Sunday, May 1, 2011

Review: Strategic Command: WW1 the Great War (PC)

This turn-based strategy game provides a platform from which you can replay some great encounters from the first world war. You have the option to play as either the German led “Central Powers” or the allied forces “Entente”, led by the United Kingdom, France and Russia.

The battles unfurl like a grand version of chess


These battles include the ANZAC's famous assault on Gallipoli, as well as Lawrence of Arabia and his battle for Palestine, and provides a realistic view of both the odds facing both sides and the terrain through which they had to battle. The scale of battle ranges from two or three countries to all of Europe which will provide even the most strategical enthusiast with a logistical challenge. There are also decisions which can make or break your campaign, which the game will prompt at the end of rounds of some campaigns. For example, “Do you send General von Bohm-Ermolli to support your invasion of Serbia or do you send him to reinforce your troops against the Russians?”

This game appears to be targeted primarily at people who have enjoyed previous Strategic Command titles and are familiar with unit capabilities and general game-play since it lacks a tutorial. The user manual however is extensive and quite useful. I found that as a first timer it was best to play with fog of war disabled so that you can get a feel for the game by how the computer acts and also by trial and error. A great feature is the fact that you can play a good variety of different campaigns without having to unlock them first.

The scope of this game can be really impressive


It plays a lot like a chess game with its grid set up rather than the hexagonal set up that many other strategy games use. As with previous titles the battles include ground, air and sea forces for a wide range of combat capabilities. The graphics are on par with Strategic Command 2 titles.

Also included with the game is an editor so you can create your own fictional wars or re-create other battles from history. This is one feature that really surprised me, the attention to detail provided here was quite astonishing. The amount of different looking terrain tiles available to you is exceptional this truly allows you to recreate land masses with amazing accuracy. Even the buildings have different options available to you so that you don't end up with a generic looking coastline covered in identical ports.

The ability to make your own maps is a great edition



Overall this is a great title for anyone in the market for a historically accurate turn based strategy with a particular interest in reliving the battles of WWI. I would definitely recommend you make use of the excellent editor for extra longevity.

- Aidan B



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