Developer: Battlefront.com Inc
Price: $4.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPad 2

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★★☆
Game Controls Rating: ★★★★☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★☆☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★★½☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

Assault Wave is a rather curious strategy game, in that it offers some quite original features, amongst a wealth of things we’ve all seen before. Its price will put many off, understandably so, but at least it does offer some interesting quirks.

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The basic theme is certainly one we’ve all seen before, setting the action during World War II. What’s not so predictable is the choice of campaigns, it’s possible to control either the US or German forces. What’s not so great is that there’s only one save file, meaning it’s not possible to play both at the same time. To compound matters, there’s no warning either, which is precisely how I lost much of my US campaign.

Playing much like a lane defense game, players place their units on the screen and watch as they travel upwards, towards the enemy hordes. It’s not possible for them to deviate from the path or be redirected, restricting the potential for tactical thinking. There’s a Rock, Paper, Scissors style mentality to how they should be deployed though, with some units proving more balanced than others.

Points are allocated for the destruction of units, as well as when they manage to get across the other side of the screen safely, with the player with the most points winning the round. Frustratingly, though, it does feel near impossible to claw back a hefty point deficit, meaning sometimes one is better off restarting then persevering. There’s also the issue that Assault Wave isn’t the most interesting of games, when watching tanks and infantry move upwards. Some interaction is involved thanks to the deployment of mortars or initiating first aid, but with no fast forward button, things can get a little sluggish.

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That’s the issue with Assault Wave. Its core gameplay is pretty tired. It is backed up by some great features, though. It’s possible to record video footage of a battle, for uploading to the internet or saving for happy memories. It’s also possible to compete in 1 on 1 battles with a friend, via the same iPad, which is quite enjoyable. The whole look of Assault Wave exudes a gutsy feeling that is reminiscent of war themed comic books of years gone by.

None of this is quite enough to make Assault Wave particularly great, but it does boost an otherwise quite staid gaming experience.

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