DriveThruRPG Review – Drakar

A sci-fi micro-RPG that takes place entirely on a giant colony ship, and uses dominoes instead of dice.

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Designed by: JVC Parry

The Earth is lost (no shocker there). Our only chance for survival is aboard a massive colony ship called the Drakar. As a member of NORSE (the Nordic Office for Research into Space Exploration), your job is to help the ship, and the remnants of humanity, survive whatever problems may arise as you make your way to the promised planet of Valhalla in this micro-RPG that uses a set of dominoes instead of dice.

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Solasta may be the dice-obsessed D&D RPG you’re looking for [PC Gamer]

Read my preview at PC Gamer

Most videogame RPGs cite Dungeons & Dragons as their primary inspiration, but few directly adapt its rules. In a world of cooldowns and mana bars, D&D’s dice rolls, bonus actions, spell slots, and long rests can feel clunky and restrictive when applied to a videogame. Even Baldur’s Gate 3 makes many notable changes to make D&D more user-friendly, while indie RPG Solasta wears the 5e ruleset as a badge of honor, warts and all.

This is a game where combat is on a grid, where every d20 rolls on screen, and where jumping away from enemies is a sometimes-treat rather than a regular part of every meal.

While it may forever lurk in the shadow of Baldur’s Gate 3, its crunchy, dice-heavy combat is just what I want in a lean adaptation of the tabletop RPG.

Read my preview at PC Gamer

Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning Is a Still a Great RPG Nearly a Decade Later [Pixelkin]

Read the full article at Pixelkin

Eight years ago the now infamously defunct 38 Studios released their first and only game. Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning was a big-budget single player RPG. It was created as a prequel to the studio’s ultimate goal of a World of Warcraft-level massively multiplayer RPG.

The MMO was never finished, the studio went bankrupt, and the state of Rhode Island lost millions. But a funny thing happened on the way to this ill-fated venture: Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning was a darn good RPG, and one of the most underrated games of the era.

Read the full article at Pixelkin

Solasta: Crown of the Magister Transforms D&D Into a Tactical RPG [Pixelkin]

Read the full preview at Pixelkin

Video game RPGs owe much of their DNA from the classic tabletop RPG. Despite Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition catapulting the tabletop RPG into mainstream popularity, there’s been a stark lack of officially licensed D&D video games in recent years. Indie studio Tactical Adventures hopes to change that with Solasta: Crown of the Magister.

“We’ve been a big fan of tabletop RPGs for 30 years,” says Mathieu Girard, CEO and creative director at Tactical Adventures. “We have a D&D campaign running every week – currently playing Descent Into Avernus. Making a D&D RPG is a passion project for us.”

Read the full preview at Pixelkin

Iratus: Lord of the Read Review [The Escapist]

Read the full review at The Escapist

Poor Iratus was struck down on the eve of world conquest, his undead horde scattered to the earth. But a good villain never stays dead, least of all a master of necromancy. Starting from the deepest bowels, Iratus must raise a new army of undead monsters to scour dungeons in this compelling tactical-strategy roguelike RPG, Iratus: Lord of the Dead.

Iratus plays like a reverse Darkest Dungeon. Instead of grim heroes delving into dungeons and braving increasing horrors, Iratus is hell-bent on bringing those horrors to the surface.

Read the full review at The Escapist

Turn-Based Combat Is the Right Fit for Baldur’s Gate 3 [Escapist]

Read the full op-ed at Escapist Magazine

In late 2013, InXile Entertainment ran a backer-only poll for its then-upcoming crowdfunded tactical RPG, Torment: Tides of Numenera. The poll addressed whether the combat system should be turn-based, like the original Fallout games, or real-time with pause, like Baldur’s Gate.

The final result was a nearly even split — 48% turn-based to 47% RTwP — with over 14,000 voters, along with some heated discussions and commentary. Ultimately InXile decided to go with a turn-based combat system, and half the fanbase wasn’t happy.

At the time, both systems offered benefits. But after years of playing Pillars of Eternity 1 and 2, the Shadowrun trilogy, and the Divinity: Original Sin series, the advantages of turn-based combat for tactical RPGs have become more pronounced, and it’s a good thing that Baldur’s Gate 3 is following suit.

Read the full op-ed at Escapist Magazine

The Outer Worlds Review [Pixelkin]

Read the full review at Pixelkin

I put about 40 hours into Fallout 4 when it launched in 2015 before I fell off, leaving much of the massive world and story unexplored. I’ve kept it installed on my hard drive ever since, deluding myself that I would jump back in to finish it some day.

After playing The Outer Worlds, I promptly uninstalled Fallout 4. The Outer Worlds’ tight pacing, excellent writing, and fun gameplay have completely satiated my first-person RPG desires – and it does it all in under 40 hours.

Read the full review at Pixelkin