Soviet Strike simply doesn't play as well as the old 16-bit Strike games.
Soviet Strike is the latest in a series of "Strike" games (Desert Strike, Jungle Strike) that first appeared on the Genesis. Through the years the original has spawned new incarnations that have appeared on Genesis, SNES, and even Game Gear. Now the series makes the jump to 32-bit, with a raw collection of messy operations and too many little problems to recommend it. The sound is dull, the scrolling can get choppy, and the control requires far too much precision. And while the full-motion video is entertaining, and the graphics above average, Soviet Strike simply doesn't play as well as the old 16-bit Strike games. So, let's get specific....
Soviet Strike follows the same structure as its predecessors: You are given a map and a list of missions to accomplish. The objectives range from destroying radar dishes to liberating prisoners. Along the way you need to grab packages, which are designated on the map, to replenish your fuel and ammo supplies. Of course, a host of heavily-armed bad guys (in the air and on the ground) stand ready to defiantly oppose your intrusion.
The graphics in Soviet Strike, while choppy, are a definite step up from the 16-bit era. The vehicles look good, and as the terrain in this 32-bit offering was made using actual models, it looks appropriately realistic. The scrolling is smooth until the action gets hectic. The data overload results in rough play, and makes the chopper nearly impossible to control with any precision. And even when the play is smooth, it's unnecessarily difficult to pick up supplies or refugees using the helicopter's winch. (If you can't pinpoint the exact spot, your winch will remain empty, making you a sitting duck.)
The only real plus to Soviet Strike is its full-motion video. Using an editing style similar to the old Max Headroom TV show, this game is chock-full of futuristic-looking technology and people using big words. It also features some of the best CD-ROM acting seen in a long time. However, this is a small victory in a larger conflict. Maybe if EA took a little less time finding good actors and a little more time working on control, they'd have a more exciting title on their hands.