previews\ Aug 27, 2009 at 8:00 pm

Panzer General: Allied Assault - 360 - Preview

Combining elements from the WWII strategy and trading card genres, Panzer General: Allied Assault from Ubisoft is quite a odd beast. However, this board game/strategy title feels quite at home on Xbox LIVE. The game combines a grid-based aesthetic with a card-based backbone to make for an experience that fans of similar LIVE titles like Magic: The Gathering will definitely want to get in on.

Panzer General: Allied Assault has two different sides, the US and the Nazis, as they fight each other in real-world campaigns like the storming of Normandy. Like a strategy game, you'll have specific victory conditions that must be achieved in order to win, like killing off all of your enemy's units or capturing a position. However, the meat of the gameplay has each side using drawn cards to represent on-field units and moving them on the battlefield in order to combat each other.

Your units are the same types as you'll find in a WWII-based RTS title, including foot units, tanks, artillery, and so on. You'll perform your actions with your cards during your set turn, after which time your opponent has a turn. During your turn, you'll be able to draw new cards and call new units, position them on the battlefield, and engage enemies. At the end of your turn, you are awarded Prestige points that hinge on how much of the grid you control. Prestige points can then be used to purchase new units and abilities.

To be sure, the game is very complex, and after spending the better part of an hour going through the game's very thorough tutorial, it's quite apparent that it's not for casual audience. However, once you stick through it and learn the game's mechanics, it's also quite addictive. The amount of depth and strategy required commands a lot of patience and understanding of the game's system, but also allows for plenty of gameplay options and potential for multiplayer matches.

Panzer General: Allied Assault provides a ton of depth, and the engaging gameplay should appeal to those who are fans of tabletop and card-based games looking for another online fix. Look for it to land on Xbox LIVE this fall.

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