Wargame: European Escalation

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Wargame: European Escalation review
Ryan Sandrey

Review

The next level

A baptism of burning tanks (cntd)


Once you have mastered the difficulty curve, you have 4 ‘stories’ to play through, each with a select amount of skirmishes making up the entirety of them. Like most strategy games, Wargame requires the capture of key objectives and/or zones of control in order for you to succeed in your mission and advance the game. Along the way, there are primary and secondary objectives to complete, each of which provides you with a certain number of command stars for achieving them. You then use these command stars as you play as a combination of 8 nations (both NATO and Pact countries included) to gain access to a whole host of units, with an almost unprecedented amount of choice. The extra firepower at your disposal is incredibly important in deciding the outcome of your military endeavours, and this is what makes the objectives you do and do not do matter more than just simply a case of completely finishing a level.

Solidarity in the ranks


Once you have battled your way through the various scenarios the campaign presents, or during this, you can choose to go to Wargame’s main theater of operations- the multiplayer scene. With a multiplayer beta that released before the game shipped, it was clear that there was an emphasis on the multiplayer by Eugen Systems, and this tells in the way the game is set up. Right from the off, the game encourages you to log into your Eugen Systems account (after creating one, of course). Once you’ve done this, you can start enjoying the experience of up to 8 player battles, where 2 teams vie for control of the territorial zones. With 11 maps to do this on, some of which make appearances in the single-player campaign, there is no shortage of battlegrounds for you to wage war on.

Wargame also places an emphasis on the competitive multiplayer scene. Although unranked options are available, with plentiful and well-populated servers everywhere, Eugen have really focused on the ranked experience. This takes the form of many things, including levelling up via the accumulation of experience points, as is part and parcel for multiplayer modes these days. There is also a worldwide league system, with full leaderboards. Whichever multiplayer experience you choose to go for, however, you will have to make sure you’ve got your ‘deck’ with you. With command stars, you are able to unlock units for addition to the deck that you use in multiplayer. The more advanced units you have, the more potent your army is, and the more likely it is you will be victorious in battle.

War never felt so good


Does the presentation match up to the gameplay? In a way. With the bird’s-eye view providing a satellite-style image of the battlefield, the presentation is realistic and enjoyable. When you zoom in, things get a bit more jagged around the edges, but the modelling and sounds of the battlefield are more than adequate for the game. If you are expecting a Shogun 2: Total War visual experience, you will be left wanting, but the DirectX 11 effects in Wargame allow a nice visual sheen that is aesthetically pleasing without being too overwhelming.

Strategy games are never about the visuals, however; they’re about the tactics and gameplay. If you put enough time and effort into them, you will find Wargame a rewarding and enjoyable experience, with plenty for the casual gamer and the purist to enjoy. Breaking the trend of modern RTS games that are flawed or simply unsavoury to play, Wargame is an excellent game, and one you would do well to pick up if you feel like starting a war.

8.0

fun score

Pros

Excellent strategy title, with the right emphasis on tactics. Enjoyable and populated multiplayer.

Cons

Tough difficulty curve, not as graphical advanced as the likes of Shogun 2.