World War II: Frontline Command Review
We command fromm the frontline in this strategy offering.
Review by Darren Cartledge
Published 19th October 2003
World War II: Frontline Command
- Developer: Bitmap Bros
- Publisher: Koch Media
- Release Date: 15th May 2003
There’s no shortage of World War II based games at the moment so it might come as a bit of a surprise that there hasn’t been a RTS title based on the era that features the depth and accessibility needed to capture the attention of all gamers. That is until now!
World War II: Frontline Command starts off in 1944 Europe prior to the D-Day landings and up to VE-Day. The game is spread across 25 missions and includes an excellent Saving Private Ryan style beach landing mission. World War II: Frontline command unlike many other RTS games is not resource orientated so there’s no collecting ore or whatever in order to raise enough funds to quickly train new units once a mission has started. From the off you are giving a set number of units that you are to complete mission tasks with, although occasionally reinforcements are made available but only on a selection of the games maps.
While the prospect of only having a certain number of troops may seem daunting to gamers that are use to the Command and Conquer style RTS games where you simply build ten more units to replace the single unit you just lost in battle it’s not, the game is very easy to get to grips with and includes features that allow you to execute realistic strategies.
World War II: Frontline Command features an advanced line of sight system. Obstacles and the position of your units are taken in to account. For instance if a unit is stood up they will be able to see further as the system takes into account the height of obstacles, although when standing you are more likely to be spotted by enemy units. The games line of sight system can also be used to ambush enemy units as enemy AI also has the same restrictions on it as the player. While this system has many plus points it can also lead to problems as we discovered, crawling along hedge rows may keep your men out of sight but you can’t see what you are approaching and like us you could stumble into an enemy position and get half your units wiped out.
The game features 23 units per side. Each unit has a primary weapon and in some cases a secondary weapon such as grenades. This comes in very handy when your units come up against enemy machine gun turrets that seem impervious to damage from rifle fire, and your mortar infantry have already been lost in the course of battle.
World War II: Frontline Command also features a unit morale system, the higher your unit’s morale the more effective they will be in battle. Completing objectives and destroying enemy positions will all boost morale, while taking hits and losing units will damage squad morale.
World War II: Frontline command features highly detailed 3D graphics which are in all honesty probably the best in any real time strategy game to date. Players can zoom up close and personal to the action in the game and see the high level of detail unit models feature. The game environments are also solid and feature some great dynamic lighting effects. Special effects in the game are also of the highest quality with fire and explosions produced to the highest standard.
While the task of creating a realistic World War II RTS game must have deterred many developers from creating such a game, The Bitmap Brothers have succeeded in creating one of the better RTS games out there which lets gamers use real strategies to complete objectives, and while the game has many features that will appeal to hardcore RTS fans the game is instantly accessible for everyone, thanks to its innovative control system and offers a very rewarding gaming experience.
Review Score: 8.2/10
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