WarMen Tactics Review
WarMen Tactics box art
System: Wii (WiiWare) Review Rating Legend
Dev: Calaris 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Calaris 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Feb. 5, 2010 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Teen 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

As a games reviewer, it is occasionally my pleasure to experience some of the most creative and artistic moments in entertainment history. Conversely, there are games that are so poorly conceived you're left wondering what the developers could possibly have been thinking. WarMen Tactics is one such game, and though the angel on my right shoulder is telling me to warn wary gamers not to blow 800 Wii Points on this fiasco, the devil in me wants everyone to revel in this comedy of errors.

WarMen Tactics screenshot

WarMen Tactics is an on-rails, light-gun shooter much in the vein of the Time Crisis series. You're given a splotch of story - something having to do with a new-world order, which you're opposed to. There's a female character who chimes in every now and again to give you a completely unnecessary heads-up on your situation, as well as a forgettable male character who makes an appearance toward the end of the "adventure."

To put it mildly, presentation is not WarMen's strongest suit (and that's saying something). The dialogue is laughably bad, but the delivery by the game's actors actually manages to trump it. The game's a perfect candidate for the Mystery Science Theater. The framerate during cutscenes labors like a dying dog, and the visuals… we'll get to the visuals later, actually, since they deserve special attention.

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Upon starting up the game for the first time, I was surprised to find that only the Wii Remote was required. It's actually not a bad approach in terms of controls, and some of the gameplay ideas are fairly inspired. In execution, however, WarMen Tactics is a complete mockery of a game.

WarMen Tactics screenshot

The controls are simple: you aim with the Wii Remote, shoot with the B button, and there are command tabs on the bottom of the screen, executed by pointing and pressing A. Essentially, you control when your character moves, but the A.I. handles everything else. There's no moving backward, either, so once you move your character into place, you'd better be prepared for any enemies lying in wait.

The A.I. is absolutely terrible, though, and your only real concern will be enemies that spawn behind you after you've already moved your character to a new location. Enemies won't try to flank you and they can be taken out just as easily while they're taking cover as when they're out in the open. When enemies do decide to close in on you, they simply stop right in front of whatever area of cover you happen to be camped at, waiting for you to easily pick them off. There are three difficulty settings, but the A.I. performs the same, regardless of which mode you choose.

WarMen Tactics screenshot

Though action commands were most times read properly, there were occasions when my character would get confused. Often when I'd command him to move forward, he'd swap out his weapon instead (or vice versa). Aiming is slow and lumbering, though hit detection is surprisingly forgiving. There were times, however, when I'd end up shooting walls while my reticule was set directly over an enemy. There's an option to stand/crouch, but it's fairly useless, considering your character auto-crouches or takes cover whenever moving to a new location.

Screenshots / Images
WarMen Tactics screenshot - click to enlarge WarMen Tactics screenshot - click to enlarge WarMen Tactics screenshot - click to enlarge WarMen Tactics screenshot - click to enlarge

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