An odd but great doujin game by Yakiniku Banzai! or Yakiniku Oh! Yeah!
Basically, a full scale war breaks out in Japon between the Imperial Army of the Empire and the Royal Army of the Kingdom. The primary weapons of war are artificially created beings called Human Tanks who are designed for the sole purpose of dying and combat. They are treated as weapons and have no humane rights whatsoever. You play as the laid back general of the Empire, Shoutaro Daihon'ei, as you push the overwhelming Royal Army away and strike back.
The game flows and plays very similar to the Super Robot Taisen series and most of the Strategic RPGs (SRPG) out there including Fire Emblem, Advance Wars and FFTactics. That is, you start with the story full of dialogues then you get into gameplay then the aftermath with more dialogues then finally an intermission; rinse and repeat. Unlike such Strategic RPGs however, its gameplay is in Real-Time. You can only move your tanks if you have established a connection with them or when "Connect" shows up. This means that you'll need to be on high alert AT ALL TIMES, making the game feel intense than other SRPGs. The game does tell you what you can do in the game and what to do, but certain crucial tips such as modules don't happen until slightly later so I highly recommend doing trial and error as you play. Futher, almost every tank dies in one hit; The only tanks that take a few hits are the "big ones" that take up more than one square; much like battleship. The object of the game is to either take out the enemy's command tanks, much like the king in chess, or achieve dominace on the battlefield, forcing them to retreat.
During Intermission, you may develop stronger tanks, purchase new ones, or enter a free battle on maps you've fought on. Playing through free battles for funding or crates is somewhat a grindfest and the enemy does little to change its tatics. However, I encourage you to play the free battles a lot it allows you to try many combinations of tanks that you should've used, experiment with new tanks, and find the most effective tactics that nets you a strong victory without casualties. It feels very rewarding when farming enough crates to start building tanks that are equipped with ridiculously powerful weapons enough to annihilate half of the playfield or tanks with a beacon that allows satellite cannons to fire and wipe out everything in its sight. Try not to point these to your allies though!
The graphics in this game are between decent to quite good, depending on people's tastes. Nevertheless, its charm is undeniable. However, there is a heavy lack of diversity between tank models. Asahi and Tsubasa for example have identical appearance but one hits a single square while the other does a twin rifle salvo hitting 1 square further around. Tanks that have large equipments on their backs are an exception. It would be slightly better if they were given different hair color or accessories.
The music in this game are mostly techno, funk, rock, and hip-hop. However, they are very catchy and fit incredibly well in every situation in the game; The custom theme heard while deploying your tanks sums up the overall themes and oddities of the Human Tanks in general. Unique to this game from other SRPGs and even most visual novels is the anime openings and endings between each chapter in the story or episode. Not many may like these videos however due to its seemingly bland vocals and animation. I feel that its presentation is intentional however and the vocals reminds me of the vocals of most anime openings and jpop of the mid 80's to the early 90's which I am quite fond of.
War on the Human Tanks is a simple yet addictive game but first impressions on the game and its overall presentation depends on people's niche and taste. That aside, I dare you to beat the first map in free battle with just Heshiko or only shock tanks!
What else? Oh yeah! When playing this game, beware the Cat!