Advance Wars: Days of Ruin review

  • Endlessly fun
  • Tuned and polished to perfection
  • Multiplayer with voice chat
  • Simpler than previous entries
  • Music ain't great
  • Will make you forget other games

So what’s new? Truth be told, we were a little worried about what additions Intelligent Systems would chuck into this sequel, as the previous two follow-ups implemented changes that only served to dilute the experience. Advance Wars 2’s unrelenting difficulty made it more lethal than a poison arrow frog baguette, while Advance Wars: Dual Strike confused us to tears with its twin-battle double-screenery. Luckily, Days of Ruin (known as Dark Conflict in the UK) isn’t about addition; it’s subtraction that makes the difference.

Days of Ruin is a simpler beast than even the original. Intelligent Systems have crammed their formula into a sieve and filtered out all the extraneous stuff that shouldn’t have been there in the first place. Gone are the second-screen battles - the top screen is now used solely for stat-displaying purposes. The special CO moves have been toned down tenfold, and the vast majority of the story mode has been banished to the darkest, dustiest recesses of the cartridge altogether.

What you end up with is perhaps the purest Advance Wars game we’ve seen yet - a solid example of wondrously balanced strategy that, stripped of distractions, is nothing less than the 21st century’s version of chess. New additions are limited to new pieces for your chessboard: flare tanks that dispel battlefield-concealing fog; motorcycles that act as a halfway house between troops and artillery; and powerful anti-tank units that can unleash devastating attacks but are as brittle as a Cadbury’s Flake.

More Info

Release date: Jan 23 2008 - DS (US)
Available Platforms: DS
Genre: Strategy
Published by: Nintendo
Developed by: Intelligent Systems
Franchise: Advance Wars
ESRB Rating:
Everyone 10+: Language, Mild Violence
PEGI Rating:


  • DARK HUNTER - October 26, 2008 2:53 a.m.

    This is no doubt the best of the series. It is the most realistic, and extemely addictive. Just with the storyline alone will suck you in till you never want to put it down. If you own a DS, this is a game you MUST buy. Believe me when I say, this game is worth every penny. Even after the awsome storymode is done, thre are still tons of maps, online play and the map editor to sink your teeth into. This game is so fun and addictive, that you might just cry when you pt it down.
  • GRwarrior - May 31, 2009 12:42 a.m.

    well, I guess this one is going on my list, with Chrono trigger and GTA china town wars.

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