Toy Soldiers: Cold War is a real-time strategy game released as a Xbox Live Arcade game on August 17, 2011. It was the last game to be released over the Summer of Arcade 2011 program. It was developed by Signal Studios and published by Microsoft Studios. It is a follow-up to Toy Soldiers but replaces the game's theme and style of the First World War with that of the 1980s era of the Cold War. A Windows 7/8 version of the game, set to be released on October 26, 2012, was never developed and Signal Studios has since removed all references to a PC release from their website.
Like its predecessor, Toy Soldiers: Cold War is a hybrid of traditional tower defense with 3rd-person action. Waves of enemies including (but not limited to) infantry, tanks, helicopters, and aircraft will charge your positions with the ultimate goal of infiltrating your toy box. If enough opposing units manage to make it inside, the game's over. In order to fight back you'll need to build turrets on pads around the battlefield before they reach their final objective. Although these turrets attack on their own, you also have the option to assume direct control and fire it on your own. This allows you to take full advantage of the turret's power, making it more effective than it would be on its own and earning more money from enemy kills in the process.
These turrets can be upgraded with cash into a newer, generally more powerful version in the same role. Upgrading turrets puts them out of action for some time but it's often worth it for the increased firepower. Turrets can be sold and repaired as well, should the player wish to get more money or save a turret under intense attack.
The player can also assume direct control of certain mobile units, just as in the first release, only now there are a greater variety and they are all suited to the Cold War 80's theme of the game. All units, except the Commando in versus, have a limited duration (battery power) before they must be recharged.
In addition to turrets and vehicles, in single player and co-op a special ability called a "Barrage" is earned by destroying marked enemies or getting a large combo of infantry kills as a turret. These barrages are selected at random and each has a uniquely devastating effect on the battlefield. In versus, a 'spin of the barrage wheel' may be purchased separately of turrets.
The turret types featured in the release:
- Anti-Infantry - Rapid firing machine guns which are effective against dismounted troops or ATV riders
- Anti-Tank - Slower firing turrets that destroy armored units easily such as scout cars, APC's, and tanks
- Mortar - Indirect firing, short range artillery that stuns, poisons, or burns enemies based on upgrade level
- Makeshift - These turrets aren't based on actual military hardware, but instead objects such as household pesticides and fireworks
- Anti-Air - When aircraft enter the battlefield these large turrets take them out with cannon fire or homing missiles
- Artillery - Large turrets that are the most powerful in the game, and have a huge range, but are expensive and slow firing
Some of the unit types featured:
- Fighter - Very fast flying unit with an automatic cannon, air-to-air missiles, and bombs. Either a MiG-23 (USSR) or an F-14 (USA)
- Tank - Tough, armored unit with a powerful cannon and multiple machine guns. Either a T-80 (USSR) or an M1A1 (USA)
- Infantry Fighting Vehicle - Armored vehicle with an automatic cannon and anti-tank missiles. Either a BMP (USSR) or an M3 (USA)
- Attack Helicopter - Fast flying unit with an automatic cannon, air-to-air missiles, and air-to-ground missiles. Either a Mi-24 (USSR) or an AH-64 (USA), Bell UH-1 Huey(USA)
- Commando - The commando has a machine gun, a rocket launcher, and balls of steel. Either Ivan (USSR) or a man suspiciously similar to Rambo (USA)
The Barrage ability can be one of six possible strikes:
- Artillery - Randomly, but heavily, bombards enemy areas with artillery shells
- Commando - Creates the commando unit to be used for 30 seconds before his mission is over
- Carpet Bombing - A large bomber flies over part of the battlefield and drops a line of bombs. Either a Tu-95 (USSR) or a B-52 (USA)
- Close Air Support - Grants direct control of a circling gunship that can rain 20mm, 40mm, or 105mm fire onto enemies
- Nuclear Strike - After designating the impact area and a short delay, a nuke will destroy everything hostile in a very wide radius
The game itself takes place in a bedroom between two sets of rival army men toys. The player can control one of two sets, the Soviets or the Americans. The soldiers battle across wooden and plastic landscapes, fitting with the "80's toys" theme of the game. Single player levels also have special bosses; these are very large and powerful units that come at the end of all the waves and take a lot of fire to bring down.
Multiplayer options include cooperative and competitive (versus) modes, both locally through split-screen and online through Xbox Live. Toy Soldiers: Cold War also includes survival maps and minigame challenges, both having integrated online leaderboards and stat tracking for members on the player's friends list.