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Call of Cthulhu: The Wasted Land
Call of Cthulhu: The Wasted Land is an iOS adaptation of the popular Call of Cthulhu RPG. Set in the World War I era, the game pits soldiers against an ancient evil looking to resurrect an army of the undead to wreak havoc on the Earth. Is it a fanservice on the iOS, or just another clumsy touch screen title?
The Wasted Land is a turn-based strategy game. Commanding a squad, you are limited in what actions you do per turn by way of Action Points, which are spent whenever a player moves, fires a rifle, calls in for help, etc. Action points are reset at the end of each turn, and players are easily able to move their character around the board. Units can heal one another, don gas masks to protect themselves from harmful fumes, and even call in airstrikes to aid them in combat.
For the most part, the game does a good job as a touch-based title. Everything is selected at the tap of a finger, and controls are fairly responsive. The HUD and item screens, however, are often difficult to see, feeling a little too intricate for a mobile title. A bit more simplicity on this part would have been welcomed by this reviewer.
The tutorial in the beginning was another drawback for me. It was well-paced, and players were able to experience for themselves how to perform certain tasks, but it was also a bit of an information dump, with all of the game’s controls being introduced over the space of about five minutes. It left me going through some cycles of trial and error once the actual game began as I tried to navigate the battlefield.
The graphics for The Wasted Land are respectable for a small mobile title. Characters move smoothly, destruction is believable, and weapons have a certain feel to them. Sound design doesn’t necessarily add anything significant to the game itself, but is passable.
Conversation between NPCs is text-based and well written. There is a distinct personality to each character, and although it feels tedious at times, the conversations are important to help you finish the game, both with clues and with story elements important to the overall experience.
Call of Cthulhu: The Wasted Land is a decent game. While it may have a few technical gaffes and issues, it’s fun, it’s interesting, and it will be sure to please fans of the RPG.