Darkwind is a multiplayer online, simultaneous turn-based game of vehicular combat. Set in a post-apocalyptic world, it involves physics-based tactical combat and deathracing, online leagues as well as cooperative wilderness scouting and looting, trading and camp-based crafting.
User reviews: Mixed (316 reviews)
Release Date: Aug 22, 2014

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Play Darkwind: War on Wheels

Third-party

 

Recommended By Curators

"Surprisingly fun, the driving mechanics are simple, yet very well done."
Read the full review here.

Reviews

“The brutality of Darkwind is the most appealing thing about it. Your team ages: at 30 their stats start dropping, at 40 their skills follow. You'll give them nicknames, train them, get attached to them, maybe even unlock specialities such as Engine Tuner or Negotiator, and then they'll die.”
80% – PC Gamer Magazine

“Dark Wind's actual gameplay is phenomenal. If you like the sound of turn based tactical car combat this is your new holy grail. The physics of car movement, drifting, changing how a car performs offroad and on tarmac, a variety of physics related to each individual car ... I mean, it's all here.”
90% – Game Tunnel

“MMORPGs get repetitive to me ... Grinding drives me crazy with rage. How many rat-equivalents do you need to smack around before you get to go beat up something else? I think this is a natural state, though, as the game has to appeal to all levels, from the beginner to the seasoned veteran ... With the addition of scouting between cities, and frequent content injections, Darkwind has a lot to do and see in-game no matter the skill level of the player or the composition of the gang. This is a breath of fresh air in what I consider a very stale and one-sided genre of gameplay, where even the behemoth in the market seems destined for repetition.”
7.5/10 – Inside Mac Games

About This Game

Battle for survival and supremacy in a gritty post-apocalyptic world of vehicular combat where strategy and tactics determines who wins.
Darkwind is a simultaneous turn-based, physics-based game. It is often described as "X-Com meets Mad Max" or "Car Wars [1980s boardgame] Online".

Darkwind is the only car game we know of that combines accurate physics with turn-based play. Not just turn based racing and Death-racing (with multiple cars), but also combats with up to 20 vehicles is where you realise why turn based is a must in this game. Running 10 trucks at once through a slaver ambush in Badlands, managing speed, steering, gun fire from anywhere up to 8 points on a truck would not be possible in real time.

Manage your gang, train your characters, design your own cars and scavenge for parts. Make your fortune in racing, deathracing and arena combat leagues, or venture into the wilderness and engage in tense multiplayer battles with pirates, traders and other players.

Trade for parts, cars and weapons in the dynamic economy of a world where your characters will age, sustain permanent injuries, and die. The detailed weapon stats, and the detailed combat system with physics, critical hits, injuries and healing, psychology, leadership and perma-death ensures a strategic challenge like few other games.

Award winning in the indie gaming community, acclaimed in the main-stream computer gaming press and praised in the war-gaming media: play it yourself to find out why.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP
    • Processor: Core 2 Duo
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL compatible
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Hard Drive: 250 MB available space
    • Sound Card: OpenAL compatible
    • Additional Notes: very light on requirements, runs fine on netbooks etc. although 1024x768 resolution preferred
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7
    • Processor: Core 2 Duo
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL compatible
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Hard Drive: 350 MB available space
    • Sound Card: OpenAL compatible
    Minimum:
    • OS: Leopard (10.5)
    • Processor: Core i5 or PowerPC
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL compatible
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Hard Drive: 250 MB available space
    • Sound Card: OpenAL compatible
    • Additional Notes: very light on requirements, runs fine on netbooks etc. although 1024x768 resolution preferred
    Recommended:
    • OS: Leopard (10.5) or higher
    • Processor: Core Duo i5
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL compatible
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Hard Drive: 350 MB available space
    • Sound Card: OpenAL compatible
Helpful customer reviews
5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
443.4 hrs on record
Posted: October 19, 2014
The game does have a fairly steep learning curve which probably scares off most casual players that aren't willing to invest a few weeks learning. The game presents a very unique mix of car battles and racing, turn based tactics(even races are turn based) dozens of cars, scores of weapons and a helpful community. If you ever wanted turn based vehicular combat with some rogue like traits or if you ever loved the original Fallout series or Eve Online then this game definitely warrants your attention and time.

The graphics are dated, yes, though the game has been out for more than 7 years. Don't let that stop you from what turns out to be, given some patience and persistance, a very intense car combat game where you become attached to cars and your gang members only to have your car catch fire and blow up and your gang leader takes a bullet to the heart or skull killing him instantly.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
28.9 hrs on record
Posted: September 27, 2014
A thougtful, tactical game without trying to 'WOW' you with a flashy overlay/interface. What it lacks in visual polish, clearly delivers satisfying in-game physics and combat. Throw Mad Max together with a Twisted Metal concept, add in-depth strategy and satisfying vehicle/character customization, and you have Darkwind. 10/10
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
315.2 hrs on record
Posted: September 28, 2014
This game has quickly become one of my all-time favorites. It is a turn-based game reminiscent of the old table-top miniature games set in an apocalyptic, harsh, and un-forgiving future. The future that could be… You start off with a handful of gangers and go about trying to make a name for yourself on the racing tracks or combat arenas. The best way to describe this experience would be if Games Workshop's Dawn of War and Mad Max had a love child, this game would be that child. Be prepared for hurt... be prepared for agony... be prepared for blood, guts, shrapnel, and petrol spew. The highs are high… and the lows... well the lows are downright nasty!
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
0.4 hrs on record
Posted: September 7, 2014
weird in a superb way 10/10
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.8 hrs on record
Posted: September 28, 2014
A very different kind of game.

I was hoping for Dark Future, but it wasn't quite there, yet still reminiscient of the Games Workshop classic.

I like the turn based driving and found my real life driving skills were quite useful for car momentum.

It is a game I could really get into except for one thing, there is no single player mode. But if multiplayer is your thing, then this might be worth a go. At least it is free.

34%

~ Snowdog
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
18.8 hrs on record
Posted: October 26, 2014
I like this game for a few reasons. First, the gameplay is actually quite fun, I like it's turn based things, because that was unique to me. When it says "Think a few moves ahead" you really need to. I went into a turn, not planning the next 3 moves for the turn. I ended up hitting a wall, and stopping the whole race. One of my friends taught me the game, i'm just basically figuring out how to scout. Secondly, people say that switching through the web browser and through the game is quite stupid. If your lazy (like all the people who disliked because of that) this isn't your game. I was happy to learn that when you have no more gang members, its not game over, unless you have no money, which basically will not happen. The tutorial does give information about driving, which is helpful, but seek controls and help with other things, you just ask people. This is why I reccommend the game. Friend me. My gang is Da Tacocorns, user name is MrTacocorn. One more thing, if your nerdy like me, you can base a book off this game. ANywho. I rate this 8/10. Thanks.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
426.0 hrs on record
Posted: October 8, 2014
This game has warts. However what it lacks in pretty-boy good looks it more than makes up for in gaming soul.

If you like games and exert even a little effort you'll feel the love too.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
27.7 hrs on record
Posted: September 22, 2014
Twisted Metal + Frozen Synapse/Xcom + (optional) post-apoc gang management? This is a winning formula.

The UI is tough to get through and the tutorial sucks but you'll be glad if you break into this. The community is helpful and the official newbie forums should get you started.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
6.5 hrs on record
Posted: September 24, 2014
Good game its really nice and has exictment
Sadly theres low players
i would rate this 8.1
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
22.1 hrs on record
Posted: September 29, 2014
Has amaising potential. but the unfriendly UI is a deal breaker for me. would continue to play if you didnt need to open up a web brower(for all the management) and a wiki page just to figure out what to do next. tutorial says heres a car drive it, and then leaves you at that. reminds me of the old car wars table top minus the rule book to help you out. will go back to it thou in a few months to see if the ui got updated mainly cause i love the car wars idea!

- atm thou its free try for yourself.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.3 hrs on record
Posted: February 27
play! Play! Play! :v
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: September 17, 2014
Best game ever! even better than Bad Rats! Dean Hall should be jealous cause his game sucks ♥♥♥♥ compared to this masterpiece!!!

Very well made AnAwesomeNinja
Cant wait for battle tractorsv3
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7 of 14 people (50%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: September 13, 2014
I Highly do not suggest this game it's tedious, slow and the controls are horrible. The online play is slow the game is laggy and the big takiling tutourial head scares the living daylight out of you! I suggest turning the volume off as this game has the worst audio I have ever heard it's the same repeditive loop of the same thing. But I did quite enjoy the Idea and the carnage but it wasn't enough to save the game I would give the game 4 out of 10!
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3 of 6 people (50%) found this review helpful
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 17, 2014
Hurry up and wait to play to mostly with bots. This game was fun, but its turn based Deathrace mechanics with AI that takes a few seconds to go (130 turns for the first place finisher on a single lap loop) adds up. The game is facinating, but poorly delivers on its premise. You queue up for races that have upcoming start times which becomes downtime while you wait for the next event to begin. The most distracting aspect is how often the game loads the steam browser to faciliate aspects of the game rather than handling it within the client.

This game is interesting, bring friends to laugh with you, but avoid if you are trying it out solo.
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101 of 126 people (80%) found this review helpful
606.1 hrs on record
Posted: August 22, 2014
Okay, first of all, this game came out in (I believe) 2007, so no... If you are looking for top of the line graphics you are not going to find it here. Also, this game is not simple. If you want simple there are tons of Flappy Bird clones out there... But Darkwind is definetly not going to be for you. Quite simply, Darkwind is not a game for everyone. But... The people that it is for will be blown away and will wonder "WHY DID I NEVER HEAR OF THIS GAME BEFORE NOW"

Darkwind is a bit hard to describe, but if I would have to put it in one phrase it would be this: Darkwind is a Turn Based MMO Mad Max Gang simulator on permenant "Iron Man" mode with a nice physics engine and a whole slew of vetrarn players who would much, much, rather spend time helping you than PVPing you into the ground.

Pretty much if you would rather play X-COM than COD, or Civ over Halo, or Jagged Alliance over Starcraft 2, you really should check this game out.
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35 of 45 people (78%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
121.4 hrs on record
Posted: August 24, 2014
Surprisingly fun, the driving mechanics are simple, yet very well done. If you take a sharp turn at speed the car won't magically straighten out, you've gotta counter-steer, and the community behind this game is great, they actually help new, idiotic players rather then telling them about intimate relations with thier mother. I'll admit, a turn-based car-combat game sounded, well, really dumb at first, but it WORKS!
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54 of 79 people (68%) found this review helpful
12.2 hrs on record
Posted: August 22, 2014
First thing to notice about this game I guess, is it's not pretty to look at, irregardless of how old it is. The landscapes are terrible, even for post apocalyptica, the cars are really simple, and the UI is downright terrible. Visually it really has nothing going for it. Even the sound is somewhat irritating.

BUT, you don't play this for aesthetics... You play it because of the amazing physics rich turned based combat/racing. Once you get used to the UI, this game really starts to shine. At the start of each turn you change steering, gears, weapon targetting, etc. and once it's all set watch the next 3-4 seconds play out. This gets hectic when you're racing against a large group of players.

The real beauty lies in how each action follows through subsequent turns. Made that hard right a little too hard? the next 3-4 turns will be spent countersteering, and when it works... oh boy does it work. Pulling off successful drifts, jumps, etc gives you a real sense of accomplishment. Combined with terrain realistically affecting your cars handling and you have racing that equals any AAA racing simulators.

I've been playing this on and off for the past 4 years, so don't let the steam counter fool you. I highly recommend at least trying this out. Once you get past the unfriendly UI and get to the actual racing, you'll have a hell of a time.
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33 of 49 people (67%) found this review helpful
1.5 hrs on record
Posted: August 22, 2014
The concept is really nice - twin elements of long term strategy when it comes to your gang and inventory, and strategic turn-based driving in matches with fairly accurate physics. I had fun playing around with a few matches and seeing how the 'game' portion of the game plays out. There's a lot of depth and thought put into this, even if the graphics and cluttered hud leave much to be desired.

Since it shows a lot of effort, I'm giving it a tentative thumbs up, but be aware - either due to a major influx of new players from the Steam release or something else unpleasant, the servers are very unstable. I was constantly losing connection to the lobby which made matchmaking from within the client a major pain. (This is why I've only put in about one hour of playtime before I decided to shelve it. Since the game's tutorial isn't very long, I was able to get a decent handle on the game's presentation in that time.)

In addition, the only way to 'pause' - as in take a break from the game, which I'm doing until it hopefully stabilizes more - is go in vacation mode, which can only be toggled on once every six weeks. So keep that in mind if you are thinking about trying the game out.

I think the game is decently well made and shows a lot of potential, but until it becomes more stable and streamlined I'll likely keep my distance for the foreseeable future.

(Keep in mind the date this review was posted when it comes to the technical issues.)
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26 of 39 people (67%) found this review helpful
299.1 hrs on record
Posted: August 24, 2014
Darkwind: War on Wheels is a very indepth game for anyone who enjoys engulfing themselves into a vehicular apocalyptic chaos. The game is very detailed and well balanced with unmatchable gameplay but some may find the graphical aspect a bit outdated. I feel it serves the game very well, giving it an old school PC game atmosphere, which I enjoy.

It is the type of game that would require patience and time for optimal enjoyment, which in turn would make you hate it right off the bat or you will begin to love it more and more like a long term relationship.

The gore and graphical detail during the events is very entertaining and gives the game a grim and humorous feel.
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18 of 25 people (72%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
14.1 hrs on record
Posted: August 26, 2014
Considering this game is about 8 years old, don't expect much out of it in the graphics department. The concept is great. I've spent a good time playing this game, and I love it. Many of the players are veterans, and are super friendly. They can help out with any sort of problems. There are many words in the Lobby that are going to confuse the noobs, though, which is a problem. The game takes a while to get used to, so give it some time before you figure out what you're doing. For the noobs out there, I have made a guide on this game to help out.
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