Finally. A decent turn based strategy game for the Xbox Live Arcade. We’ve had pretty much every genre covered on Xbox Live Arcade except turn based games, and Commanders : Attack of the Genos is a brilliant one at that. Taking influence from games such as Advance Wars and even, in parts, the Command & Conquer series, Commanders is set in an alternate 20th century where nuclear and genetic research has come along in leaps and bounds.
The games story focuses around a group of genetically altered humans called the Genos. They have been built to be harder, better, faster and stronger (Apologies for the Daft Punk reference) than ordinary humans. They have stayed pretty much away from the ordinary humans for a while, but they are resurfacing. You play as one of a few commanders, starting first as Alec Falcon, through 15 campaign missions where you have to destroy all enemies, or capture a certain building. The campaign is easy, but a heck of a lot of fun, and it is a breath of fresh air to the genre and to the Xbox LIVE Arcade.
The game itself involves you move your troops along a grid, each one of your available troops being able to move a certain number of squares per turn. Each troop has an advantage over others and some are more capable in destroying certain types of enemy. Your main solider is the Commander , a spider looking unit that have special powers that can affect the troops around them. When one of your soliders comes into contact with an enemy, the camera moves down to show the two soldiers attacking each other, instead of using images seen in games such as Advance Wars.
The graphics are pretty good too. The soldiers look rather cell shaded and the environments look crisp and a joy to look at. The little characters that appear during cut scenes are very well animated, providing a nice change throughout the game. The music can get repetitive with the same soft jazz playing over and over as you play.
As with many other Arcade games, the online mode seems to be useless as no-one is playing it, so I was unable to try out the online aspect.
Overall, Commanders : Attack of the Genos is a breath of fresh air for Xbox LIVE Arcade providing a fun turn based strategy game well worth your 800 MS points.