Written by  :  woods01 (163)
Written on  :  Mar 26, 2001
Platform  :  DOS
Rating  :  2.8 Stars2.8 Stars2.8 Stars2.8 Stars2.8 Stars

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A lot of flash but no fire.

The Good

This was one of the standout games for the Amiga and was a popular title on all the platforms it appeared on. It gave a new reason to try a chess game. A lot of people avoid anything to do with the game but this brought new people to it. The thought of some fighting pieces, like the "chess" game in Star Wars, made people go ape just to see the fighting between the pieces. The graphics and animation were great for their day. The fact it jazzes up a classic strategy board game that works wonderfully on the computer makes this a great game to try.

The Bad

The game's A.I. and training options just can't compare with other chess games, most notably the Chessmaster series. For this reason most hardcore chess nuts will find the game little more than a novelty as the animations repeat and become tiresome. I'm not a serious player and pretty much any computer chess opponent will suit me, but I found that once I'd seen all the animations the game started to loose my interest. I knew what the fighting was going to look like so I wanted to get on with the actual "game" and the animations just got in the way.

The Bottom Line

While these Battlechess games are worth trying, especially the groundbreaking original, the combat animations will eventually repeat and lose their appeal. And once you lose interest in the animations then you might as well be playing a better computer chess program.