Pacific Storm: Allies

Format: PC
Excalibur Publishing

5 060020 472862
Age Restrictions: 7+
25 May 2007

Pacific Storm: Allies is set in the Pacific during World War II and covers the turbulent period from 1940 to 1948. Command either the United States, Imperial Japan or the British as you take part in a dramatic sequence of large-scale naval and air operations where the fate of the world is on your hands. Pacific Storm: Allies blends three game genres into one: strategic wargame, tactical RTS and aircraft simulator...

Pacific Storm: Allies is a reworking of the original Pacific Storm game. This time around the action not only centres around Japan and the USA forces, but it also brings in Germany, the UK, the Netherlands, and the USSR. The UK has also been upgraded to a playable nation - which is a welcome relief for all of those who were beginning to think that the UK, thanks to America's habit of retelling the war from their point of view, had no part in the War.

This means that you can now either play as the United Kingdom, United States or Imperial Japan as you walk through a variety of sequences of large-scale World War II, Pacific theatre, naval and air operations. You can also develop weaponry and technologies to improve your units, move your fleet and deploy it in the battlefield and send them into combat. And once in combat you can choose to be the general at headquarters commanding the entire force or one of the pilots flying one of the missions.

Pacific Storm: Allies offers plenty of new units, new historical locations to visit, a diplomatic system that allows you to form alliances and a brand new version of the engine that brings better graphics than the first instalment. Each scenario, map, and element has been carefully based on historical archives.

Your fleet includes battleships, aircraft carriers, destroyers, cruisers, missile cruisers, submarines and torpedo boats as well as tankers and transports. The aerial war is conducted using fighters (starting with piston-powered craft and evolving to jet fighters in later levels), attack aircraft, torpedo bombers and strategic bombers. There are 86 different types of unit, all carefully modelled from WWII-era aircraft and ships, in the game. Also, you can develop new technologies and create new weapons systems, which may almost instantly overturn the global balance of power.

Around 100 technological improvements (upgrades) enhancing combat effectiveness of warships and military aircraft are available. In addition to the strategic mode with its 127 different Pacific zones and 40 naval bases, you can play 20 historical battles, including the Battle of Midway, the attack on the Japanese admiral Yamamoto's plane and the battle for Guadalcanal.

The cut sequences and in game graphics are all pretty impressive and at the end of the day this is a pretty impressive game. There's something here for all strategy fans.

Nick Smithson

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