Let's face it. If you're a human male, you've probably played with army men at one point in your life (hopefully when you were young). The thrill that you got as your little green guys made a daring assault on the grey German base camp, throwing marbles and making that weird peow-peow noise stays with you for a long time. For some it never really goes away, and we long for being able to experience it again. That's where Halls of Montezuma: a history of the United States Marine Corps comes in. It's just like a classic game of Army Men, on a massive scale, using cards.
The interface didn't take as long to get used to as I thought it would, being able to nut most of it out and have a full game in a short 30 minute session. The game takes place on the typical strategy game hex map, using card to display your units. X symbols or for infantry units, O's are for armor and -'s are for artillery.After you choose your scenario, and which side you want to be (usually one side has a big advantage over the other), you can call up detailed reports of all your squads. In this screen you can see what squads are fit or tired, which ones have broken leadership, how many losses they've undertaken, even whether their supply lines have been cut off. From the reports menu, you can also check out all the objectives on the map and see who owns them, and also what squad is supposed to occupy/liberate them for more points. In the orders menu, you can send commands down to your divisions. However, they may not take the road you were expecting them to use, and if they make contact with the enemy they will try and drive them back, rather than risk being killed.Every thing in this game revolves around your need to acquire more Victory Points. After a designated number of turns which is different for each map, the person with the most VP wins. You could be in the middle of a daring offensive, when the judge calls time and Rommel just starts laughing in your face and steals your lunch money.
Being an older game, I don't expect greatness from the graphics and sound, just functionality. Graphics worked, when you worked out what the symbols meant on the cards, it was pretty easy to picture up the armies in action. Sound was another story though. It was very minimal, which was okay, but what was there was dull. Moving units made a noise, units suffering under attrittion made a noise, and that was about it apart from some other PC-Speaker bangs and booms. Depending on where you feel Graphics and sound belong on the priority list of a game, you might want to steer clear of it, but anyone else could do worse than giving the game a try for some fun.
+Accurate simulation of sitting behind a desk directing soldiers
+Pretty fast pacing
+Easy to Comprehend
-Graphics merely functional
-Sound less than adequate
-You don't have direct control over individual units