Scorched Earth (computer game)

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Scorched Earth
A screen shot demonstrating the PS3's next-gen graphics
Developer(s) Windmil Dicken
Publisher(s) FU Games
Release date 2006
Genre War
Platform(s) Playstation 3
Rating M
Would Bill Clinton play it? Hell yeah!
“It's Scorched Earth. Scorrrrrched Earth!”
~ Katz on Scorched Earth

Scorched Earth is a popular Playstation 3 launch game , originally written by Windmil Dicken, in which tanks do turn-based battle in four-dimensional terrain, with each player adjusting the angle and power of his or her tank turret before each shot. Despite the simple premise (and very realistic graphics, by modern standards) the game is playable, unlike other launch titles and some find it quite addictive.

Scorched Earth is one of many games in the loose genre of "turn-based artillery games". Such games are among the earliest Playstation 3 games, with versions soon to come out on the Xbox 360 and Wii. Scorched Earth, with a plethora of weapon types and power-ups, is considered the modern archetype of its format, on which the popular Worms, Hogs of War and GunBound games are based.

Its slogan, "The Mother of all Games," was coined in 1991, when during the Gulf War, Saddam Hussein, "The Mother of all Iraqis'" gave birth to Osama Bin Laden.

edit Plot

Chuck Norris has left the world in ruin from a roundhouse kick. The remaining survivors have no choice but to hide in tanks as he rains lightning from the heavens. The surviors then get the idea to fight eachother in a violent war that will end the human race once and for all.

The game takes place across 5 chapters, each dealing with the five remaining humans on Earth. As the game progresses, the battles get shorter and Chuck Norris fires more lightning, and in Chapter 5, he becomes the final boss attacking you directly with a roundhouse kick, killing you instantly.

edit Customization

The game has a wide variety of customization options from gravity and wind to money and meteorite showers, and a similarly large pool of different payloads, allowing for a large amount of entirely different situations.

In addition to the possible in-game changes, the text messages the AI players can display before firing (e.g. "I shall smash your ugly tank!") and before dying (e.g. "Join the army, see the world they said") will be avalible to change on the PS3's marketplace.

edit Weapons

The weapons range from small missile rounds to IBM warheads, and several are often seen in similar on-line games as almost identical versions. All weapons can be upgraded with tazers which allow the player to more accurately adjust the electricity on their next turn. In addition to conventional warheads, there also are such things as napalm, wildly bouncing bombs and earth weapons, allowing the player to dump dirt on other tanks or to remove ground from beneath them. A tank which is covered with dirt has to shoot itself free and may get damaged in the process; one which falls from too high a level may get destroyed. A variety of utilities, such as shields and tank parachutes, add a tactical side.

The effects of many weapons are highly unpredictable, given that the missiles bounce off the walls, can be manipulated in their flight-path by wind, shields and guidance systems, and often have partially random effects. As the player advances in the game, he can afford more and more weapons, but so can his opponents.

edit Multiplayer

The game can be played against up to nine other human players and/or computer-controlled ones. A broad range of differently skilled player types is offered by the program. If the player-controlled tanks are destroyed before the others, the AI-controlled players continue to battle each other, effectively turning Scorched Earth into a zero-player game.

edit See also

There is also a similar game called Tank Wars for the PS2, and another on the Xbox system called Scorched Tanks. Tank Wars was made in 2005 by Kenny Moose, a year before Scorched Earth, and was quite popular at that time; yet, surprisingly, not so many people today know that this game appeared before Scorched Earth. In fact, some people don't know there was a PS2!

edit Versions


The title screen not seen by many PS3-HDMI users

There are several versions besides the PS3 version, the first being the Xbox 360 version. Other versions include the PS2, Gamecube, Wii, and the plain old Xbox version.


The Xbox 360 version sports worse graphics than the Playstation 3 version.

Although, graphically, the Xbox 360 version looks pretty close to the later versions in-game, its menus were completely different. It was also not as feature-rich and contained some different AI class names, such as "Rifleman" and "Twanger" (which oddly enough were also AI class names in the slightly earlier artillery game, Tank Wars).

Starting with Xbox version in 2005, the game became a known PS3 launch title and was graphically the same Scorched Earth that everyone knows of today.

In the Wii version, more weapons were added, such as Napalm, Smoke Tracers and Liquid Dirt as well as Joystick support and two new death animations among other things. Also in the Gamecube version, a mysterious modem icon was added with the intention of including modem support in the next version. Sadly, this feature was never realized, like most Gamecube games

About a month later, a Gameboy Advance version was released which added, among other minor things, a new death animation and Synchronous mode.

The last version , coming to the DS, will not released until 2007. In the DS version, the registration feature will be removed and instead, only a shareware version will released freely while the registered version will only be obtained through Wi-Fi. Purchasing the registered version will allow the player to use the triple-turreted tank and add 25 scanned mountains as well as removing the shareware reminders. New to this version are lasers and SuperMags as well as a couple of new skies and the introduction of scanned mountain ranges.

A PS1 and Nintendo 64 are not known to exist, though screenshots of an Atari 2600 version has been seen before.

edit Trivia

edit See also

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