|Dev: Game's Workshop||Review Rating Legend|
|Pub: THQ||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Release: Dec. 12, 2007||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Players: 1-8||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|Review by Cole Smith||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
Each mission increases exponentially in difficulty. It's a gradual curve, one that you can adapt to. Overall the gameplay is not very difficult. It won't satiate hardcore strategist, which is why there is more of a focus on action. But the average gamer will be challenged by the battles. The A.I. reacts accordingly to your commands, but due to the technical issues, has a consistent unfair advantage. It's something that you'll have to compensate for which will cause you to adopt some unique techniques such as commanding all six units individually, since they seem to stick together like overcooked macaroni.
Selecting and deselecting units can drive you nuts. It's as though the cursor is an un-removable umbilical cord tied to your soldiers. You've got to learn to click on a neutral area before you make a move, otherwise you're likely to make an accidental move and waste your points for your turn. The radar will display information such as unit position and the tracing of projectiles. At times you won't be able to see the battlefield clearly, or at least clear enough to keep track of your units. The radar is invaluable for this situation, not to mention that it allows you to pinpoint the whereabouts of enemies firing at you that the camera doesn't show you. Due to the camera angles and line of sight firing rules, you can't fire back at the enemy but you can get the hell out of the way. You also have the option of shooting directly through your own soldiers, using them as cover. It may not be the most noble of strategic tactics, but since the A.I. doesn't play fair, it's any port in the storm.
Each mission is presented in bite-sized chunks. That's always a consideration for a good portable game. You can burn through a mission in less than half an hour. These games are streamlined for easy accessibility which may not appeal to the hardcores that want more depth. The level of intensity is entirely up to you. You can play it like an action game or like a methodical chess match. Online and ad hoc modes will definitely extend the replay value since you don't have to worry about the unfair A.I. advantages. All players will suffer from the restrictive camera angles and awkward D-pad controlled cursor. The multiplayer mode will accommodate up to eight players, but you can play with as few as only one other player.
Warhammer 40,000: Squad Command displays good quality graphics, although they appear a little hazy and washed out at times. The explosions and animations are good but are few and far between. The screen is static a lot of the time which is made all the more noticeable by the lack of in-game music. This game does not give the impression of a big budget production. It will find its audience with Warhammer fans and those gamers that find most strategy games too involved.
CCC Senior Writer