M.A.X.: Mechanized Assault & Exploration DOS front cover
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M.A.X.: Mechanized Assault & Exploration

M.A.X.: Mechanized Assault and Exploration is a hybrid turn based and real time strategy game developed and published by Interplay in 1996.

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As its name implies, M.A.X.: Mechanized Assault and Exploration (MAX) is a conquer ‘n’ plunder-type strategy game in the same vein as the Warcraft or Command & Conquer series, albeit with a few interesting twists. The goal of M.A.X. is to colonize newly-discovered planets, controlling the resources found there, and defend your colony against other rival factions looking to literally blow you off the planet. Play M.A.X.: Mechanized Assault & Exploration online!

M.A.X.: Mechanized Assault & Exploration game description

Set in a distant future where mankind has long abandoned Earth, an alien species offered to help humanity to seed new colonies throughout the universe, and in turn humans would fight in their wars as soldiers and strategists. The entirety of the human race now lives on a massive alien ship, and they have divided themselves into several factions, each with many colony ships of their own, and the aliens pit them against each other and let the victorious party colonize the planets they conquer. The brains of mankind’s best strategists are removed and put in the alien’s cybernetic machines, where they can lead the war and colonization effort. The player assumes the role of one of these cybernetic mission commanders.

M.A.X. is most notable for its ability to be played as a real-time or more traditional turn-based strategy game, which can significantly impact how the game is played. The length of turns is adjustable, as is game speed, so the game can be as challenging or brain-dead as the player wants. But at its core, M.A.X. is about resource-gathering, building, and tactical combat. The game offers more than 50 land, sea, and air units, most of which can be upgraded to improve their armor, speed, and range.

You can play as one of eight different Factions (all of which are explained in a rather lengthy fictional introduction in the manual), either in a complete campaign or in a limitless number of custom missions. There’s also a tutorial campaign to get new players up to speed on the myriad unit and building options.

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