Only one game to look at this month, so it’s going to be brief…
Legacy of Dragonholt
Though Dragonholt has stayed firmly on my shelf for the last year, and it is one of the few games that are on my ‘move on’ list, it isn’t a bad game, but then, it isn’t a great one either!
If you like ‘choose your own adventure’ games with a fantasy setting, then this is worth a look, though the hefty price tag may deter some. I stand by pretty much everything I said in the review; It plays reasonably well solo and has a few really good mechanisms, such as the use of time when exploring the village, and the story itself is pretty entertaining.
It definitely works better as a solo experience – the way it uses skills, for me, just didn’t really work with more players, and however descriptive you go into designing your character, mechanically they all felt pretty similar and too confined.
It’s an almost there game – it needed something to spice it up. Combat is dull, though through no fault of the dialogue, it’s just the way the skills work, and whatever skills you choose to use out of the options given, you never feel as though you are in control of a situation, as a lot of the choices just don’t end up doing what you wanted, or envisioned, them to do!
What the game does have going for it, though, is the story and its many side quests, some of which are along the lines of ‘pick up and deliver’ but others are much more involving, and they lead the story along some interesting paths.
For me, I enjoyed fair chunk of the story, though I found some of the results when you choose which skill to use, a little frustrating, and the humour, whilst a nice addition, was often ill timed, destroying the building tension of the moment. I also found I wanted more to do; better control over my character when things got tough.
Despite the pretty good narrative, I did struggle to finish the game, as I found my interest waning. I keep going on about it, but the lack of player involvement and the vast amount of text, especially if playing with others, makes me want to read a good book rather than play the game for any length of time!
Since Legacy of Dragonholt’s release in 2017, there have been several other games of this ilk released, and the majority give the player(s) a greater sense of involvement – like they’re actually playing the game rather than tagging along in someone else’s story. From the many out there, two that spring to mind are House of Danger and War with the Evil Power Master, both from Z-Man Games; not Fantasy, but they do offer something a little different, play quicker, and cost a lot less!
One year on – A Game better experienced solo, and if you like your adventure games to be narrative driven, having no dice to roll or cards to draw, then this could be a winner for you, but be sure to check out all the opposition first.