UniWar in Review – Starcraft in the palm of your hand?

Historian of human life and the coming end of the world, I am here to tell you from the far flung future of the year 2154, that the events of UniWar are real. This is the fate of our world, the outcome of our people and the end of our existence. You died honorably but painfully.

UniWar is an online multiplayer turn-based strategy game for your iPhone and iPod touch from developer Xpressed. The game itself plays much like the classic Advance Wars for the Gameboy Advance and DS Lite, but has the feel of real-time strategy game Starcraft in its unit abilities and character design.

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There are a few ways to play. Alone, you can play over the course of a 21 mission campaign taking control of Uniwar’s three separate races in an attempt to defeat your enemies and control the map. This mode will help you learn the intricacies of each race’s units in a solo match against an A.I. controlled enemy on a map you select. In Vs. mode you play against a friend in the same room while passing your device back and forth. Lastly and quite possibly most important, you are able to take the competition online and compete one on one or as a team against others in ranked leader board matches.

The idevice with its touch screen controls is the perfect home for a turn-based strategy game which UniWar takes complete advantage of. Place a finger on the unit you wish to interact with and a list of actions will appear on the screen. You have the option of touching one of the choices provided to you or simply selecting a location or enemy on the map that you want to advance to or attack. Once your choice is made, confirm through either the menu option or place your finger on top of your unit. Simple and effective, the controls work to give the player a smooth gaming experience.

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Each of the races has eight individual units that are unique in appearance from themselves and their enemies. Great care was taken in the design of the units down to the smallest detail. If you took the equivalent of an infantryman from each race and stood them next to each other you would be able to see the subtle differences in height, weight and shape of the characters. From the flapping of wings to the launching of missiles, each unit’s animation breathes life into the characters, drawing you further into the experience.

If you have your volume turned to the max when you start UniWar the first time, you may find yourself quickly reaching to turn it down. The sound is loud and proud as it booms from your idevice speaker. The menu is carried in on mechanical arms and the music plays a futuristic tone that might make you feel like you’re sitting in front of your television preparing to watch a ”Terminator” film in surround sound. Each unit has a distinct sound, from the whip cracking of a creature’s sting to the clamping down of claws during the final death blow. These nuances add to the overall ambiance of the game. One small gripe would be that the music is only heard in menus. The lack of it during gameplay becomes noticeable as you get deeper into a match where the number of moves your opponent must make is increased and the time you sit eagerly anticipating your turn is filled with silence between each move.

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There is a lot to like about UniWar. You’re able to play multiple hours of increasingly challenging levels, learning how to use each of your unit capabilities in different terrain against ever evolving scenarios and enemy types – and that’s just in the single player campaign. Beyond that, you have an online component that will allow you to create or join as many as 20 matches at once. Variable options such as a leader board to compare yourself to your rivals, a personal profile to keep track of your records, and an option to chat with your friends and opponents help to make UniWar an excellent overall package.

My complaint about music, though minor is a concern when you are on the observing side waiting for your turn.

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I recommend you transport yourself to the AppStore right now and snatch up UniWar. It’s true that by the year 2154, you will no longer be around to witness the events of Uniwar, but you can take the opportunity to go down fighting. Who knows, maybe the future isn’t written in stone. You might just be the individual who prevents the apocalypse from occurring.

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App Summary
Title:UniWar (v.1.0.0)Developer:Xpressed
Price:$0.99App Size:10.1 MB
  • Single player campaign with multiple hours of ever increasing strategy.
  • Robust online multi-player experience for unlimited replayability.
  • Excellent individual character design and sound effects.
  • Stat tracking, online leader boards and chat features.
  • No music during matches.

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  • Candy L

    Excellent detailed review! Multi player is done so well!

  • http://www.youtube.com/lordcrom LordCrom

    Thank you! Multi player is excellent! :)

  • Armaan

    The only problem with the game is that the multiplayer maps are online only. You can play single player against bots online (I think), but you can’t play them single-player locally against the CPU. This is a huge oversight in my opinion. Maybe an update will unlock the multiplayer maps for singleplayer play.

  • http://www.youtube.com/lordcrom LordCrom

    I believe the developers of this one will be keeping up with updates and listening to their community very closely. Your fears will be answered in a future update, I believe.

  • VoodooVyper

    I don’t agree with the title of this review. It is very misleading and even more untrue. This game is nowhere near the same as StarCraft, not even close. The gameplay elements are totally different. It’s like saying sentinel is like StarCraft because it has lasers, bad guys, and resource gathering.

  • http://www.youtube.com/lordcrom LordCrom

    I understand what your feeling. UniWar is a Turn-Based Strategy game where as Starcraft is a Real-Time Strategy game. But the character design of the three races in Uniwar are very much similar to those found in Starcraft. The Sapiens in Uniwar translate to the Terran, Titans translate to Protoss and Khraleans translate to the Zerg. Lastely the developers themselves referenced the game as a blend of both Advanced Wars and Starcraft on their itunes listing of the game. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the subject. I appreciate it.

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  • uniwarrior

    There is a new update coming out soon. It’ll include a level editor, if I heard correctly. =)

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