Mixed or average reviews - based on 20 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 20
  2. Negative: 2 out of 20
  1. Innovative features together with realism and playability make it a must-have for American Civil War enthusiasts and recommendable to all tactical-scale wargamers. The lack of strategic elements is a bit disappointing, though. [Aug 2006, p.55]
  2. 85
    A top quality Civil War military strategy game. Its brutal realism and tough tactics make it a must own for a strategy gamer who is getting sick of the same old fare being hawked out by other companies.
  3. It is is enjoyable, playable, and will find a happy home in any strategist’s library, hardcore or otherwise.
  4. This year's first essential wargame. [July 2006, p.76]
  5. Wargamers and Civil War buffs will love the easy-to-play, historically authentic Take Command: Second Manassas.
  6. With its slow pace and realistic combat, Take Command: 2nd Manassas is very much a title for war gaming enthusiasts, but not really for the casual gamers who like to dip into "Age of Empires" or "Warhammer" now and then.
  7. Some gamers may be turned off by the complexity and slow pacing, but strat fans with open minds and a love for the genre should enjoy themselves here.
  8. War gamers without an uncompromising bias towards turn-based play and real-time strategy fans looking for a more realistic depiction of battlefield strategy and tactics should definitely give the game a look.
  9. The interface was easy to learn and use, allowing more time to be spent enjoying the strategic elements of the game. With the ability to create your own campaigns or play those created by others, this title has potentially limitless replay value.
  10. The gameplay is built on a system that will initially frustrate those used to more immediate rewards, but players willing to stick it out can easily become engrossed in the mechanics at work. It’s a lumbering, slow beast of a title that won’t ever invite you in and if you’re up for a real challenge, it will give you one. It is also, as said above, the finest title based on the American Civil War yet seen.
  11. Second Manassas is not a surprise; it's testimony that these guys know what they are doing. [July 2006, p.67]
  12. The game's AI works very well considering all that is happening during conflicts on a scale like this. The game uses a scenario tree where the outcome of one battle affects the next in the historical mode but you can also play quicker battles in open play.
  13. Its sprite-based units overlaid on a 3D field look cheesy(yet may still tax low-end systems), but stiff looks are a welcome sacrifice for historiccal accuracy and scale. [July 2006, p.67]
  14. This is one game that general real time strategy game fans will enjoy, be you a Civil War fan or not.
  15. The level of depth and historical accuracy is not going to sit easy with most gamers, but if you consider yourself a war-gamer or even a historian then this has your name written all over it.
  16. This is a fresh-feeling game, full of drama, atmosphere and surprises. If you like your tactics titles realistic and don't mind having your Manassas whipped by a bayonet-sharp AI now and again, it's likely to be the best £20 you spend this year.
  17. Technical shortcomings do mar the experience though as does the lack of multiplayer.
  18. If you're a reality fan looking for a full-on Civil War experience, this is it. [Aug 2006, p.54]
  19. A cumbersome and confusing affair. Order a full retreat. [June 2006, p.86]
  20. So not worth it, pick up "Hearts of Iron II" and get a proper strategy/history game.

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