Military Madness: Nectaris Review
Apparently, Nectaris: Military Madness is a remake of a remake of a remake. Until I started this game on the 360, I had never heard of the previous games, which appeared on the PS1, TurboGrafix 16 and before that, the PC. From what I understand, little has changed in the way of gameplay, though the graphics, options and modes have been beefed up with each release. Unfortunately, none of these aspects, new or old, manage to stand up to more recent military strategy games.
Nectaris, available through Xbox Live, has a very old school feel, mostly because it's as old school as it gets. This is bare bones, hexagon-based strategy game that puts players in control of an army with all the standard units and pit them against a series of increasingly difficult maps and enemy armies. When I say bare bones, I mean just that; there is no story to speak of, good or bad. It is simply a battle of who can move which pieces into the right spots at the right time. With no narrative Nectaris can begin to feel like a creative version of a simple game of chess, rewarding players with nothing more than the feeling of besting their opponent.
Most know that strategy games can get tedious after a certain amount of time, and other, better entries in the genre generally offer something to push the player forward through the "I'm bored with this" period. Take the Advance Wars series, for example. In each entry in that series, there came a time where I was just bored with the gameplay. Rather than quit, I kept playing because I was sure a new story twist, unit or enemy was just around the corner. Not so in Nectaris – just more maps, more enemies, but nothing to grab me and keep me going.
I did, however, enjoy the return to the hexagon-based grid after so many one-to-one grad-based systems in other strategy games. It doesn't really change the gameplay in any significant way, but seeing it brought back was a refreshing change of pace.
Nearly everything else is just Ok. The graphical update is nice enough, but when held up against other strategy games, or even other downloadable games, it just can't make the cut.
There isn't a whole lot else to say about Nectaris. It's an old school strategy title that I'm sure someone will enjoy based on either nostalgia or just a lack of anything else to play. If you remember the first game fondly, maybe give this one a shot. If not, write out any other strategy games you can think of on little slips of paper and tape them to a wall. Throw a few darts and chances are whichever game you hit, it will be more engaging end entertaining than this archaic experiencing. I guess some games deserve to be forgotten.
In The End, This Game Hath Been Rated: 38%.