Can it successfully combine realism and fun?
American Conquest: Fight Back is still a solid game which manages to combine RTS realtime tactics with wargame strategy satisfyingly. Unfortunately, the wargame complexity requires a certain degree of unit and structure-building micromanagement which will appeal more to the dedicated RTS player or wargamer, rather than someone looking for a fun genre game that distinguishes itself with an additional layer of realism. The package never completely gels into a consistently entertaining and satisying experience. Also, we noticed that registration for online games was in German, which kind of puts a crimp in that.
You'll get a boat-load of missions, but the awkward tutorial will leave you hanging, and the historical background is largely long-winded.
Being able to rotate the camera and zoom in and out by degrees would have been quite useful for managing huge amounts of troops; units can get lost in the shuffle
Very realistic combat noise, but the music isn't too stirring and there isn't enough environmental sound.
Adding morale, shot power and other elements is refreshingly unique, but there's a steeper learning curve and some annoying micromanagement/babysitting.
Lasting Appeal (8/10)
The learning curve and wargame depth make it an ill fit for the casual gamer, but those grown tired of the usual RTS cliches should find it rewarding--after carefully going over the manual.