AtWar Game Review
AtWar Game is a community website that allows you to Play Risk online without having to spend a penny. The interface on AtWar Game is incredible and it users Silverlight to provide in-depth information on each game you are playing.
Whilst you can sign up for an account to keep track of stats, earned medals and more profile information, you can play AtWar Game as a guest at any point. Because of this option, the game is incredibly accessible, and this is coupled with the easy-to-navigate interface.
As expected, you can choose between quick play games that play out within a few hours, or multi-day games that give players 24 hours to make their moves. There are three different rooms, split for standard games, beginners and special clan war events for veteran players. Each game is displayed on a rolling board that shares information about player count, map and game options.
Getting to the Risk Games
AtWar games are player made, so you can easily set up a new game with your friends, and there are plenty of ongoing games to choose from too. If you’d like more choice, you are always welcome to start your own lobby.
No matter where you are on the website, you’ll always find a panel at the top of the website that provides different quick links. If you’re in-game you are given basic game tools, and outside of games you can access profile information or take a look through the different maps available.
The profile information provided for each player is incredibly extensive, and you can view a lot of information about how good a player is from here. Stats include elo rating, overall leaderboard position, rank and game info.
As you can imagine, the amazing interface and website design is the real winner for At War risk online, but game-play is also very unique and engaging for players.
Going Through the Game Tutorial
Once you enter the Atwar website for the first time, you are asked if you’d like to be taken through the tutorial. I’d highly suggest giving this a look, as it covers the basics of the game, and explains where AtWar-game.com is different from the typical game of Risk. There is also an Atwar wiki that explains details and strategy in more detail.
At the beginning of each game, you must select and acquire a number of territories. The number of territories you can acquire will depend on the scale of the map and the number of other players participating in the game. On phase one, you will need to purchase troops. AtWar Game uses a very unique troop system that includes a variety of different troop types. Each troop will have it’s own stats and associated costs, and you can purchase troops with the currency earned from holding territories and cities.
Phase two is used for troop movement, and this is the phase players will use to initiate attacks on other territories and reinforce troops to different areas. A very interesting mechanic here allows troops to move a certain radius from the current position, as opposed to moving entire territories each turn. This gives players with smaller countries more room to make attacks, whilst holding larger countries will be more difficult to initiate attacks from.
By moving troops into another territory and ending your turn, those troops will prepare for an attack. However, there is one catch. Players must move their troops into an enemy or neutral city within that country. As you can imagine, larger countries have more cities, and each of these can be taken.
Unique approach at playing Risk
There are no dice rolls in the AtWar Game, and instead players will need to use the weaknesses and strengths of each troop type to plan out their attacks carefully.
I absolutely love this approach the At War browser game has taken, and it is something you are unlikely to see elsewhere online.
After ending a turn, you are shown the ‘overview’ phase – this basically shows players moves globally, allowing players to quickly view what has happened across the board that turn.
Whilst playing, players can always refer to the tools on the interface to check their game progress, keep track of income and troop production, and monitor their stats. There is so much more to the game as well, and you should certainly give the tutorial a try to get a taste of what the game has to offer. It’s a lot for your strategic taste-buds to take in at first – it’s impressively overwhelming.
I personally think AtWar is the most unique risk war game when it comes to the massive scale of data and information each player is provided with, and the depth of game-play mechanics far outperforms any standard online Risk game.
There are a huge selection of maps to keep you entertained, and maps seem to be released on a regular basis, too. The great profile tools allow you to constantly improve your skills as well, creating a competitive environment in the community.
One thing that may be a make or break situation for some is the addition of purchasable units and abilities. These can be purchased with currency earned for playing, or currency purchased with real cash. I haven’t had the chance to truly test out how balanced these abilities are, but it makes it much harder for newer players to outplay veterans. Fortunately, the real cash option only allows you to try out units for 1 day, whilst in-game earned currency can permanently unlock items.
Players can also pay for a premium subscription for $5.99 a month. The subscription gives players the ability to create more games with more player slots, but there are other changes to gameplay too. For example, premium subscribers gain access to five new strategies and the chance to find rare units for use in-game.
AtWar Game Summary
To summarize everything, AtWar Game has one of the most in-depth strategy games available online. If you are looking to play the vanilla Risk, then this isn’t for you. However, the game is very strategy based and incredibly fun to get into.
Players can progress through the leaderboards and improve their elo, all whilst learning more about the unique game mechanics. The website is impeccable, and the community is very welcoming. For example, the At War forums provide a great place to meet friends and plan games. Unfortunately, there are some elements that give paying and long term players the upper edge, and this is one issue that i’m disappointed with.