Power Dolls is a turn-based strategy game in which the player takes role of a commander of an all-female military group manning giant mechanized battlesuits in a series of nine missions, with objectives ranging from destroying convoys to stalling enemy advance to rescuing captured military personnel.
Squads for each mission can be assembled from a total of twenty-one pilots, seven variants of mechanized battle armor (which can be armed with sixteen types of weaponry), four types of aircraft ranging from transport carriers to fighter-bombers and artillery units.
Several different battle plans can be chosen for most of the missions. The differences between these may range anywhere from a slight change of the deployment time up to and including a complete change of mission strategy.
Successfully completing a mission unlocks bonus piece of artwork depicting one of the women piloting the mechs ingame. There are nine of these graphics in total, one for each mission.
Somewhere in the future, Nova Earth is devastated by neutron blasts leaving nothing behind. But ten miles below this carnage there is a hidden military base with a brigade completely composed of women whose task is to restore justice and order. These female warriors are equipped with the latest cyber technology and death bringing firepower. The Power Dolls have arisen from the ashes to kick some ass.
Power Dolls are announced as ultimate "Scenario Simulation Game" and were programmed by Kogado Software Products in 1994 by MegaTech. Ever heard of those fellas? Well, MegaTech also published Knights of Xentar, a mentionable game - but not for playability. With Power Dolls they try the usual recipe - a story about fight against evil, sugar coated with a wide array of anime babes. This time we have science fiction, but next time we will surely go back to hack and slay RPGs. What I want to say is that Mega Tech (or Kogado) are not producing the games that usually gain the status of "evergreens".
But back to our Power Dolls. What do we do, how do we play ?
First there is a mission briefing with some digital speech (!). In the first mission you need to blast a dam in order to flood enemy troops. First equip your cyber babes and assign them to the different landing vehicles, and then start the mission. Land the dolls somewhere near the dam and watch out for enemy fire. Concentrate on one enemy at a time and blast 'em all away. Destroy the dam. Finished. OK, OK it's not that easy. The enemies are not quite strong but there are many of them and luckily you have reinforcements on your way. Navigate your battle cyborgs through the hexagon-tiled map, search for enemies, choose weapons to attack and after a (short) while the first mission is done. Hey, and now we get a BMP-image saved into a specific BMP folder. Right, to keep the (male) players interested, you "earn" a bonus image for each successful mission.
The gameplay is like in History Line or Battle Isle. Move, attack, wait, move, attack, wait. Just with the little but significant difference - those two games were actually fun. Power Dolls, unfortunately, turns out to be boring. Even if you like the gameplay (which is quite unlikely) you will loose all motivation while listening to the game's music for more that 20 minutes - it's so damn repetitive.
But it's not all bad in the game. We have very nice graphics and the speech is just fine (even though it sounds a bit like from a bad low budget Japanese SciFi Movie).
I am really sorry to conclude that Power Dolls is a strategy game with very little strategy feeling and some nice graphics. So it is just 2 points for me. (If they didn't have the anime pictures it would be a 1 point game). However, maybe I am completely w rong about this game and you will love it! Try it out yourself!
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