Blitzkrieg is the latest expansion to the Order of Battle World War 2 turn-based strategy game. I have never played any of the previous expansions, so will be jumping in as an entirely new player. It is first worth saying that while Steam say this game is free to play, it isn’t. You can try the a few maps and scenarios for free, but then you need to buy one of the expansions. Think of it like how Telltale games often have the first episode free, but the rest are paid. Now I’ve gotten that out-of-the-way let’s dive into why this game is both very good and very bad at the same time.
Starting with the good, we have an enormous game. There are tonnes of units, missions and a full-blown multiplayer mode. All of it is detailed, historically accurate and there is enough of it to keep any strategy fan busy for a long time. The single player missions see you replaying events from World War 2 and this expansion focuses on the German forces. After each missions depending on which troops have survived and exact outcome of the battle you can carry forward certain units to other missions. These units can continue to level up and become stronger. This is really cool as you’ll always have fresh recruits, but having these elites to back them up is lots of fun. Also when one of them tragically dies you feel the loss quite heavily as you might have been using them for several missions.
More of the good in Order of Battle: Blitzkrieg is the strategy involved in each mission. You will often start a mission with a small collection of troops, but after that you are left to win on your own terms. Do you build lots of aircraft and bomb your way to victory? Or do you bring out the tanks and roll over your enemies? It is all up to how you think you can best win the current situation. Certain units are more effective against others and developing your army accordingly will see you destroying the enemy.
As the game is turn-based, you will move each unit and attack with them. The game then rolls some dice to see how effective your attack was. You will steadily see your front line move either forwards or backwards depending on how you fare in combat. If you can support your troops correctly then you are more likely to do more damage, too.
This is all really good and I had fun with Order of Battle: Blitzkrieg for a few hours. I hit a point though where I realised I wasn’t enjoying myself. I was just hitting attack, retreat, heal, attack, over and over. The missions all seem to last way too long. After you take several turns of moving nearly 20 units individually only to realise that you have only take 1 of 3 objectives the game becomes unbearable.
However, maybe you like heavy turn-based strategy games. The problems with this one is that it is a bit unclear without looking into every single stat (of which there are something like 15) on a unit to know how much damage it will actually do. As you play more you’ll start to learn how each one works, but since there are so many that will take a fair while.
Honestly, I really enjoyed Order of Battle: Blitzkrieg for the first 3 or 4 hours. After that though it became a war of attrition, one I really didn’t want to return to. I’d only recommend buying it if you have exhausted the ‘free-to-play’ part and you really enjoyed that. Otherwise there are plenty of less dry turn-based strategy games or World War 2 games in general. In seeking to be as detailed and accurate as it is, Order of Battle has ended up being rather bland.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary PC code was provided to Brash Games for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to email@example.com.
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