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Gary Grigsby's World at War Reviews (Windows)

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Critic Reviews

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Game Watcher (May 16, 2005)
Overall, this is an excellent World War Two wargame, and I stress wargame here. This isn't kid stuff, like some of the currently popular WWII games, and it won't be easy to win as Germany, the way its number one competitor's design allow. You have to earn the victory here, by planning and smart decision making, not by having it handed to you by the hero worship of the German Military others designs are often hung up on. The graphics aern't fancy, but they are functional, and the game is fun and challenging. If you want to play a game about World War two, play World At War.
IGN (Mar 10, 2005)
Matrix Games is doing its best to support the wargaming market these days. Titles like Gary Grigsby's World at War are a welcome addition to the genre. It has the best of both worlds -- an endlessly sophisticated design based on some natural concepts that are easy to understand. The actual movement of troops is the most accessible and obviously enjoyable part of the game but the rewards of managing your supply chains and setting production priorities are absolutely undeniable. The unpredictable development of the war is nicely balanced by a the historical setup and very realistic modeling of a variety of factors. Though human opponents will still provide the most enjoyable challenge, the AI is no slouch here.
GameSpot (May 02, 2005)
Newcomers to this genre will simply be overwhelmed by the amount of data this game throws at them, while students of the conflict will revel in the detail. World at War isn't for everyone, but if you're willing to come to grips with the interface and come in armed with some knowledge (or the will to learn), it provides a very rewarding way to relive WWII from the perspective of its top leaders.
Worth Playing (Oct 19, 2005)
Overall, Gary Grigsby's World at War is a good game. The AI is not disappointing, but you need human opponents to get the most from the experience, and the learning curve, while steep, is definitely less than that of other war games on the market. The feeling of victory after having perfectly orchestrated a complete takeover of a nation is simply one of the most gratifying things in my recent gaming experiences. This game is definitely a great addition to any war gamer's collection.
Game Chronicles (Apr 22, 2005)
Without being a history geek myself – though I always admire people with such acumen – I must say that Gary Grigsby's World at War not only makes for a fine game, but I would be tempted to use it as a high school teaching tool for its sheer depth. It provides all of the data you could want for any battle you can think of and that takes research and devotion rarely seen in any other genre. It's even more compelling when you take into account the ability to replay scenarios with benefit of hindsight. It's about as thrilling as you can make learning history without wearing costumes.
Gameplay (Benelux) (Oct 29, 2005)
World at War is een erg toegankelijk strategiespel (zo is er bv maar één basisgrondstof) en overzichtelijke mappen. Liefhebbers van de complexe Turnbased Strategiespellen als Hearts of Iron 2 of Korsun Pocket zullen het gebrek aan diepgang misschien storend vinden maar daar staat tegenover dat vele gamers die nog niet vertrouwd zijn met het genre dit als een ideaal instapspel mogen beschouwen.
Overall World at War is best suited to casual war gamers and those new to the genre. It lets these gamers experience the strategic challenge of managing global warfare within the historical context of World War II without bogging them down in details or minutia. Hardcore war gamers often live for that minutia, though, so if you’re in that category you may want to look elsewhere for your grand strategic fix.
GameStar (Germany) (Apr, 2005)
Ich finde es echt komisch, dass die inoffizielle Version von Axis & Allies deutlich näher am Original liegt als die beiden offiziellen Varianten, die von Hasbro und Atari über die Jahre veröffentlicht wurden. Und die Umsetzung ist Altmeister Grigsby erstaunlich gut gelungen, wenn man seinen Hardcore-Background berücksichtigt. Auch wenn die Menüs übersichtlicher hätten ausfallen können, macht World at War fast soviel Spaß wie eine Partie des extem motivierenden Brettspiels. Versagt hat das Entwickler-Urgestein bei seinen umständlichen Erweiterungen des Spielkonzepts wie den Versorgungslinien. Da man die glücklicherweise deaktivieren kann, dürfen Axis-&-Allies Fans (davon gibt’s hierzulande eine ganze Menge) ihre Weltkriegs-Ambitionen jetzt auch vor dem Monitor ausleben.
Grigsby’s World at War is a paradox: a a beer and pretzels wargame by a man known for monstrously large designs. At first glance, WAW is nearly similar enough to Axis & Allies to warrant a copyright suit; fortunately, Grigsby has changed up the A&A formula just enough to make an interesting game.
70 (UK) (Sep 22, 2005)
The faults that might have torpedoed this heavily-laden Liberty Ship - woeful AI, numerous bugs, poor accessibility and impractical scope - are, happily, conspicuous by their absence. CPU-controlled opponents won't astound you but they put up a reasonably convincing fight with the help of those scripted events mentioned earlier. Bug and accessibility-wise there are unusually few reasons to rant. Practicality? Here WaW certainly has the edge over its Swedish peer. With an attractive PBEM option and game durations that can be measured in hours rather than days, this is definitely the grand-strategy title for those of us lumbered with obligations like jobs and school.
PC Games (Germany) (Jan 23, 2006)
Hearts of Iron 2 war uns zu hektisch und komplex, Strategic Command zu simpel. World at War dagegen trifft die goldene Mitte. Hier können wir nach Herzenslust testen, was passiert wäre, hätte Deutschland 1941 nicht die Sowjetunion angegriffen, sondern Großbritannien das Mittelmeer sowie Nordafrika streitig gemacht. Grafik und Sound fallen nach ein paar Spielstunden nicht mehr groß ins Gewicht. Also alles super? Nein. Denn wo Licht ist, fällt auch Schatten. Die Tutorials halten wir für zu dürftig, das macht die Lektüre des Handbuchs zur Pflicht. Ist World at War also nur etwas für Profis? Auch nicht. Durch die vielen Einstellungsmöglichkeiten lassen sich Komplexität und Schwierigkeitsgrad mühelos runterregeln, das Spiel verliert dann aber an Spannung. Fazit: Wäre der Einstieg leichter, würde eine deutlich bessere Wertung herausspringen.
GameSpy (Jun 20, 2005)
Ironically, when it comes to grand strategy of World War II, it's perhaps easier to play Paradox's exhaustive and exhausting Hearts of Iron II, a game with a much better interface, a better A.I., and considerably more freedom. But unlike World at War, Hearts of Iron II is building on the mistakes of its previous iteration. Perhaps if Grigsby makes a sequel, it'll be smarter and more manageable. As it is now, World at War is the work of an ambitious developer whose ideas are bigger than the capabilities of his game.