User Score
8.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 42 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 37 out of 42
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 42
  3. Negative: 5 out of 42

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  1. Apr 3, 2014
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I recall firstly playing this game in 2004. It was summer and I had a lot of time and I can say I spent it well playing all missions of this diamond. Yeah it is hard and you have to think a lot in every mission or you WILL get owned by the AI. Most people cannot even get past the 1st Russian mission. AT guns kill them too fast. Simply theu cannot think and go from the left side just below the hill and kill these AT's 1 by 1. That is what we call thinking and not rushing (like in many other games).

    So...graphics. For a game published in 2004 they are great. But still are good in 2014 and enjoyable. Explosions, fire, guns and buildings are reaslistic. Bullets disperse so it is not 100% sure you will hit an enemy with your guns, especially if you have a SMG and the target is more than 20m away. So, depending on the distance you have to use different weapons. Katyusha is the best (lol you have it only in the last russian mission). Vehicles can be captured, repaired, partially destroyed and looted, COMPLETELLY destroyed and not lootable, and directly controlled by pressing END. After discovering this, I replayed all missions again. It is awesome to see your Tiger moving and firing when you want it. Environment is fully destructible, and you can put fire on a wheat field and burn the enemies in it (1st mission of USA). You can literally demolish all buildings in a mission zone if you want to.

    Gameplay. a lot og depth in there and this game does not forgive mistakes. Sometimes you may hate it for this, but it is all your fault in the end. You can pause and issue orders, which will be your saviour many times or even decrease/increase game speed. You have to be really careful when fighting vehicles, as the distance, the angle and the spot you hit them, may either destroy them (so you cannot use them), disable them (the desired thing, as you can loot them for ammo/fuel), or just waste your ammo and give it more time to destroy you. And it will do it asap. Enemy soldiers mostly come to you like ducks, but there ae occasions they will hide behind cover and throw grenades, especially afetr most of their comreades are dead by your ambushes. Hidind and ambushing in this game works pretty well and this is what you must do to kill enemies 5 times more than your men rushing towards your location. There are also silent weapons (you will need to use them effectively in British mission 1...at least), mines (never really used them tbh), bazookas (love the way the rocket moves after some distance), AA guns, AT guns, howitzers, torpedoes (again British mission 1), and much more fun stuff to alter the game play in each mission.

    There are so many different ways to complete a mission than makes them replayable. The only limit is you resourcefoulness. I still play the last german mission where you have 2 tigers and you face wave after wave of allied attacks...just epic. I last playe dthat game on 2011 as I had some problems with compatibility on win 7. But after resolving it, I left this game for 3 years. Now I returned, replayed it all, trying completelly different tactics, having a total blast and then buying its unknown expansion Silent Heroes...and keep having a total blast with it, as it is even harder and brutal (sad there is only 1 review of 52/100...Gamespot reviewer is a total noob in these series from what I saw in his writtings). And after Silent Heroes I bought Faces of War (but not its unknown sequeal Brothers in Arms), and Men of War series. And I am sooo stuck on them. I ve not touched any other game in the last month.

    Its difficulty is something that makes casuals qq about bugs, interface, voiceacting (lol who cares) and storyline (lololol who the **** really cares). There are things that you should master before putting on use. S:HOWW2 interface is one of them. Get how it works and you dominate (even then you gotta save **** happens too often), or just buy another casual game like CoH (it is a good one, but nowhere near S:HOWW2 depth). Yeah this game is for HC players, and only they should have the right to rate it. If you are another casual qq'er go review a casual easy base building boring rts.

    I consider myself lucky for having this game for 10 years and still playing it. It offers moments that other games do not. Bombarding Prishib station with Katyusha, Defending Villers-Bocage with 2 Tigers, having 15mins to accomplish some hard task (british 1st and 4th missions) and starting with 2 crappy Shermans and ending up with 1 Koning-Tiger and 1 upgraded Tiger (USA mission named Minefields), that make it fun as hell.

    Ignore any review below 8/10. The person either has low IQ or he did not give this game the time to get its mechanics. Check youtube to see how it is done if you have questions and you do not want to give up. I feel strange when I finished the game on 2004, when youtube did not exist and Pstn connection made web surfing slow as hell. Googling solutions was impossible then :) But I made it.
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  2. Sep 16, 2011
    10
    This is an excellent game that is very... very difficult and should be played with others in cooperative mode for higher rate of success. You will need to bring the best out in you and do thorough planning, learn how to use which guns, where and when. DON'T try to rush head on or you will be dominated and crushed, the AI in this game can and will counter attack you as well...
    Odds are you
    will never finish a single map in this game but good luck and don't give up, its one of the best games ever..... one last thing.... it isn't over until its over, you'll remember these words when you have played a few maps. GL Expand
  3. Jul 5, 2011
    10
    This game and the Men of War series is in my opinion the best RTS WWII games. The thing that lets this game stand out is it's difficulty. I couldn't even make through the first levels in the easy difficulty at first. Afterwards I started to understand the tactics and finished the game. I must say, It was worth it.
Metascore
77

Generally favorable reviews - based on 45 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 34 out of 45
  2. Negative: 0 out of 45
  1. The AI is very smart. Probably too smart for newbies. Even on easy mode, soldiers will react with gang reflexes in shooting you to a pulp.
  2. While some RTS fans may not be happy that it does not follow the same Build & Overwhelm pattern of many other RTS titles, the depth and strategy it offers is a welcome change.
  3. Brilliant graphics, incredibly detailed environments, smart controls, and 30 sinister standalone missions. [Oct 2004, p.120]