previews\ May 14, 2009 at 8:00 pm

Military Madness: Nectaris - 360 - Preview

Another title from the HD remake movement on Xbox LIVE Arcade, Military Madness is a reboot of Hudson’s Military Madness, last seen on the TurboGrafx 16. The game is a turn-based affair that takes place on the moon, letting players take on each other in strategic combat. While only a preview build was available for play, the game offered up a compelling blend of old-school turn-based strategy for hardcore fans of the franchise, as well as some nice new touches, like HD graphics and online co-op and competitive modes.

Military Madness will offer up the same story elements as the original game, which takes place in the year 2089. Two forces, the Allied-Union and the Axis-Xenon, are vying for control over the moon, launching a variety of units at each other in an effort to capture bases and gain superiority. While the story elements haven’t changed from the original game, the gameplay has gotten some upgrades.

Military Madness starts out by giving you a different number of units, depending on the map played. While you can’t build new units, you can utilize enemy units by capturing a factory with units inside. Your units have very basic commands, which pretty much boil down to simple “move” and “attack” functions. The real element of strategy comes from the Zone of Control feature. This uses a hexagonal barrier that surrounds your units, which cannot be permeated by your enemies. If you use the best of this element, you can create barriers that prevent your opponents from moving, and block them off in order to gain the upper hand.

The environment will also play a big part in your strategy. Only certain unit types can navigate certain terrain, and some units will even get boosts from specific terrain types.

Graphically, Military Madness isn’t amazing, but is a nice improvement over the original TG-16 title. The game utilizes a 3D look that looks pretty solid, but certainly not the best amongst XBLA titles.

Military Madness is shaping up to be a pretty faithful version of the original well-loved title, and the online features could make it one that fans of the original will definitely want to sink their teeth into. Look for it on Xbox LIVE Arcade later this summer.

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