This real-time strategy game from the creators of Uplink and Darwinia is completely derivative and original at the same time. Borrowing freely from the movie WarGames, Defcon stages a semirealistic game of global thermonuclear war. Though the unique style of the game, complete with ambient music and people occasionally sobbing or coughing in the background, creates an immersive atmosphere, the demo falls just short of a top rating. Occasional crashes and an awkward tutorial detract from the engaging yet creepy multiplayer gameplay.
The action occurs as a clock counts down the minutes and hours from Defcon 5 (the start of the conflict) to Defcon 1 (all-out nuclear war). You have until Defcon 3 to place all your units, which include radar, missile silos, air bases, and fleets, which in turn consist of carriers, battleships, and submarines. Most units have several functions--for example, air bases can launch fully equipped nuclear bombers or fighters that scout enemy locations, and silos double as air-defense and offensive missile launchers. A seven-part tutorial walks you through the basics of the game, culminating in a very easy battle against a computer opponent. Though the tutorial provides a decent introduction to the action, there's no included documentation with the download, leaving it up to gamers to learn hot keys (if there are any) for options such as displaying current orders or radar coverage. Moving the mouse to the edges of the screen lets you navigate around the globe, but without hot keys for those items at the bottom, you may find yourself looking at Africa when you want to highlight orders in northern Europe. We experienced a few game crashes when playing against the computer AI, and contextual tutorial help often interfered with the action. Also, we may have blown our missiles too early, but we often spent time simply waiting for the game timer to run out. Despite these niggling complaints, Introversion has created another unique and polished game that military strategists should enjoy greatly.
It's global thermonuclear war, and nobody wins. But maybe (just maybe) you can lose the least. Defcon lets players compete against up to 6 other opponents online in an all-out nuclear war. Strategically place silos, radar, carriers, submarines in order to save as many of your people as possible, while wreaking havoc on your opponents.
This demo lets you play the tutorial and a single-player game against one AI-controlled opponent. The demo also includes LAN and online play.