- NA release: 29th December 1998
- JP release: N/A
- PAL release: N/A
- Developer: The 3DO Company
- Publisher: The 3DO Company
- N64 Magazine Score: 74%
In the future year of 2001, a virus will ravage the Earth and have a 98% death rate amongst “females”. The governments of the world tried to create “quarantine zones” to protect the “females”. The men of the world aren’t happy and civil wars break out, eventually some people get their hands on nuke and a nuclear war started.
After the dust settles, there are millions of men but only 50,000 “females” (the game keeps using that one term and I found it odd). Without the guidance of women, men have reverted to tribal instincts and have formed gangs. Thankfully, there are hundreds and hundreds of working tanks for them all to use. One man, Griffin, is trying to make it to the quarantine zone in order to find his wife.
BattleTanx is an over-the-top arcade-style tank game. While the plot is presented in a serious manner, the gameplay itself is silly and fun. It’s mainly focused on multiplayer, but there’s still a campaign to work through, using a mixture of modes. You get to control one of two types of tank. The BattleTanx is the main tank, but in some stages you also get to defend your base using a tank attached to a rail.
I was initially annoyed that I couldn’t aim my tank’s cannon while the AI could, but I found out (a bit too late) that different control methods did allow this to happen.
Two of the modes you’ll encounter are quite straightforward: either kill all enemy tanks or get to the end of the level. Another has you using the rail tank to defend against waves of enemies. The better you do, the more tanks you’ll have on your side in the next level.
The maps themselves are nicely detailed and manage to look distinct from each other (even if some things, like the lights in Vegas working, make no sense). The buildings are destructible and can even form new paths. There are power-ups, health and weapons to find amongst the rubble, too.
The main mode is essentially “capture the flag”, with “Queen Lords” (a female that each gang has) instead of flags. You need to blow up the enemy bases, kidnap the woman and return her to your base. The game says you’re “rescuing” them, but it semes dubious.
While the serious story and the “Queen Lord” part are a bit strange, especially as they’re mainly done to justify the gameplay, it’s a really fun multiplayer game. I do find it odd that this was never released in Europe – N64 Mag expected it to come out in March 1999, so there were definitely plans to do so.
It’s good, unfussy fun, mind, and with the story becoming ever more ludicrous as you progress, you’ll find, despite being able to complete the game in a day, you won’t be able to hate Battletanx. Instead, you’ll wish that there was a bit more to it.Tim Weaver, N64 Magazine #26
Remake or remaster?
A remastered collection of both games would be nice, especially as the game would benefit from an online mode.
Official Ways to get the game
There’s no official way to play BattleTanx
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