Silent Hunter III

Simulation 2005 Windows Ubisoft Naval War Strategy

Dive, dive, dive!

As the name suggests, this is the third game in the popular Silent Hunter series of submarine combat games and if you've never played such a game before, this is actually a great place to start as it's probably the best of the lot. It's detailed enough to appeal to true sub fans but it's also very accessible so noobs should feel fairly welcome too, making it a good all-round package. The idea here is that you are in command of a German U-boat in the Atlantic during World War II. You progress through a career mode, starting anywhere between 1939-1944, and must complete a series of missions which form the dynamic campaign. You get to choose which flotilla to join, which affects your starting sub, while you'll also find that you have access to different technology depending on which phase of the war you're in. There are lots of other nice touches here, from the ability to award your crew with medals for good performance, to giving them specializations to improve overall operations. As far as sub sims go, this has got to be one of the best. It's got heaps of detail which really sucks you into the claustrophobic world of the underwater world and which is aided by the atmospheric visuals and audio design. Things might seem overwhelming to start with but thanks to the intuitive interface, you'll soon pick things up and be navigating like a veteran. The mix of action and strategy is well balanced, with the combat being tense and exciting, and the management aspects being just as compelling, so if you're curious about the genre or an old-hand, this is a great choice.

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