Unity of Command is an innovative and refreshing operational-level wargame that covers the entire 1942/43 Stalingrad Campaign on the Eastern Front.
User reviews:
Overall:
Very Positive (436 reviews) - 84% of the 436 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Oct 17, 2012

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Buy Unity of Command: Stalingrad Campaign

Packages that include this game

Buy Unity of Command Trilogy Bundle

Includes 3 items: Unity of Command - Black Turn DLC, Unity of Command - Red Turn DLC, Unity of Command: Stalingrad Campaign

 

Reviews

“Wargames this fresh and friendly tend to inspire deep loyalty.”
86/100 – PC Gamer

“A traditional hex-based wargame of unusual elegance, one that is perfect for genre newcomers but equally satisfying to veterans."
9/10 – PC Power Play

“Accessible yet deep, attractive and with an AI which teaches you the core of the game by beating you around the head.”
Rock Paper Shotgun

About This Game

Unity of Command is an innovative and refreshing operational-level wargame that covers the entire 1942/43 Stalingrad Campaign on the Eastern Front. Playable from both the Axis and Soviet perspective, it strives to recreate the strategy, the forces involved and the general tension of that crucial period in World War II.

Experience the highly fluid, enormously large battles of maneuver in a turn-based strategy setting. Take command in this mobile, back-and-forth sort of war where logistics and poor weather are often the decider, and defeat and victory are sometimes just a mile, or a day, apart.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS:Windows XP
    • Processor:1.6 GHz
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive:150 MB HD space
    Recommended:
    • Processor:2.0 GHz
    • Memory:2 GB RAM
    Minimum:
    • OS:10.6
    • Processor:1.6 GHz
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive:150 MB HD space
    Recommended:
    • Processor:2.0 GHz
    • Memory:2 GB RAM
    • Processor:1.6 GHz
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive:150 MB HD space
Customer reviews
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Overall:
Very Positive (436 reviews)
Recently Posted
Militaristic September
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: August 21
A brutally hard game in which you must complete objectives in a VERY short timespan.

Now THIS is fine, testing your skill in strategy is a good thing, but every attack and defense you make with every unit is based on LUCK. You could either wipeout a unit with one attack, or they could delay your entire force by a single turn, and you NEED to complete things quickly if you wish to win.

You can help increase your odds of success by using your stronger units and adding modifiers such as an anti-armor vehicle or even replenishing your units to a set amount of health, but in the end, it's all down to a dice roll on if you're going to win or not.

Personally, I find this game to be naccaptably difficult due to simple random number generation that decides if your attacks/defenses win, or lose. If you want to try it out anyway, download the demo and see if it will sit well with you.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
BlueOrange
91.9 hrs on record
Posted: August 18
I love this game. Every few months, I come back to it; I try to improve my performance in the campaign, or to improve on my performances on the tougher maps.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
DespairingSquid
5.0 hrs on record
Posted: August 10
Tonight we raisee a glass...TO THE FÜHRER
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Steven
12.2 hrs on record
Posted: August 10
The game is not easy, very challenging even from the beginning, which force you to think a lot. Unfortunately the AI is fixed in game, so you cannot choose the difficulty.

Although it is a very classic hex war game (and surely you can expect how the game runs), but I still love the UI design a lot. But, for me, I think the game is more puzzle-like rather than grand strategy game.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
PlagueB
13.2 hrs on record
Posted: August 6
Wow! I didn't recommend this earlier? Silly me! One of the most enjoying strategies I have ever played. The AI will supririse you each time. "Repleyability" value of ecah scenario is great. Worth having.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
=J13=Serenity
11.1 hrs on record
Posted: July 17
Game mechanic itself is great, and offers very unique gameplay.
But the way the missions and campaign are implemented makes this game somewhat unplayable.
Developers give you very limited numbers of turns whis is ok if its a puzzle game.
Tha problem is that the combat itself is 99% random, and sometimes you can beat the scenario easily, but next time, with exactly same moves from your and enemy side you will loose.
And if you loose even once in a campaign you have to start over the whole campaign.

So,probably, this game is a Puzzle game with 100% random. Funny mix heh?
Helpful? Yes No Funny
marja-e
360.6 hrs on record
Posted: July 2
Fascinating exploration of WW2 operations.

I particularly enjoy the "Red Turn" expansion and the community scenarios. It has an easy-to-learn system, although players will have to learn how to use artillery assets. It doesn't have hidden forces, or supply shortages. I would like to see a western front expansion, and maybe a Chinese front or Burmese front expansion.

On some of the larger maps, during the computer's turn, the map may quickly zip back and forth to show the computer's actions. I have sensory processing issues, so rapid scrolling can give me headaches. I do something else during the computer's turn and return for my own turn, so this game's scrolling doesn't usually give me headaches.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
BourbonActually
59.6 hrs on record
Posted: June 29
Beautifully simple and elegant and yet at the same time presents a real strategic challenge that'll have you coming back to it again and again to emulate Zuhkov, Hoth et al. One of the best games I've played in a long long while!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
sprad_47648
255.8 hrs on record
Posted: June 27
Unity of Command has great replay value - there is just the right mix of randomness in rolls to make it interesting while maintaining substantial reward for good stategy.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Fuligin
106.9 hrs on record
Posted: June 14
The good strategy ♥♥♥♥
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Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
91.9 hrs on record
Posted: August 18
I love this game. Every few months, I come back to it; I try to improve my performance in the campaign, or to improve on my performances on the tougher maps.
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6 of 12 people (50%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
Recommended
5.0 hrs on record
Posted: August 10
Tonight we raisee a glass...TO THE FÜHRER
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Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
125 of 131 people (95%) found this review helpful
Recommended
147.4 hrs on record
Posted: December 4, 2013
Rating: 9/10

Unity of Command is a turn-based, hex-based strategy game set on the Eastern Front of the Second World War. The scale of units depends on whether you play as the individually superior Germans, organised into divisions, or the numerically superior Soviets, organised into corps. Battles occur along what were historically organised as single operational fronts by the attacker. This game has an incredibly functional and elegantly minimalist UI, which makes planning and manoeuvring simple to execute.

Strategy heavily focuses on logistics. Instead of drowning players in a sea of minutiae and micromanagement, the mechanics elegantly strip away all the non-essentials for this scale of warfare. All players need to be concerned about are maintaining supply lines—and how to cut off those of their enemies. Resupplying your own troops is done automatically at the beginning of each turn. Terrain features that support or hinder logistics, such as railroads, bridges, mountains and rivers, are the most important strategic points on maps and are furiously fought over. Although weather rarely becomes an issue for most maps due to the corresponding historical dates, the Russian winter at its fiercest can seriously limit your supply and unit movement range.

Unlike almost all other games of this scale, the presence of logistics means that encirclement attacks work realistically, where you surround enemy units and cut off their supply (e.g. food, fuel, munitions). After being out of supply for 2 turns, a unit's combat effectiveness is incredibly compromised. After 4 turns, enemy units are unable to attack. In other games, encirclement merely increases the surface area from where can an attack enemy unit (i.e. multiple friendly units can attack the same enemy). As with German strategy in the first half of Operation Barbarossa, sometimes it's better to bypass large enemy formations and hit their rear supply lines using more mobile divisions (e.g. armoured, mechanised, motorised or cavalry units) than to fight a grinding battle of attrition focused on the complete destruction of the enemy.

Despite deceptively simple mechanics, this game is quite realistic at portraying the effectiveness of strategies of the period. There are three main realism problems: (1) No fog of war, though formations at this scale are almost certainly known to enemy reconnaissance; (2) No command structures, which assumes that command delay is less than 24 hours; and (3) Air supply is not subject to anti-aircraft attack. There are far more complex and detailed games that achieve greater realism, such as Gary Grigsby's War in the East (Matrix Games), but the overall effectiveness of those strategies is largely the same as in this game but include far more micromanagement.

The singleplayer AI is very well crafted, but there is a serious caveat: it's limited to planning one turn in advance. This makes the AI devastatingly effective at conducting defences, launching counterattacks and striking at supply lines, but unable to follow through strategic attacks. This is why in singleplayer you can only play as the attacker. To increase the difficulty, instead of simply achieving a marginal victory, you can take your chances at achieving a brilliant (i.e. perfect) victory by reaching all the objectives in record time.

The multiplayer community is small, but you should usually be able to find at least one or two games every day through the following Steam group (Unity of Command Multiplayer). Unfortunately, there is no matchmaking service, which is why people use this group. Be careful though, as strategies that work against singleplayer AI are usually unsuited to facing off against infinitely more crafty human players.
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61 of 68 people (90%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
6.7 hrs on record
Posted: March 7, 2015
Best Suited For Casual Strategists

+ Minimalist, aesthetically pleasing design and visuals; keeps the game from appearing to be daunting or intimidating
+ Soundtrack, while limited, helps one to focus adequately
+ User interface is both clean and intuitive
+ The challenge, and subsequent feeling of reward, is increased by many subtle factors; namely, these include: supply lines, weather, and terrain
+ The added features of partisans, bridge demolition, air support, and reinforcements all lend to a feeling of depth and a vital need to remain calculating
+ Much of the strategic nuances are carefully understated, making the gameplay appear simpler and more inviting
+ Reinforcements are only available from a limited pool, forcing you to utilize your existing resources carefully

- Learning curve, while not readily apparent, can prove to be somewhat steep
- Ultimately, there are fewer available campaigns that one would like
- Dramatically underwhelming tutorial
- Crippling lack of display options
- Multiplayer is direct-connect only, and has some functionality issues (although it is quite fun if you can get it working correctly)

If you enjoyed this review, please follow my curator page. Also, feel free to join my group, LockeProposal's Big Day Out for discussion and announcements. Thanks for reading!
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47 of 52 people (90%) found this review helpful
Recommended
96.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 26, 2013
If you ever wondered "Hey, I wonder what all those hex-based, turn based, 70s board wargame-inspired are all about", this is the game for you. Also, if you love hex-based, turn based, 70s board wargame-inspired games, this is also for you.

The GUI is silky, the AI is cunning, and it looks fabulous -- which last is rare for a game of this kind. The interface makes it easy for newcomers, and it's bloody hard, making it lovely for verterans. Novices would be well served by picking up the Red Turn DLC, as it's about the Soviets curb stomping the Wehrmacht in the later years of the war, and the scenarios are a little bit easier than the ones in the base game.

I've been playing turn-based wargames like this since I was a kid in the 80s, and I can say without reservation this is the best one I have ever played. Go up and buy it.
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102 of 139 people (73%) found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
18.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 28, 2014
The good:
I like the simplistic gameplay, and the focus on keeping your supply lines intact while pushing forwards. That´s what this game is about. Capturing objectives while keeping your units in supply so they don´t run out of juice on the front lines. All within a tight turn limit.
It´s an intriguing and (to me) novel concept.

The bad:
It´s frustrating beyond belief. Not because it´s hard (it is) but because it´s to damn random.
+Pushing an enemy off a tile is random.
+Getting "Overrun" results, which allow you to attack again in the same turn, is random.
+A battle can randomly turn out to not go as predicted and you don´t defeat a unit that you needed gone (the game shows you the expected outcome before you attack).
+Bad weather which heavily favours the defender (you are never the defender) may randomly show up and completely screw over your push for the objective.
+Specialists (expensive and often crucial) within your units may or may not be among the casualties when the unit fights.

The problem with that is, the game does not give you the time for this kind of randomness. The turn limits are so tight that any one of these events can screw you over. Sure you might still beat the mission but the game differentiates between normal, decisive and brilliant victories. Many follow up missions are barred behind decisive victories and some even behind brilliant victories.
So you try over and over again, without any change in strategy (once you got it down) and hope that you get enough "Overrun" results with your armoured units and you hope that your push doesn´t get stuck in bad weather until you finally beat it in time.

Due to this, I can´t really recommend it as much as I like the concept of the game.
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91 of 124 people (73%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
7.2 hrs on record
Posted: September 1, 2015
Do not buy this thinking it is a strategy game. A strategy game lets you explore many different paths to victory against an opponent that is reacting to you. You can create your own strategy to beat the enemy. This game on the other hand, is more like a puzzle game.

The units are set up in predetermined positions. The AI is extremely passive and just reacts to the very few outcomes you can do by scripting. The AI stands absolutely no chance in a fair fight. The only reason why the campaign is so hard is because you are usually extremely outnumbered, you have a limited number of turns to get your objective and the supply line mechanic is designed so you are at a disadvantage as an attacker. Combined with the extremely closed scenarios, the AI just reacts to your predictable movements with strategies scripted by the designer. I frankly do not find any fun in that.

TL;DR This is not a strategy game. It is a puzzle game where you play against the level designer to beat a level in a few turns with an overwhelming disadvantage. If you like that and pretty graphics, try this game. Otherwise stay clear of it.
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38 of 40 people (95%) found this review helpful
Recommended
41.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 5, 2014
If you've never played a turn-based, operational-level strategy game before, this is the best starting point. The intuitive UI and the kind of cartoony art assets make for a game that feels very inviting. However, this game is hard, but in a good way. Your onus as the player is to be clever, to examine the situation and find weak points in your enemy's defenses and assess risk and reward. You end up thinking like a World War 2 general after you play a little bit, and that's really cool.
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33 of 34 people (97%) found this review helpful
Recommended
96.1 hrs on record
Posted: June 25, 2014
TL;DR: It's awesome if you know what you're getting and if you're into this kind of game. To know what you get I guess you have to read the rest of this wall of text. I promise it will be a nice and informative read while covering most of what you'd want to know before you buy the game or one of the two DLC's.
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Unity of Command is an excellent game that manages to achieve a thing rarely achieved by wargames that deal with WWII on the operational level: It's accessible to newcomers and easy to learn, it's simple on the surface and in its gameplay but it still has enough depth and complexity to offer interesting decisions for veteran wargamers, because almost every decision you make carries some weight when it comes to the end result. There are other wargames comparably excellent to this one, but they make most newcomers want to vomit blood out of their eyes - because the developers place their confidence in you being willing to read a 100 page manual alongside playing their game and they assume you will look past the hideous and needlessly overcomplicated user interface. (I'm looking at you Korsun Pocket - excellent game, terrible learning experience).

None of these things are an issue in Unity of Command. The user interface is excellent and very user-friendly. You don't have to click on a unit to get information about whether it can still attack or move, you see it at a glance because each unit has tiny icons below and around it, that tell you everything you could possibly want to know about your or your enemies' unit at a glance without wasting your time and clicking every unit to check manually.

Another point where this game shines is its "realism". I know this word is hard to swallow if you're a "serious" wargamer and you look at Unity of Command. But this game basically models the higher-level essential things of what war in the eastern front at the operational level was all about. For the Germans it was about advancing as fast and as far as you can to take key objectives without outrunning your own supply or your supply lines being cut off by the enemy. The flipside of this naturally means encircling your enemy and cutting of their supply to weaken them and eventually starve them out completely. Also it's about breaking through (sometimes multiple) defensive lines of your enemy. Pick the weakest link in their line, punch a hole with a massed attack at that point, and then squeeze through everything that has wheels to advance as fast as possible towards your objectives, while your slower infantry divisions advance behind your motorized divisions and worry about securing the supply line for those advancing units, whilst simultaneously trying to encircle and destroy the enemy. The deceptively simple game mechanics of movement and attack (whilst also considering rivers, terrain features and weather effects on your movement and attacks) are excellent at modelling all of the above - and in the end I think the gameplay mechanics really model everything truly relevant in the context of this large scale warfare level.

Each of the units you'll see in the game represents several thousand, if not ten-thousand men and each single single hex represents 20 kilometers. Almost all you ever do in this game is move and attack with your divisions, move and attack. But where to move? What to attack? What to attack first and what with? Where to break the enemy line? How do you cut off their supply lines to starve them out? You also make important decisions in the form of "theatre assets" (air raids, building or blowing up bridges, extending the range of your supply depots etc.) Also you have to decide about reinforcements as the game progresses over turns (each turn represents 4 days), so new reinforcements may come into play - on your side as well as on the side of your enemy. Sometimes you need to take a specific area at the edge of the map so your own reinforcements may enter from there, at other times you just replace some losses that your divisions in play suffered already (which sensibly you can only do if they are in supply).

So yes at first glance your options seem somewhat limited but they always make perfect sense in the context of modelling the war in the east. You could bomb a city where an enemy infantry division has entrenched itself, but each air attack you launch on that city has a chance of turning the city into ruins, giving any enemy division within it even more defense as fighting on a pile of rubble increases their chances to hide and ambush if you launch an attack into that city. Some divisions have artillery attached, but if you move that unit its artillery attachment ("step") won't contribute to your attack value, it will only contribute in your defense and attack after you end your current turn and they have set up. This game is just full of gameplay details like this which make absolute sense. If you enjoy pondering these kinds of decisions with a feeling that virtually each small decision matters for the outcome, then this is a game for you. You can also play this game okay without paying much attention to the deeper details - you won't excel at it but you could still play very competently and there aren't that many details to know either, the complexity of your options and decisions arises from the interaction of the gameplay mechanics and the finer details.

Also there are "Zone of Control" mechanics meaning every (non-weak) unit in a hex extends a zone of control into all six hexes around it (as long as those hexes are inside the own territory), meaning enemy divisions who move into these hexes are immediately "pinned down" by the division controlling the zones around it and so the pinned unit can't move any further this turn. This leads to excellent tactics, where some of your units "clear" those zones of control and get pinned, while others advance through and past those friendly pinned divisions and thus can advance deeper into enemy territory without getting pinned themselves. You'll learn what that means and how important zones of control are soon enough, because the nothing short of excellent AI will constantly make intelligent use of this mechanic to exploit any hole and weak link in your own defensive lines which may have looked good and solid enough a second ago when you ended your turn, but proved to be as fragile as a butterflies wing a moment later. Also the AI is excellent at defending any objectives you need to take. It knows exactly what your objectives are and dynamically and competently adapts its defensive lines to hinder your progress at every turn. Good times.
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I do have some gripes about Unity of Command as well however, but they are nowhere seriously bad enough to spoil the fun and experience you can have with this game. I've come across at least two maps that are ill-conceived for 1920x1080 resolutions, because there is a limit to which point you can drag the map view around and some of your user-Interface elements can end up blocking a part at the edge of a map that isn't greyed out and where the actual gameplay still happens (though you can quickly enable and disable user interface elements with hotkeys, so the problem is merely annoying, not gamebreaking). Also there is little variety in terms of music, but the music that is there is really nice. (And it's not as if I can't mute it and play my own music anyway).

If I had to criticize gameplay I would say it's mainly this: Your performance is solely ranked based on how timely you take objectives and nothing else. Rarely this can lead to stupid outcomes where I took Stalingrad on time with two completely weakened divisions, my other forces virtually obliterated. I'd have lost on the next turn, but because I took everything on time it was a "brilliant victory". Troop loss should have been included in your performance rating. Also random outcomes and weather can prevent you from achieving the best possible rating.
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45 of 55 people (82%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
502.7 hrs on record
Posted: September 2, 2015
Even after few years, this game is so fresh and enjoyable to play. Its quite easy to learn basics and quite hard to master, I d reccomend it to any WW2 fan. I must note that reviews of the players who spent cca 10 hours in this game are rubbish, cause game is much more complex than written in reviews. Amazing thing about this game is that it doesnt have only operational side of the war gaming and one can easily notify strategic side of each map. Due to this, multiplayer games are never the same, or even similar, which constantly adds fresh flavour of this game. Defo one of the best&most realistic ww2 strategies, only object I have is relatively small community of players. Cant wait for new games from Uzelac& company :)
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