Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics
Developer: Auroch Digital
Reviewed by Brian M. Sammons
Ever since X-com I have been a sucker for turn-based tactical shooter RPGs. The relation to table top war gaming with minis such as all the various Warhammer games really appeals to the armchair general meets nerd in me. When you add the Lovecraftian Cthulhu Mythos things only get better, at least it should. While this game isn’t the first to do that, there was the World War I-focused Call of Cthulhu: The Wasted Land a few years ago, Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics moves the action to the next global conflict. Is the game bigger and badder like WWII was to WWI? Does it add something new other than more efficient weapons to slaughter people with? Well, put on your helmet, grab your MP40, and let’s find out.
Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics is based on a pen and paper RPG Achtung! Cthulhu from UK publisher and game designer Modiphius. This takes the familiar feel of fighting the evil (or cosmically indifferent) forces of the Cthulhu Mythos made famous by the Call of Cthulhu RPG, turns the action knob to 11, adds diabolical Nazis (because really, what’s more fun than shooting Nazis in the face?), and plays with another favorite genre of mine: alternate history. The original tabletop game is a lot of fun and Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics represents that as well as any computer video game could. If you are a fan of any Cthulhu-flavored gaming you’re going to want to check out this game. But with a title like Achtung! Cthulhu, that’s pretty much a given. So how is the game for the non-Cthulhu cultists out there?
In a word: solid. If you are also a fan of X-com and the like, this is a game that will appeal to you. The combat and tactics are solid and the battles you find yourself in feel challenging without feeling hopeless. For something relating to Cthulhu, that’s saying something. For the WWII buffs out there, you can expect to play with some weapons ripped right from the battle field, but added to that arsenal there are low sci-fi, steampunk-like weapons, and when I say that I mean a gun that fires actual steam. If that wasn’t enough whiz-bang for your buck, then you can try some black magic to harm and hamper your foes. To further make this experience stand out from the typical wargame fare, there are the monsters and various Eldritch baddies from the Cthulhu Mythos. I won’t drop any names here and you may have to wait a bit before you start fighting them but trust me, they are there and they are angry.
Achtung Cthulhu! Tactics is a solid tactical RPG flavored with monsters, history, and weird. If you are a fan of H.P. Lovecraft, his Cthulhu Mythos, or games that play in that dark and twisted world, you will get a kick out of this one. If you are a fan of tactical wargames, I say give this one a try as it will add some new elements and enemies that are sure to put a spin on things. If you don’t know your Eldritch from a hole in the ground and never played a tactical shooter before, then this is a good way to get initiated with both. Consider this one recommended. It is currently out for the PC, but it will soon be released for the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.