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War Plan Pacific

Platform(s): PC
Genre: Strategy
Publisher: Shrapnel Games
Developer: KE Studios

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'War Plan Pacific' Goes Gold

by Rainier on Nov. 24, 2008 @ 4:00 a.m. PST

War Plan Pacific is a turn-based computer wargame for one or two players (IP based multiplayer capability) covering the entire war in the Pacific from 1941 until 1945. Shrapnel Games is looking for a few good men to ensure smooth sailing.

It should have been just another December Sunday morning. It wasn't. Scores of aircraft dropped from the sky, blood red suns adorning their wings, unleashing a Hell borne from bullet, bomb, and torpedo. Body and hull shattered, blood and oil staining the Hawaiian waters as most of the United States' Pacific Fleet was transformed into a mangled wreck of flesh and steel within hours. As bad as the carnage was it was but a sign of the days to come, as the greatest naval conflict the world had ever seen- or would see- erupted upon that infamous day. Forged in the flames of Pearl Harbor this conflict would only end in the atomic flames of Nagasaki.

War Plan Pacific is a turn-based computer wargame for one or two players (IP based multiplayer capability) covering the entire war in the Pacific from 1941 until 1945.

Focusing on power projection through the use of a strong navy, players will assume the role of the heads of either the Imperial Japanese Navy or the United States Navy (along with allied British, Australian, and Dutch forces), commanding a historical force mix in a total war aimed at achieving nothing less than an unconditional surrender of the enemy.

Individual ships of light cruiser size and larger are represented, and each turn represents one month of real world time.

The Japanese player faces a challenging road to victory, although victory is possible through either a quick win or a slow win. He can cut the vital US to Australia sea lines, isolating Australia and thus denying the US its important forward and submarine bases necessary to march steadily towards Japan. If denied for six months the Japanese will win. This is the quick win for the IJN. The slow win involves staving off total defeat until 1946. To do so the Japanese has to do more than hold onto a few ships and bases though, as both the loss of oil or a successful strategic bombing campaign (which also abstractly culminates in the atomic bombings of the mainland) will spell defeat for the Japanese.

Long time wargamers who are familiar with Avalon Hill's classic Victory In The Pacific will feel right at home with War Plan Pacific. This is not a game that seeks to track every single widget, bullet, and drop of sweat in the Pacific theater, but rather one that allows the entire war to be fought in a single session. As lead designer and KE Studios' founder John Hawkins says, "Put the kids to bed, play a full game, be in bed yourself by midnight." Eschewing hexes, War Plan Pacific uses a system of twenty-nine important bases. Your naval forces are either found around the bases or in transit. The speed of your task force determines transit time, something to keep in mind when planning an assault involving task forces from all over the Pacific.

War Plan Pacific is a game of naval conflict, with land combat represented by the taking of bases through the successful use of sea power. And while the game abstracts several elements to make it playable in a few hours, its heart beats a historical reality. Naval forces arrive on a historical timetable. The Japanese long lance torpedo is a thorn in the USN's side. Players can attempt to recreate the Doolittle raid, tying up Japanese coastal forces for months, or as the IJN scare the Hell out of the American public by shelling the West Coast. Try out historical strategies, or try out your own. What will be your turning point? Coral Sea? Midway? Guadalcanal?

Key Features :

  • Turn based grand strategy wargame of the war in the Pacific from 1941 until 1945, influenced partially by the classic Avalon Hill board game, Victory in the Pacific.
  • Playable by one or two players. Multiplayer is supported via Internet play.
  • An emphasis on playability allows a complete game to be played in under three hours. That's right, from Pearl to Nagaski in three hours.
  • The theater of operation ranges from Singapore in the east to San Francisco in the west and the Aleutians in the north and Brisbane in the south. Point-to-point based movement. One month turns.
  • Twenty nine bases of strategic and historical importance.
  • Eye-catching digital counters of individual historical ships of light cruiser or larger size, amphibious transport groups, convoys and air groups representing the forces of the Imperial Japanese Navy, United States Navy, Royal Navy, Royal Australian Navy, and Royal Netherlands Navy.
  • Three scenarios. One purely historical, two with alternate set ups.
  • Two victory conditions for each side: one a "quick" win while the other a slower win. As the Japanese isolate Australia or survive until the American public loses its taste for war. As the Allies strangle Japan's oil supply or force them to the surrender table through a massive bombing campaign.
  • Scenario files are XML text files that can be edited, which also allows the OOB and ship capabilities to also be modified. Likewise, base information, sea distances, and relevance to victory conditions can also be changed.
  • Turns consist of forming and disbanding task forces and assigning them to either patrol, raid, or invade. Patrol defends friendly bases, raids assault enemy bases and their defending forces while invasions attempt to capture and control enemy bases. Additional turn elements include designating ships for repair, supply efforts, and land based air location.
  • Combat is fast paced and uses a virtual 'Battle Board' with players choosing to engage their foe in gunnery duels or over the horizon with the use of air power. Air strikes must face CAP and flak, while in surface battles the Long Lance torpedo can be an Allied vessel's worst nightmare. Invasions involve transport groups attempting to overwhelm a base's defenders, softening up targets with pre-landing aerial and surface bombardments.
  • Plenty of tough choices! With never enough forces to cover the vast Pacific, and with the need to be both offensive and defensive, each turn is one of exciting choices. Historical advantages, disadvantages, and doctrine have been built into the game without the need of cumbersome rules or mechanics, allowing War Plan Pacific to model the war but keep the game playable in a single session.
  • Each side offers a unique playing experience, keeping gamers constantly engaged in the strategic cat and mouse game that marked the war in the Pacific.

War Plan Pacific will launch Dec. 16, 2008 and will retail for $39.95. Pre-order now and War Plan Pacific will only cost you $33.45!

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