Monday, March 03, 2014

Lock 'n Load: Heroes of Stalingrad Gameplay Review

I'm playing Lock 'n Load: Heroes of Stalingrad, a turn-based strategy game by Lock 'n Load Publishing and Matrix Games.

The game features two campaigns (one for the Germans, one for the Soviets) and over twenty standalone scenarios. Comprehensive tutorials makes learning the system easier. Multiplayer is not asynchronous like in some of Slitherine’s turn-based titles, but you can resume saved matches later if your opponent is online at the same time. The interface uses classic tabletop counters on a slightly animated map; an action bar gives you one-click access to all options. Units include leaders, infantry squads, support weapons, and vehicles. You are allowed to take actions in one hex at a time (leaders can active surrounding hexes, though), and (usually) one action per unit in the hex. Stacking units in a hex will improve the odds for an attack; dice rolls are used to determine victors in combat. Successful attacks will cause a morale drop, and shaken units must be rallied by leaders at the beginning of each turn. Proficient AI rounds out an attractive package. A combination of challenging scenarios, capable AI, and straightforward mechanics makes Lock 'n Load: Heroes of Stalingrad a notable turn-based wargame.