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Jan 15, 2013

History - Legends of War: Patton Review

One would think a game producer would have the game engineers take the best from Jagged Alliance, Soldiers at War, Squad Leader, Hired Guns: The Jagged Edge, 101 Airborne Invasion of Normandy, or even the real time game Men Of War: Assault Squad  and improve on what those games did. This is not the case. It seems as though the engineers never played one of the aforementioned games before developing Legends of War: Patton.

In Patton, the player controls each individual soldier. Do not confuse it with games like Combat Mission II: Barbarossa to Berlin, Theatre of War 2: Kursk 1943 , or Squad Battles: Eagles Strike. In these games the player controls squads of 3-15 men and indvidual armor units. Combat Mission is an excellent turn based game. It is complex and highly detailed. I also like HPS' Squad Battles as well. In their own way, both games stay true to Avalon Hill's Squad Leader: The Game of Infantry Combat in World War II.

With that said, Patton is a turn-based game. The graphics are pretty good. They are an improvement from Squad Leader and Soldiers at War, but there are no real bells and whistles as you see in most games today. It does have different unit types. It has a system of action points for moving distances, which are measured in meters. It also has a unique method of setting lines of sight to take an opportunity fire shot, but that is as far as the game goes.

The game misses so much, which makes me wonder why are the producers of turn-based tactical squad strategy games missing the mark?

Some of the items I feel Legends of War: Patton is missing:

1) An inventory system for the individual soldiers.
2) There are no unique weapons to pick up, acquire, or employ.
3) There is a simplistic method of setting mines. There are no satchel charges, tellermines, smoke grenades, white
phosphorus grenades, or geballte ladung grenades, etc.
4) One cannot search dead enemy soldiers.
5) There are new infantry/armor types that are unlocked as the game progresses but they are generic.
6) It is not possible to enter buildings, nor is it possible to shoot through them.
7) It is not possible to have a soldier lie prone or crawl. Only standing or kneeling are permitted.
8) There is no chain of command in terms of squad leadership. There is no squad rally function.

Other issues I have with the game:

1) There is no way to save a game when you are in the middle of a mission. There are no quick save buttons. So, if you
must leave you must end the mission and have to start all over again. This is most irritating.
2) The game recycles the music and voices from Dreamcatcher's War Leaders: Clash of Nations (which in
itself is a good game that can be best described as a Empire: Total War - Gold Edition version of
World War II).
3) The characters have famous names like Audie Murphy, but they have given them no personality at all.
4) One must kill all of the enemies. There are no prisoners taken except in the videos.
5) There are no civilians to avoid or people to rescue. There are no objects or items to be seized or found on the map. It
seems that there was little imagination put into the production value of the game.
6) The multiplayer mode does not contain a hot seat function. The only way to play multiplayer is through a LAN connection.

I am sure I could find more to write about. I pre-ordered this game with high hopes. I am an avid turn based squad tactics strategy game fan.

For me, the game is a complete disappointment.  
Verdict: 60/100

Genre Strategy
Style 3D Real-Time Strategy
Themes World War II
Release Date December 18, 2012
Developer Enigma Software Productions S.L. Slitherine Software UK Ltd.
Publisher Maximum Games
Controls Keyboard, Mouse


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