In Fabrication Games' World in War, a turn-based multiplayer online strategy game for the Apple iPhone, players control armies in a World War II combat scenario. Playing as military strategists from Great Britain, USA, Soviet Union or Germany, you must complete objectives (such as invading your enemy's territory) to win the war.
This challenging strategy game (available for £1.79 in the App Store) stands out from others in its genre because of its simultaneous, 'real-time' turn-based combat. Unfortunately, like many strategy games appearing on the mobile platform, World In War suffers due to the Apple iPhone's small screen size - it's simply impossible to see the entirety of the map mid-battle. There are compelling strategy games on the iPhone, but this isn't one of them.
It's like Risk, but with a much narrower focus
To deploy your troops and move them on the battlefield in World In War for iPhone, you simply tap the unit. Infantry, tanks, artillery and ships are available to you after building them in production centres, although they only vary in attack strength (not in abilities). Currency is produced from the territories you control. Regions near production centers (marked by a factory icon) provide the most income.
There are three modes in World In War (Single Battle, Multiplayer, or Campaign) with a computer AI serving as competition in Single Battle and Campaign modes. Here, you win by completing objectives such as invading a specific country or delaying the opposing force's invasion for a set amount of time. Then you can purchase strategies like an air raid or paratroopers, and deploy them accordingly.
This isn't unlike most war-themed strategy games, except that when playing online or in Single Player Mode, turns take place simultaneously. This means that both opponents (or in the case of Single Player Mode, the player and the computer) execute their strategies in real-time. This unique feature of World In War for iPhone is beneficial in that it eliminates delays in the action and often results in a sort of cat and mouse game with your opponent, but can also mean players are attacking areas that have recently been vacanted.
The World War II era maps look clean and the different terrorities are colour-coded based on who owns the space - providing a crisp view that gives a comprehensive look at who's in the lead. A collapsible tool bar is on the right hand side of the screen contains the 'end turn' button and objective list, among others. The maps are littered with production centres, so you'll have no trouble building up an army quickly.
Because of the coinciding turns in World in War, after each round, the game shows a replay of the action. We found this to be a bit superfluous, and usually skipped over them and planned strategies based on what the map looked like at the start of each turn. The map itself was also troublesome, despite its clean aesthetic. It's too small to view on the iPhone screen, and you have to zoom in to make moves. We never felt as though we had a sense of the whole map when we were invading. While we haven't had a chance to play yet, we suspect the game's experience is far more enjoyable on the Apple iPad (this version is available from the App Store for £3.99).
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