War. What is it god for? Absolutely nothing, except for the loads and loads of ace wartime simulations killing multitudes of the enemy.
Yes, you can be transported back in time to the early 40s and fight World War II against the Bosh. Yes indeed, for only £34.99 you can go and show Hitler exactly what you think of him. A bargain. Re-live the war without any chance of getting blown up or shot at.
Computer games - I love 'em. You can be transported to space one minute and then off to the Middle Ages and then win the war and still be back home in time for tea.
There are two types of war game - the run around, shoot lots of soldiers and watch the blood fly everywhere type, like Fireforce, and the climb into a tank or plane and strategically win the war that way by looking at maps and deciding which tactics to use against the enemy type.
Campaign is of the latter kind and is billed on the box as the most comprehensive military simulation of warfare in World War II. Well it could be true, but you'll just have to wait until the end of the review to find out.
Basically Campaign is a pure strategy game, but it does have a certain 'arcade' element to it. This so-called 'arcade' bit is where you take control of the tank platoons and choose any tank to run around in blowing other tanks up. More about that later.
Job-wise, Campaign is very flexible indeed. If yo want to be a lowly tank driver then that's up to you, but you can take the position of a General or even take the top job as Field Marshall - or you can do all three!
As General, you control the fighting of an individual battle with tanks plus artillery and air support. As the Field Marshall, not only do you stay about 35 miles away from the battle supping tea and scoffing biscuits without any fear of getting shot or blown up, you also get to co-ordinate the strategy for all the tanks, convoys, aircraft, ships and production centres.
Lowly tank driver is the job for me though, going wild in a nice big tank with a nice big gun blowing away the enemy for King and Country and shouting "Yah boo sucks" to the Hun.
It's much more exciting than sitting behind a desk looking at maps, but that's only a personal opinion.
To be perfectly honest I'm not a huge fan of proper strategy games, but I liked Campaign for two reasons. One, it had a bit of action in it, unlike some other strategy games I could mention, and two, it is so damn authentic.
For starters, included in the package is the use guide which gives you a historical background to the war. You also get two World War II propaganda posters and postcards, plus a D-Day landings battle plan map - you even get an authentic wartime newspaper reprint.
You certainly feel more involved with the game than you would with just a couple of disks and a flimsy manual. Obviously a lot of work has gone into Campaign in trying to make it as real as possible. This must have taken a lot of research and also a lot of time.
For instance, you get another manual with all the tanks, aircraft and ships in it which it gives you all sorts of information on each one, ranging from speed to weight to the date it was first available. As well as being informative it also serves as the manual protection.
Everything is just so accurate and absolutely huge. For instance the playing area covers up to an amazing ten million square kilometres and features detailed towns, villages, rivers and woodlands.
You can take full command of up to 3,000 vehicles of which there are over 150 vehicle types on over 20 historically accurate maps. Locations of the maps range form the desert wastes of the Sahara to the decisive D-day landings. And if that isn't enough there is a map editor which allows you to modify the existing maps and create new ones of your own, so the possibilities are endless.
In fact if you fancy it you can even swap sides and take control of the German army. Just think you could be a Hitler re-incarnate. Gulp!
Right, back to the 'arcade' tank driving bit. If any of you have seen Pacific Islands, also by Empire, then you'll realise by looking at the screenshots that the tank bit of the game looks very similar.
Well, yes it is, but that's not a bad thing is it, because Pacific Islands was pretty good as well. The actual driving of the tank is really easy and simply involves nine keys of the keyboard. After a few plays of the game it becomes second nature. Oh, and I can recommend blowing up some houses in the town, just for laugh.
So is Campaign going to be as victorious as our good old British Tommies were, or will it end up growing a small moustache and shooting itself in a small bunker in Berlin?
Well overall this is a really good game, but I'm afraid a lot of people tend to ignore this type of thing. They probably think that strategy is for incredibly boring people, but it's not true - that's just stereo
Right, if people get over their strategy fears then I think that Campaign could become a good seller and could be up the charts before you know it.
The only niggle that I have is that after a few hours play it tended to get a bit boring - no, not boring exactly, but I started losing interest.
Other than that I can't really complain - top marks go to the actual presentation of the game, plus I forgot to mention the excellent introduction disk that comes with it. It features some great graphics and some sampled speech and is a good, err, introduction to the game.
So, if you feel like you want to go and bash the Bosh and defeat the evil tyrant Hitler, Campaign could well be the game for you. Tank you and goodnight.