Warpath takes place in an alternate 1941, where everything is the same, but without the Nazis. The antagonists are a group called Raven, which I assume is evil, but we don’t know much about them. I don’t know why the villains aren’t Nazis. They probably wanted to avoid showing swastikas. However, other games have found other ways to do this without completely rewriting the history. If Raven were even slightly interesting, I wouldn’t be so upset. Instead, we get a bizarrely evil organization with no ideology or motivations and a corny name.
Strangely, the game makes many other references to historical events. This isn’t Valkyria Chronicles where you can live in a fantasy world. The game features General Eisenhower and the name of King George VI of England. Each weapon and vehicle has exact descriptions and appearances. You can even find quotes from historical figures as flavor text. This is exactly the type of attention to detail that I love in historical games. But it makes the ahistorical bits seem even stranger.
Like many real-time strategy games of the future, combat is divided into two parts: base building and combat. This is the lazy type of base building, where there’s only one path to development. You are told when to build and how to upgrade structures. You are limited in your options for construction, which limits the number of units you can field at one time. This further restricts your tactical options.
The base is located in an open area that is populated with enemies and resources. You can only see your immediate surroundings at the beginning, so you will need to send out scout aircraft to uncover the rest. While other players’ bases can be attacked and allied with, there are limited benefits. Alliance members have the benefit of shared perks, but PVP is just for the sake of destroying something. If that is all you need, many Raven troops are roaming the same world. There is no point attacking other players if you can kill them and get usable resources.
Combat is played on a grid based on the hex. Although it’s unusual for an RTS, it doesn’t significantly affect gameplay. The grid wouldn’t have been visible in the interface, which I may not have noticed. The controls are simple. Click on a unit to choose it. Next, click on an enemy or place to attack or move. To issue orders, you can click and drag. The only problem is that there’s no button to select all units. There is however a command to select groups. Although it might not seem like much, this makes any strategy more complex than “Everybody kills that man.” and turns it into a micromanagement nightmare.
The Path to War
Campaign missions were my favorite of the open-world activities. It is not exciting to attack solitary enemy units to steal their boards. In the campaign, enemies units respond when their friends are under attack. The custom maps were visually more interesting than the vast, flat overworld.
Although here is a lot of variety in the missions, only a few are particularly memorable. They also heavily rely on pre-planned events. One example is defending a dam against advancing enemy forces. This mission can be completed relatively quickly. There are three rows and three waves of enemy forces. No matter how good you do, the first two lines are destroyed at the start of each wave. It feels artificial. This is a problem in almost every aspect of the game. I didn’t feel like I was making enough tactical decisions.
Warpath doesn’t seem to be the most difficult Android RTS. I had difficulty getting into the game. It is just too restrictive to provide an enjoyable strategy experience. Warpath simply isn’t interesting enough to offer more than a token of appreciation.
Is it Hardcore?
Warpath is playable but has a very restricted strategy experience that is not helped by an engaging narrative.