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Xbox 360



Action / Strategy









T (Teen)



Q1 2007



- Open Ended Gameplay

- Varied Single Player

- Online Play



- Steep learning curve

- Some maybe frustrated by the level of micromanagement

- Short single player

- Visuals are a mixed bag



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Battlestations: Midway

Score: 7.0 / 10


World War II games have grown in popularity over the last five years or so. With Activision and Electronic Arts churning out World War II shooters every holiday season, it’s nice to see a game come along that doesn’t fall neatly into that particular genre.


battlestations midway          battlestations midway


Battlestations: Midway does not contain any first person shooter elements and instead focuses on air and sea battles. BM is set after Pearl Harbor when American involvement in the Pacific Theatre swelled. You are thrust into the boots of Henry Walker who rises through the ranks of the US military as told through a series of rendered cut-scenes, which are brilliantly done. The game is split up into a series of campaigns based around controlling submarines, warships, fighter planes and aircraft carriers.


The first few battles of the game are quite small, but as you progress through the game the battles become enormous. Battlestations: Midway combines elements of real-time strategy and action games. During a lot of the game’s battles you’ll be responsible for issuing orders to other friendly units and you’ll also be in charge 




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of maintaining the well being of your own vehicles. During each of the game’s battles you can command other units via a command map, which allows you to highlight units and designate enemy targets.


One of the greatest elements of Battlestations: Midway is the open-ended gameplay. The game doesn’t force you to


fight the enemies in a linear way, aside from the opening missions, which are lumbered with necessary tutorials for the different units. The middle and later stages of the game allow you to command and control a series of units and you can choose how to engage the enemy, be it using dive bombers, artillery or submarines against a variety of Japanese targets. 


The level of micromanagement is staggering. For example: when you are in control of a battleship you are not only responsible for the rest of the fleet, but small things such as the health of the ship. Your ship is susceptible to fires, leaks and engine trouble. In battle you can divert men on the ship to fix those damaged components. You’ll either love the level of micromanagement or hate it as it does take time away from the game’s battles.


battlestations midway          battlestations midway


The single player game is quite short, about six hours or so. There are a series of separate challenges that can be played through if you still want to enjoy the game offline. The challenges offer up some intense battles and feature varying levels of difficulty and can help boost your Gamerscore.


By far the most enjoyable part of the game is the online play. A total of 8 players can play online at once, and the game’s multiplayer battles are more intense than the single player game. Depending on your vehicle preference, you can play online on “planes only” maps, “ships only” maps or you can play maps with a mixture of aircraft carriers, ships and planes. Just like the single player, the multiplayer has one team playing as the Americans while the other team plays as the Japanese. The multiplayer maps are usually centered around seek and destroy objectives.


The visuals are a mixed bag. At times the game will amaze you with enormous battles and explosions occurring all around you. Other instances, you’ll get sick of looking at the water all the time. With a few exceptions, the frame rate is stable and doesn’t hamper the gameplay.


Battlestations: Midway offers up a change from other World War II themed games and real time strategy fans are really going to find some enjoyment in this title. Those who are more interested in action-packed gameplay may find the level of micromanagement and accessibility to be a problem.


- Siddharth Masand

(June 6, 2007)


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