BATTLE FLEET 2 – Review by James Barnes


This is an indie naval strategy game set in the Pacific during World War II focusing on the fighting between Japan and the United States.  The game encompasses a period of history I happen to be very interested in. Naval warfare fascinates me and I enjoy games that are based around it.

A map of the Pacific is broken up into to segments and the objective is to gain control of each one by defeating your opponent in a turn based battle. The experience is not unlike a more involved version of the traditional game of battleships.In each turn you are able to manoeuvre your ships a certain distance and fire on a chosen target.  Your ships have a limited number of shots per weapon and in each turn you can fire all the weapons available on the ship should so you wish.

In one particular game I had a single submarine pitted against a destroyer, a submarine and aircraft attacking me from an airfield on an island that also had coastal batteries ranged against me.In another my forces were made up of an aircraft carrier escorted by cruisers and destroyers.

There are a variety of forces to play with and I was able to steam into a Japanese held segment of the map to destroy the enemy and take control of it.

Playing the game is relatively easy. For example in an attack using a destroyer I selected the main forward armament and with that a ranging aid appeared marking the extent of the guns’ range and using these tools I had to estimate the precise range of anenemy ship before opening fire. The game is literally hit and miss and in real terms the system is not unlike traditional wargaming rules.Players who have a background in traditional table based wargaming would find all of this very familiar.

The graphics are not the greatest but they are far from terrible. This is a simple game but it is engaging and you have to keep your wits about you. Having successfully hit your target, watching it sink is very satisfying. There is a reasonable level of skill required and like all these things practice will improve your ability to guess correct ranges allowing you to win more efficiently.

It isn’t a game I can play for hours, but while it may not be a relaxing experience it isn’t so intense that I find myself on the edge of my seat.  For me it is the ideal chill out game when I’m not in the mood for running around shooting bad guys in much more elaborate games. This game is about fun not cutting edge graphics and keeping up with the likes of Call of Duty.  Although I am not a fan of online player versus player scenarios this game lends itself well to that format, so you really can play battleships if you want to!

Battle Fleet 2 is made for PC and is available on the Desura sharing platform and will shortly be available on Steam. The game is a mere 50mb in terms of storage size and you’ll find it difficult to be disappointed with something a simple and well thought out as this.

Reviewed by James Barnes for War History Online.

Capital J Media
Currently available on Desuraand on Steam from later in November

Mark Barnes

Mark Barnes is a longstanding friend of WHO, providing features, photography and reviews. He has contributed to The Times of London and other publications. He is the author of The Liberation of Europe (pub 2016) and If War Should Come due later in 2020.