Follow TV Tropes


Video Game / Outlive

Go To

Outlive is a Real-Time Strategy game developed and published by Continuum Entertainment. It was released in Brazil in 2000 and in the rest of the world in 2001, published by Take-Two Interactive.

Increase in terrorist activities and dwindling natural resources have lead to the world's superpowers to unite, forming the World Council. Seeking to solve the above issues, the World Council commissioned expeditions to scout out every planet and moon in the Solar System in hopes of finding resource-rich ground. After a lengthy search, they concluded that Titan, one of Saturn's moons, is their best bet. Thus begins the Outlive Project where three specially made starships will bring colonists to Titan and begin mining operations. There was a problem though; Titan's environment was unsuitable for humans. Fortunately, two groups had solutions to this problem. One of them is led by Dr. Joseph Taylor, who intends to create genetically modified beings that would adapt to Titan's environment and do the initial work. The other is led by Dr. Mary-Anne Harley of Mechatronics Inc. who preferred robotics and advanced Artificial Intelligence to do the job. Both were given one year to churn out prototypes of their respective entries. This all seemed like a simple rivalry at first, until the Liberty Army's constant involvements through their various terrorist attacks would only reveal that there is more to the World Council and Mechatronics Inc. than meets the eye...

Outlive contains examples of the following tropes:

  • Artificial Brilliance: For such an old game, the AI in Outlive is surprisingly clever.
    • It automatically assists friendly units and buildings under attack, a feat almost no other strategy game does. What's more, the assist radius can be fine-tuned.
    • Units can be set to automatically retreat once below a certain percentage of health. Not that useful due to most units having paper-thin armor but heroes really benefit from this.
    • Units can also be set to automatically use all their special abilities when appropriate. Only non-combat abilities are exempt from this, such as minelaying or the Raider's Camouflage ability.
    • If you have multiple camps such as a main base and several expansions, AI opponents always attack the least defended one. In combat, they automatically target the weakest units first to reduce enemy firepower as fast as possible.
    • AI opponents will make full use of air transports throughout a match. In the early game, they will use them to scout out the map. Since they fly, are cheap to build, and are available from the start, they will have a few of these roaming about the map. They will even take potshots at your base just to screw with you. Mid to late game they will have entire squadrons roaming about with a full load of passengers which they can disembark when threatened. These passengers are actually on standby - it's unsurprising to see them get used when they actually attack.
    • It is fully capable of carrying out tricks and combination attacks such as locking down your defenses before attacking or nuking your base which you will instinctively pull out your army to safety... right into the guns of its army it had positioned outside your base. Even better is that it will sometimes coordinate with allies, making for some impressive AI teamwork. Or a different AI opponent takes the opportunity to kick your ass.
  • Baseless Mission: A few times. The human campaign has it easy, considering the auto-regenerating vehicles.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Happens twice in the human campaign.
    • In Level 3, you can pull this off by saving Dimitri Karpov's base.
    • Level 7 has Morales helping out Maxwell and Mackenzie when Kaminski tries to off them.
  • Chest Burster: The Vampire unit, created by using a Dominator's Incubate ability on an Abominable (provided the Abominable survives long enough for the Incubate timer to reach zero).
  • Critical Existence Failure: Applies to units, not so to buildings. As buildings take damage, their operating efficiency drops to 75%, then 25%. Nuclear reactors additionally start leaking radiation, damaging themselves and everything near them.
  • Death from Above: There are quite a few air units in the game.
    • Transporters can be upgraded to carpet-bomb a targeted area.
    • Choppers start out quite weak but can be upgraded with air-to-ground missiles, as well as an incendiary missile that sets everything in the target area on fire.
  • Deflector Shield: The Heavy Tank, Avenger, Thunder, and Apocalypse can be upgraded with one which negates any damage inflicted. This can further be upgraded to decrease the recharge time and increase its active time.
  • Genetic Engineering Is the New Nuke:
    • For some reason (implied to be sabotage), Dr. Taylor's genetics project produced hulking monstrosities called Abominables that wrecked the laboratory, destroyed the base the lab was in and scattered all over the globe. They roam across most maps, with a random chance of going violent and throwing massively damaging boulders at everyone they see until killed or they no longer see a target.
    • Similarly, the Dominator's Incubate ability is pretty much an anti-Abominable Spawn Broodling, killing the Abominable to create a Vampire: a bat-like creature that has low health with a life-draining attack and explodes into a highly-damaging cloud of gas when killed.
    • With research, human players can produce their own Abominables that can take orders but otherwise behave like native ones, even randomly roaming across the map if left idle. They pack quite a punch but don't have much health; on the other hand, owned Abominables appear neutral to everyone but their owner, allowing for interesting sneak attacks as the AI doesn't attack them unless ordered to or the Abominables attack first.
  • Herd-Hitting Attack: A few units have weapons that can deal damage over a wide area.
    • Choppers and Flamethrowers can use incendiary missiles and napalm to set enemies on fire.
    • Transporters can drop powerful bombs when upgraded.
    • Electros can be upgraded with the ability to let out Nova energy which has a very large Area of Effect. They can also be upgraded to leech energy off enemy buildings to charge up their Nova energy attack faster.
    • The Chaos seems to have been designed with this in mind, having an attack that showers on area with explosives after the initial explosion and can be upgraded to cover an area with a radioactive cloud. This makes it one of the best siege units in the Robots' arsenal.
    • Thunders use sonic waves and can momentarily increase their firepower.
  • Hero Must Survive: Every mission but there is a subversion and an aversion.
    • In the third mission of the human campaign, you can find Dr. Taylor's bodyguard, Pedro Oliveira. He doesn't have to survive.
    • In the penultimate level of the human campaign, Peter Mackenzie must survive as usual. However, when he disarms the fifth and final ICBM, the building self-destructs and kills him.
  • Invisibility Cloak: The Fighter can turn invisible. Raiders have the Camouflage ability that disguises them as an Abominable.
  • Kill It with Fire: The Flamethrower unit has a short-ranged but devastatingly powerful attack that can hit multiple targets. Its Napalm ability also sets the target on fire for additional damage.
  • Macross Missile Massacre: The weapon of choice for the Apocalypse unit. Extremely long-ranged and devastating, to the point where they're considered a Game-Breaker in multiplayer; not using Apocalypses is a frequent house rule in Robot vs Robot and Human vs Robot matchups.
  • Magikarp Power: The Chopper is a rather weak aircraft, only armed with a weak machinegun and poor armor. Once fully upgraded, it essentially becomes a Lightning Bruiser (or Glass Cannon at least due to its vulnerability towards anti-air) with a nasty attack that hits a wide area with fire.
  • More Dakka: There's not a single unarmed unit in the game. Even non-combat units have a weapon. On the other hand, these weapons tend to be weak.
  • Sickly Green Glow: Indicates radioactivity released by uranium deposits, damaged mines on uranium deposits and damaged nuclear power plants. Everything in the cloud takes damage until they die or get out of the cloud.
  • Spider Tank: The Chaos, a six legged monstrosity with a cannon that shoots projectiles which explodes into more projectiles. It's also able to cover an area with radiation. To a lesser extend, there's also the Morpher which transforms into buildings and when upgraded can also permanently transform into an EMP mine.
  • Tank Goodness: While all units in the game are vehicles, the human side has an actual Tank unit. Not only is it stronger both offensively and defensively than previous units, it is also the only unit that can fire at targets without having to face them, thus being able to attack while moving. The Heavy Tank exchanges this advantage for an Impact Cannon plus temporary invulnerability.
  • We Have Reserves: The game all but encourages you to have this mentality, as units tend to die by the dozens in each battle.