The Falklands War: 1982


posted 8/1/2005 by Tyler Sager
other articles by Tyler Sager
One Page Platforms: PC
The Falklands War: 1982 is a game that can be reviewed quite succinctly. Hardcore grognards, rejoice! Here you’ll find a highly detailed, complex modern warfare simulator, with enough tailor-ability to keep you and the wargaming community busy for quite a long, enjoyable time. If, however, you don’t consider yourself a grognard, or if you have no idea what a “grognard” might be, it’s probably best you just give this a pass.

I am not a grognard.

And I did not enjoy this game. I found it overwhelming, over-complex, and so highly detailed that I just didn’t have time to have fun. However, the game is done quite well. There is a loving attention to historical military accuracy, and the ATF: Armored Task Force engine that runs everything is quite an impressive bit of code. In fact, every issue I could lodge as a complaint would be considered a compliment by the avid wargamer.

ProSIM once again brushes up their ATF engine, a real-time war simulator that’s heavy on detailed gameplay and light on superfluous bells and whistles such as fancy graphics and audio effects. The game focuses on the Falklands War, the conflict over the titular Atlantic islands which took place between Argentina and Great Britain in the early 80s. Due to the nature of the conflict, The Falklands War focuses a great deal on infantry combat, with relatively little armor involvement. This makes for a more intimate-feeling wargame than some of the previous ProSIM titles, such as Raging Tiger.

The Falklands War includes 8 historical scenarios and 10 “what if” scenarios chronicling some of the more important engagements (or possible engagements) of the war. Each of these scenarios starts off with a briefing, a detailing of troops, and a suggested battle plan. Sticking to the suggested battle plan offers the historical view of the mission, but players are free to engage the enemy however they see fit, allowing for plenty of “what if” scenarios and replayability in even the real-life missions. Each of the missions is highly researched and (as far as this non-history buff can tell) highly true to the events that unfolded a few decades ago.

Once the initial setup is confirmed, orders can be given to the individual units, and the clock starts. Units can be controlled at many different levels, from platoon to squad to individual. At the higher levels of command, the computer AI takes over control of the individuals, making things somewhat smoother for beginners. Unit control is quite complex, with a dizzying array of commands to chose from, such as formation, speed, attack stance, and special actions. The interface is correspondingly quite clunky, although the game can be paused at any time to take stock of the situation and issue new commands. Once the complex interface is understood, however, there is a wealth of information and control at the player’s fingertips.
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