Advance Wars makes the jump from the GBA to the DS and still delivers lots of advance fun.
• The combat system is similar to previous AW games but adds more depth.
• Still fun but also adds a bit of grit to the storyline.
• There are new classes of vehicles, ships and aircraft.
• Battle fields are sometimes split into two simultaneous fronts, where victory on one front plays a big role on how the second front will go.
• Lots of content to play in the war room section after finishing the main campaign.
• Can have multiple CO's in a battle, this brings more tactics into game.
• Now have 3 save files.
• Graphics are a step down compared to the GBA AW games.
• Some battles seem too easy and others very hard.
• Having dual fronts to a battle is sometimes annoying and feels like the battle is not meaningful.
In AW Dual Strike the core game play from the previous AW games remains. You move your land, sea and air units around the map and take out your opponents units. Also your foot soldiers take over cities, factories, airports and navel ports to gain money and the ability to build new units. For most of the maps wiping out all enemy units or capturing the enemies HQ gets you the win, you then progress deeper into the storyline and begin the next battle.
The biggest addition to the game is the Dual Strike combat. During a battle each side has 2 CO's; at the end of your turn you can switch to the second CO. At the end of each turn you switch the CO and build up both CO's power meters, when both power meters are full you can perform a Dual Strike. During a Dual Strike you get two turns in a row and both the CO's super powers are in effect, a Dual Strike can turn the tide of a battle but it also takes a long time to build up the CO's power meters. The other big addition to the game is the new unit types, there's a Megatank, Piperunner, Stealth Jet, Black Bomb, Black Boat and an Aircraft Carrier.
The graphics are similar to the GBA AW games in look but are not as crisp and detailed; they also look fuzzy and washed out in color. I am not a big fan of the new look and was disappointed a bit when I saw them. Still I can tell what little blob is what so it wasn't so bad that it impacted the gameplay.
The story is not very complex but suits the game, basically you just move from one battle to another with a little bit of story between battles. There's more character interaction in this game than in previous AW games and it's a nice addition.
There is a lot of value to a game like this, I have probably sunk 45+ hours into this game and although the game is simple and repetitive in nature it is also fun and addictive. The pick up and play factor is also handy and the story is not very complex so you don't have to remember it if there is long gaps in your gameplay time.