|System: PS2, Xbox, PSP, PC||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Kool Kizz Amusement Works||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Crave Entertainment||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Dec. 11, 2007||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-4||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
In addition to its tactical weakness, Dai Senryaku VII: Modern Military Tactics Exceed looks and sounds pretty bad. Since this title is considered a budget title (most retailers sell it for about $20.00) and was released for the Xbox back in 2005, I wasn't expecting too much. However, the entire thing looks like an early nineties single-token arcade game, and the sound is so repetitive that it makes you feel a little crazy. One really terrible thing about the game's overall look is how the HUD system can get in the way of moving your troops or firing a weapon. The HUD will display the names and credentials of the vehicles and troops in the field right over where you were trying to move something, and you're left very frustrated because you can't see where you're supposed to be going because there's some name in your way. The sound is particularly horrible because it consists of a 40-second loop of music and a handful of generic dialogue snippets that are used an obscene amount of times during every stage. The result is maddening. I'm not usually one to obsess over poor visuals or sound, but this one honestly made enough of an impression to merit the extra verbiage.
One redeeming quality of the game, however, can be found in the map-making mode. This mode is essentially for all of those who make the strategy boards as a professional hobby. It gives you all of the different hexagonal tiles of varying terrains to work with and lets you create challenging boards with ease. You can play through simulations on these boards as well, so it is a pretty rewarding experience when you've created a board that is conducive enough to strategy that you find yourself somewhat enjoying the game.
And as fun as these moments might be, trust me, they're fleeting and far between. The game as a whole just suffers from its poor production and a whole host of missed opportunities. I could have seen this game being an interesting and relevant military simulation that would have brought joy to those who count military simulation as their hobby of choice. However, the repetitive gameplay, weak strategy, and downright poor visuals and sound make it just another budget title to avoid.
Amanda L. Kondolojy
CCC Freelance Writer