Silent Storm

Format: PC
Bigben Interactive/JoWooD Productions
Age Restrictions: 11+

Click here for a free downloadable demo.

Silent Storm is a 3D tactical turn-based Role Playing Game set against the backdrop of WWII. As the conflict rages on the frontlines, you'll be leading a small multinational squad behind enemy lines to gather information and wreak havoc on your enemies...

It's a good idea... no, it's essential that you enter the training mode before you even attempt to tackle a full game. It is incredibly engaging and at first attempt seems too complex.

The training session takes you through a number of simple moves and on to the firing range to practice your shooting skills. And then you are off into the combat heavy world. Nice and simple mission to get you started. Help one of your injured comrades to safety. Only one problem, you are outside an enemy building and to make matters worse they know you are there.

Once this relatively simple operation has been completed successfully you get the chance to pick your team from more than 40 operatives from 30 different nationalities, each with a unique background and mix of specialities and skills. Once you've chosen you squad you get the chance to kit them out with a whole stash of weapons and off you go on your first proper combat mission.

You can play as an allied or axis force - depending on whether you want to help the Nazis or stop them. One of the great things about this game is that you can redesign the look of your character so that he/she actually resembles you. For a man who has a proper avatar of himself to play in The Sims and Quake III - sad I know, but true - this is the next best thing. The review code we played wasn't 100 percent complete, there was no option to check the voices before choosing them and when we did change them we noticed they were all the same anyway, but it was complete enough to know that this is a pretty impressive role-playing game.

The controls are not easy, in fact when first confronted with them they look near impossible to master, but a quick go on the tutorial and then a few cracks at the first level and you'll have mastered the basics. Though, if your like me you'll attempt to start the game and pick it up as you go along. Don't! As you'll find yourself unable to do very much.

There are some minus points which detract greatly from the game. These include difficulty in getting your squad to go in the same direction when there are stairs or walls to negotiate. And the inability to see your characters if they are camouflaged - there is a dark area where they are supposed to be, but that is not always easy to spot.

On the whole this is a fairly impressive RPG game, with a few annoying bugs that put a slight damper on the whole game. It looks and sounds great (although the voices on the code we played was a little repetitive) and is sure to provide entertainment for ages.

Nick Smithson

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