Galactic Assault: Prisoner of Power

This game slipped under my radar, and I’m curious to see if anyone here picked this one up. It is developed by, and appears to be the more complex brother to the wonderful Massive Assault series of turn-based strategy titles. The average review seems to be around a 7, but the fan reviews seems to skew toward 8 and an occasional 9.

[Unlike Massive Assault, this title] adds new elements to units, like morale and terrain bonuses. No longer is an invasion a series of simple mathematical calculations where one unit will always damage a certain enemy to half its hit points in a round while the next unit will finish it off. Instead, you have different units with different morale scores. An elite unit might have a very high morale, and do maximum damage each time while that same unit after suffering a lot of damage, might only be partially effective, or not effective at all. Of course you can research technologies that improve morale, and units can beat feet back to base for healing too.

Here though, artillery deployment is extremely well done. While artillery has a range, that range can change depending on the terrain, with cannons placed higher up able to shoot further. This reminds me of Fallen Haven a bit with the differing ranges, though there the developers at Interactive Magic simply cheated by letting the alien artillery fire one hex further than yours, which was annoying. Here, whoever gets to the high ground first and sets up their big guns is going to have a real advantage.
Also, if any of your units are attacked while within the range of artillery, they can call for support (up to a set number of times per turn) which means that not only will an attacker be subjected to return fire from the defending unit, but also from the supporting artillery.

I’m playing it now. It’s not bad. It reminds me a lot of Battle Isle: The Andosia War (without the annoying realtime resource production). It’s much easier to just pick up and play than that game, though. The interface really couldn’t be improved upon, in my opinion, and the gameplay’s so straightforward there’s no further direction needed, really. All the same, I’m only a few turns in, so I can’t give a long view at this point.

What it does not really remind me of is M.A.X. I say that because M.A.X. is one of the games it compares itself to. Maybe it’s the 3D engine, maybe it’s the absence of resource gathering, or maybe it’s the inability to build what you want where you want, but there are enough differences for me to give a negative to that comparison. Think Battle Isle 3D and you’ll have a pretty good idea of what the game is like.

EDIT: I’ve never played Massive Assault, so I can’t comment on comparisons to that game.

MAX was absolutely incredible, unlike the butched MAX 2. Hmmm…the same can be said for Missionforce:Cyberstorm.

Haven’t played it, thought about getting it but decided against it based on the review from /8:

It’s very…Eastern European. Meaning there’s some awesome there, but it could use polish and a more attractive, user-friendly UI. And a much better translation - the story’s based on material from the Strugatsky brothers (most famous in English-speaking circles for Roadside Picnic, the original inspiration for Stalker.), so it’s probably pretty cool in the original language. Then again, maybe it’s just as muddled and incoherent, I don’t know.