The early 90s made the previously hardcore genre of hex-based wargames accessable to a much broader audience. The rules got simpler, the controls easier and the graphics less cryptic. The prime example of this trend is of course Battle Isle by Blue Byte. To a lesser extent, The Perfect General contributed there, too.
This 'lesser extent' is even an advantage to many people. Instead of total simplification for beginners, it offers something for everyone: accessibility and at the same time complexity. The game is incredibly easy to learn, especially because of the mouse control. You can do everything with one click: moving, attacking or waiting. No menu needed. Don't laugh, you couldn't take that for granted back then!
The first strategy game I seriously played and loved was Dune II: Battle for Arrakis. Before that, I was absolutely not interested in this genre. I never found it particularly exciting to virtually push some combat units around on a map. But Dune 2 nevertheless cast its spell on me and has not let go of many of us to this day. A whole bunch of successors poured over the audience in the years that followed. However, these clones soon lost the appeal of the new. Perhaps I would have found these fresh ideas in other – less well-known – representatives of the genre back then. In search of such pearls, I enter the famous hexa fields of The Perfect General II.
While I watch my character walking slowly towards the sunrise at the end of Valiant Hearts: The Great War, I take a look back at the road that has brought me here. Considering that for the most part it lead through the battlefields of World War I, the journey was surprisingly rich in variety, and it entailed even some nice memories besides all the horror. Yet it has been exactly those contrasts, these emotional ups and downs, which make these sensations so intense. Its beginning seems almost a bit unreal now, but soon the story will come to an end, and I cannot remember when I had such a feeling of accomplishment at the end of a computer game.