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Generally favorable reviews - based on 22 Critics What's this?

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8.1

Generally favorable reviews- based on 123 Ratings

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  • Summary: Men of War is a Real-Time Strategy game that takes place during the height of World War II. Intense battles span Europe and North Africa as gamers play as Soviet, Allied or German forces across 19 massive single-player missions. Both online multiplayer and single-player conflicts feature authentic vehicles and weapons of the era and brutal combat that will take players into the heart of the fight. The Direct Control feature allows gamers to command any single unit on the field at any time. Players have complete control over the unit’s actions and can change, upgrade and repair equipment and vehicles. Three evolving storylines in the Soviet, Allied and German armies, comprising 19 missions in total. Realistic models of armament and military equipment recreated in accordance with design drawings and historical documents. Highly detailed WWII environments and characters faithfully recreated with a cutting-edge graphics engine. The single player campaign features a fully customizable user interface. Online play features a unique faction (the Japanese) and numerous gameplay modes including Capture the Flag and High-Value Cargo. [Aspyr Media] Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 22
  2. Negative: 0 out of 22
  1. Possibly the best game about WWII, unless you want your games simplistic and easy, in which case you should settle for WII games. Like Soldiers, Men of War will be the best game no-one will buy. I hope I am wrong. [Apr 2009]
  2. So if you want to enjoy the looks of a Tiger tank and watch it perform exactly like the Discovery boys told us it did, then you don’t miss out on Men of War. For anything.
  3. This might be the most gripping tactics title I've played in getting on for a decade.
  4. Men of War is a strategy game for the fans of the genre and the Second World War in its whole. Several problems in the gameplay on the other hand can ruin the game experience and will oblige the more casual gamers to uninstall the game. But who will try to go on with the game will find a wonderful and tough game able to satisfy him.
  5. An engaging, solid RTS with mission design near perfection! But be warned: Men of War is only for experts of the genre. Anyone else will be frustrated by the hardcore approach of the game.
  6. The successor to Faces of War (2006) has some useful innovations on offer, but is mainly about one thing: hard-core battles of WW2. It's exceptionally difficult, but not unfair. Veterans will enjoy using the innumerable amount of tactical options at hand. There's a multi-player mode for LAN and Internet for up to 16 players and a co-op mode for up to 3 players, too.
  7. Men of War is not going to appeal to the casual gamer. Only hardcores will be willing to attempt to crack this nut – it almost cracked this nut.

See all 22 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 31 out of 42
  2. Negative: 4 out of 42
  1. Dec 29, 2013
    10
    Men of War is a great game. The campaign is challenging and offers a wide array of units, strategies and tactics. MoW also features multiplayer and LAN so you can play in games with up to 16 people. The game also comes with a free mission editor so you can create your own maps and missions. Okay the AI is quite bad and the voice overs aren't perfect but over all this is a spectacular game with rich and diverse gameplay. Expand
  2. Jack
    Aug 14, 2009
    10
    Amazing game. It's not for traditional RTS fans, and it's not for traditional shooter fans. It's a completely unique style of gameplay. Once the action starts it's really frantic, just like real war. You're always on your toes and there's always something to surprise you. Expand
  3. AnonymousMC
    May 8, 2009
    10
    Fortunately, or unfortunately depending on how you look at it, the Company of Heroes series was a fantastic WW2-themed strategy game. However, despite my love for it (and years of work modding it into a persistent MMO-RTS), there were some things that I never enjoyed about the game, including the base building, the incredibly arcade-y feel and the lack of any type of support for modding.

    If we look back, two years prior to COH, Best Way and 1C Company released an RTS that was overlooked by so many, the title? Soldiers: Heroes of World War II. The features? Realistic and detailed physics models, destructible environments, the ability to directly control any unit on the battlefield, and most importantly simulation style gameplay without the base building tedium. Best Way didn't stop there, 1 day after the release of COH, they released the sequel to Soldiers: HOWW2, Faces of War. Unfortunately, competing with COH was never in the cards for FOW, and S:HOWW2 was long forgotten (and often overlooked itself).

    Now two and a half years later, Best Way and 1C Company are back again, this time with Men of War. Improving of all the aspects of Soldiers: HOWW2 and FOW, they are once again trying to prove their series belongs in the collection of strategy gamers and World War 2 enthusiasts.



    Men of War contains many of the great features, of it's predecessors, such as individual unit inventories and weapon skill levels and the ability to toggle direct control of any unit. However, simply stating them without some explanation of how they influence the gameplay probably isn't enough for those of you unfamiliar with the series.

    Each and every unit (including AT guns, tanks and individual soldiers) have their own inventory. This includes everything from medical kits and grenades to bullets and tank shells to vehicle fuel. While this may seem like a micromanagement nightmare, it really turns into an extremely satisfying experience of managing your troops and vehicles (including their crews) - yes, vehicles must have drivers to move, and it's possible to commandeer them if you are able to kill the crew without seriously damaging the vehicle.

    Along with an individual inventory, each soldier has a skill set. The tank crew that just escaped from that burning Sherman, might not be as effective with their scavenged BARs as their original owners. This means you must take care when using troops for certain tasks. For example, when assaulting an enemy in a building, you make sure you have you men with automatic weapons and high skill using them peaking around the doors inside. You'll only make the mistake of sending riflemen to take a building once.

    Increasing the sense of attachment to your units is direct control mode which allows you to take control of any unit in the game, seemingly turning the game into a third-person shooter or tank simulation. Moving the unit with the arrow keys, your mouse pointer becomes the weapon targeting location allowing you to fire well placed shots on enemy tank weak spots or executing head shots on unsuspecting enemy troops.

    However, whatever you do, be careful, gone are the days of retreating your men to your HQ for reinforcement (a la COH). Once their gone, their gone; although certain missions and all multiplayer modes allow you to call in reinforcements based on either a set income or game timer (allowing you only to call in the heaviest of units later in the game).



    Touching more-so on the physics and destruction models, the physics engine calculates impact angle of all projectiles, making it important to aim where tanks are vulnerable and to aim at high angles, avoiding flat angles. Fortunately, the game helps you with this information when aiming (unless its disabled and frequently is in multiplayer matches). In addition, the game calculates structural damage loss from repeated hits on the same piece of armor. Vehicles have more damage states than I can explain. Tanks can lose treads, vehicles can lose wheels. Engines can be destroyed, turrets and firing mechanisms (AT guns) get damaged, they can catch on fire and explode, as well as a plethora of other damage situations. Some are repairable (assuming you have a repair kit and a free unit) others leave you stranded for good or the unit destroyed.

    Moving away from the game play and on to what there is to play, we see that MOW features 3 campaigns (USSR, Germany, and Allied) and a few bonus missions. This equates to about two dozen hair raising, heart pounding missions. But they aren't for the feint of heart. These missions are tough and those without strong will to succeed may be quickly frustrated, luckily, the single player features the ability to modify the gamespeed on 5 different levels. This allows you to slow down the game when things get hectic in order to issue more orders and control the situation better. If you are still having trouble, all the campaign missions can be played in cooperative mode in multiplayer!

    Speaking of multiplayer, there are a variety of game modes and you are given the ability to play as one of five factions, US, UK, USSR, Germany, and Japan (Japan will be added in a free content patch). Out of the box, you are given access to over 50 units to use in multiplayer, but there are modifications released that allow you to play with any unit in the game (more on modifications later). The multiplayer modes include Combat (deathmatch), Frontlines (Attack/Defend), Victory Flag (one flag to capture/hold), and Battle Zones (sort of like BF2 capture the area mode). For hosting custom games, there are a ton of options, including the ability to have Infantry-only or Tank-only matches. However, the series now features a multiplayer ranking mode with automatch (still pending a patch).

    Men of War is also extremely moddable. New units can be added (support for animating them as well), and there are a few promising modifications such as the single player (Dynamic Campaign Generator) and the multiplayer Germans Soldiers Mod (GSM). There is also a modification called Realism Rebalanced that's great to use with the DCG mod.

    All this said, Men of War isn't without it's faults. The campaign missions can, at times, be really infuriating due to their difficulty and the voice acting in the campaign is atrocious (but it does grow on you). And while the AI is improved, it still can be frustrating to see them get themselves killed doing something incredibly stupid.



    Support-wise, the game has a variety of publishers which has led to a disaster of a first patch. 5 different patch versions were released, and some publishers (such as Direct2Drive) still haven't released the patch to their customers. I have hope that this will get better with additional patches. The requirements also state the game is unsupported on XP/Vista x64 however there are many people using those operating systems without issue.

    Overall, Men of War is a must have for any strategy gaming enthusiast and World War II fan, especially those who enjoy a simulation. And while not as 'easy' to pickup as Company of Heroes, those that do will find the experience much more rewarding.

    Unfortunately, this title, like the ones before it, may be the best title that no one buys. Hopefully the increasing availability of it over previous games in the series, such as it being available on Direct2Drive and Steam increases it's popularity.
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  4. Apr 17, 2014
    9
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Having played Soldiers: Heroes of World War 2, its unknown sequel Silent Heroes, Faces of War, and completed every single mission of this game in medium, I can say safely that these games are diamonds if you look for a real challenge. And I mean a REAL TOUGH challenge.

    These games were truly made to test your patience, reflexes and nerves. They are not made for the casual RTS gamer. He will hate them for their difficulty. Reloading a specific point 15 times to get through it is very exhausting. Facing overwhelming enemy forces, an AI which destroys your tanks so much easier that you can destroy its (you have the same tank as the AI, you flank it, you fire at its engine, but nothing happens--> then it fires at your front armor and BOOM, your tank explodes), no time to organize your defenses as you would like, having to take care of ammunition, cover and survival of 50 INDIVIDUAL soldiers, will make every newcomer cry or curse.

    Consider these factors before your try these games. Many people come here and whine about them, but the plain true is that they were not made for this challenge. Even the veterans confess that the game sometimes becomes infuriating due to its almost impossible difficulty. And they are right. If someone claims that he found this game relaxing and easy he is a liar. The odds and the numbers will always speak of your defeat. Your crushing defeat. The quickness required to make it is almost unachievable. and when you think you have annihilated the enemy, and you start moving your forces relaxed, the next second something will happen to make you lose your color and maybe quit the game for some hours. Example? Some random flamethrower appears from nowhere and burns something you hold dear...

    The problem is that you cannot be everywhere all the time. And the enemy attacks in many points SIMULTANEOUSLY, and most of the time your units will not do that what you want. So...there comes the pause micromanagement paradise (for few of us) or nightmare (for all the others). But when you make it and destroy all the enemy forces with your own hand...this is something to boast for. You will like it when your shot destroys only the turret of the enemy tank. And this is mainly achieved with direct control. Direct control is your saviour in difficult situations. You can chose where to move, how to rotate, where and when to shoot.

    Last but not least about the game's difficulty. The stealth missions. AI's patrols choose random ways to walk. You cannot predict them like in other games. They may discover a corpse in a place you thought they would never go. You have to kill everyone with knives and away from everyone else. You will see how impossible it is when reinforcements arrive and see all the corpses you have left behind, when the dead will scream and his comrades will hear it, when some random light will catch you and so on. Stealth missions for me are the hardest. In fact, stealth missions are the hardest in reality.

    I have never been in war personally, but I have 1 thing to say to all these crying about the game being unrealistically hard. Klawzevits said that war is rarely battles. Most of the time is marching and logistics: food, ammunition, fixing bridges etc. So do not cry. Imagine the next game to have food and other survival factors in it.

    Graphics: 7/10. Good they do their job, they could have been better.
    Physics: 9.5/10. Awesome. Watching an operating tank being upside-down from a strong explosion is a lol thing. Walls falling wand hitting the infantry under them is a nice detail. Need to say more?
    Sound: Rofl...2/10 but who really cares. Mute the game like everyone and put some music. 6 Hours EVE online music made it for me.
    Storyline: Who cares...some real persons there and their actions during the war. Trust me, I do not care and none really does. Nowadays the games are too many to get intrigued in one's story.

    Some annoying bugs which do not allow you to complete missions though is the reason I put 9/10. It happened only twice on last allied mission (who cares, it was the last one after all) and the 4th bonus mission. Pissed, I wanted to play the 5th as well.

    The game will take you in many places that are not memorised in other ww2 games. As a Greek loved the 1st German mission in Crete. It was tough as hell with all these SMG's, but there is always a way to make it if you try and think. Then Africa. Rommel, Italian destroyer, sandstorm hiding sounds and much more. The devs understood that simply repeating D-Day would not help. Finding battles like Yugoslavian, Greek, Polish, Iranian (lol they were invaded by USSR), Chinese (vs Japan ofc) that are never ever commemorated is something that makes me love a game.

    The game is rewarding only the hardcore gamers. For me, the most difficult battle was the 7th USSR: Behind Enemy Lines. Not only a tough stealth pre-mission, but a main battle where you had to take some heavily fortified hills. Try it and cry. If you are casual go away.
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  5. Jan 25, 2014
    8
    A great game built from a great concept. The game is simple yet complex , easy to learn but difficult to master and very fun and addictive to play. However, the lack of features for single player after the main missions is disappointing. The multiplayer is great fun and seems like it got more work then the single player . The editor is one of the best in-game map editors i have ever seen with tons of features.

    Overall the game is great and I recommend you buy it.
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  6. Feb 22, 2014
    6
    Men of War had everything to be one of the best Real Time Tactics games, but failed at it because of many details, all summed up make the game annoying and frustrating.

    I love strategy games, the more detail the better, but when a game asks me to take care of a large battle and manage 100 soldiers with such detail that I have to search enemy bodies for ammo for every single one of my soldiers... sorry there's something wrong here.

    The AI is a mix of amazing and frustration, but I give a thumbs up here, the AI behaved fairly decently most of the time, but even then you better save often because while you micromanage some soldiers in the right, your only tank in the left might decide to move forward for whatever reason and die miserably.

    The Camera is very bad, you have to constantly micromanage the angle of vision because it doesn't allow the player to zoom out enough, not even near enough, creates a feeling that vehicle battles are just random stupidity. For Infantry the camera is good enough.

    Graphically the game looks very poorly optimized, I have a decent computer, in some battles I had to turn everything off or to low settings and even then it was bad, I've played far heavier games without half of the slow down. This creates a huge problem with unit selection and deselection, units lost constantly because the same button to deselect also allows to make a move order, come on... why in hell!?

    But not all is bad, small battles where there's not a ton of troops everywhere can be very fun, specially when there's a low amount of tanks involved, infantry vs infantry fighting is very good and dynamic. In the end I had some fun playing this game, but just as much frustration.

    For RTT aficionados I would recommend this game, other than that I don't recommend it, and make sure you have a pretty good computer to run this properly.
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  7. anonymous
    Sep 4, 2009
    0
    Horrible voice acting annoying interface, bad graphics and a stupid AI this game is crap if you want a good World War 2 Strategy game play Company Of Heroes which has a better engine good voice acting, Intelligent AI, Challenging missions and better graphics Expand

See all 42 User Reviews