DEFCON (2006)


Developed by Introversion Software, DEFCON is an RTS game with a nuclear warfare theme. It was released in 2006,

DEFCON Gameplay

Gameplay takes place through a board, or map of the world. Players take part as one of six territories and look to destroy the other players, or survive on-coming attacks. It can be played online with other people or with AI. Unit creating and management are an important asset.

Thematically, and through various game play elements, the game has many similarities with the earlier computer game “War Games”, which focused on a similar concept on a smaller scale.

DEFCON also lets players form alliances as the game progresses. The speed of progression depends on the game being played, but players progress through the levels of DEFCON. The higher the level, the more players are able to do. Units can be created in DEFCON 5 and 4 but cannot after this; instead, the game focuses to war and confrontations. Nuclear Weapons can also be launched.

Game Reviews

DEFCON has been generally very well received. Metacritic give the game 84 out of 100, averaged from 36 critic reviews. Its user score is similar, with an average score of 8.6 out of 10 from 152 user ratings. Most reviews for the game seem to be favourable, with scores in the 80s or 70s.

Gaming Excellence were one of the most favourable, awarding the game 8.6 out of 10. Rick Poulin praised the games well balanced rules, as well as the sense of atmosphere created through watching the board map.

IGN similarly gave the game 8.5 out of 10. Steve Butts commented that “DEFCON’s a great example of how a few simple concepts can be combined to make something that’s incredibly interesting and pleasantly complicated” whilst also stating the game was a thematic reminder of War Games in its themes and portrayal.

NTSC-UK were one of the less favourable, still awarding DEFCON 60 out of 100, commenting on a lack of depth in the game as a main point of criticism.