Welcome to the War Room!
To many first-time players, when the War Room first unlocks, it’s not clear exactly what it is. But there isn’t really a whole lot to it; it’s just a series of extra maps that you can play on for score and to earn coins for Battle Maps. There’s no plot to it and completing War Room maps won’t unlock anything. Completing all 20 maps, regardless of rank, will turn the Records entry under the Stats menu gold; S-Ranking all 20 maps will turn the War Room entry on the menu gold. Those are the only rewards you’ll get, aside from the coins and whatever sense of accomplishment it gives you.
If you’re up for the challenge, then read on.
Our goals for this guide are to explain to you how to get a perfect score of 999 on all maps with any available CO. This is actually possible, though very difficult in some cases. In general, this will take the form of day-to-day guides for a quick HQ capture, but some maps are too complex for that.
General CO Recommendations
It’s possible to get a perfect score 999 on any map with any of the ten COs available for the War Room. But some have a significantly easier time than others.
In order to use a CO, you have to unlock them in the Campaign. At the start, you can use Andy, Max, Sami, and Olaf. Everyone else has to be unlocked. You also don’t get to use Sturm even if you’ve unlocked him.
So who should you pick?
First of all, Sonja is without question the worst CO to use in the War Room. None of the maps have Fog of War, so her additional vision is useless. In addition, her hidden HP doesn’t affect the computer opponents at all. This leaves you with bland units, a CO power that only offers the basic boosts of 10% attack and defense, and a luck penalty that hurts her damage output. In short, only use her if you’re looking for a challenge.
Sami is generally the best CO. Most War Room maps are easiest to win by HQ capture. Between her extra movement on APCs and transport copters, and the additional capturing power of her infantry, Sami is often able to speed right through a map and win faster than anyone else.
Max is also quite good, as his attack bonus to direct units is simply ridiculous. Eagle is another effective CO; Lightning Strike takes a long time to charge, but once you get it off, you can take out quite a few units for the Power score, or move your transport twice as far. However, on many of the shorter maps, you won’t get a chance to use powers at all.
Kanbei is also noteworthy; in the later games, he has Samurai Spirit and that more than makes up for his added prices. Here, they can hurt him quite significantly, but an extra 20% attack and defense is nothing to sneeze at. In general he’s not recommended, but he tends to be a more interesting challenge to play as than Sonja.
Unlocking New Maps
Once you’ve cleared Field Training and opened up the War Room, you can see that you start with six maps unlocked: Spann Island, Duo Falls, Sole Harbor, Land’s End, Point Stormy, and Dire Range. Don’t ask me why these particular maps were picked, I don’t know.
The rest will have to be bought with coins. Only two maps will be available at a time; after buying one or two, leave the shop and come back to unlock additional ones. It takes a total of 92 coins to unlock all the maps.
The scoring for War Room is almost identical to the scoring for Campaign, but with one important difference: you have much less leeway with Technique. If you’ve memorized the Campaign scoring and want to know the difference – you can lose up to 20% of your units in Campaign, but only up to 10% in War Room.
If you want to review the scoring in general, then read on.
AW1 uses a 1000-point scoring scale, but it’s actually equivalent to the 300-point scale used in AW2 and DS. It’s just that the categories are weighted here.
Note: In the following equations, the brackets ⌊⌋ mean that whatever is in the brackets is rounded down to the nearest whole number. This is also called the “floor function”.
Speed is worth 500 points, and is probably the most straightforward category – it’s all about beating the mission fast. If you complete a map within its turn limit (which varies from map to map), you’ll get the full 500. If you take longer, you’ll lose points.
To work out your exact Speed score, call the map’s Speed limit S and the number of turns you finished it in T. Then, your Speed score will be:
This value caps at 500, and the resulting score is exactly equal to five times what your Speed score would be in AW2 or AWDS under the same circumstances. Simply put, to get a perfect score here, you have to win in the turn limit. The game itself won’t tell you what this is, but we’ve helpfully included that information in our guides.
It’s actually possible to gain an extra day of leeway if the number the game uses for the Speed limit is high enough. This happens in a few maps over the course of the series, but none are in this game. All of our listed Speed limits account for this extra day; if you take one day longer than what we say, you’ll lose points.
Technique is worth 300 points. It’s based on the percentage of units you lost compared to the percentage of units you’ve had on your side over the course of the battle. Unlike the later games, AW1 doesn’t have a convenient way to check this; your only option is to look at the Units tab and add up the numbers.
Call the number of units lost L, and the number of units deployed D. Then Technique in Campaign is determined by this formula:
Once again, this is the same formula used for Advance Wars 2 and DS, except multiplied by 3. Put a bit more simply, if you lose at most 10% of your units, you’ll get full technique. There’s actually a little leeway here due to rounding.
There are some important notes here. First: Any unit you lose counts against Technique. If it was loaded in a transport that got destroyed, it counts against you. Ran out of fuel and crashed? That counts against you. Deleted a unit? That counts against you too. Yielded on a map with multiple allied armies? Every unit you still had out counts against you. So don’t let this happen!
But there’s an important thing to note that will help your Technique too. Joining! If you join two units together and that unit is destroyed, it only counts as one unit destroyed. But you still get credit for having two units deployed in the first place! In other words, joining is good for Technique, especially if you’re on a map where you might actually run up against the limit of 50 units per army.
As noted earlier, War Room has a lower Technique threshold for Campaign. You can only lose 10% of your units (with a little bit of leeway for rounding), but Campaign lets you lose up to 20%. Keep this in mind if you switch between the game modes.
Finally, we come to Power. Power is worth 200 points, and it’s not intuitive how it works at first. Simply put, Power is not about how many enemy units you destroyed over the course of the map; it’s about how many enemy units you destroyed in a single turn. More specifically, it’s about what proportion of the total enemy units you destroyed; the bigger the army, the more units you’ll need to take out. Unfortunately, there’s no easy way in AW1 to see how many enemy units are deployed over the course of the map.
For this formula, E is the number of enemy units deployed over the course of the map and P is the largest number you destroyed in one turn. Your Power score is then:
Again, it’s the formula used in Advance Wars 2 and DS, just multiplied by 2. If you’re having trouble working out what that means, the short version is that you need to destroy 10% of the total enemy units in one turn.
Once more, there are some things to clarify. First off, rounding always counts against you here. If the enemy makes twenty units, then two will get you full Power; but if they make twenty-one units, you’ll need to destroy three.
Second, all those things that count against you for Technique? They don’t help you with Power at all. A unit in a destroyed transport doesn’t count for you, and neither does a crashed air or sea unit. Only units that you directly destroy through attacking or counterattacking count.
Finally, if you’re fighting multiple enemy armies then you have to combine their individual unit counts to figure out how many enemies to destroy for full Power.
The maximum score is 999, but if you get this, it will always actually be 1000. This is because of the weighted categories – you can’t lose less than two points. And unlike Campaign, you always see your numerical score after a War Room map, so you can be certain that your score is perfect.
One thing to note, though. If you clear a map with 999 points, the high score displayed when you select the map in the War Room will never be replaced, even if you clear it in fewer days. This is annoying for people who want to keep track of their fastest scores; you’ll have to do that manually.