The Republic of Rome is long, difficult and drenched with an extreme dose of randomness. It features no cutscenes or flavour text, choosing instead to cover itself in dice charts and a manual coded like a phone book. And yet, it’s one of the most immersive, thematic and plainly exciting games both in and out of its genre. It’s the perfect example of how mechanics can create an incredible narrative and unforgettable gaming stories.
Videogame and board game reviews by game critic Erik Twice. What does he think about the game of the year? And what about that forgotten classic? Read about it here!
In Riftforce we fight for power and control. As magic broke into the world and elementals began to awaken, ten guilds sought to dominate this new source of strength. In this game of hand management and strategy, prevailing over our opponents will require all our wits and the understanding of the small subtleties inherent to each faction.
Indiana Jones’s adventures stopped for many years after the release of his third film but he remained active in the realm of video games a bit longer. Released in 1992, one of them stands out even today. Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis is a point and click adventure by LucasArts, creators of Monkey Island and Maniac Mansion. It captures the spirit of the original films perfectly and remains a fun romp almost 30 years later.
The Lord of the Rings is not a story of war. At its core, it’s not even a story of orcs, elves or magicians but one of sacrifice and friendship. Knizia’s adaptation of the literary classic is the only game I’ve played that truly recognizes this fact. Through its mechanics, it reflects the difficult journey of the novel and how only cooperation could overcome such dire odds.
Reiner Knizia is not a designer known for his strong themes. Most of his designs feature only the flimsiest of justifications for their settings and are rightly regarded as abstracts. And yet, there’s a satirical side to him. In his 1995 classic High Society, we take the role of twenty century socialites willing to waste our riches in the pursuit of status, clout and appearances.