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Battalion Wars


Jeff W
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It's fun, the graphics are pretty good, the cartoony look is nice, and the gameplay is solid. Farther along you get the more varied types of troops and armor you get, gets kind of hectic contolling all of them and keeping yourself from getting killed. The game has a sort of rock/paper/sissor feel to it, I came upon a small fort guarded by a tank and rifle troops, my bazooka veterns can take care of the tank but they'd be cut to ribbons by the riflemen, my riflemen can counter theirs but the tank would wipe em out. You have to take control of individual units and have them go after the enemy they're best suited to fight, you can even command individual soldiers in these different units if you want. Gets crazy trying to manage all of that and get a few kills yourself but so far I like it, you can move from unit to unit as you wish and when you die you just hop back into the closest person until you have none left.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I finally rented this title from GameFly, and have had a chance to sit down with the first ten missions. I have not played the Advance Wars games at all, so I can't comment on how similar Battalion Wars is to that. I will, however, say that I'm enjoying it a great deal. I'll ditto bug's comments from earlier on in this thread about how the gameplay feels. It can get hectic trying to command all of the troops as well keep your own guy alive. You can't go in guns-a-blazin' or the enemy will make short work of you. The element of strategy is nice, and offers just enough challenge to make this interesting without being overly challenging.

 

In short, I think anyone who likes a good third-person shooter like Metal Arms and Pikmin will like Battalion Wars. It definitely feels like this is the spawn of these two titles mating. And since there isn't much coming out on the Cube these days, I'd say it's worth a look. I'll comment some more the further I get into the game. For now, just know it’s fun, very fun.

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So, I finished this game the other night, and overall, I'd say that Battalion Wars is a really fun game. I think if you're looking to purchase it, be forewarned that it's quite short. The main portion of the campaign took me under four-and-a-half hours to complete. Of course the game does offer you an incentive to replay the levels in an attempt to achieve a higher score, thus unlocking four bonus missions. If you're someone trying to unlock all the missions, the total playtime can extend several hours beyond that. Some of the later missions can be really challenging in trying to get a good ranking, which depends on how fast you complete your objectives, how many of your troops survive, and how many enemies you kill.

 

In addition, I do think the game has a few odd quirks. The way it incorporates troop deployment strategies is really well done, but at times it can be a bit overwhelming trying to control all of your soldiers at the same time. Since you command the action in the shoes of one of the soldiers on the field, you don't always get the all-omnipotent vantage point you would expect with other RTS games. You not only have to try to keep the soldier you're controlling alive, but you also have to make sure that your other units attack the targets you want to destroy. Doing that often requires you to make sure you're locked onto a target and order the correct troops to attack with the C-stick. Sometimes this works quite well, other times it feels like you're soldiers don't listen to your commands. What's worse, if you don't keep your troops together, some of them might get lost somewhere in the level, leave the forces currently under your control vulnerable to attacks from more powerful foes.

 

I also noticed that in a crowed situation, it can be difficult to lock on to the target you wish to attack. For instance, I may want a group of rocket veterans to go after a tank, but if the tank has a squad of rifle grunts around it, I may accidentally target one of them instead of the tank. This can get extremely frustrating in aerial vehicles like the jet fighter, which need to fly past a target and turn around before it can make another run. It would have been nice if vehicles like this had a tendency to target larger threats first, then focus on the foot soldiers.

 

But hey, I don't want to come across like I didn't enjoy this one at all, because I really did. As I said before, if you liked Pikmin at all, this will probably be a good game to check out. The two titles have a lot in common, in my opinion, and both have a unique and fun visual style. Definitely give this one a rent if you feel like your GameCube is being neglected (which it probably is right now).

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  • 11 months later...

Got this from Gameaccess last week, and played through the first few missions the other night. So far, I'm not so sure about it. The idea seems solid, and I like the idea of taking Advance wars into new areas, but I was having a hell of a time with the controls. There are points with several targets where it's kind of difficult to lock onto the right enemies, and I think this game would have really benefitted from a pause feature (stop the action, issue commands, and then restart, kind of like KOTOR). I also had a hard time with the recon mission (essentially, a racing level), and the vehicle being tricky to control. Finally not being able to control the camera at all has been a little disorienting to day the least-I guess I've just gotten so used to having it that not having it is a big deal now. I'll certainly give it another shot, but initial impressions aren't that great.

 

That being said though, I'm really interested in trying out the Wii version. With pointer support, the targeting issue should be at least eased a little.

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That being said though, I'm really interested in trying out the Wii version. With pointer support, the targeting issue should be at least eased a little.

 

Not to mention that it should be a lot easier to use the pointer to select units to attack and whatnot. Doing this with the C-stick works, but it can be a bit cumbersome in the more intense battles.

 

As far as the camera is concerned, you can move it to display the action in a more aerial perspective with the D-pad. It's not much, but it does help you get a better sense of the overall lay of the land.

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Chris,

 

My problems with the game were exactly what you mentioned. The controls were fine in some parts but way too clunky in others. I got through a few missions before sending it back to Gamefly. However, I think the Wiimote will really fix all of the issues that i had with the controls. I am looking forward to BWii.

 

-Dean-

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