There have been quite a few games that have tried to recapture the Famicom/Advance Wars magic formula. None of them have really succeeded. Wargroove just came out, and after an hour or so I can say it has a lot of potential. Here is what is different from Advance Wars.
- It has a fantasy theme instead of modern warfare.
- You have a commander unit that is actually on the field.
- When the commander does stuff it builds up its super power.
- The commander unit actually “casts” the super power on the field as part of its turn. Commander’s location matters for both powers I have seen so far.
- No unit can ever stand on top of a city or barracks or any other building.
- When a barracks builds a unit, it selects an adjacent spot to place it in. Still can only build one per turn.
- All buildings have health, max 10.
- To capture an enemy building, you first have to fight it. It can’t attack, but it will damage you when you attack it.
- After you “kill” a building it becomes neutral. Any unit that has the ability to capture (commander, infantry) can capture it instantly from an adjacent spot.
- To repair a unit you get reinforcements. The unit must be adjacent to a friendly building, spend money proportional to its cost/health and health is subtracted from the building and moved to the damaged unit.
- All buildings/cities repair a little bit each turn automatically.
By far the biggest thing is the introduction of critical attacks. Most units have them. They aren’t like critical hits in other games at all.
For example, if a pikeman attacks while it is adjacent to another friendly pikeman, it does way more damage. Rangers (artillery) can attack on the turn they move, but they do critical damage if they fire standing still. Swordsman crit if they are adjacent to the commander. Knights crit if they have moved 6+ spaces this turn (charrrrge!). etc. etc.
Best of all, this has 4 player local, and ? player online multiplayer. I thought it was Switch only, but it’s on Steam, so I got it on Steam.
I streamed what I played so far: