Naval warfare was never the sam after the demise of the battleship. The Second World War replaced it with effective sea-
But the battle fleets of old brought a chess-
It's the complexity that Action Stations tries to simulate. As you can imagine, you don't usually just sail up to the enemy and tire your guns. You must weight up your relative fire-
All this plus up to 20 different ships under your powerful command. It's the ultimate in management simulations.
Half Drake and half Nelson
The game runs in three minute turns rather than realtime, which is a pity. You therefore have ample time to work out your tactics, but there's an awful lot to decide. Action Stations is astonishingly detailed and very complex, and if you're natural admiral material you'll need to ingest the large manual which, for a naval game, is remarkably dry.
A variety of scenarios, ranging from Pacific carrier battles to the hunting of the Bismarck in the Atlantic is included. You can play a human or the computer, and can set up random or historic positions and conditions. Then it's up to you to rewrite history. (Using your skill and judgement place an 'X' where you think the enemy fleet is).
You don't get any views of the action - the only graphics are the battle plots. This is the most useful function you have, and it's there that the balletic twists and turns of the 50,000-ton battleships are shown. Everything is menu-
Contemplate your naval
The computer has eight skill levels and many of the battles are distinctly one-sided so it's possible to indulge your appetite for wining to excess. The accuracy and detail of both the vessels and the encounters will impress many a war buff, but it would have been nice to choose the ships to pit against each other.
The big fault is that the game runs too slowly. It does seem to calculate everything from the ocean currents prevailing to the hair-
That aside, it's a very specialised game, it's a whole evening tied up and, if you like the thrill of the hunt, it's fascinatiing.