Parents' Guide to

Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics

By Neilie Johnson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Occult WWII game has limited tactics, big difficulty spikes.

Game Windows 2018
Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

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Is It Any Good?

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Despite a strong concept and some nice audio, this plays like a prototype for a better, more finished strategy game. Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics has a number of gameplay features that actually work very well. The tutorial does a good job of teaching you how to play, the setting is cool, squad members are varied and interesting, and the controls are simple. Still, there's much to be desired when it comes to exploration and strategy. The game levels are also fairly extensive and invite you to explore them. Considering the game's richly narrative source -- Lovecraft's horrific stories -- you'd expect to find all kinds of interesting clues scattered around them. You won't though, so don't waste your time searching empty rooms and hidden corners. That's disappointing, since the levels don't pay off in atmosphere either. (Unless you expect to meet an Elder God in a well-lit forest or army building.) Worse than the lackluster set dressing, though, is the lack of strategic options. Combat starts when enemies come into range and stops when they're all dead. That means you can't sneak up on them or stage a retreat. And prepare to lose camera control; during your enemies' turn, the camera's likely to zip to a big area of black where (you guess) enemies are scuttling around in the shadows. Wild difficulty swings don't help matters either. The developer admits it's still tweaking the game's balance, and it shows, since an easy mission will be followed by one you'd swear is impossible. These issues are unfortunate, because Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics does have good things scattered through the tale: interesting characters (the female fighter is awesome -- she's possibly the strongest hero in the game), satisfying base combat, and a cool paranormal context. As a result, Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics's offering a fair measure of fun right now. Here's hoping that the developer wants to do better than fair and releases an update that bumps up the fun factor.

Game Details

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