Jagged Alliance Flashback – Preview
Follow Genre: Strategy
Developer: Full Control
Publisher: Full Control
Platform: PC, Mac

Jagged Alliance Flashback – Preview

Good: Challenging and fun gameplay, world feels alive
Bad: Voice acting, UI
User Score
(7 votes)
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VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 8.4/10 (7 votes cast)

The Jagged Alliance franchise goes way back as the first game appeared in 1994 for PC and got a reboot in 2009 on the Nintendo DS. The development team Full Control decided to treat us with a new Jagged Alliance game which is fully called: Jagged Alliance Flashback. Seeing older franchises revived always pleases the mass of loyal fans so let’s see well how this title is working out at the moment.

Jagged Alliance Logo

For those who aren’t familiar with the Jagged Alliance series, I’ll provide a quick summary. Basically, you take control of your own personal squad of mercenaries. With that squad, you must complete objectives by thinking very tactically as the game is a turn based one. Every turn, both you and your opponent can move a certain amount of spots and choose to engage or wait it out (for a coordinated group attack or something like that). If you’ve played an XCOM title in the past, it won’t be hard to understand the mechanics behind Jagged Alliance as both titles play pretty similar.

The story of Jagged Alliance Flashback takes place in 1988. An individual known as “The Prince” rules over San Hermanos like a real tyrant. As a smuggler and arms dealer, it isn’t too hard to keep the locals at bay. The United States got word about the production of mass destruction weapons in San Hermanos and wants to put an end to it. Unfortunately, “The Prince” has close relations with Soviet Russia so going in guns blazing wouldn’t do much good in regards of peace keeping. Meanwhile, in San Hermanos, the natives aren’t happy with the oppression of their people. A rebellion soon surfaces and The Prince, afraid of losing his power and influence, captures the leader of the rebels and sentences her to death. This is where you come in. You are the leader of a secret strike team from the US have been given the assignment to free the leader of the rebels while staying under the radar. Not everything goes as planned and after freeing the target out of prison, your helicopter gets shot down. Only one soldier managed to jump out of the vehicle before it crashed to the ground. Now it’s time to look for the other survivors, if there are any. From what I’ve seen of the story in this Early Access build, it certainly provides the player with enough material to justify their actions (a.k.a. killing a lot of people) but don’t expect too much depth here.

jagged alliance 2

Gameplay wise, this Jagged Alliance title works as it should. You can simply move your forces around, take cover behind trees or rusty old vehicles and try your best to surround your opponent. If you eventually encounter enemy soldiers, the game switches to a “battle” mode where movement is limited by AP. Each action you do will deplete your AP so be careful and think your plan through. This is what makes these kinds of games really challenging. Especially if your team is greatly outnumbered, you better have some slick moves up your sleeve! If a character dies (and die they will), don’t fret. As long as your funds allow it, it’s no problem to hire some more mercenaries. Like this, you can have a real squad of trained killers.

Graphically, the game is average at best but it does feature some nice detailed areas. A great thing to notice is that the world really feels alive. You can see chickens and cows roaming around or natives going about their own business. Even butterflies are swirling around. The UI, however, leaves much to be desired. There’s no indication where you should be going even though you’ve already visited a certain character. It was a bit of a pain to search over and over again. Some arrows or quest icons would be more than welcome in regards of navigation.

Jagged alliance 1

Now some words about the voice acting. Basically, it isn’t that great. The mercenaries sound mediocre at best and their vocabulary doesn’t contain much more than “copy that” or “on my way” when giving them an order which soon gets rather old. Besides the mercs, you won’t hear a lot of chattering as NPCs don’t have any spoken in texts. The accents of some of the playable characters are sometimes quite exaggerated which could be either some more evidence of bad voice acting or it could be a smart reference to the previous games (where laughable accents were ‘a thing’).

Here are some things which are planned to be implemented soon in Jagged Alliance Flashback: A stealth system, melee combat, conquering sectors and militia and a brand new UI. Especially that last one will enhance the game a lot as of now, the UI isn’t really user friendly. As with any Early Access title, bugs are quite common. One time, my soldier aimed at an enemy and before my guy even shot at him, he already dropped his loot (opponents only drop loot upon death). Another time, a drunk chicken was busy turning circles over and over again on the same spot. Of course, these are pretty minor hiccups and I didn’t really encounter terrible game breaking bugs.

Jagged Alliance 3


For an Early Access title, Jagged Alliance Flashback is certainly in a playable state and there’s a lot of fun and challenge to be found. However, a lot of features are still not present in the game so it’s really important to keep that in mind if you’re thinking about buying it. The voice acting isn’t that good and the graphics probably won’t blow you away but the gameplay is quite entertaining and I’d love to see how Jagged Alliance Flashback will turn out in a couple of months.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 8.4/10 (7 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: +2 (from 4 votes)
Jagged Alliance Flashback - Preview, 8.4 out of 10 based on 7 ratings

1 Comment

  1. […] while ago, we’ve done a preview on the game Jagged Alliance: Flashback. It’s been quite a while since then and meanwhile, the […]

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