by Neal Stevens
October 14, 2008
ebb and flow brings us SH4, Battlestations: Midway, and
(eventually) PT Boats, there is one constant that seems to grow stronger
over the years: Navy Field. Subsim first
reviewed Navy Field in
October 2006, and the community that revolves around this online naval
action game has kept it popular. Now, when most games would have peaked, SD
Enternet incorporates submarines into the mix and that
changes everything. Subs add the z-axis combat that makes naval battles
exciting and unpredictable.
Adding a new class of warship to an established game like
Navy Field is a tricky proposition. The players who have logged thousands of
hours fighting above the waves now have to contend with a threat below the
waves--and the players who choose to sail down the submarine tree get to
develop the new tactics necessary for success against the bigger, faster,
and better-armed battleships and cruisers.
The game is free to download and play at the lower
levels, compelling the curious Silent Hunter or Dangerous Waters skipper to
have a go and see what all the fuss is about.
And the list of Subsim skippers who play Navy Field is booming. Once the
player gets a taste of the action, camaraderie with other players, and pride
of ownership that accompanies improving one's ship, many choose to pay the
modest monthly fee and engage in unrestricted warfare. And the numerous
players one can find in the game servers is proof the game can be addictive.
Tactics and ship characteristics in Navy Field mirror
reality but everything is scaled down or sped up to enhance the action.
Games seldom last more than 15 minutes and getting rearmed and ready for a
new game takes only a minute, so you won't be waiting for players to join
and get ready. Navy Field promises action and it delivers.
Submarines make it even more interesting by
adding the stealth aspect.
While a battleship can knock out smaller ships
such as DDs with a single salvo at great range, a skillful sub skipper can
dive and launch a salvo of torpedoes to sink the BB. Subs
are slower and more fragile than surface combatants, and vulnerable to
planes. The biggest limitation is the amount of time a sub can remain
underwater. Just as in WWII, a sub in Navy Field must travel on the surface,
only submerging when an enemy is near. Great care and consideration must the
used to manage the air supply (which would have been one of two factors in
WWII, the other being battery power). Damage reduces speed, which makes
retreating very difficult. Submarines, even submerged, are not undetectable.
Small escorts such as destroyers and corvettes can detect nearby subs.
The success of this game has been widely recognized and
has led to creation of a follow-up title,
Navy Field 2 in full 3D. You should check it out and see if you like
it--it's free to learn and you might be an early adopter of the
longest-lasting naval franchise around.
Publisher: SD EnterNET
publisher: eFusion MMOG