Advance Wars may be gone, but there are several great games you can play instead26 Feb 2020 1
I’m not sure what it is about turn-based strategy, but it’s a very compelling form of design. Real-life is messy, and trying to execute a plan in real-time is actually quite stressful - turn-based games offer a unique respite from the troubles of ‘reality’ and let you plan out the perfect move.
Nintendo’s Advance War series was probably one of the best turn-based strategy games of its day, especially for the hardware it was released on and has inspired many an attempt to recreate its careful blend of strategic build up and tactical map play. It erred on the side of puzzle-tactics at times, but for the most part simply presented you with a map and a mission, and it was up to you to see it through. Excellent unit diversity and easy-to-grasp strong/weak interactions mean't it was a great way to get your strategy fix when on the move.
Our good friends over at PCGN also recognise Advance Wars’ greatness, so much so they’ve compiled a list of great games you can play on PC that are similar. Sadly, none of the Advance Wars games have been ported to other platforms yet, and there hasn’t been a new Advance Wars release since 2008’s Days of Ruin. There hasn’t even been a naff mobile port yet!
Here are some of the best Advance Wars games you can play:
- Wargroove (Pictured)
- Into the Breach
- XCOM 2
- Valkyria Chronicles series
- Unity of Command 2
- Tiny Metal
- Fell Seal: Arbiter’s Mark
We can throw in a few other games that are similar and not so PC centric. Fire Emblem: Three Houses, for example is a great experience although like Fell Seal is more RPG than it is pure tactics.
Warbits was an excellent mobile title that was directly inspired by Advance Wars, and the Final Fantasy Tactics games are also on mobile. But what we really want is just a new Advance Wars game, so hopefully Nintendo sorts that out sooner rather than later.