In a surprise announcement, the hit indie game Wargroove is adding a large amount of free DLC to the game, including new commanders, a new co-op campaign as well as new units and rebalancing to the base game. This indie game is just the little game that could with how well it has sold and how relevant it has been.
The success of this game is pretty surprising when you consider it’s heavily influenced by the Advance Wars series, which hasn’t had a new entry since 2008. Even though similar turn-based tactics games like Advance Wars and Fire Emblem have been able to sell respectably well, the genre itself is not very popular.
Advance Wars may have been popular, but there’s a reason there hasn’t been a game in 11 years, so Wargroove has done a fantastic job marketing itself and appealing to the fans of this genre.
Despite Wargroove being very similar to other games in its genre, it did an immaculate job of building on what made both series great. Unlike Advance Wars, Wargroove actually has your commanders on the field of battle with you and the overall plot is a lot more personal.
Wargroove makes you grow with the characters because the plot personally affected their lives and gave each character realistic motivations for why they join the war effort. Plus having them in battle led to more strategy being involved and if they died then you automatically got a game over. They were integral to the plot and overall gameplay.
Their sprites were detailed and charming and each character’s special moves felt unique and fit their personality. The generic, expendable units were given a lot more depth as well due to all of them having special requirements in order for them to score critical hits. Some units had to be beside another unit of the same class, some had to be beside your commander, while others had to move a certain amount of squares to get a critical. This means you had more strategic placing, especially on maps where you were given a certain amount of units and couldn’t build your own army.
There is also just more unit variations and because the game was set in medieval times and not the modern era, the game could be a lot more creative with its character types and setting. This little indie game did a great job of building on genre staples while also forging its own uniqueness.
One of the highlights of Wargroove is the map editor, a mechanic that Advance Wars had but that Wargroove built upon tremendously. The customization options are much more in-depth and seeing some of the maps the community has made is beautiful and fascinating.
The community that surrounds this genre is known for being creative, making their own fan-games and keeping the genre alive and well by constantly making their own maps sharing them with everyone. It’s like why Mario Maker is so popular, the developers give the player the tools to create as much as they want and get quite in depth with the mechanics.
Not only does it have a map editor, Wargroove also has a campaign editor where players can craft their own story with specific victory conditions and branching paths. This is huge compared to just creating singular maps, especially when you consider that this game supports cross-play between its Switch, PC, and Xbox versions. The replayability that this function encourages is perhaps the main reasons it’s one of the best indie games of 2019.
The campaign editor was used by the developers (Chucklefish) to craft the real story of the game as they wrote on their website:
“In designing Wargroove, it was important to us to empower players to create their own content and stories, and the Campaign Editor is a key part of that. It’s the same tool that Chucklefish is using internally to create the campaigns that will ship with the game, and will therefore empower you to create content on par with ours, or even better! ”
The developers also said that the game made back its budget just three days after launch, and that’s with the PS4 version not releasing until months later.
Being a new IP and being developed by a studio that had only made one game prior to Wargroove, means this game deserves all the praise it has gotten.There has been no release date for the new free wave of DLC, but we are sure that it will make this great game even better than it already is. The physical deluxe edition for Switch and PS4 releases on Oct. 29.