Review by Riphamilton32

"Best DS Title Yet - ABSOLUTE Must-Own"

If you have a DS, you MUST own this game. It is one of the greatest games on DS, and, in my opinion, one of the best games ever. This is a great strategy game - perfect for anyone who likes to think and develop plans. Advance Wars: Dual Strike is definitely a step up from its predessesors.

Graphics

This game has excellent graphics. All the units look perfectly clear. The terrain looks great, as well.Basically, the battle field is 3D, but has a 2D feel to it. Obviously, like all war games, its divided into squares. Then, when you attack someone, a cutscene comes up showing the unit shoot, then the other unit counter attack. Here is where the 3D really comes into play. Excellent pictures show then fire across the split screen, with a great background depending on what kind of terrain you are on. All the different COs (the main characters of the game) are drawn creativly and have a few different facial expressions. They don't move, they are drawings on the left side of their talk-bubbles.

Sound

What can I say besides excellent? There are tons of different songs depending on which COs turn it is. There are sounds when you move a unit, when you shoot missiles, etc. It all sounds perfect and on time.

Gameplay

Now, most games have a "Story Mode" and some kind of "Free Mode" where you can play certain levels however many times you want. Not Advance Wars. You have Campaign Mode, the War Room, AND Combat Mode. I have had this game for 2-3 months, and I am only half way to 100%! There is so much to do and unlock! There is even a store where you can buy more COs, alternate costumes, and maps. There is a huge chart showing all the different medals you can get by building so many units or playing for a certain amount of time. You can also make your own custom maps.

But anyways, getting into specific gameplay, I will talk about the ACTUAL game. Basically, your on a map divided into squares with a bunch of different terrains and a load of troops. You pick a CO, who all have different powers, and you start the game. You use bases to build more units, airports to build more planes, and Seaports to build more boats. Each unit has its on movement. You move, then if someone is in your range, you can attack them. Many factors determine the damage, such as Terrain, Remaining health, unit type, etc. In order to win, you have to destroy all of the enemies troops or capture their HQ. There are also units called Indirect units that can fire over a long distance, but can not fire right in front of thier face. Sometimes, battles can take place on a "second front". If you were to lose on the second front, the game would continue. The winner of the second front can have that CO come down to the first front for a tag battle. Tag battle? Yes, that's the new feature in Dual Strike. Two COs fight together, and they can use a "Tag Power" - both COs use thier Super Power in one turn.

Campaign mode is very fun. The storyline basically is that the Black Hole army is up to something in Omega Land. So, the allied nations - consisting of Blue Moon, Green Earth, Yellow Comet, and Orange Start - try to stop them. Later in the game, they find out they are sucking the life force out of the land for their own crazy ambitions. As you progress through Normal Campaign, you unlock more COs to use. Once you enter Hard Campaign, you get to use any CO out of all the ones you have unlocked. Hard Campaign is very similar to normal, only the enemy has more/better units.

The AI is really good. If they are in range of one of your indirect combat units, they will run away. If you try to capture thier HQ, they will try to destroy the infantry. If you capture an airport, they will make anti-air units.

Anyways, I gave this game a 10 for great graphics and sound, excellent AI and infinite replayability.


Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 01/24/06


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