Advance Wars: Dual Strike

LQ: 9

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Brain grade: 9.1
Fun score: 8.9

Game Type: ESRB Rating: Everyone 10+ Platform/Console: , LWK Recommended Age: 9+ Thinking Skills Used: ,

Advance Wars: Dual Strike has players controling military squads on a grid map. Players send out tanks, soldiers and transports, among other units, in turn-based battles. This means players can only make so many moves before it is the opponent’s turn to attack. Each unit has pros and cons, and it is up to the player to balance out their squad as they try to defeat enemies, take buildings and dominate the map. The game is simple to play and contains mild cartoon violence. Reading is needed to follow the story but not necessary for gameplay, so the game is recommended to players ages 9 and up.


This game is good for kids who need help with:

Self-Awareness

Understanding our own actions, thoughts and feelings.

Advance Wars: Dual Strike Educational Game Review image 1

Each battle requires different strategies, and these must periodically be amended to tailor to different map layouts and enemy positions. Players need to be able to identify what they are doing well, and more importantly, what they are doing wrong. This means shuffling around their troops or attacking from a new angle. Sometimes it may be better not to attack at all, waiting for the enemy to move and playing defensively. Players who can best assess their own play styles and identify which strategies worked (and which ones did not) are most likely to proceed far into the game.

Planning

Developing a systematic approach for setting and achieving goals.

Since battles are turn-based, players have plenty of time to think during battle. This means they can plot out a course of action without having to make quick decisions and hair-trigger reactions. Instead they can survey the map and take note of enemy positions, deciding what troops to deploy where. Some troops have ranged attacks (allowing then to strike from a distance) while others are more like a tank (slow and powerful). In order to win, players need to craft sound battle plans that use these different abilities wisely.

Furthermore, the game features a "Map Design Mode" that allows players to build their own battle maps. In order to build a fun and interesting map, several steps and a good amount of foresight is required, as players need to methodically position several elements, like water, bridges, buildings and roads.

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