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PlayStation Mobile offers a space for talented developers who want to independently publish their work to a small but active community. Super Tank Poker accomplishes to do the splits between depth and simplicity.
Super Tank Poker is a turn-based tactics game. You select your missions on hub worlds and complete a variety of scenarios. Each mission features a deadly but quirky foe which is introduced by comedic dialogue.
The game’s a mix of Advance Wars and Poker. The machinery you use – the amount of units, their strength and type – are determined by each mission. The game offers different tanks and artillery. The latter is highly effective from afar but has a limited movement arc. If it’s your turn, you pick each unit and sent it off to fight off the enemy. The grid is divided into squares for movement. There’s both visual and structural diversity and there are a lot of covered/open areas that require to plan your moves wisely. Gladly the maps are not too big so that the matches don’t take up much of your time while you’re on the go with your PlayStation Vita or PlayStation certified device.
Once the enemy is in your unit’s line of sight, there’s battle mode. Unlike other turn-based tactics games the game doesn’t check your units values for like strength, armor and such, no you simply play Poker against them. Small Blind, Big Blind, swap of cards, call, raise, fold – a nice round of playing cards. The unit that wins the short poker matchup also wins the fight.
The interesting fact is that you put the health of your units at stake. So you can risk the remaining health of your tank and go all in to harm the enemy and bluff. Then he might fold and get his last bits of energy taken off of him if he has an even worse High Card. Amazingly that tactic even works sometimes, but the AI gives you a run for your tanks often. The positions of your units are also important as your own artillery won’t flinch from harming your own unites in the vicinity. The missions are also diverse as in some you just have to defeat a whole bunch of tanks, in others you survive as long as possible. This survival play isn’t completely new but adds to the overall fun.
Thomas Hopper’s Super Tank Poker is proof that a fun idea can actually amount to a solid game. This PSM game is easy to pickup but has tactical depth and those who are new to tactics game or to Poker can easily get by in the beginning. Around 2 Dollars are a nice fit for this game and if you enjoy the premise it’s worth it.
All screenshots were captured by ourselves using the Vita’s native screenshot feature.