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Step back in time
The Battleground series of historical strategy games is a pretty extensive one and includes the likes of the very decent Waterloo and the pretty ropy Napoleon in Russia. This fourth installment falls somewhere in the middle and thus makes for a solid, if unspectacular entry into a crowded genre. This one follows the template laid down by the original game in the series, Ardennes, pretty closely, being a turn-based strategy game that focuses on a specific period in history. In this case, it's the American Civil War that gets the attention, with this one following on from Gettysburg and throwing players into the dark days of April 1862 when the Confederates launched a surprise attack on the Union army being led by Ulysses S. Grant. There are multiple scenarios to play through here, and which allow you to see how your generalship skills would have held up in the real-life battles, and you've got all the expected historically accurate units to make use of here. Shiloh certainly isn't groundbreaking in terms of historical strategy games but it does deserve some credit for simply getting most of its elements and features right. This one features more challenging AI than previous games, while the scenarios are fascinating and genuinely enjoyable to play through and which are supported by some atmospheric music. The game is very narrow in focus, while there's no scenario editor which does hamper the long term appeal somewhat, but as long as you're interested in the period and are happy to play through the missions here, you should be in for a good time.
- Battleground 3: Waterloo Strategy, 1996
- Sid Meier's Gettysburg! Strategy, 1997
- Battleground 5: Antietam Strategy, 1996
- Battleground 8: Prelude to ... Strategy, 1997
- Battleground 6: Napoleon in... Strategy, 1997
- Battleground: Ardennes Strategy, 1995
- The Operational Art of War ... Strategy, 1998
- Panzer General 2 Strategy, 1997