Mixed or average reviews - based on 26 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 26
  2. Negative: 8 out of 26
  1. Hammer & Sickle is something of a strange case—it's by no means a perfect game, but it features a perfect game engine.
  2. What disappointed me was that a game with such a great story displayed some rather under whelming graphics and tons of load screens, which ultimately end up hurting the material instead of supporting it.
  3. A game that has decent replay value and a difficulty that will keep you engaged for quite a while. The missions are interesting and varied, and have many alternate ways to complete them.
  4. The actual gameplay is great, but the narrative, which maintains a much more noticeable presence than in Silent Storm, is very cliché and serves only to drag the game down.
  5. Hammer & Sickle should have been a great game, after all it is basically just a mod for the brilliant Silent Storm. Somehow everything has gone wrong. The difficulty level is insane, the constantly progressing time completely screws up the gameplay and technically it is worse than its smooth predecessor. [April 2006]
  6. Battles are visceral and exciting in ways that may surprise gamers who haven’t really experienced quality turn-based tactics. [Mar 2006, p.61]
  7. Poor gameplay, sub par graphics, and some antiquated control mechanisms.
  8. Even God would need cheat codes to beat this strategic RPG. [Feb 2006, p.50]
  9. Avoid this one like you would an elderly relative at a wedding reception who's suffering from the plague. [PC Zone]
  10. Takes an interesting concept and hammers it into the ground with a ridiculously high difficulty level and several issues and bugs which should have been resolved before the game shipped. Unless you are a die-hard fan of turn-based strategy, you should look elsewhere for your gaming fix.
  11. 60
    Combat is occasionally brilliant, but the stealth scenes are a real chore. Developing your characters’ skills adds a lot to the game, but listening to them talk will give you a headache.
  12. The idea of a Cold War Russian agent infiltrating the ‘enemy’s’ sector could (and should) have been so much more, but the frustration and abundance of small flaws induced by Hammer and Sickle sadly point to another missed opportunity in our books.
  13. An idea that went much further than necessary with graphical problems and sound that seems out of place. Better to pass on this one.
  14. There may be a select few that will try the game and love it.
  15. The game is slow to play and the timing system can make that even slower, World War III will start more times than you'll be able to count and a fully destructible environment isn't worth much when you are supposed to be stealthy.
  16. In the end, Hammer and Sickle was just not fun for me. And for a game, that is not a good thing.
  17. 50
    Though it sounded sweet on paper, developer Nival Interactive couldn’t translate it into a great game. Hopefully, Hammer & Sickle’s failures will inspire the creation of games that can more fully realize its potential.
  18. There is strategy and action to be found, but it takes a great deal of searching, and more patience than a Buddhist monk.
  19. Eventually, the mire of frustrations, constant reloading, harsh difficulty level, bugs and generally poor design wears you down. Rabid strategists will appreciate the game's saving grace, the combat system, and may find themselves more tolerant. Good luck to them. They'll need it.
  20. All the pedigree and ideas are here to make Hammer & Sickle a veritable feast of turn-based feast action. Unfortunately they’re all lost in a flawed and poorly executed example of cashing in on past glory.
  21. 40
    One of those "if only" games: if only the RPG elements had been fully developed; if only the game world were larger; if only the combat were smoother and not slow as molasses; if only the A.I. were stronger; if only the bugs and general sloppiness had been worked out.
  22. The KGB wasn't as hard on political dissidents as Hammer & Sickle is on those who play it.
  23. The combat engine, once you experiment around enough to figure it out, isn’t that bad; what is bad is that you’re typically alone and grossly outnumbered.
  24. 30
    Except for true masochists who believe that hair-pulling frustration equals enjoyable realism, Hammer & Sickle offers nothing worth paying for -- except maybe time to catch up on your reading while waiting for your turn to load.
  25. 30
    Another potentially cool game completely obliterated by terrible execution.
  26. A total rush job, from start to all-too-sudden finish. [Feb 2006, p.73]

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