Thanks to the Command & Conquer series, Electronic Arts was able to create a new gaming niche – the real-time strategy. Since the 1995 release of Tiberium Dawn, the C&C franchise has grown with the RTS genre, still very popular in today’s gaming milieu. But on the other side of things, free-to-play massively multiplayer online titles (MMO) have shown us in recent years that it could be fun to join thousands of other players around the world and play the same game as it happens. In what could be a controversial move for EA, company vice president and general manager Jon Van Caneghem announced the “transformation” of Command & Conquer into a “premier online experience,” a free-to-play series starting with Generals 2.
Said Van Caneghem at Gamescom 2012, “For nearly two decades, this franchise has existed as something you buy; now we are creating a destination where our fans will be able to access the entire Command & Conquer universe, starting with Generals and continuing with Red Alert, Tiberium and beyond.” He added that the company will ensure that C&C remains true to its RTS roots despite the seeming paradigm shift.
Generals 2 actually isn’t the first C&C title that will be free-to-play – Tiberium Alliances was released in May of this year, and became the first title in the series to establish C&C in the MMO scene. It does look apparent that things are going to be a lot different in the world of Command & Conquer, although we’ve heard some of the classic elements of the series will be present on Generals 2. Reaction to the Gamescom 2012 promotional trailer you see above has been quite heated and negative and mostly anti-EA, as seen on its YouTube link. But it’s too early to judge a game that isn’t even out yet. For those curious to find out what all the fuss is about Generals 2, a closed beta registration form is now available on the C&C site.