I passed on reviewing the original Strategy Soccer, a bold but ultimately flawed attempt at turning footy/soccer into a turn-based strategy game. Well, the developer’s back with “Strategy Soccer Live Club 2013″, an improved sequel that’s made the cut.
The biggest problem with the first game was no computer AI, meaning all games were local only. As followers of this site know, I’m not against that when done right, but the turn-based nature of the game didn’t lend itself to that experience IMO. The sequel, among several tweaks and additions, has online play which makes it easier to get a game going; have a friend or two with an interest in sports strategy, get them to plunk down 80 Microsoft Points, and make plans to go online together.
What intriques me about the Strategy Soccer series is its core gameplay mechanic. The game is turn-based, and you choose what player to engage, and whether to move them or have them do an action (like shoot, pass, and more). Each player can only move a certain amount, and each team can only move so many players per turn. Each player does not recover fully between turns, which penalises you if you keep moving the same players every turn, so the game effectively forces you to not only move players into key locations, but to also do so with enough time to let them recover before you need them. It’s an intriguing challenge.
Think of it as a turn-based war game, except the war is over control of a ball. With the key addition of online play, this is a great experimental title for 80 MSP.
Here’s what the developer (Hoelkosoft) has to say about the game:
“The turn-based soccer game is back. And finally it features club football and online multiplayer. Beat your friends and anyone else ;)”