Battle of the Bulge
||(Win95/98) (Retail Box) (CLOSEC4PR)
ESRB Rating: Everyone - Animated blood and violence
World War II is in full swing, with the Allied armies
piercing their way into Europe. Their extended position leaves them vulnerable
to a German offensive strike. With crucial supplies, reinforcements and
strongholds at stake, the battle fought here will be a deciding factor in the
outcome of the war.
"The Battle of the Bulge" continues the epic saga of the
critically acclaimed and award-winning Close Combat series. Sneak attacks,
stalwart defenders, spies and saboteurs are among the exciting surprises
lurking on both sides of the battle. Whether you command American or German
troops, you decide when and where they will be deployed. Launch air attacks
against the enemy but keep your eyes on the skies; random weather patterns can
wreak havoc on your offensives from above. History in the making is in your
New Campaign system allows movement of multiple battle
groups on a strategic map of the Ardennes.
Units may enter from different points on a battlemap
based on their strategic movement.
Through advanced AI, stress, fatigue and morale have a
direct impact on your troops and they react accordingly.
Strategic game battlemaker allows you to create your
own Bulge campaigns.
2 players can play head-to-head via serial cable, IPX,
dial-up and the Internet.
Internet players will be able to use online matchmaking
services to find opponents and start games.
Are You Ready to Rewrite
On December 15th, 1944, the 75,000 US soldiers stationed in
the Ardennes went to bed without fear. Crushing German losses along the eastern
and western fronts had reduced the powerful German war machine to a shadow of
its former self. Europe had been largely liberated and Germany was now fighting
on its own soil. The Ardennes forest was thickly wooded, making large -scale
military maneuvers difficult. Nobody seriously believed that Germany could ever
muster the forces for another offensive in any case.
The Germans thought differently.
At 5:30 A.M. on December 16th, the Germans launched a
massive attack that caught the Allies completely by surprise . Over 250,000
German troops, well supported by armor and artillery, poured into the region.
American troops, unprepared and vastly outnumbered, were pushed back and a
massive pocket was formed in the Allied lines: The Bulge .
You now take control of one side of this battle. As the
Germans you must push forward and try to break past the Allied defenses. As the
Allies your job is to contain the Germans and hold out for the reinforcements
that will allow you to strike back. In either case the war will be fought your
Windows 95/98: 200 MHz Pentium or faster, 32MB RAM or
greater, 60MB hard disk space, 4x CD-ROM drive, 4MB video card (3D not
required), 28.8 modem for head-to-head play, Internet access for Internet
by Mark H. Walker (12/21/99)
"The developers, Atomic Games, had the sense to leave well
enough alone and created tactical battles that are still reminiscent of the
original Close Combat's skirmishes. Without a doubt, Close Combat: Battle of
the Bulge sets the standard for a real-time strategy interface. After selecting
a unit, a simple right or left click combination determines whether the unit
crawls, walks, or runs; defends an area; pops smoke; or fires its weapons. One
more click defines an area or carries out an attempt to ambush enemy
awarded to the last man standing. The other side has run away long before that.
Unlike most real-time strategy games--Sid Meiers's excepted--Close Combat knows
its soldiers, and soldiers don't fight to the last man. Frequently the
scenarios are won by sinking the enemy's morale and forcing him to recognize
discretion as the better part of valor."
"...Close Combat: Battle of the Bulge is a war gamer's
nirvana. The combination of a polished battle interface, intriguing campaigns,
and gorgeous graphics make this the best Close Combat in the storied
Gameworld.com by Scott R. Krol
"...CC4 is a very detailed look at tactical combat. Every
round is accounted for, every crew member of a vehicle is present, and most
importantly morale and fatigue is tracked for your units. A decimated squad
won't charge a machine gun nest just because you've told them to attack. An
anti-tank gun with most of the crew wounded will take much longer to reload
than one with a fresh crew. Being able to use real world tactics plays a huge
part in achieving victory since you can't just throw your men away in endless
"Now we get to the reasons CC4 ends up falling short of
greatness: the offensive AI is terrible, bordering on non-existent, right out
of the box. If you're not on the defensive you really won't notice the poor AI,
but try a defensive scenario and see how different the computer plays. The
computer will rarely advance, and when it does it will only take baby steps...
Thankfully a patch was issued which does help, otherwise CC4 would have ended
up with a much lower score. The offensive AI is now improved, but it still
seems a little too cautious.
"Even with the tank gripes I would still recommend Close
Combat IV to any fan of the series, or to newcomers who are interested in
trying a different type of RTS. With the morale factors battles are very tense,
very exciting, and most scenarios take less than a half hour to play; perfect
for wargamers who don't have a lot of free time. Toss in the huge number of
scenarios and you have a very good addition to the Close Combat series. Very
good, but not perfect."
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