|This article is written from a real world point of view.|
Global Conquest mode is a turn-based strategy game mode integrated into the PC version of Command & Conquer 3: Kane's Wrath. The Xbox 360 version (including the Xbox One port) does not have this game mode, and is replaced by Kane's Challenge instead.
The goal of the game is to achieve world domination. The player must choose one of the three factions which will be used to attain this goal. World domination is achieved by either destroying all bases owned by the other two factions, or by achieving a faction-specific goal. These alternative win conditions are as follows:
- GDI: control 33% of the map area within the influence of your bases.
- Nod: bring 24 cities to the red (full) unrest level.
- Scrin: build 9 Threshold towers (constructed at tier 3 bases).
At the start of the game, each faction has four bases randomly placed across the globe. Bases provide a place for the player to assemble their armies, called strike forces and can grant them additional support powers, once they've been built up. Strike forces are integral to the Global Conquest play mode. Each force is a defined group of units that the player deploys from bases to the global map in order to attack enemy bases, engage hostile strike forces, or establish new bases.
All bases begin at tier 1, but can be upgraded to increase the base tier. This expands its area of influence and allows it to produce strike forces with a higher tier requirement. In addition, the player may upgrade the base's power and defenses. These secondary upgrades will automatically improve as the base's tier increases.
Once a base reaches tier 3, it may construct one of several utility structures that provide global support powers or allow assembly of epic strike forces from that base. These include each faction's superweapons and epic unit factory from the normal game mode, but there are additional structures unique to the Global Conquest play mode, as well.
Should a base be damaged, whether by a strike force or support power, it can be repaired, restoring all structures. Only one task may be done each round by any given base; one upgrade, repair, utility structure addition or strike force deployment.
Strike forces are the hands of the player, in a sense, being the primary means of influencing the wider world. The player can use default strike forces, or define a custom force to fit his or her unique play style, but once assembled, the force' composition cannot be changed. A strike force may be composed of units from any single subfaction and only those containing an MCV may be used to establish a new base.
Once assembled, a strike force can be issued commands to move across the map and attack. They will move a certain distance each turn, so that longer moves can take several turn to complete. Each faction has additional ways of moving their forces around. GDI and NOD forces can make use of seaports, traveling from any two ports as their move for that turn, while Scrin forces may gain access to a support power that creates a temporary wormhole between two locations on the map. These wormholes can be used by Scrin forces in the same manner as ports are used by human forces. All factions can airlift their strike forces between tier 2 & 3 bases.
When strike forces engage in battle, the player may choose to play the scenario on the familiar C&C 3 battlefield or allow the computer to automatically determine the outcome of the fight. The latter choice is effortless, but often results in an unfavourable outcome for smaller, specialized forces. If the strike force survives, any units lost in the scenario are subtracted from the force on the world map. These units may be restored by bringing the strike force under the influence of a base and repairing it. Surviving units will retain their veterancy, allowing successful strike forces to become quite powerful over time.
Scattered across the globe are a number of cities that serve as resource nodes, of sorts. In addition to being key to Nod's alternate victory condition, each faction receives income, at the start of its turn, for every city under the influence of one of its bases. Cities have two basic attributes: population and unrest, and every faction has a different effect on the cities under its influence.
Both GDI and Nod promote an increase in population, as they have a vested interest in the survival of the human race - but while the former decreases unrest in an attempt to keep the peace, the latter increases it, driving the people toward rebellion. The Scrin faction, on the other hand, decreases population, seemingly converting unfortunate victims into resources, but having no effect on unrest.
Unrest is indicated by the colour of a city's icon and shows the extent of the political allegiances of the city's authorities to GDI or Nod. Blue cities are fully GDI aligned cities with minimal unrest. As unrest develops, their colour shifts to light blue, yellow, orange, and finally red, the state of full unrest (and full Nod alignment). If a city remains under Scrin influence for long enough that it's population is completely wiped out the city is shown as grey and has no unrest value, however placing a GDI or Nod base near a greyed-out city will restore its population.
Cities are instrumental to all three factions; all three factions rely on them to provide resources; the means are determined by the faction.
- GDI: loses resources for unrest in cities.
- Nod: receives more resources for higher unrest in cities in their area of influence.
- Scrin: receives more resources each time population level decreases in cities in their area of influence.
Population is indicated by the number and thickness of the bars on the edge of the square coloured city marker. The larger the city is the more valuable it is to all factions, even though the Scrin faction slowly wipes out the population of the all cities under their influence and converts them into extra resources.
- When playing as Nod and trying to expand rapidly, quickly build a Tiberium Forge at one of your Tier 3 bases. This will grant you the Guerrilla Repairs ability. Now train a Strike Force consisting of an MCV and just one other unit. Use this strike force to deploy a base, then on the next turn, use Guerrilla Repairs on the strike force. On the same turn, give the strike force any move order you want, since a Strike Force can be repaired by this power on the same turn it moves. Lather, rinse, repeat. This allows you to rapidly establish bases at every port at a rate of one base EVERY TURN.
- Remember that, as Scrin, you do not need to control cities. It is often beneficial for a Scrin player to begin in Asia and consolidate their power in that area. Because there are only very few cities in Asia, and no ports, your enemies will have to spend at least 2 turns to attack you, giving you plenty of time to defend. Also, since GDI's income is almost entirely tied to cities, and Nod's alternate victory requires them, a patient Scrin player can wait on one to destroy the other, then steamroll the survivor with little resistance. Asia also provides ample flat land to cover with Tiberium for your own income.
- Don't forget Europe! While the Middle East and the Americas have many cities, Europe has the highest number of cities on the map. A single Tier 3 base can cover all of them if placed properly, making it an extremely profitable location to hold. Europe cannot win you the game on its own, but the income from it is still substantial. This applies even to Scrin players, since denying Nod access to the European cities will force them to hold every other city on the map to win.
- As either Nod or GDI, you have a bomber strike power. Save this power for attacking enemy "base building groups." These are small Strike Forces used by the enemy AI to set up bases that usually include an MCV and only a small handful of other units. When hitting these strike forces with the bomber strike power (Vertigo Strike or Orca Strike) there is a very high chance the MCV will be destroyed, thus making the strike force useless and costing your enemy time and money to move it back and repair it.
- If playing as GDI and your Orca Strike is on cooldown, consider using Commando Strike instead. This will buy you a turn to get Orca Strike off cooldown.
- Strike forces with MARV can convert Tiberium into credits on Strategic View, consider using them as auxiliary income sources and means of Tiberium counter-proliferation.
- Remember that both GDI and Nod posses 2 powers each for changing unrest levels. If you aren't using them your opponent probably is. Especially when playing as GDI, do not underestimate the power of Refugee Aid to snatch victory from the jaws of a Nod opponent. Either way, prioritize using these powers on cities that are NOT within your enemy's Area of Influence, since this will force them to use their own powers to change the unrest level back in their favor.
- It takes two or three superweapon hits to wipe a base off the map of strategic view, however damages only take effects on next phase, so when a base is attacked by superweapon (especially receiving the killing blow), consider decommission it immediately. At least some resources can be salvaged instead of a complete loss.
- To avoid a real-time battle stretches too long, Fog of War and stealth will be removed after a few minutes. Use this as a tactical advantage when battling against Nod.
- Although it is labelled as a "Global Conquest", Antarctica is not present on the map.
- Every time the player engages in a real-time battle, initial credits will be 10000, regardless of how much is left in the balance of the strategic view. Also, the credits the player acquired during a battle will not be transferred to the balance of strategic view.
- The base a player constructed in a battle will not remain in the strategic view after a victory.
- Maps on which battles are played are randomly chosen from the main skirmish/multiplayer map pool, and layouts of bases are randomly arranged too. The same base can have a completely different layout in two different battles.
- All units produced in a battle will be "decommissioned" afterwards, and will not be added to a strike force. Similarly, no structures constructed during a battle will remain as structures assigned to that base.
- By transition, no captured enemy structures nor technologies remain after the battle.
- If any initial units in a strike force are lost during the battle, this strike force is considered "damaged" after the battle, even if a player produces identical units to compensate the loss. The same applies to base structures; if any of the initial structures is destroyed during the process, regardless of any potential identical replacements, the base is still considered "damaged" after the battle. Infantry units garrisoned in epic unit are considered "lost", but when the strike force goes into another battle, the epic unit is not garrisoned.
- If a strike force had received full upgrades in strategic view, newly produced units in a battle are not upgraded and each upgrade option must be researched during combat. However, this will not stack up any upgrade effects to initial upgraded units. If units belonging to a strike force are not upgraded in the strategic view, no potential upgrades during the battle remain afterwards.
- Sometimes, if a strike force reaches maximum veterancy (every unit is heroic), the overall veterancy may be reset to "rookie" after the battle.
- Battles can only occur between two opposing strike forces or a strike force versus a hostile base with a hostile strike force nearby. Bases cannot have defensive forces garrisoned within, and friendly strike forces cannot combine or reinforce each other.
- Infantry units can not be loaded into transport units (e.g. APC, Hammerhead) before a battle.
- It is impossible to "retreat" from a battle - the only way to abort is to "surrender", which will result in complete loss of all assets on the battlefield.
- The tactical AI that is used to auto-resolve battles is subpar. For example, a strike force of 4 Vertigo bombers pitted against a strike force of 6 Mammoth tanks will result in a win for the Mammoth tanks virtually every time. In even a beginner's hands, the Vertigos could defeat the Mammoths in just 3 bombing runs.