meridian squad 22 an early look
Meridian: Squad 22, is a Real Time Strategy game on Steam that is currently still in development. In Squad 22 you play as Mark Quinn, a squad leader whose task is to go and investigate the disappearance of the first colonization crew who landed on Meridian. This game is currently still being developed but has been opened up for early access for those RTS lovers looking for another challenge.
Currently, Squad 22 has three different gameplay modes to choose from. You have your standard campaign (story), Squad missions, and Conquest. Currently, there are six campaign missions to play after their new patch goes live later this week. Each mission dives into the story and focuses on pulling the player in making them wondering what actually happened on Meridian. Squad missions are currently still in development but I imagine them being missions with a small amount of unit support. Conquest, on the other hand, puts a different spin on a single player RTS game. In this mode, you start at a single point/base. Then, you pick and choose your conquest path by selecting battles that will lead you into demolishing your enemies stronghold.
The surprising thing is that this game is developed by a single individual named Ede Tarsoly. For this game, he has teamed up with Hexany Audio team to help with that side of the game. For a game to have a lone developer is one thing, usually those types of games comes out extremely low quality and with lots of bugs. That is not really the case with Meridian: Squad 22, from my point of view this game reminds me a lot of an early Red Alert or Command & Conquer style RTS. Some differences that this game has to offer more new aged units and expands the battlefield with ground, sea and air units depending upon your choices.
The choices that I am talking about all reside in the games research and development trees. There are three total research trees, one for Defense, Economy, and Offense. On each, there will be color coordinated research material to pick up scattered across the maps. This happens in a lot of RTS style games that make you explore the map to find all the hidden secrets, but most RTS’s make you find them before you achieve victory. In Meridian: Squad 22 this is not the case, you can achieve victory and have the ease of mind to explore the rest of the map with little resistance to collect the rest of the essential research materials.
While playing this game you may find some issues with figuring out which building units are what due to the lack of size of the selectable icons within the game. To get around this I was able to play easily while utilizing the key commands just like I would in any other major RTS game. I could only find two things I wished were better during the gameplay. At times, you will have a significant unit or hero character which can’t die or else you lose the mission. Sometimes when you include this unit in your army it is hard to tell which one is which. The other issue is unit control and aggro range. At times if you leave your units in an area a couple may go off charging into combat on their own due to their aggro logic. When an enemy unit gets close to your unit, it will make your unit charge after it impeding the progress. When that happens your unit is off on its own potentially eliminating the current threat. After defeating the threat the unit will stay there and wait until the next threat which it will charge forward repeating this process.
If this game had the same type of army control that a current generation Starcraft or Command & Conquer it would make it such a great deal, and a steal of an RTS game for only $9.99 on Steam. That being said if you would like to take part and make this game better by playing and leaving feedback it will most likely be taken very seriously since it still is in the development stages and will be having patches created and implemented based on players feedback. The campaign is still being designed and will be added through these patches as well. So, if you are looking for a new RTS and like the feel for small developers then stop by Steam and give it a good look through.