You may remember I chatted about this one, and about a year or two before that it was all over the board game social groups. In short it’s a leviathan board game in a box the size of a couple of breeze blocks, it has a foot firmly in the RPG camp in the same way that Diablo and Grim Dawn are RPGs, all the stabbing, easy on the character moments, incidental decision making with pretty direct fallout, but damn it does the hacking and slashing well.
Characters are diverse in appearance and collection of powers building to tactical combinations with the rest of your party, clever but frustrating action economy, and so many possibilities, status conditions, and moving parts that the whole thing is far easier to manage with an app or three on the side. And actually with that electronic assistance Gloomhaven becomes an incredibly fun game, without it you’ve really got to enjoy your bookkeeping.
Borne on its popularity, Gloomhaven now has a video game version, all of the heroes fully animated, the modular board pieces turned into deep, rich scenery, and all of the numbers handled for you from behind the proverbial curtain.
The video game version is still in early access stages so that players can help test the hell out of the many features to make sure that every character is ready and waiting to go. Currently the only playable characters are the Brute, Scoundrel, Spellweaver, and Cragheart, and after a recent update, the Tinkerer, which means that of course, my character has to wait until last. It’s almost like the Mindthief’s deck is filled with complex strategies, different mechanics, and like huge swarms of rats are hard to animate! Vermlings will not be sidelined!! Although apparently he gets released some time before the end of the year.
The board game has a mass of other characters who are unlocked over time, and given the pace of updates we might not be waiting all that long for the full release as it’s the characters and their management who are the most intricate part of the game. If their actions can be managed properly then so can all of the creature actions.
Oh, and on the subject of the creatures, the creatures in Gloomhaven always looked pretty in the artwork, but seeing them brought to life is something truly incredible. Demons, elemental undead take on a far more haunting aspect when they float and shamble their way towards you to kill you. “Elite” creatures also take on a better visual aspect, rather than being the same cardstock token inserted into a different colour stand, cultists change robes, bandits gain subtle armour decorations, and while the differences are not dramatic, they do add a little depth to the design that sets it apart from the tabletop version.
The gameplay is practically identical, you have your deck of cards, each of which with two options, in combat you choose two cards per turn, and you execute the top of one card and the bottom of the other, typically the top half will be more offensive, the bottom will be more tactical. For a turn based strategy you can easily take your time mulling over your options, and because you can play alone you’re not rushing to ensure you’re not holding everyone else up. When using those abilities, there is always the extra step of “confirming” your moves, which can be skipped by double-clicking, and there’s also a lot of confirming the end of turn, confirming how you take damage, and while it’s all necessary, it does jar the flow of the gameplay a little. Better I think to have played the board game to appreciate the reason for each feature, or maybe in-game tutorials will help advise new players after the proper release.
Early reports are naturally mixed because this game is early access, but fixes have been swift, broadly successful, and expected features are being released at a respectable pace. Whether you decide to jump on in the early days or wait for the full title, I think it’s safe to say that this will be a worthwhile investment for fans of the original board game. Whether or not it will translate to a broader audience… I’m going to suspend judgement for now.
Space: the final frontier that we’re aware of, but among hypothetical frontiers, barely breaks the top 10. Oh and while we’re on the subject of top 10s…
Games, be they video or board, are so often inspired by the big black void that engulfs us and the possibilities that may await beyond, opportunities, horrors, exploration and adventure. While we had options beyond counting, we somehow managed to drill down to a mere ten games themed in and around space.
Throughout my life, I haven’t been the best at rhythm games. I’m able to make a pretty good run at them when I’m in the right frame of mind but even then, my reactions to the on-screen prompts can be a bit off. Which, considering one of my favourite games of all time (The Binding of Isaac) has the potential to train lightning-fast reflexes into you, is a bit odd.
Nonetheless, given a flash sale and some Steam Wallet funds laying around – Thanks Joel – I decided to pick up a game that had caught my eye on visuals alone: Melody’s Escape.
Steam sales means that I get to pick up titles I’ve sought after at a great price; let’s be honest, we’ve all been extra tempted by Steam sales – And recently, Steam put up a sale for all DragonBall related games and lo and behold, the fighting game DragonBall FighterZ came up in that list. Anyone who’s ever read this website before will know that I do love a good fighting game. When DragonBall FighterZ first came out, I was hugely interested. It was a massive success story that was able to quickly rival the other 3v3 or ‘tag’ style fighting games, especially as it’s been a while since the last big one.
Ratchet & Clank 2: Locked and Loaded, (or Going Commando in parts of the world where innuendo can be in game titles), was released in 2003 on the PS2, one year after the first game. The game begins with the duo appearing on an interview, lamenting the fact that no one needs a hero nowadays.
Objection! At least that’s what I would say, except in this example we don’t need to object to anything. Instead, we just need to point out contradictions politely and in the most effective ways possible – With cold hard facts. Thankfully, we have a professional duo to help uncover the facts of these murder cases, in a pun-filled game akin to Phoenix Wright. If you’re a fan of courtroom games, then this is definitely one you should add to your list. Before you do, come check out our thoughts on the bird-based Aviary Attorney. Before I continue with this review, a huge thanks to Vivi who sent me this game as a gift on my birthday. You know my sense of humour far too well!
On an unsanctioned mission, not approved by the vatican, we find ourselves playing FAITH. A pixelated horror game that can be found on Itch.io. In usual fashion, indie games and horror seem to go hand in hand, but how good is this one? What makes this one so thrilling? Does the religious theme have anything controversial thrown into it? I decided to check it out for myself, as I delved deep into the world of FAITH – And who knows? Perhaps if it’s requested, we could move onto FAITH: Chapter 2? Anyway, here’s what I thought of the first title.
Ratchet & Clank is a series of 3D platformer/action games developed by Insomniac Games, then known for developing Spyro the Dragon and known nowadays for developing Sunset Overdrive and Marvel’s Spider-Man.
In this series of articles, I’m going to talk about the original 3 games, covering off their major features, plot, equipment, control, and how it felt finishing them today. I’m going to be upfront, these games were some of the first I played; I still adore them today 15/16/17 years later, so gushing may occur.
With that out of the way, let’s get started.
When I first picked up Doki Doki Literature Club, I knew the sort of wild ride I was going to get into, thanks to the surge of popularity the game enjoyed on release. I played this a while back, so coming back to it now to review feels almost nostalgic. I noticed I somehow never reviewed the title back then and I wanted to at least review it once, especially now the hype is done. After all, there are still recommended videos on my YouTube feed, all to do with this seemingly innocuous title. So what makes Doki Doki Literature Club so good?
Last night, whilst playing Elder Scrolls Online, I managed to finally do something that had taken me months to do. I cleared Veteran Maelstrom Arena with no deaths, giving me a brand new title in the process, The Flawless Conqueror. Arguably the hardest solo content in ESO, I was so chuffed to have done it at last. To make it better, I did it on a class that doesn’t often get through Veteran Maelstrom Arena, as showcased by the lack of entries on the leaderboard. Today, I’d like to step back, chat about gaming achievements and open this up to you, to share yours with us.