Approximate Release Month: March 1993
Genre: Turn-based strategy
Developer: Vic Tokai
Publisher: Vic Tokai
Super Conflict is most immediately comparable to Nintendo’s Game Boy Advance masterpiece Advance Wars, only not as good
It mostly comes down to how user friendly the games are. Super Conflict has you controlling the Blue army in a battle against the Red army. The goal of every battle is to destroy the enemy’s Flag Tank, which is a very powerful unit. Early on, each map provides a predetermined mix of infantry and armor with their own plusses and minuses, but I don’t think there’s any base or unit building at all here. You don’t collect resources in Super Conflict, you just blow each other up. The game’s how to play section makes mention of factories, but I never encountered any. There are 55 levels, though, and I only experienced a handful.
There’s little attempt to share any information about what’s going on, though. Given the rock-paper-scissors dynamic with units, it would be nice if the game would tell me if a possible attack would be favorable or not. Obviously, my M551 Sheridan tank would decimate standard infantry, but how would it do against a T-62 or T-55 tank? Or the Flag Tank, for that matter! Super Conflict doesn’t surface any data, so I found myself making poor decisions because of my inexperience. I don’t think memorizing match-ups involving similar units is very friendly to newcomers.
Each map is made of a bunch of hexes, and each hex can have defensive properties that encourage taking the better defensible position. You never want to fight in plains, even though they offer more mobility. Forests and mountains are difficult to maneuver in but help prevent getting your squad destroyed. Cities will refuel your tanks and repair them slowly, so parking your flag tank on a city is a good idea.
One major gripe about Super Conflict: if all of your units run out of ammo and fuel, the game keeps going. I messed up big time in one of the scenarios and wasn’t able to take out the enemy Flag Tank in time, resulting in my units just … sitting there, unable to move or defend themselves. The computer decided to take its sweet time destroying the defenseless tanks. When my Flag Tank had 1 HP remaining, the computer wouldn’t blow up my tank. I had to manually quit out of the game to get it to end since they wouldn’t finish me off. Have the match end when one team can’t move or attack!
To make that kind of situation even more annoying, it takes so long for the computer to make their turns. You have to sit and watch the computer’s cursor select the unit and make a move and watch them attack. Over the course of a Super Conflict battle it adds up.
I don’t have a clue if Super Conflict is balanced. There’s a lack of meaningfully different units in the early levels I’ve played and not enough variety in objectives to make strategy very important map-to-map. I think what’s here is okay, but it’s the little things that cause Super Conflict to feel excruciating and boring to play.
Tomorrow: Will Super Strike Eagle be a good flight sim for this console?