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Radio Commander

Radio Commander is a strategy game based on one crucial idea - the player uses only a radio to command his troops on the battlefield. In Radio Commander, the player is not an invisible being hovering over the battlefield, but rather a real military commander that carries a heavy burden of coordinating military operations. It’s a bold try to redefine the genre, as player will be involved in a decision making process much more realistic than those pictured by casual RTS. The game is set during the Vietnam War and focused on a narrative driven experience. The main game scenario doesn’t avoid difficult issues of civilians trapped in the theater of action, shady CIA operations, and cynical political pressures.
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Game Discussion

Review by Anonymous
Review from Steam

I'm giving Radio Commander a thumb's up for the originality of the idea. However, as a former US Army Company Commander, Field Artillery Forward Observer and Enlisted Radio Operator for an Artillery Fire Direction Center, I have found the need to conform to the game's way of making radio calls to give my units orders. This is a bit frustrating and results in needless delays. I'm just not sure about this one, but the concept is good.

Review from Steam

A surprisingly good strategy game.
What makes Radio Commander quite different from traditional strategy games is that there is no real-time view of the battlefield at all, but a paper map and a radio. On first glance this seems like a little trick to save on models and animations to make a somewhat simplistic game, but that assessment would fall a bit short. It gives the whole missions a certain realistic feel to it and adds an extra layer of difficulty considering that even where your own units are is at times not entirely clear.
What this concept loses in visual beauty it makes up for in other departments. The audio quality is very good and - most of the time - rather atmospheric. There are a few characters whose voices become familiar, whose backgrounds and views drive a story which might include a lot of clichees but is enjoyable nonetheless. The simulation of the actual combat is not too simplistic, featuring various advantages like altitude, surrounding terrain, unit numbers and flanks, that all influence both combat power and morale. The ten mission campaign includes quite the variety of tasks that are interesting, different and plausible.
Also it is possible to 'look up' from the map and even look around the base a little bit. This is a nice feature for when one waits for events to unfold, but it feels like an opportunity to add more functions to this - say a visual indication on how long helicopters will have to refuel or how far an artillery battery is in reloading - would have made it more engaging. At a couple of times also the 'plot' moves along with things that obviously would not have been conversations on the radio, so maybe in future games one could put those there.
On the further downsides the AI can sometimes be a little troublesome - although this usually gets masked until the replay - in how they navigate, sometimes taking detours instead of direct paths, even if this makes them walk through jungle hills rather than an actual road. But in most missions this is a minor issue.
There are also several instances in which the use of certain units is not really part of the tutorial, or rather, not very well explained, but a bit of trying around usually solves that.
Also, one should mention the content warning: this game contains a lot of strong and definitely not politically correct language.
Overall it is very well made and no wonder one or two similar games have since popped up. If you are interested in to the Vietnam War, you don't mind a few of the classic stereotypes, and just want a slightly different kind of strategy game, this is definitely a good choice.

Review from Steam

the game is very fun in my opinion, but after I played around 5 missions it just got boring to me. It felt repetitive even though the missions were quite different. I do think it is a very good game though. I would wait for the game to go on sale before you buy it.

Review from Steam

If you are a fan of 911/112 Operator, then this might tickle your fancy. But only just, as the differences might feel like a step backwards for some.
The UI in this game does feel a hell of a lot more immersive than it's counterparts. Especially since your character can look up and peer outside the tent to observe the surroundings of the fire support base. I won't go on too much about the game-play, other than it plays similar to the other Operator games. Except in this one, you are marking your assets on the map rather than moving them yourself (you give them direction over the radio instead). It works fine, but runs dry, especially since you have no direct control and there is a lack of events that require choice.
The story within the campaign contains a mix of scenarios that are realistic and far fetched. As an example (and it's already been said in other reviews), the amount of casual chatter on the radio between call-signs is very unrealistic. Good idea to for building a narrative, but is immersion breaking as soldiers just wouldn't talk that much over official channels. Regardless, you might be drawn in at first because of this narrative, but game-play does little to complement the overall experience.
I'm going to thumb this one up, as it is nice to see the developers be creative with their already proven formula. But I would say get it on deep deep sale even if you are very keen, as the content will only carry you so far.

Review from Steam

I like this simulation.. Kind of.. Idiot proof