Buyers beware, this game is less feature-rich, less entertaining and less professionally-made than it's beloved predecessor, JA2.
It's easy to be critical of series sequels, especially those made by a new company. The fact is that fans of the series were hoping for a new installment in the beloved series which would harken back to the good old days of a stubborn Fidel, broken-language Ivan, cheerfully deadly Scully and mysterious and powerful Magic.
Those characters are present, along with much of the classic cast. The problem is not the characters, but alas, Jagged Alliance is about much more. I played Jagged Alliance upon it's release, and Jagged Alliance 2 years later. Sir-Tech's vision of a modern mercenary group in an XCOM style of gameplay was brilliant, and I didn't even discover XCOM until much later.
Flashback, however, offers none of the strategic delights of roaming a jungle and hiding behind trees, glimpsing enemies for a moment before they fade out and flank you, or sneaking around buildings to approach enemies stealthily and take them out. You move your units in a turn-based manner, you equip them with various weapons and gear you find or purchase in your travels, but that is where the similarities end.
Tactical combat is a joke, with a poorly designed interrupt system which rarely triggers despite having an experienced teamate facing the enemy around a blind corner. ranges are ridiculous, and weapons fall off to a 0% chance to hit at such a short range that early combat takes place within 4 squares by necessity, and marksmen with an 85% score rarely have above a 60% chance to hit a center-body shot even at that range.
The result is a grindy slugfest wherein utilizing good tactics for cover and concealment and positioning and intersecting fields of fire fails to draw out enemy mercenaries into makeshift kill-zones and enable your team to kill them with minor injuries. Perhaps this was intentional, but for me... the tactical advantages gained by good positioning and approach techniques were a big part of the game. Sadly, this is not the only shortcoming Flashback exhibits.
The sectors are largely empty. Gone are the days of finding secret crates stashed back in a corner of a sector, looting it and finding that much-needed lockpick or ammunition of flak vest. Perhaps they have populated some key sectors with these things, but in the four starting areas there's not so much as a single crate to be found - and believe me, I scoured the zones. So while they have filled the zones will all kinds of terrain features to fill up the squares, there is nothing to interact with to make exploring sectors and looting buildings in any way interesting, which was a huge part of the JA series experience.
The UI is clunky and unintuitive, and it fails to offer some of the more interesting dynamic features of JA2 - that is, line of sight cones and rooftop access. The diversity of available weapons - which has no option to raise or lower - simply makes the entire game more difficult, decreasing the likelihood that you will find weapons or ammunition on enemy corpses which match those your party is using. The dialogue screen is almost identical to JA2, which is not a compliment - dialogue was one of JA2's weak points - but falls short of even that in failing to provide more than a very simple and linear dialogue. Where at least JA2 gave certain mood-flavors to your responses, Flashback offers only prewritten script which fails to cover any reasonable range of optional responses.
The English is bad. I realize this is an overseas company who bought the IP, but really... the English is bad, in a finished game product which is supposed to be the professional and legitimate successor to a great franchise. Grammar is where the main mistakes are, but the mistakes are grating when you consider you're paying for a professional product. Using "is" instead of "are" and "them" instead of "it" where appropriate may seem a petty criticism, but my eyes get crossed and I have to reread the already-boring dialogue because somebody didn't do a decent proof-read of their script before release, and it's annoying. Some may not care, but it's still worth noting in a list of the shortfalls of the product.
There are glitches. Sadly, this is to be expected of most modern games, and I won't detail them. They are numerous, but the ones I discovered are relatively minor and akin to what you will find in most games shortly after release.
Overall it seems the company was looking to make a quick buck on a popular franchise, released a comic-sketch version of the mature and gritty mercenary game, and decided to call it a day. I wonder if the designers ever played the games, because some of the basic features left out were core to the overalal JA experience. For my money, this game wasn't worth it. As always, YMMV, but as a long-time fan of the series, I can't recommend this joke.