This one caught me by surprise a bit, but there is a massive sale on slitherine/Matrix titles happening right now on Steam, and there are some great deals on great wargames that everyone should be checking out!
Check out Fantasy General II. The latest DLC Evolution just dropped and I reviewed it a couple days ago. It’s fantastic, and so is the base game. If anyone needs to see what a modernized wargame can look like, look no further than Fantasy General II.
Shadow Empire is an excellent 4x game with deep RPG elements and an amazing world generation. Games are dramatically different depending on the type of world you build, but there is a consistent focus on logistics, tactics, and empire building that I adore. Definite one more turn vibes.
Strategic Command WWI is one of my favourite comfort games. The tactical gameplay is deep enough to keep you thinking, but the overall mechanical load is light enough that it’s very playable after a long day of hard work.
Warhammer 40k: Gladius managed to get away with something I didn’t think was possible. What if you got rid of diplomacy in Civilization? Guess what, it works. Each faction plays very differently, and the emphasis on combat highlights one of the best bits of the Civilization series with AI that can put up a competent defense.
The Sale lasts until Monday, so check it out before it’s too late!
You know it’s going to get good when one of the first things you do in a campaign is eat your siblings for getting uppity. Fantasy General II: Evolution is the latest expansion for the already excellent Fantasy General II released in 2019. The third official DLC, Evolution places you in control of the Lizardfolk Szzlag as he attempts to devour his way to prominence across the Broken Isles.
I had the pleasure of reviewing Fantasy General II on its release, and I was very surprised with just how good a job the developers, Owned by Gravity, managed to do conveying the spirit of the classic 1996 game while modernizing a whole heap of systems. If nothing else, go check out the base game when you get a chance. It’s a good game and worthy of a playthrough. Now, to the swamps!
Fantasy General II has generally done a good job of creating a fascinating fantasy world and backed it up with good game narratives in the base game. The story of Falirson and the Empire was entertaining and I’m glad to see that Szzlag’s story is as well. The writing, possible decisions, and outcomes all reinforce the fact that Lizardfolk are not human and do not share a lot of human sensibilities. Theirs is an eat or be eaten world of hunting and raiding where weakness means a swift death. Don’t let Szzlag be weak. Don’t let Szzlag be human, it may save you later!
Evolution goes that extra mile and demonstrates the nature of this harsh world through gameplay. The game does an excellent job out of the gate of introducing you to a totally different playstyle. Lizardfolk are not the strongest fighters out there, but they are excellent ambushers and full of crafty light infantry. Since Lizardfolk can maneuver quickly through water tiles, and can even hide in deep water and kelp forests, setting up ambushes and luring enemies into traps is the name of the game. Just watch out for the carnivorous fauna! Setting up an ambush and seeing it go off without a hitch is second only to massive encirclements for giddy wargaming highs. There is nothing quite as fun as watching the enemy’s giant crab trigger 3 different ambush moves and defensive fires as they move to attack an exposed gaggle of newts.
Eventually, you’ll encouter Hoomans, with their fantastical trinkets, floating hovels, and distinct lack of swimming ability. The dichotomy between fighting humans on the coast and fighting humans in land is amazing, and requires a very different approach. Pelting humans with javelins and stones from the water while luring ships to underwater ambushes is great fun. Hiding in the jungle, sacrificing newts to lure humans out of position so your weaker units can scrape some advantage, is equally so.
On the campaign layer Lizardfolk play very differently as well. Szzlag and some high tier units require evolution points to upgrade. These are generally acquired by eating notable Lizardfolk, which quickly becomes tied to the central narrative of the campaign. In addition to evolution points, liquid mana is a key resource. This is acquired by raiding certain settlements or, more reliably, whenever a friendly unit dies. Now the cost of hiring a new unit of newts can be weighed against the value of their death. If these units can be killed in a manner that serves an ambush, well then, everything turns up Szzlag!
I was generally enthralled with this expansion. Lizardfolk make you think and play very differently from most wargames, not just from the base Fantasy General II experience. The campaign can be made more difficult though a few settings, but I felt the difficulty was good, punishing foolish mistakes and rewarding careful plays. I rarely sit down for several hour gaming sessions anymore, but I found myself making time in the evening to get through a mission or two. I really had fun.
Fantasy General II was already a great wargame and this expansion does about everything I’d hope an expansion would do. Gameplay is significantly different, the narrative is interesting, and the campaign is engaging throughout. Definitely check out Fantasy General II: Evolution if you have any interest at all.
Tabletop wargaming is such a fun and satisfying hobby. Whether its for historical settings or fantasy and sci-fi, the hobby is rich, full of wonderful artistic people, and an excellent way to spend an evening in good company. From working out a particular force or battle to hobby towards, gathering the necessary miniatures, painting them up, and then seeing them in action on a table, there’s enjoyment to be had at every stage of the journey.
Unfortunately, miniatures are expensive, painting is time consuming, and the required space is generally quite extreme. From the relatively doable 4′ by 4′ up through the standard 6′ by 4′ to whatever Black Powder tries to get you to play on (I don’t have a 12′ by 8′ table Warlord, be kind!), Setting up a home gaming space can be daunting.
Alternatives to Buying Miniatures at Retail
There have been some excellent innovations in 3D printing, allowing for relatively inexpensive options for many of the most popular settings, but even that can be out of reach for many.
So I’m here to write about another alternative that I don’t believe gets the same attention as pewter, plastic, and resin do. Paper! There is really no less expensive way to get a fully functioning army on a table than paper miniatures. Now I know that paper miniatures might conjure images of crudely drawn stick figures or a rectangle with the word “Rhino” written on it, but with the right tools, the work of excellent artists, and some spare time, you can have a full tabletop ready to game in an evening or two of listening to your favourite podcast (Ahem! Episode 6: No One Seems To Know What Professional Wargames Are).
Paper Miniatures You Say? Surely You Jest?
When done correctly, paper miniatures can be absolutely stunning, as I hope some of the better done images in this article suggest. The requirements are also dirt cheap. A pair of decent scissors from your local scissor dispensary, some cheap glue, and a colour printer.
My Favourite Historical Paper Miniatures
For historicals, I love the work of Hellion & Company’s Paper Soldiers Line. Most are illustrated by legendary artist Peter Dennis. If you’ve read any Osprey books, there’s a good chance you’ve seen his work. I had the pleasure of meeting him at a convention early in 2020. He had brought his paper ancients and they were simply stunning. Stunning to the point that I immediately went to the Hellion & Co. booth and bought one of the books myself.
The miniatures can be scanned and printed or, in the case of the book I purchased, cut directly from the pages. I’d recommend going the printing route so there’s always the potential for backups. Although if you’re a little more forward thinking than I was, there are purchasable PDFs on their site which are obviously easier to print.
My Favourite Fantasy Paper Miniatures
In terms of fantasy miniatures, I’m mostly be exposed to the art of One Page Rule’s Patreon miniatures, but I love them. (Again, full disclosure, I’ve done some comission work for OPR). The art style is fun and cartoony and the optional black border makes for easier cut jobs. The campaign I wrote, Darkness Within, pits humans against vampires and their undead minions. I don’t have any miniatures for either army and so I decided to go the 2D route. It’s been incredibly easy to print off two of each sheet and go to town, creating enough for a small skirmish within a day.
There are plenty of other artists out there and a quick troll through wargamesvault reveals dozens of free and paid paper miniatures. Finding an artist or company whose work you enjoy and want to support is another fun part of this avenue of the hobby.
Last time on the blog I announced my intention to fix my old Warhammer Fantasy High Elves and get them ready for Age of Fantasy: Regiments. I’ve finally sat down and given the whole set a good once over, sorting out exactly what I have that fits with the ruleset and what kind of work lies before me.
Full Disclosure: I have been commissioned to write narrative work for One Page Rules. I don’t receive anything from people using the site or downloading anything, nor have I been asked to write this. I just honestly love the system and wish more people would find it!
From Warhammer 7th Ed. to One Page Rules
When I put this army together and partially painted it as a bright eyed and easily distracted youngster, the name of everyone’s game was Warhammer Fantasy Battles, 7th Edition. As we go through each until, you’ll see what kind of havoc that set wreaked on unit composition loadouts.
Thankfully some years back I was given the opportunity to review the excellent One Page Rules, which started life as a way to play Warhammer Fantasy and Warhammer 40k without the massive and unnecessary rules bloat. I absolutely fell in the love with the system, and thankfully so did my regular wargaming group. Rules wise, we’ve since switched wholesale away from old man Warhammer and into One Page Rules.
As a first step to this daunting task, I went looking through the OPR High Elves Army list (itself only one page, thankfully) and tried to sort out exactly what I have that fits with the army. I’m specifically gearing this army towards the Age of Fantasy: Regiments game so that I can keep the feeling of the old games alive. I’ve always been more of a fan of squared off regiments than free moving units. All the point values and unit rules I’m using are freely available here under ‘Army Books.’
Princes & Mages: High Elf Royalty
The Leadership of any army is a good place to start. At some point, too distant to remember, I acquired the High Elves from the Island of Blood starter set. No doubt I had hoped to put this project in motion much earlier, but time makes fools of us all. No matter. The second best time is now, right?
First off I’ve got a pristine and unpainted Elf Prince on Griffon with Lance. That comes out to 175 points and should be a formidable force on the battlefield. Since he’s going to end up a centerpiece, I’m going to leave the painting to my much more talented wife (Detailed look at her amazing Nurgle Chaos Army coming soon!)
Beside that is a High Elf Prince on Horse, also with a lance. The discerning can see my young self’s attempt a freehanding an owl on the shield. I believe I’ll keep that exactly as is after regluing. the plastic has held up quite well so very few touchups are needed.
Next is the Island of Blood Mage, a beautiful sculpt and again untouched. He comes to 60 points with Level 2 Magic. Will be shoving him towards my wife’s paintbrush too!
Lastly, and the most funny, is my attempt at pulling one over on Games Workshop. The kit that came with the Prince on Horse could either create a mounted or foot version, but not both. Butchering a Dark Elf Spearman got me this abomination. I’m going to run him as a Phoenix Prince, with no upgrades for 70 points.
Infantry and Elite Forces
The core of any force is the infantry. In Warhammer 7th Ed. that means bringing out literally the least amount of basic soldiers you could get away with. My Spearmen were organized in a unit of 15 which allowed every spearman to fight to the front, striking first.
In Age of Fantasy Spearmen are classed as Warriors and come in groups of 10. I’d love to be able to run 20, which means fixing up a few of the unpainted models in the back. A block of 20 with spears will hold their own and only come in at 285 points. If I manage to find a pile more Spearmen somewhere, I’d love to put together a second unit, but I’m not counting on it.
Archers work best as small units that add activations and long range, in my experience. So I’ve broken down my Archers into units of 5 without any command. These come in at 195 points total.
Also from Island of Blood, Sword Masters become Elites, with a full command come in at 185 points. The Seaguard are now simply Guardians, and they thankfully max out at 10 per unit, so they’re going to become the core of my ranged force. They come in at 185 points as well. Bows are expensive.
Elites with Lion Cloaks (My weirdly untouched White Lions) operate the same way as Sword Masters with Lion Cloaks adding stealth for some protection from ranged attacks. These lovely models seriously need some paint. They’ll be in a unit of 10 unless I can find 5 more somewhere. They come in at 205 points.
Cavalry, Artillery, & Chariots
The Island of Blood Light Cavalry are in as good shape as the rest of the set, so there’s nothing to do but paint them. They’ll cost 135 points for all the goodies like bows and lances. My SIlver Helms, on the other hand, suffered from Warhammer 7th Ed. It was easy enough to throw a character in alongside 6 horsemen and call it a day. Thankfully Age of Fantasy keeps everything to the same frontage, so Heavy Cavalry units will come in 5 or 10 strong. As I have 6 painted and only needing minor repair out of 8 total, they’re going to function as a unit of 5 until I can find some extras. At 5 strong they cost 155 points. At 10 they’re 260.
Chariots are good fun, and Having 3 running around the battlefield rarely gets old. As you can see, they’re in quite different states of disrepair. They might be one of the first projects I work on, as long as I can find a proper chariot base for the second Lion Chariot. They come to 170 each for the Lions, and 150 for the Horse Chariot.
Finally we get to the artillery. I have 2 Bolt Throwers, one of which is modeled with extra shots and the other without. Taking one of each costs 85 and 55 points. They’re definitely useful and small enough, so they might find the painting table after the chariots are fixed.
Conclusion: I’ve Got My Work Cut Out For Me
That was a lot to cover, but I’m glad I went through the effort of sorting them out. With every unit on the table filled out, I’ve got myself over 3,000 points for Age of Fantasy: Regiments. Now I’ve got a goal to hopefully have everything done and painted by the time restrictions are lifted and everyone is vaccinated. Time to get to work!
We haven’t really talked very much about tabletop miniature content on Let’s Talk About Wargames, but we really should be. I started my wargaming career as a bright eyed youngster along two paths. One was dreamily watching Shogun: Total War‘s armies march about at 20FPS on the family Windows 98. The other was staring into the display cabinets at the local Games Workshop.
Tabletop wargaming is every bit as integral to the wider hobby as the other avenues of play, but the amount of time, effort, space, and money requried to make good on it might put some interested players off of the whole thing.
Getting Started with Tabletop Wargames?
Luckily there are some individuals and groups putting in the effort to make tabletop gaming more accessible. I’d particularly like to shout out the following:
Little Wars TV have been working to make historical tabletop wargaming easy to dive into with tutorial builds, a free ‘Dark Ages’ skirmish ruleset, and a series of excellent battle reports with historical commentary.
One Page Rules offers a myriad of fantasy and science fiction rulesets that fit on a single page, are easy to play, and remain model-agnostic. (Full Disclosure- I have been previously commissioned to write Narrative campaigns for OPR. Something I was eager to do because I love the system so much)
A Horror Unearthed: Unpainted Minis!
My wife and I recently helped my parents clean up their storage space and made a troubling discovery. Our Warhammer miniatures, which we had put away at the end of Undergrad and were believed lost to time and space, were just hanging out this whole time down in the basement.
Sacha’s army of Nurgle Chaos Warriors was almost perfectly intact and as beautifully painted as I remembered. My Orcs and Goblins were in a similar state, though less well done and less complete (there are always more goblins to paint).
Beneath them both, however, were the remnants of my high school High Elf army. Realizing that we don’t already have enough projects on the go (we do) Sacha and I decided that we were going to work on building, repairing, and painting this army to conform to One Page Rules’ Age of Fantasy: Regiments, which for my money is the best fantasy miniature game modeled after the classic Warhammer Fantasy.
High Elves Always Have a Plan
So how to go about doing it? Well first things first, we need to figure out exactly what we have as it lines up with Age of Fantasy: Regiments. From there we’ll need to know what models we need to acquire or remove to create properly sized units.
Then we need to get building and fixing. A lot of damage happened to these poor guys as they languished in boxes. I’m primarily the builder here, and Sacha is the excellent painter. Once we know what is what, it’s time to go through and glue, pin, greens tuff, and magnetize everybody. I’ll probably post some mini tutorials on these topics as I tackle them, with pictures.
The last step, once everyone is put together, is painting them up. Sacha has taken on the task of painting the monsters, heroes, and other big flashy stuff, and I’m going to be handling the rank and file.
More to Come: Historical and Fantasy Tabletop Game Coverage
As we work through this project, I’ll be posting regular updates and starting to trickle out more content related to tabletop miniature wargames, both historical, fantasy, and sci-fi. There’s a lot to cover but I’m a big fan (and more importantly a glutton for punishment.)
With a prayer for accuracy from the artillery-gentlemen on the hill, Hoàng Đăng Bình and his allies in the Viet Minh 204th regiment charge forwards to liberate Đông Khê from French colonial forces. Over the next hour the dedicated band of heroes liberate prisoners, assault bunkers, hold off waves of attackers, and finally liberate a small town from occupation. It could have been a level in any Call of Duty or Medal of Honor game, and that is the most fascinating part of playing 7554.
I may be terrible at First Person Shooters, but diving into Vietnam’s only major historical videogame production is worth my repeated (probably avoidable) deaths. From the Battle of Hanoi in 1946 to the Battle of Điện Biên Phủ in 1954, 7554 provides the perfect fodder for exploring how non-western companies and governments navigate historical memory and the business of selling videogames.
If you’re interested in watching the playthrough that inspired this article, head over to our Youtube channel.
7554‘s availability makes it one of the few non-western, non-Japanese historical war-themed games available for consumption outside their own domestic markets. This gives 7554 a unique and interesting seat amongst the many domestically produced propagandistic games that have been appearing around the world for nearly 20 years. (My repeated attempts to track down playable versions of Chinese produced wargames for the home market are a testament to the difficulty in finding anything working).
A brief overview: 7554 takes place during the First Indochina War, or the Anti-French Resistance War, placing the player as a Việt Minh fighter attempting to oust the French Colonial forces from their homeland. The game does its very best to present the conflict in purely those terms, with the focus on the Việt Minh’s tactical and strategic decisions over any attempt to engage with the political component of the conflict. It makes sense, 7554 was developed with help from the government of Vietnam, and they were very clear about what could and couldn’t be represented, according to the developers.
For instance, there is no multiplayer in 7554. Chiefly this is due to the fact that there cannot be any instance of shooting Việt Minh soldiers by the player. This extends much farther to the fact that the French forces on display in 7554 don’t include any of the 10s of thousands of Vietnamese who fought against the Việt Minh. Instead the French Forces are comprised of white and black Frenchmen, clearly indicating the colonial nature of the player’s opposing forces.
Materially, the game does an excellent job of portraying the hodgepodge of weaponry that would have been available to both sides. Weapons of Japanese, French, American, German, and Soviet make are all scattered throughout the game. The missions themselves play out in well done environments and are generally playable, though feel trapped in a world made in 2003. This is no real fault of the developers. They were working with the tools they had at hand a managed to make an interesting game with it.
Scattered throughout 7554 are key moments, usually cutscenes, that show the main characters or their comrades performing over the top heroic deeds. This initially struck me as hammy. But the more I played the more I realized that this is exactly the same kind of thing players see every time they boot up Call of Duty or any of the other myriad of shooters from the decade of the 2000s starring American soldiers. The propaganda is definitely tailored to the audience, with over the top heroics in 7554 replaced with awesome shows of technical force in later Call of Dutys.
There is a lot to talk about with this game, and I might make a second piece once we reach the conclusion of the main campaign. For now, I’d highly recommend checking out our Let’s Play if you have any interest in how this game portrays the conflict.
It’s a feeling that’s all too common. It’s Christmas Eve, and you’ve suddenly realized that you’ve forgotten to buy something for the ardent wargamer on your list. What will you do!? Head to Steam of course and send them a wargame digitally. Here are some of (but not all of) our favourite wargame picks this year. You can’t go wrong grabbing any of them for yourself or loved ones.
We have no affiliation or links and won’t earn a cent from this. We just like these games in particular and want to amplify them. Happy gaming!
I very much like Unity of Command 2 and its recent expansion, Blitzkrieg. In terms of operational level command in a WW2 game, it’s hard to beat these. UoC had a bit of a problem with being more “puzzle-y” than wargame-y, but UoC2 has solved that issue. There are lots of ways to successfully complete your objectives in this turn-based bad boy, coupled with a solid logistics system that will beat the hell out of you/ your opponent if you’re not careful.
I’m also fond of the persistent units in UoC2, your veteran units will gain experience through multiple scenarios and you can upgrade them with various specialist “steps”, or reinforce them with things get bloody. And they will! Every mission has a timetable you have to meet, and you will have to spill some of your own blood to complete objectives on time. Tick Tock, capture Warsaw please.
This one was something of a sleeper hit for wargamers this year. Something normally out of our element, as it is a stealth-based real-time tactics game, but it’s probably the most fun you’ll have being a guerrilla in WW2.
You’ve got a squad of partisans (duh) that you can order around on missions during the start of Barbarossa, sabotaging tanks, poisoning supplies, all sorts of very partisan-y things, and boy is it fun to do. Your partisans all specialize in different areas, meaning you can pull off some interesting combos to take down a patrol silently or, when required, go loud and shoot down a whole square of Nazis at once. The controls are a bit finicky at points, but the experience makes up for that handily.
Technically, yes, CK3 is more of a grand strategy game, I know. BUT it does have a lot of very strong wargame elements when it comes to the composition of armies, placement of forces, and logistics to support your men. Warring isn’t easy in CK3, which is why it’s good to be good at the politicking side of it as well.
Your character will be the ruler of a house, fully realized as an independent player on the map, and all other landed rulers are modeled as well. So, schmooze up to some friends and have them help you in your wars… or just assassinate people in the line of succession until you take their lands. There’s a lot of options here! It’s great! Buy it!
Total Warhammer 2 is a very fun (and relatively light) wargame, packaged with a nice strategy game layer. Send your fantasy beastmen against the cities of the treacherous elves, throw skeletons at alligator men, and call down a meteor against the enemy dwarves. It’s like getting to be a kid again and smashing your toys against each other in imagined epic fantasy battles, but realized on your PC. Or, you know, if you play the Warhammer tabletop game, it’s pretty cool too, I guess.
Total Warhammer 2 did not come out this year, but it’s had consistent updates and new DLCs pretty regularly since its release. Couple that with the fact that it integrates with Total Warhammer 1 and presumably will with Total Warhammer 3, if Total War interests you, it’s a good time to pick it up.
So John Tiller Software is kind of an eternal presence in the world of digital wargaming. They’ve been making games with (virtually) the same tools for decades now. There are games to cover the Napoleonic Wars, The two World Wars, and a lot of other conflicts that are less common, like the Spanish Civil War.
Their recent collaboration with Wargames Design Studio has breathed some life into the old games, with new releases coming along with a fancier engine and some classics getting a remake. There’s really no better time to check JTS/WDS out.
My most recent playthrough was Sheldt ‘44 which covers the campaigns through the low countries, but I’ve also sunk a lot of time into Japan ‘45and Japan ‘46two games that cover the planned invasion of Kyushu and the Kanto region as part of Operation Downfall.
Once you get a handle on the system’s controls, you’ll be blazing through the games and enjoying a deep, but relaxed, operational level campaign. These games are also great for those interested in Orders of Battle and maps, as both are exceptionally researched and well presented within the games.
This one came out of nowhere for me. An indie strategic game of the Eastern Front of WWII, Cauldronsforces players to make crucial decisions about how their armies will interact with conquered areas as they advance. This means confronting the horrors of war head on.
The gameplay is straightforward and abstract. Players assign armies and corps to different fronts and then give them broad orders. The actual conduct of battles is fed back to players through a text ticker. It might take a while to get used to, but it is quite the unique experience.
This has become my new favourite “comfy” wargame. The Strategic Command series offers a high level strategic view of both WWI and WWII but I’ve found Strategic Command WWI to be my favourite. Players control an entire alliance and attempt to win the war through research, diplomacy, production, and the actual control of units.
Once players have gotten the hang of the system, which shouldn’t take very long, they’ll be digging trenches in the west and launching cavalry charges in the east in no time. The ease with which this game operates has made it a favourite for me after long work days. I can settle in and play a few months worth of turns without my brain frying, all while still getting a convincing recreation of the First World War.
Armoured Commander definitely flew under the radar for a lot of people, but I’m hoping more will check it out. A unique experience, Armoured Commander IIputs players in command of a tank squadron in WWII. More of an RPG than a strategy experience, there’s real tension in deciding how your tank will operate, how to upgrade your crew members, and how to tackle each day.
Armoured Commander II doesn’t pull any punches either. A solid hit will knock your tank out and might even kill some crew members. Having to replace a lost driver hurts after you’ve spent several missions with him and leveled him up. There’s a certain narrative flair to Armoured Commander II that you don’t really get with some higher level games.
The simplistic graphics shouldn’t put anyone off, as they mean there are dozens of tanks, campaigns, and other support units to engage with. There’s a lot of content in a small package here for quite a cheap price.
Another indie entry, Operation Citadelis reminiscent of the classic Panzer General games. The base package includes campaigns from all across WWII but the main draw is the included modding tools.
While there is a lot of fun to be had fighting gigantic campaigns using the built in maps of Asia and Europe, as well as individual missions all over the place, the integrated tools let your imagination run wild.
I’m currently in the process of trying to build a squad level mod for Operation Citadel set in the Pacific Theatre, and it’s coming together remarkably well considering my less-than-stellar game design knowledge. Check it out, there’s a lot of content and if you’re crafty, the sky’s the limit.
Hades is super, very, extremely good. It’s a roguelike game where you play Hades’ son, Zagreus, who for reasons not stated initially, really wants to get the hell out of… Hell. You will fail, and fail often, but luckily, since our star Zag is a god of the Underworld, he just pops right back out at the bottom of the river Styx to make another climb out. The combat has a lot of options in it, with 6 different weapons to choose from, all of which have a bunch of different modes you can run with. Not to mention on your many, many runs, there are several Olympian gods who will grant you boons to aid you with your escape. The way that these mix into the gameplay feels very satisfying, and those of you with strategy-focused brains can think of some pretty clever combinations to make a run go well.
The story is one of the best I’ve seen in any game from the past 10 years (and was robbed at the Game Awards, to be frank), with stellar writing, music, and voice acting making you feel strongly for all the characters you run into. It’s a great story about family, love, betrayal, and determination that knows how to balance between a drama and a comedy. Do yourself a favor and play Hades.