Chess, boardgame and wargame elements; not for everyone
Theatre of War is a surprising mix of gameplay elements that revolve around turn based actions, some that have been borrowed from chess, some other that seem to have been taken from other turn based top down board games and other that are more specific and familiar to wargamers. However, the fact that you can tell which is which, the fact that these elements don't seem to coalesce into one meaningful, complete game, is the reason why I'm not really as enthused about it as I could have been. Yes, te strategy is there, and evern elements of puzzle seem to permeate the game's building block nature, but that does little to make this stand out as a game that is more than the sum of its parts. The attack rules, to accommodate both the hex based as well as the grid based rules that have been splashed together, seem to not be too well thought out. But, one thing that this game does well is the graphics. In this department, I can't really, truly complain. So, if you don't mind a shallow game, but like an early 3D interfaced one, well this one has that going for itself. A good alternative, I'd think, would be to download the eponymous 2008 ToW
, which is actually a classic strategy, a lot more playable and immediately recognizable in terms of gameplay style.