Winter!: Prepare for holiday gaming!
The Advance Wars Franchise has always been a solid TBS (turn-based strategy) series, ever since its inception on the Game Boy Advance. Nothing really changed in the series until the first DS title Dual Strike, and now we have Days of Ruin, which takes all of the problems with Dual Strike and mushes them into a fine pulp.
One of the first complaints that I've had about the series as a whole up to this point has been the plot and the characters. They are so incredibly hackneyed that it's impossible to play through the game without forcing yourself to press the skip dialogue button with the same frequency as the fire button in a shmup. Here, the whole theme of the game has been grittified to the point that it would be impossible to distinguish from the bottom of a pickup truck tire. While some cheesiness remains, it thankfully doesn't detract from the story.
The characters are all new, and many of the RPG style mechanics from Dual Strike have been entirely removed.
While the mechanics of the game have changed very little if at all, the addition of a few new units has balanced out many of the minute problems of the previous iterations. You can take your commanding officer onto the field to give your troops a morale boost, and the CO powers are much harder to build up to, as well as much less powerful than in the previous games, making for a much more level playing field between advanced and beginner players.
Overall, Days of Ruin could easily be considered the best installment in the series, with the second game Black Hole rising in close competition. Days of Ruin is worthy of your attention, whether you like action titles or RPG's.
Game Traits applied to Advance Wars: Days of Ruin (DS) by matrixrunner