Jagged Alliance
Written by Shigamoto   
Friday, 11 February 2005

On a small island in the South Pacific a mad dictator has taken over. The cruel dictator is ruling the island roughly and has a large military machine. Your mercenary team are hired by the resistance on the island to topple the dictator and end his reign of terror.

Jagged Alliance is pretty well known, mainly because it introduced turn-based strategy gaming on a squad level. The game starts with a pretty low quality intro with today's standards.

Before beginning the operations you have to select a number of mercenaries to hire. Each mercenary has a really well written biography and different stats. For example some might be wise old and wise but in bad health and some maybe excellent shots but too trigger happy and so on.

In the beginning you will have to hire what you get since most skilled mercenaries don't want to work for you right away, you have to build a good reputation first. I really like the personalized elements in the game, it keeps the game from being just a collection of stats and units. Many other strategy games get caught in the stats trap easily.

The game play and controls is not hard to grasp. You simply move your mercenaries using the mouse, the controls are really good since you do absolutely everything with the mouse. For example if you want a mercenary to duck or hide you click on the soldier once.

Each mercenary has a number of health points, when they get hit by enemy fire they loose health points, also if they get hit they will continue to loose health points because they bleed. The only way you can stop the bleeding is by calling a medic to the mercenary.

The fire fights are has a fair amount of action. The player has to really position the troops in the right angles to win the fight. Your objective should be to catch the enemy in crossfire, or try to ambush the enemy. So using standard military manoeuvres in the game is successful.

When playing the game you sometimes notice that the AI is not that great. Sure the basic stuff works, for example when an enemy soldier is attacked he gets backup from another nearby soldier. But the enemy don't understand when they will loose, so they hardly ever retreat. They also tend to set up firing positions, which aren't that great. For example behind four trees with no clear shot at all and exposed from the back.

However they do have different skill levels, which is a good thing since you can focus on attacking the enemies with poor skill.

Jagged Alliance is a good game, which definitely was a fresh breeze back in 1994. It had many features that weren't common back then. The game is a must play if you haven't already taken it for a test drive.


Developer: Sir-Tech
Website for Game: N/A
Publisher: Sir-Tech
O/S: DOS (Works with Windows XP)
Cost of Full Game: N/A
Year of Release: 1994

Tested on:
Pentium 4 2.4 GHz, 512 MB RAM, ATI Radeon Graphics Card

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