Imagine being thrown into the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. This will help you to understand what it’s like to play Supreme Ruler 2020, a complex global strategy game whose woefully inadequate tutorial and manual leave you treading water with something bumping against your leg. Running a country is hard work - a deep supply model, 300 researchable technologies, economics, diplomacy, and warfare all require your attention, and this feat of multitasking isn’t helped by the uninformative interface. You’ll certainly have time to experiment, though, since the pace of SR’s gameplay is roughly equivalent to watching continental drift. Mercifully, cabinet ministers can assist you with the day-to-day affairs of running your country. Most perform adequately, but trusting your defense minister to control units during wartime is perhaps the most efficient way to lose.
Warfare is an inevitable fact of life in 2020, as your relations with other countries continually erode, seemingly without cause. Selecting and moving your units on the 1.4 million hex map is like trying to move ants to the right square on a screen door; you’ll be lucky if your units wind up within a few dozen hexes of where you wanted them. The poor controls are matched by equally unimpressive graphics and sound. Assuming you’re not bored stupid after the first go-round, the campaigns and scenarios (you can play as any U.S. state, for example) make the game very replayable, and multiplayer is also available. You’ll need a great deal of patience to have fun with this one, though.
PC Gamer scores games on a percentage scale, which is rounded to the closest whole number to determine the GamesRadar score.
PCG Final Verdict: 50% (merely okay)
Jul 3, 2008