- Summary: How would combat change if you could foresee the future? If you could prevent your past mistakes from ever happening? What if your enemy could too? Achron is the first game to feature single-player and multiplayer free-form time travel. It is the world's first meta-time strategy game, aHow would combat change if you could foresee the future? If you could prevent your past mistakes from ever happening? What if your enemy could too? Achron is the first game to feature single-player and multiplayer free-form time travel. It is the world's first meta-time strategy game, a real-time strategy game where players and units can jump to and play at different times simultaneously and independently. You can undo your mistakes, change your strategy after committing to it, preview the future, freeze time to perfectly coordinate attacks, and send entire fleets through time to when they are needed. However, all of your opponents will also be independently moving across time, attempting to rewrite history in their favor... … Expand
Sep 9, 2011Achron brings a very unique mix between real-time strategy and time travel mechanics. The gameplay can get extremely confusing and the graphics aren't all that great. However, more experienced strategists will have a great time, playing around with time and outsmarting their opponents.
PC GamerSep 13, 2011When it comes to RTS design fundamentals, Achron is frustratingly primitive, which depreciates its brilliant twist. [Nov 2011, p.81]
PC PowerPlaySep 8, 2011An intriguing gimmick, but neither polished nor entertaining. A tech demo on stilts. [Oct 2011, p.54]
Sep 16, 2011Injecting dynamic time travel into a real-time strategy game is a risky, ambitious move. Though it takes a lot of effort, experimentation, and agonizing in order to use the time travel mechanics effectively, Hazardous Software manages to pull it off. The problem is the rest of the game suffers from design flaws and technical issues, making Achron feel like an RTS relic.
Dec 17, 2011Many of the poor critic ratings, I believe, were written back when Achron was still under primary development. I'd compare it to tasting aMany of the poor critic ratings, I believe, were written back when Achron was still under primary development. I'd compare it to tasting a cake that's not done cooking yet - of course it's not going to appeal to many people. However, now that there've been several patches and fixes, I find that most of the critic reviews won't hold against actual experience.
The time travel mechanic is interesting. Somewhat tricky to use, but how you use it depends on how good you want to be at the game. If you go back in time (something Achron does differently from other games) and simply want to undo moves, well that's easy enough, but can only make up for so many mistakes. It's not hard to learn basic time manipulation, only to master its intricacies. The pathfinding has been significantly (and I mean tremendously) improved since release and when most of the critic reviews were made. Back then, yeah, you couldn't walk around a building without microing your units every step. Not as much of a problem now, and it just gets better with each patch (which comes once a month or so, to change balance aspects and whatnot).
The AI isn't stellar. How it could be in a game like this is beyond me. However, it is enough to give players a challenge if they haven't mastered the RTS properties of macromanagement. The graphics look dated, but aren't important. They give the game a distinct feel, and convey all of the necessary information without hogging your system resources.
Speaking of which, the Resequence engine is going to take a lot of system resources. Keeping track of several minutes of a match all at once is challenging. You'll need a dual-core system for sure, so make sure you meet the spes before you buy. Try the demo as a stress test.
Achron's community is small, but great. Everyone is considerate and thoughtful, and the community contributes a lot to the balancing of Achron. The forums are great for discussing perceived problems and possible solutions, and everyone's really into the game at all skill levels.
Over all, I strongly recommend the game to anyone with a taste for time travel AND RTS games. Pure RTS fans may feel like the time mechanic is too complicated, and should play other games instead. Fans of time travel alone may not adjust well to the RTS aspects, but should certainly watch games and theorize! Fans of both would most likely love the game.… Expand
Sep 16, 2011This is, as I write this, most likely becoming my second favorites strategy game after Starcraft Broodwar.
Let's put it straight first. ForThis is, as I write this, most likely becoming my second favorites strategy game after Starcraft Broodwar.
Let's put it straight first. For me real time strategy games is all about multiplayer. So I don't care if the campaign of this time travel extravaganza is supposebly weak. I learned the game by watching casted games on youtube, and I suggest you do it too!
Just experiencing the game like this, at the first glance, I recognised the wast amount of strategies that could be used by the players. Different kind of strategies, that needs a totally different way of thinking than in any other rts. In what other game could you go for a rush, in which you build a lot of tier 1 units, then when the units reaches your opponents base, you go back in time, SWITCH WHICH RACE YOU'RE PLAYING, and instead go for a resource heavy game? Just the though of the mind games that could be played by the players is mind boggling.
Some people complain about different aspects of the game, but what the game is really about is the time travel, and that certain part of the game is working flawlessly. And it's not a gimmick either, it's a completely new way of thinking. Try it out, but give it the time it needs to be properly learned!… Expand
Jul 19, 2012Don't let the arguably low score scare you, this game is a jewel. It's just hard to find that jewel, as the game is very counter-intuitive.Don't let the arguably low score scare you, this game is a jewel. It's just hard to find that jewel, as the game is very counter-intuitive. Which is not the developer's fault but just the nature of time travel. I can relate to some of the reviews because I too thought the game wouldn't work properly, as there is nothing more frustrating than giving out complex orders only to find your army somewhere else entirely because you forgot that one a-move you made. Timewaves just travel slow (does that even make sense?). Conclusion: if you are willing to mess around with this game, you are greatly rewarded. Obviously, time travel probably offers so many possibilities that you tend to get totally overwhelmed with it at the beginning... but just try. Achron is not ill-designed. It just takes some time to get used to the mechanics. And then you'll be very confused with the linear movement of time in reality when you stop playing the game.… Expand
Sep 10, 2011Never, anywhere, have I played an RTS as involved as this one is. Simply put this game is a must buy summed up in two simple words: TIMENever, anywhere, have I played an RTS as involved as this one is. Simply put this game is a must buy summed up in two simple words: TIME TRAVEL. I mean real honest time manipulation mechanics that allow you to not only "fix" your "mistakes" but also bend and break real time to your will.
The only thing holding this back from perfection and its true greatness in redefining the RTS genre lies in its Indie development and release giving the game play a look and unfortunate feel of the RTS games of the 1990s. The worst of which being the pathing. Some quick advice on that though, units will only move in straight lines and cannot seem to register terrain so hold CTRL and the game will allow you to que up your movement paths allow you to correct the poor A.I. movements easily
Even still in the course of a few matches the "AHA" moments of realizing how to break time to your advantage are well worth the cover price. Future scouting to see places your units have never actually traveled, harassing with "phantom units" that won't exist come the next time wave. and chronocloning your army to battle with itself are just a few examples of discovers that make you feel like a king until you notice your opponent has changed something further in the past than you… Expand
Aug 31, 2011Quick Info:
If all you like to do is playing skirmish and single player, then Achron is a very clear NO BUY for you. The Campaign, whileQuick Info:
If all you like to do is playing skirmish and single player, then Achron is a very clear NO BUY for you. The Campaign, while actually having an interesting story, is heinously and VERY effectively murdering any fun you might have had. The skirmish AI is incapable of dealing with any player on a pure rts level, add in time travel and it goes under like the titanic. However, if you like to play with friends this game makes for wonderful evening of cursing, laughter, mind-screws and many WTF moments. Achron is a multi player game. Its only truly fun when you have a human opponent to screw over via time travel. Its very enjoyable to see your scams create successful outcomes. Many a Doctor Evil lolathons ensued when i played Achron 4 vs 4 with friends. However be warned that due to the, lackluster rest of the game, the population of people to play with ad hock via On-line match-ups might be close to non existent, making matchmaking on the Achron forums a necessity.
However, if you have even one friend willing to play with you, you can experience some insane moments of fun and laughter as the two of you try to reconstruct just what the hell happened right now and how to profit from it.
I give this game a solid 7 because while graphics and single player are seriously lacking, the core game play which is manipulation of events and time travel works surprisingly well. Yes it requires work to get into and the developers at Hazardous Software have their work cut out upgrading the UI and the infos you get on your units (like.. what orders did i gave when?) - not to mention path finding.
Achron clearly shows a possible direction for future rts and strategy games in general.
Achron will not be a huge hit, but it may very well be the granddaddy of a new breed of time travel games where time travel is not a scripted mess (singularity, we look at you) and does not take the form of a simple rewind.
Portal + time travel anyone?… Collapse
Dec 19, 2015This game shows a highly innovative, I'd even say genius mechanic of time travel in a real-time strategy - something no one has done before orThis game shows a highly innovative, I'd even say genius mechanic of time travel in a real-time strategy - something no one has done before or since (up to 2015). In short, you can give orders to units in the past and in the future, and there are "update waves" which travel at about 3x faster than normal time. Also you can teleport units across the battlefield with teleporters and into the past/future with chronoporters. So, basically, you can do tricks by sending units into the past to help their older doubles and so on - use your imagination. This sounds like an amazing game decades ahead of its time, but sadly its poorly designed tutorial and heavily scripted missions will turn off most players and make them drop the game in frustration. I heard good things about multiplayer but you won't find anyone thru the lobby, only thru forums of this game's fans, which are in short supply.
I could endure only the demo and 3 missions, even restarted the game and played them once again to understand the mechanics better. And though I did understand how this game works with some effort, I doubt many gamers even would.
Too many units are introduced too fast. The tutorial popups ask you to do stuff but don't let you do it before you press OK which actually hides the instructions about what you need to do. The scripted events take control off from you unexpectedly, place new units and give orders to other units, creating even more confusion than the already complex time-traveling system. While the control is taken away from you, characters are talking and the battle goes on. This feels like a nuthouse. Sometimes you aren't even sure if what has just happened is a bug, a scripted event or a game mechanic in action.
I found the story trashy, though if you have nostalgic feelings for Star Wars (I don't), you may find it ok, as even the main character has the name "Luke". The 2D art is amateurish and, together with this Star Wars-like setting gives this game a "trashy" feel, like it was a school project done by teenagers - while the ingenuous combat system of this game deserved so much more. The 3D units are hard to tell from each other. The ground is covered with big uniform textures taken from some free online libraries, with strange lighting and huge, almost unit-sized bumps and long black shades in which smaller units get lost. The huge low-polygonal terrain objects look ugly next to tiny, much more detailed units. The air units hover so high above that you can't see where exactly they are located in relation to ground units (and their shades are shifted) - and where you need to bring your anti-air units so that they could fire at those air units. The controls are clumsy, the GUI is poor, with too few tips. The music is pretty good though.
The game introduces an interesting mechanic of grouping units with hierarchies of command - which also allows you to save on orders while giving orders in the past or the future (the number of orders you can give is limited by "chronoenergy"). But hierarichies don't work well, as units following a leader don't have a fixed formation, tend to spread and walk in ever expanding crowds which leads to edge units getting killed with no one helping them because the rest of the formation is out of range and won't come to assist other units in the formation.
Save files get corrupted and don't load, so if you fail (e.g. in the very first mission 8+ marines must survive in a fight which comes unexpectedly) you may have to restart the whole mission. Missions are long and heavily scripted, sometimes the instructions are given while you are busy fighting and fail to concentrate.
Voice acting is amateurish and lifeless, as if the actors were bored/annoyed with the story as much as I did. When you click on the timeline (an innovative tool to show the battlefield's states up to 5 mins ago and after), it takes the game 1-2 seconds to load the state of the battlefield at that time point which makes the whole thing feel clumsy, especially when you are already stressed by struggling with this complex game and its heavily script-influenced mission objectives.
Btw I bought the game some time in 2014 and it had all graphics glitched on my laptop (AMD Radeon HD 7670M video card), but it finally ran on my new desktop computer which has GeForce GTX 970. I think the devs need to try a Kickstarter campaign to get funding for Achron 2 and make a proper game on the same concept this time.… Expand
Nov 6, 2011this game is bad broken path finding and a the AI has a significant lack of the I and if that wasn't enough you have to remove moves made inthis game is bad broken path finding and a the AI has a significant lack of the I and if that wasn't enough you have to remove moves made in the future if i wanted to do those moves i wouldn't have changed my moves in the past would i… Expand