Amiga Power

Team Yankee
By Action 16
Amiga 500

Published in Amiga Power #48

Team Yankee

Team Yankee, Pacific Islands and War In The Gulf are more or less three data disk versions of the same game that were rather cleverly marketted as completely different titles. Thankfully, their shared game engine is challenging and entertaining, so we'll forgive them on that point. What's harder to let slide is the fact that this one's even older than Amiga Power, yet they're flogging it at £17. On the other hand, the Combat Classic 2 compilation from Empire contains Pacific Islands plus F-19 Stealth Fighter and Silent Service 2 for a mere £30, making it a better value and generally more worthy way to have a go at commanding tanks.

Based on the novel of the same name, Team Yankee puts you in simultaneous control of sixteen armoured vehicles, from hulking main battle tanks to rather weedy missile-firing APCs. The game's split into interlocking, real-time missions where you desperately try to halt the advance of Ruskie armour across pre-Glasnost Empire in the first desperate days of World War 3.

Simultaneous control of so many vehicles is both the strength and weakness of the game. Your forces are split into four groups of four vehicles, which simplifies things, and you keep track of things either on a map screen (where you also plot waypoints for each unit) or by splitting the screen into four sections so that you can see what's happening with each unit.

Team Yankee

Before the start of each mission you can re-equip your vehicles, study the map and call in artillery strikes at pre-set times. This invariably gives rise to hilarious friendly-fire incidents as you plough one unit through the fire zone at the set time and get them all blown to heck. Just like the real thing.

The map shows all enemy units that your guys can see, and the first person view uses what looks like a combination of vector graphics for buildings and roads, and scaled sprites for all the vehicles. Like most sprite scaling, they look a bit crap and blocky close up, but since they explode quite nicely and burn merrily, that's not really a problem.

What is a problem is the complete lack of artificial intelligence on your side, so unless you're controlling your units, they'll just sit there and get blown up. This means you can only really take one unit into action at a time unless you're inhumanly fast with your mouse, which is a pain. It's also difficult to work out which unit is being shot at until a vehicle explodes, which is of course way too late. The only annoying features of an otherwise classic game.

The Bottom Line

A great wargame, combining strategy with true arcade action, but it's been published at much too high a price. Go out and get the excellent Combat Classics 2 compilation and enjoy three times the fun for just a few pounds more.

Cam Winstanley

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