section where you can challenge your friends. I haven’t played it with any said friends as yet, since the game has only been released. But two games against strangers was harder than any of the single player campaigns, since you’re playing against humans trying to outsmart you.

The story is fun and definitely worth following. Each mission starts with a briefing which spells out your objective clearly. Although, most of the time if you simply wipe out the enemy, this will suffice. Some stages require you to hold out for a certain amount of time to succeed.


GAMEPLAY

SWINE adopts the same RTS elements that most strategy games of this kind maintain. Click on tanks, send them over the map, destroy the enemy.

However, there are some interesting deviations from the norm. For example, base building is completely absent. You choose tanks that you will start the stage with, as well as some extras you can buy during the match with Strategy Points. I love base building, and I honestly would have loved to have seen some Pig and Rabbit military buildings.

There are also tow vehicles that can tow one of three resource containers: fuel, ammunition and repair. Each one serves its own function, as the names describe. Which is great, since you can repair your tanks and allies during skirmishes.

Even though the game allows you to buy tanks during missions, the strategy points are a bit low. Once your tanks start dying off, the mission becomes harder to complete. Most of the time you will be strategically deciding how to handle each mission in order to avoid critical losses.

Each of tank also has certain abilities. One can burrow into the ground and attack from ground level, another can plant mines, while others can call a bombing air strike. This type of mechanics makes the game even more strategic, as you need to make sure you take the correct tanks into battle.


SOUND AND GRAPHICS

When it comes to the graphics, I am reminded of old Command and Conquer games. Even the movie cut-scenes are much like C & C cutscenes, with maybe a bit of Team 17 Worms’ flair and humour added.

The user interface is kept simple. On the bottom left is the map, while the bottom right holds the menu for your tanks and orders. Now and again, you will have a display pop up with either your army or the enemy spouting threats or encouragement at you.

Each tank has its own set display. If you hover over them, you will see their health. When it runs low on ammunition or fuel, small symbols will appear to alert you. I also loved the many variations in tank design that have been provided.

The game claims that it plays well on 4K graphics, and I have found this to be true. I played on my pc through my 4K television, and the graphics holds up superbly.

Those of you who are familiar with my reviews know that I do not often praise the sound of a game. SWINE has some of the best sounds I’ve heard in a game. Mostly how they make me laugh. The rabbits have an accent that reminds me of Steve Martin’s french character in The Pink Panther. Even with the ‘hamburger’ pronunciation.

The addition of voice overs for the text and briefing is such a relief. I’ve often complained when developers could not even add that small touch, and SWINE delivers. The sound and voice acting is the one element of the game that I truly enjoyed over the others.


FINAL VERDICT

SWINE HD Remastered is what you would get if you married Team 17 with Westwood Studios. This real-time strategy game provides a combination of some sophisticated strategy with good-natured laughs, as well as some rather enjoyable plays on words. Even after completion of the game, you will be want to come back for some multiplayer fun. While some stages are rather complicated to complete, several changes in strategy and determination will lead you to victory.

SWINE HD Remastered receives 9.5/10 for an overall score.

**PLEASE NOTE: AIR Entertainment were kindly supplied with a review copy. This has in no way influenced my views on the game as per our Review Policy**

SHAUN M JOOSTE

Author, Poet, Screenwriter, Gamewriter, Journalist,
….and Elemental Mage Supreme in his spare time
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https://celenicearth.wordpress.com || http://celenicearthpublications.co.za

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