Tempting – Battlelore: Command

Yeah, this little gem looks pretty cool. Yes, it comes in a bit  pricy at under $10, but then again, it looks like there’s some serious gameplay value.

The fine folks at PocketTactics pulled together a rather positive review:

I’m starting to feel a bit spoiled. Seriously, what was the last major board game release that ended up a dud? It sure as hell isn’t BattleLore: Command, the latest release from Fantasy Flight Games, which, despite a major omission, is still a strong contender for digital board game of the year.

If you’re a fan of board games or just strategy games in general, BattleLore: Command is going to trip all your triggers.

I’m quite enjoying Sid Meier’s Ace Patrol!

Yep, I’m having fun with Ace Patrol, as you may have seen in my previous post, it’s a light single/multiplayer, World War I strategic combat game. Airfights consist of up to 8 combatants, four per side, and vary depending on aircraft, pilot skill, and game difficulty level.

Ace Patrol is currently only available for iPad, iPod Touch and iPhone in the Canada iTunes store, during this pre-launch period, but it will be available worldwide on May 9th.

I’m having a blast, check out the ingame images below:

A Tale of Two RPGs

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Two cool Fantasy Role Playing Games have caught my attention lately on my iPad; The Battle for Wesnoth and Battleheart.

Yes, they’re both RPGs, but are so dissimilar in their approach and execution that they’re not really treading in each other’s space, so to speak. Here’s why…

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It’s Big
The Battle for Wesnoth (which I’ll call Wesnoth from now on) is a large, turn-based strategy-style RPG. Think back to the old-school versions of WarCraft and you’ve got it, without the hewing of trees or mining of gold.

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Now if this sounds a bit familiar, well it is. The iPad version of Wesnoth is a port (the official port) of the free Linux, MacOSX, and Windows version of the game.

According to the developer:

Battle for Wesnoth is the official port of a gigantic, complex and detailed full-scale strategy-RPG. We made sure that nothing was cut from the game, everything from flags flapping to skeletons juggling their heads, it’s all here!

Wesnoth is a unique combination of tactical strategy RPGs like Fire Emblem, Advance Wars, Panzer General, and Final Fantasy Tactics. Using your hero, you need to capture villages to gain income, and recruit new units to do battle. These units gain experience through combat and can level up into powerful new classes. But make sure to protect your veteran troops, as they can be recalled throughout a campaign!

Yes, it’s big. And fun! And long!

  • Almost 200 campaign scenarios across 15 major campaigns – literally hundreds of hours of gameplay!!
  • Over 200 fully animated unit types in six major factions, all with distinctive abilities, weapons and spells
  • Experienced units gain powerful new abilities as they advance
  • Bring your battle-hardened troops with you as you fight through campaigns
  • Highly detailed and varied terrain graphics
  • Three levels of difficulty for casual to expert players
  • Cross-platform multiplayer matches against iPhone, PC, mac and linux players!
  • Professional music score with 90 minutes of original music
  • OpenFeint integration with achievements

Being turn-based, you have the luxury of time to carefully plot out your moves — not so in this next RPG!

Battleheart
Fun. Cute. Engaging. All words that easily describe my current quick-RPG-fix.
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Battleheart doesn’t really have a fleshed out story, rather it’s more of a RPG forest & dungeon crawl with a set of scenarios encountered by your hearty band of adventurers, here’s my crew.

You progress through the scenerairos, leveling up, collecting loot, finding and spending gold.

As with any good RPG, as you level up you get access to new powers and abilities. And as you get more gold, you can buy better weapons, armor, and magical objects to make your characters more powerful.

Create a unique party of heroes, and lead them in frantic real-time battles against monsters of ever increasing power. Lay waste to your foes with dozens of unique special powers as you gain experience, upgrade your party’s equipment, and craft them into the ultimate battle force!

  • Easily command your army via simple touch commands.
  • Create a unique party from numerous character classes, including stealthy rogues, powerful wizards and stoic knights!
  • Customize your heroes via dozens of unique skills – literally hundreds of class and skill combinations!
  • Make the most of your party’s skills to control the battlefield – turn your opponents into frogs, stun them with poisons, or simply destroy them with meteor strikes and whirlwinds of steel!
  • Over 100 unique items to collect and equip across a 30+ level campaign, complete with epic boss battles!
  • Put your custom party to the ultimate test in survival arenas, where rare and unique rewards can be found!
  • Incredibly sharp animation and art designed specifically for the Retina Display and iPad!

My crew having a BBQ…

A simple and quick game to get into, but one that becomes challenging after a few hours of game play, which it should as it continues to challenge you!

Two Games, for two game experiences
As I mentioned at the outset, these two RPGs are only similar in that they *are* RPGs. Which is great for me because when I tire of pushing my party-of-4 through the next scene in Battleheart, I can switch over to Wesnoth and slow things down a bit, while cranking up the strategy factor. More pure RPG fun!

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A movie scene inspires a genre of casual games

The movie is Aliens – the James Cameron action flick that spawned all sorts of video-game and cultural cliches. But it also spawned some interesting ideas in casual gaming. Consider this scene: Ripley and the Marines are bunking down for the night in the terraform complex on LV-426. But first they have to secure the main medical centre in the complex from alien attack. …more



This post is an excerpt from one of my weekly posts on the Future Shop Techblog. Check out the full post here.