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Video Game / Totally Accurate Battle Simulator

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Oh, for the love of God, it's like watching babies trying to slap each other...
Jacksepticeye on the game

Totally Accurate Battle Simulator (TABS) is a "strategy" game for the PC by Landfall Games. The game has the player building an army of... googly-eyed blobby people-things from a wide selection of units and watching them march into battle against another army of googly-eyed blobby people-things. Hilarity Ensues. It is an unusual strategy game in that once you have placed your units and started the battle, you cannot control most of them, making the game one of timing and puzzles as well as pure strategy. The game has a campaign mode, which pits the player against a pre-determined enemy army that they must find a way to defeat with a limited number of units, and a sandbox mode, which lets the player just go nuts and pit whatever armies they want against each other.

invoked The game is currently in early access, so much of the information is subject to change. Access to the Pre-Alpha was obtained by preordering Clustertruck - another Landfall game - until September 27th. The open alpha was obtained by signing up for the newsletter for the game. A final Alpha version of the game with more updates exists, but was exclusive to a number of YouTubers playing the game on their channels. The game was finally given an Early Access on April 1st, 2019. Seriously. One year later, on the next April Fools, they released the "Bug DLC", which adds in "bugs" (aka cheats) into the game, such as making units big or small, giving everything the ability to fly, or allowing Halflings to implode into black holes.


The Alpha versions of the game can all be freely downloaded from here.

Totally Accurate Battle Simulator provides examples of:

  • Abnormal Ammo: The Snake Archers shoot living snakes from their bows, that act as units on their own. There are also multiple units who will throw a very large heavy object (such as a safe, a Viking ship, or something else) as their attack.
  • Action Girl: Some of the strongest units in the game are female, like the Pirate Queen, Artemis, and Lady Red Jade.
  • Affectionate Parody: Of the real-time tactics genre. More specifically, the Total War games.
  • An Axe to Grind: The Brawler, Berserker and Jarl units all wield axes of some kind. The Secret Units, the Executioner and Ullr also wield axes, but Ullr's have an axehead on both ends and are meant to be thrown: on impact, they act as ice bombs that freeze any unit in a certain radius.
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  • Anchors Away: Blackbeard's arms have two big anchors for his arms, and he uses them to smash enemies.
  • Arrows on Fire: The Skeleton Archers shoot flaming arrows.
  • Artificial Stupidity: The various units in this game aren't exactly brilliant. This is entirely intentional, since it adds more hilarity and silliness to the game.
    • They frequently walk off the edge and get caught on small things. Some Simulation maps like Bridge force units to walk narrow pathways, so you can see many units falling into Bottomless Pits.
    • Units that fall over can usually get up pretty quickly, but on the rare occasion, they will be unable to get up. It's pretty funny to see they move their legs haplessly while trying to walk again, however.
    • Healers prioritize certain units over others, even if you position them nowhere near each other. If you try to set up a pair of Healers to support your Reaper, they'll march to the other side of the map to pocket your Mammoth instead.
    • Certain ranged units (like the Quick Draw) will happily shoot through their allies to kill an enemy. This used to be worse: in the Alpha versions, every ranged unit in the game could be expected to shoot regardless of who was in front of them.
  • Armor Is Useless: Cosmetic armor considered part of an outfit, like for the Knights, doesn't actually protect them. For some reason, Hay Balers' hay bales and the Blunderbuss Units' barrel armor are able to withstand a ballista bolt and allow them to stand back up as long as they don't get hit in an exposed area.
  • Army of the Ages: Units can be taken from multiple time periods spanning from the Stone Age to the Modern Age.
  • Attack! Attack! Attack!: Most Units will never retreat. They'll just keep going and going and going until they fall off the edge (or win, or get stuck on things, or die...). Subverted with the Sarissa and Chu Ko Nu units, who do retreat if the enemy gets too close to attack effectively.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Some units that would theoretically have authority, such as the King, Chieftain and Jarl. While they aren't technically seen actually authorizing anything, they certainly can fight, and are some of the best units in the game.
  • Background Music Override: Every time a Cupid hits something, the music changes to a jazz track filled with Sexophone.
  • Barbie Doll Anatomy: Units in this game don't have nipples or genitals.
  • Bare-Fisted Monk: The Taekwondo unit attacks with only punches and kicks, but he is quite strong. Kicks from him usually kill weaker enemies instantly and send them flying.
  • Bloodless Carnage: Despite stabbing, smashing, and crushing going on, no blood is ever seen.
  • Boom, Headshot!: Projectiles deal double damage if they hit in the head. However, it doesn't happen often because most ranged units aim for the torso.
  • Boxing Battler: The Boxer unit fights with their boxing gloves and punching skills.
  • Broken Bridge: The "Broken Bridge" map. Subverted, as there is a pathway underneath the bridge, allowing units to cross.
  • Bullet Time: Slow motion can be activated by holding down the left button of the mouse, making it easier for you to see the chaos of the battle. This is definitely a good way to see bullets, arrows and cannonballs slowly wreak havoc while you move the camera around.
  • BFS: Some boss units wield very large weapons, and they are deadly at melee combat. For example, the King has a Zweihänder, Lady Red Jade has a Guandao.
  • Cannon Fodder: The cheapest units like Peasants or Halflings fill this role. They are melee units that do a very small amount of damage, have very little health, and be taken down by just about any other unit in the game.
  • Cartoon Bomb: The Bomb Thrower, Pirate Queen and Bomb Cannon of the Pirate Faction use this type of explosive, fitting both the theme of the faction, as well as being suitable for the utter ragdoll ridiculousness the game is designed for.
  • Carry a Big Stick: Tree Giants, as the name implies, wield trees that they whack enemies with. When the tree hits something, it creates a large shockwave that can send smaller units flying.
  • Chain Lightning: Zeus's lightning will leap from one unit to the one behind it.
  • Color-Coded Armies: Red and blue. You command the red army in campaign mode, and the colors of each side can be switched in the Options menu.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: Usually, during the campaign mode, the computer has more money's worth of units than you do. In certain levels, they can even place units on your side, which should be impossible.
  • Cupid's Arrow: The Cupid unit fires arrows, and their arrows can make units fall in love. They will run into their ally's mouth, and damage them by kissing.
  • Dem Bones: The Skeleton Warriors and Skeleton Archers are typical skeletal soldiers.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: There are godlike units like Zeus, or eldritch beings like the Grim Reaper, but they can be killed like other mortal units.
  • Domesticated Dinosaurs: The Raptor Rider unit is a neolithic warrior riding on a raptor.
  • Edible Ammunition: The Wheelbarrow unit contains a unit fan-nicknamed the Apple Thrower. He throws apples.
  • Extra Eyes: Very rarely, units can spawn with extra eyes, or conversely only one eye. It won't affect to their sight, though.
  • Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: The Border Update adds the Raptors as secret unit. They are very quick and tend to drag its victims with them as they find more. There is also a Raptor Rider added in as well.
  • Everything's Better with Samurai: Samurais are a decent unit that costs only slightly more than Squires, but can also deflect projectiles, though they can eventually get overwhelmed. Taken Up to Eleven with the Shogun unit, which can close the distance between itself and an opponent when close enough, as well as deflect at least fifteen projectiles before needing a moment to recool, as well as being naturally durable enough to take up to four before going down.
  • Everything's Better with Spinning: The Mace Spinner spins his maces. If he's empowered by at least one Cheerleader, he can spin them so quickly that he forms a tornado that can sweep through the enemy units. The same applies to the Da Vinci Tank, Lady Red Jade and Blackbeard, albeit they can create much larger ones.
  • The Faceless: The Scarecrow unit has buttons for eyes, but his actual eyes (if he has any) cannot be seen. The Executioner also has a hood on but doesn't even have buttons.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: The TABS universe has many mythological or fantastic units like Zeus, Thor, Grim Reaper, Monkey King, Dragons, Vampires, Cupids, and so on. So you can let them fight.
  • Flechette Storm: The Ninja unit throws shurikens pretty quickly, but the Sensei throws three of them at a time.
  • Friendly Fireproof: Nope. Units can and will kill other units on their own side with reckless abandon, though it's thankfully slightly better than it was in the pre-alpha.
  • Full-Frontal Assault: There is a option in the settings to make everyone naked.
  • Game Mod: Several mods have been created for this game. They often add new units or maps.
  • Gardening-Variety Weapon: The Farmers and Harvesters use pitchforks and scythes respectively to fight off enemies.
  • Glass Cannon: Quite a few.
    • The Sensei can only take one or two attacks from most units before croaking, but his projectile output is tremendous.
    • The Scarecrow releases crows that are perfect for taking down beefier units, but his own health is severely lacking.
    • Skeleton Archers are capable of dealing a lot of damage with flames, but they die at the drop of a hat.
    • All siege units can take out multiple enemies at once or deal huge amounts of damage with powerful projectiles, but they can't take much damage at all.
    • The Deadeye does significant damage with her Winchester and pretty much never misses, but most units one shot her.
  • Good Bad Bugs: Invoked with the Bug DLC, which add "bugs" that change the game in a funny way.
  • Good Old Fisticuffs: The Halflings have only one attack: punching and grabbing. Wheelbarrow Drivers, Longship Carriers and Flintlock units also use their fists once their particular gimmick runs its course.
  • The Grim Reaper: Available as the Reaper unit. It uses a huge scythe that can kill multiple enemies at once.
  • Groin Attack: The Jesters, Taekwando Units, Harpooners, Captains, Pirate Queens, Lady Red Jade and even Blackbeard will sometimes kick an enemy unit in their lower parts.
  • Guns Akimbo: The Flintlock units wield a flintlock pistol in each hand, and Artemis has a bow that shoots multiple arrows in each hand. Somehow. Also the Gunslinger, holding two revolvers in each hand.
  • Horny Vikings: The Viking faction has multiple units with horned helmets, including the Headbutters and the generic Vikings.
  • Human Pincushion: Having enough ranged units on the battlefield will turn other units into this. Hwachas and Artemis can do so easily on their own.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice:
    • The Ballista unit can impale a unit and send them flying across the map, whatever they were holding staying where the unit was just moments prior.
    • Vlad has a giant tree trunk of a stake that will occasionally impale the units he's fighting.
    • The Reaper can impale weaker units and instantly kill them with their Combat Tentacles.
  • Improvised Weapon: The Tree Giant uses a tree as his club. Due to its sheer size, the Tree Giant can take down groups of regular units with ease.
  • Jack-of-All-Stats: Squires have all-around pretty good stats for infantry units: decent health, good damage, high speed.
  • The Jester: The Jester unit, which uses blades on both his hands and feet to kill enemies via both punches and backflips.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: Samurais and Shoguns both wield katanas that can deflect arrows and bullets. The Samurai Giant also has one, though they're more likely to backflip kick the ground against smaller units.
  • Kill It with Fire: Units like the Dragon or Skeleton Archer can set enemies on fire. Fire deals damage over time, and nearby units can catch fire from burning units.
  • Kill It with Ice: The Ice Archer and Ullr can freeze and slow down enemies with their attack. If they become completely frozen, they will be killed instantly.
  • A Load of Bull: The Minotaur from Greek mythology is one of the Ancient Faction units.
  • Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: Units with a shield can protect themselves from small projectiles like arrows or weaker bullets. However, if they took several projectiles at once their shield is often shoved to the side, allowing another projectile to bash the unit holding it. It's more noticeable when you use cheaper shield units.
  • Make Me Wanna Shout: The Shouter unit can yell enemy units away with the power of their voice.
  • Never Bring a Gun to a Knife Fight: The Musketeer is a gun-toting ranged unit with shield-piercing bullets, but he can be easily killed when a melee unit gets close enough. His long musket is essentially useless at point-blank range.
  • Mook Maker:
    • The Scarecrow unit stands back and spawns crows to attack units and explode.
    • The Snake Archer shoots living snakes, and they bite enemies.
    • The CLAMS (yes, it is in all caps) unit does nothing but throw out clams to attack the enemy.
  • No "Arc" in "Archery": Averted for most part. Projectiles like arrows, bullets, or cannonballs are subject to gravity. Swords from the Swordcaster are one of the few exceptions that play this trope straight.
  • No Plot? No Problem!: Here's a bunch of red guys, they want to kill those blue guys for some reason. The feeling is reciprocated. That's about as much plot as you get in this game.
  • One-Hit Kill: The Super Peasant apparently kills any unit in one hit.
  • Our Giants Are Bigger: The Samurai Giant, Tree Giant and Frost Giant are available as secret units. They have lots of health compared to other units. In addition, there is an extremely low chance that regular units spawn as much larger ones.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: The Vampire unit was added in the Spooky update. He can move fast by transforming into a bat, and sucks blood of enemy units.
  • Pintsized Powerhouse: There is an extremely low chance that regular units spawn as ant-sized ones. While their health is low compared to normal sized units, they can kill enemies like other units.
  • Pirate Girl: The Pirate Queen is the strongest unit of the Pirate faction, and she is a woman. The secret pirate unit, Bomb on a Stick is also female.
  • Pirates vs. Ninjas: The game has the Ninja unit and Pirate faction, so you can let them fight.
  • Player Mooks: You can take control of a unit and direct its movements and attacks.
  • Poisoned Weapons: Blowdarters fire poisoned darts form their blowgun, and they can damage the enemy gradually and slow them down.
  • Psychic-Assisted Suicide: Units that are terrified of skeleton warriors often kill themselves by running of a cliff.
  • Purposefully Overpowered: The Dark Peasant and Super Peasant are ludicrously powerful units that can decimate an entire army in a short time.
  • Ragdoll Physics: Although they're prone to breaking, it's incredibly amusing to watch a cluster of people getting sent flying by a Ballista shot. Or getting sent flying by a Taekwondo kick.
  • Rain of Arrows: The Hwacha and the Artemis unit fire a barrage of arrows that showers down on enemies, which can temporarily pin them down or kill them.
  • Set a Mook to Kill a Mook: Units that received arrows from the Cupid unit will kiss their allies, and this kiss gradually damages them.
  • Shields Are Useless: Shields are good against small projectiles and weapons of a similar size. Anything bigger or more powerful than pirate guns, such as musket bullets or most siege engines, will not do much to protect against them.
  • Shield Bash: The shield unit's main form of attack: bashing anyone to death with a big board just as big as the users.
  • Shotguns Are Just Better: The Pirate faction, unsurprisingly, has both of the shotgun's predecessors. The Blunderbuss units possess the weapon of their proficiency, letting out big blasts at the cost of a hilariously exaggerated kickback. The Captain possesses the pistol sized dragon of similar function, and being a more expensive unit, is much faster to reload the gun.
  • Shout-Out: The Shouter unit is basically the Dovahkiin. He wears an iconic horned helmet, and his shout can blow enemies away.
  • Siege Engines: Siege engines like Catapults, Ballistae or Cannons are available in this game.
  • Standard Status Effects: Some units can inflict debuffs on their enemies. The Skeleton Archers can burn enemies with their flaming arrows, Ice Archers can freeze enemies, Potionsellers can confuse enemies with thrown potions, and so on.
  • Stone Wall: The Haybaler unit doesn't deal much damage because he uses a wooden stick as his weapon, but he wears hay bales and it negates damage from most projectiles, such as arrows, bullets, or even ballista bolts.
  • Sword and Gun: The Captain uses a large cutlass and a pistol version of the blunderbuss at the same time.
  • Support Party Member: There are some units that don't attack but do other things. For example, Healers can heal others, Bards can distract enemies and Cheerleaders can increase the attack rate of others.
  • Tank Goodness:
    • Da Vinci's Tank of the Renaissance faction has multiple cannons and can spin to fire them more rapidly.
    • The Tank unit was added in the Legacy update. It's a tank from added a modern tank. It can fire explosive shells from its main cannon, and crush infantries with its track.
  • Taking You with Me: When the reaper dies, an Unrealistic Black Hole forms and sucks nearby units, doing damage to them.
  • Throwing Your Sword Always Works: The Swordcaster summons swords and shoots them at enemies.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Most of the units aren't particularly bright, but none are as dumb as the Bomb on a Stick unit, who uses a Cartoon Bomb on a stick to whack enemies, always killing themselves in the process.
  • Victory Through Intimidation: The Skeleton Warriors are pretty weak, but can terrify the enemy into walking off a cliff.
  • Video Game Flight: The Valkyrie, Scarecrow, and the crows they summon. Technically, they just hover above the ground.
  • Weak, but Skilled: "The Teacher" is a relatively cheap unit with a single sword, no armor, no special powers, and almost no health to speak of. Thanks to his excellent parrying and dodging, he has been known to handily defeat the far more expensive units like a knight. Under the right conditions, one Teacher can reliably defeat 10 squires, all on his own. That said, outside of countering non-boss swordsmen he is not very effective at all.
  • We Need a Distraction: The Bard unit is specifically designed for this: he gets units to chase him and he runs away.
  • Why Am I Ticking?: The Firework Archer unit shoots fireworks that have a short delay before they go off. In the meantime, they fizzle. Loudly.
  • Wingding Eyes: The soldiers in the game get > eyes when hurt badly and X eyes when they die.
  • You Will Not Evade Me: The Harpooners shoot harpoons at enemies, then reel them in to attack them in melee.
  • Zerg Rush: Cheaper melee units like Peasants, Halflings, Squires, Farmers and Painters are often used for these.


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