Learn how to control an aircraft before whining like a slut about how you sux at this game. This game is innovation!
This game has a campaign mode, in which the essential authentic battles of the Pacific Campaign are introduced from attack on Pearl Harbor, to the battle of Midway. I don't have to say for which side are you playing i guess..
The campaign follows the fictional story of Henry Walker and his brother Donald, those are the personages, commanding your key units "through you". The campaign is short, but that is just fair in the sense, that it drags you into a historically short period of time, so no complains here. Also, the game is not only about the campaign, so there is much more action besides it. Only those who really get their kicks from these types of naval games, will repeat the campaign again and again, until they achieve all the secret and secondary objectives or make it in the hardest difficulty. It is easy to learn the game within a few hours, but it is very hard to master it. Training mode is present in this game, in which you learn all the aspects of the game, but it is boring and meant for those who really struggle at learning.
Now obviously this game would be a lackluster with just a short campaign, so like any other game it does have a mutliplayer, but to compensate for the short campaign, and the lack of commanding the majority of units in it, this game also offers a special single player mission, called the challenge room, in which 3 separate campaigns exist, consisting of several missions. This is the hard-core part of the game, as these "challenge room" missions will put your skills to the test. Only very experienced and skilled players will find great pleasure in defeating these missions, and only losers will complain like the whiners they are, that the game "suck". This just shows that this game was designed for those who appreciate it, and strive in achieving skill. This game is definitely not for everyone.
The combat and physics in the game are as much realistic as can be without being too realistic to damage the gameplay.There are many people who don't understand the fact, that in order to make this game competitive, the developers had to lower the ranges of artillery and flak guns, otherwise the ships would start automatically destroying each other as soon as you would build them in your naval base. Also the size of combat maps is, of course, shrinked, because otherwise you would have to travel 2 hours just get to your opponent. I have to explain this, because i was amazed that there are so many idiots, who don't understand this simple gameplay element. Other than reduced ranges, the damage is extremely well put and never the same. For instance you can destroy a destroyer with a single 500 pound bomb, or you can drop as many as four 500 pound bombs and the destroyer will still be afloat - this is the beauty of the game, as it really represents well the critical hit system and weak spots of units. Obviously you won't cause any damage to a battleship with 5 inch artillery, but you will destroy a submarine with a single torpedo hit. The control of units is very responsive and indeed - it takes a while to learn to master the flight of an aircraft and dogfighting with it, but once it is learned, it is only a pleasure. Units respond realistically, unlike in other games, which had naval and air units. You can change the control of units from direct to strategy mode, in which the computer takes control over your units and you just command them all in a tactical map by giving waypoint orders - this always comes when commanding bigger forces. But it is you, who should take control in critical moments, as the computer typically sux in difficult situations.
The graphics are good, at times look very good - skies and lighting in particular, but then there are less beautiful renderings like terrain and ocean.
The models themselves look very detailed. Now the sounds are decent, although one could expect more diversity and intensity from all the sounds of fire and collision. At times they lack the punch, but generally sound pleasant.
The voicing is done great - i love the fact that Japanese units have their own narrator, and that whole system sounds appealing. At times the voices get repetitive, but since this is a strategy game, no complains.
The game runs smooth and is easy on hardware - that is great having in mind that it features large areas and many units at the same time. Even patched to latest version the game does have bugs, those occur in a while, so it is not perfect by any means. Also i still think that this game lacks in the variety of units, and combined with a short campaign it does not feel complete. Lucky enough there is a sequel, which continues from where Battlestations Midway left. With minor complains, this game is great and unique.
This game is a rare gem, which allows for some of the most hard-core naval WW2 action and direct control of units with real physics and damage system, but it is not for everyone, especially not for the many whiners, who only complain, do not appreciate the game and do not try to strive.