Keep in mind this is a first impressions look at Commander: Europe at War Grand Strategy.
The game was created in Java, a strange choice and one that limits the resolution to 1064 x 768. It also requires a bit of tinkering with the compatibility options but it runs fine on my Vista laptop and my 8.1 desktop.
There is a reason the music is turned off by default but since I never have music on while playing wargames it is no loss for me.
Graphics are functional with the map and the UI clear and uncluttered. You can have little 3D type graphics for the units or NATO counters - and the large counter set is very nice. There are 3 zoom levels for the map and the graphics style, particularly the muted colours, gives a WWII feel to the game for me at least.
The game mechanics are relatively simple and easy to pick up. But that does not mean beer and pretzels. After downloading the game I tried my hand at defeating Poland and abandoned that game in 1940. Hmm…. it was time to read the manual.
The manual for the game runs to about 35 pages and does a reasonable job of giving an overview of the game. The manual for the Grand Strategy mod runs to 650 pages and includes advice on tactics, strategy and the kitchen sink.
The game has plenty of strategic depth with considerable subtlety thrown in for good measure. Playing the game requires a clear strategic plan and careful planning. It is a game, as far as I can tell at this point, that I can get my teeth into.
The ai is not particularly good. For learning the game mechanics and possibly a game or two it is fine. But the real beauty of this game, I suspect, is with PBEM or Hotseat.
Overall, I am very happy with this game especially at the Deal of the Week price. It has the quality of making you think – of analysing the latest campaign, what went right, what I did wrong, what I could do better.
< Message edited by shunwick -- 3/13/2014 11:14:39 PM >
I love the smell of TOAW in the morning...