Though real-time strategy has evolved over the last decade and the stars of the genre are now legion, one name looms above them all: Command & Conquer. Red Alert is Electronic Arts' first attempt to bring the high profile franchise to iPhone and while it does have a few rookie issues – including an inexplicably missing multiplayer mode -- it is a promising beginning for a series that deserves a long life on the App Store.
With no multiplayer in this download (EA promises it will come in an update -- perhaps it should have held the game until it was ready), the focus of Red Alert is on the main campaign and skirmish mode. The campaign is split into five missions for each faction, Allied and Soviet. The missions offer very little variety – typically you are ordered to destroy everything in your path or acquire a base. There are some optional objectives from time to time, but it would have been good to see more mission variety beyond kill 'em all. Each faction has a healthy number of units, from war bears to jet fighters, as well as a number of buildings and defenses to install at bases. The unit designs are clever, especially the Soviet war bears and zeppelin air ships.