Do you enjoy rewriting history? I know I do! Are you familiar with a little Battle in Belgium called Waterloo? Have you been waiting for a decent computer portrayal of this pivotal campaign of Napoleon’s? Then perhaps your wait is over – Strategy First is going to be bringing us BreakAway Games’ rendition of this famous Napoleonic conflict for use on your PC!
A couple of things to start off this preview:
I was playing the Beta 4 version of the game (which means that it will only get better!)
I am not impressed with lineage, designer’s names or use of complex technology – I judge a game based on if it looks good and plays well!
That being said, lets launch into the preview of this wonderful new soon to be released game on Waterloo: Napoleon’s Last Battle!
When those that love wargaming think of The American Civil War, The Battle Of Gettysburg comes to mind. This was a turning point in this conflict. Had the Confederates won that battle The American Civil War would have turned out much differently. Luckily, it has been brought to the PC in several different forms. When we think of the Napoleonic Era, The Battle of Waterloo pops into mind. It was just as pivotal as Gettysburg, but not nearly as well depicted in PC games to date. Strategy First is going to change all that. Their release of BreakAway Games (remember The Battle of Antietam?) Waterloo: Napoleon’s Last Battle will present the wargamers out there with a well-rendered version of this important conflict. What if Napoleon had pulled it off and defeated Wellington AND Blucher? The world would definitely be different if this had come to pass.
From what I have seen in this Beta version, the graphics are superb! So I am expecting the final version to truly be a satisfying visual feast. This is expected, but the attention to detail is amazing. True students of Napoleon will be able to identify the many units on the field of battle by their colors and uniforms alone! The rest of us will need to refer to the onscreen information provided with each unit. The battlefield itself is also a thing to behold!
Yes, yes, but how does it play? I can hear you all asking. The game I played was easy to learn and a whole lot of fun to play. All of the formations of the era are available here. The famous infantry squares are a must to survive mass Cavalry charges. Changing a unit to column for movement and back into line at the end of the movement has been made simple to perform. Just don’t get caught by musket fire while in column! Flanking maneuvers are rewarded by routed enemy units, if performed at the right time. Leaders can move individually or take their command with them. All this and more is available in Waterloo: Napoleon’s Last Battle.
Do you have to be familiar with these types of games to enjoy this one? Absolutely not. A set of tutorials are included that gradually walk you through all aspects of the game, so even those not familiar with the proper response to a charging unit of Dragoons (or who think that Dragoons are a misspelling of dragon) will be introduced slowly and surely to the world of Napoleonic combat. After you are familiar with the game and comfortable with the interface, you are then presented with a set of scenarios that range from very small pieces of the battle to the entire Grand Battle from start to finish. With any luck you, as Napoleon, can finish off the pesky British before the even peskier Prussians reach the field. Winning Waterloo: Napoleon’s Last Battle as Napoleon is in the same realm of satisfaction as having the Confederates safely entrenched on Cemetery Ridge and the Round Tops at the start of day two of Gettysburg!
I am greatly looking forward to the final version of Waterloo: Napoleon’s Last Battle. Finally a computer rendition of this epic battle that does it justice is here. And if all goes well, perhaps we will see a few other Napoleonic titles in the near future! The 4 GiN Gems are the minimum that this game will achieve (unless something truly devastating happens) and I fully expect that to be higher once all the finishing touches are put on this game. Kudos BreakAway – keep up the good work!