Starship Traveller

Starship Traveller

Starship Traveller offers a nice departure from the usual swords and sorcery settings that the gamebooks are known for. It is a science fiction tale that borrows heavily from Star Trek, but packs a lot of humor as well. Completing the story requires a lot of luck or trial and error, which might annoy some players. However, it remains entertaining and engaging throughout, even if the replay value is not as great as we would have liked. Still, you can’t really go wrong with its low asking price and it is worth it for the nostalgia factor alone.

Gameplay: Lots of reading along with the occasional choices and dice rolls.

Graphics: A couple of nice full color drawings add some flavor to the text.

Sound: Not many sound effects, but the music capture the mood nicely

Stonekeep

Stonekeep

It was a very long wait for gamers back when Stonekeep was first announced until it was released, but it was also worth it. The game is fun to play, although some role playing purists might bemoan the lack of character customization. Stonekeep features a long quest, with plenty of great characters, but is hampered somewhat by slightly tedious combat and endless corridors that look the same. If you don’t mind the slow pace and the fact that the visuals are definitely showing their age, then you will have a lot of fun with Stonekeep.

Gameplay: A fun dungeon crawler with a better than average storyline.

Graphics: Obviously dated now, but back in its time the enemies and special effects were brilliant.

Sound: The voice acting is surprisingly good and the music is nice and atmospheric

Ultima I: The First Age of Darkness

Ultima I: The First Age of Darkness

The Ultima series provided the world with some truly groundbreaking games over the years and it is great to see the humble roots of such an excellent series. This EGA version has been given a new visual coat of paint compared to the monochromatic original, but still looks archaic compared to modern titles. However, the gameplay, although simplistic, can still entertain if you are able to look past the limitations. Whether you want to play it for nostalgic reasons or simply see what all the fuss was about, Ultima 1 should definitely be owned by all retro fans and RPG aficionados.

Gameplay: Truly great for its time, but obviously it is very simplistic by modern standards.

Graphics: Once again good for its time, but time hasn’t been too kind.

Sound: Nothing more than noise

Princess Maker 2 Refine

Princess Maker 2 Refine

It has been quite a long wait, but Princess Maker 2 Refine is finally available to western audiences. There is no denying that it is a very niche title and still has a couple of rough edges to smooth out, but it is still a very addictive title with plenty of replay value. Prepare to lose at least a couple of hours when you get hooked on this game.

Gameplay: Very stat heavy, but once you get the hang of how things work it becomes extremely addictive.

Graphics: The visuals have been spruced up, but still look a little dated compared to more modern titles.

Sound: Nice tunes and full Japanese voice overs

Vigilantes By Timeslip Softworks

Vigilantes By Timeslip Softworks

After releasing Deadstone, one of the most enjoyable top down shooters of 2014, Timeslip Softworks is back with a Kickstarter for their latest title, Vigilantes. This time they have turned their attention to the turn-based strategy genre and have set their sights quite high. Vigilantes is influenced by genre classics from the 90s, such as Jagged Alliance, X-Com and Fallout, but breaks out of the mold with a unique theme and setting

Winter Wolves Releases New Dating Sim RPG Hybrid Queen of Thieves

Winter Wolves Releases New Dating Sim RPG Hybrid Queen of Thieves

Longtime fans of indie developers, Winter Wolves, might remember a little game called “Queen of Thieves” that was announced way back in 2011. The good news is that the game is now finally available on desktop platforms, with a Steam and mobile release also around the corner. It is a dating sim/RPG hybrid, with an optional “visual novel” mode for those who are not fans of role playing elements

Sci-Fi Meets Fantasy In Upcoming Piranha Bytes Game

Sci-Fi Meets Fantasy In Upcoming Piranha Bytes Game

Nordic Games and Piranha Bytes, the team behind the Gothic and Risen franchises recently announced that they have a brand new game in the works. Called ELEX, it is going to be a bit of a departure from their previous work, thanks to a brand new post-apocalyptic science fantasy universe. The developers are promising a vast, seamless game world populated with interesting characters along with mutated creatures. In addition to plenty of thrilling action the game will also ask players to make deep moral choices on their journey

SteamWorld Heist

SteamWorld Heist

SteamWorld Heist is set in the same universe as its predecessor, SteamWorld Dig, but opted for a completely different genre and play style. Despite the switch, the game retains the charming visual style and addictiveness that is becoming a hallmark of Image & Form titles. If you are a fan of turn-based strategy games you really owe it to yourself to add this one to your collection.

Gameplay: Despite being turn-based, the game feels fast and action packed.

Graphics: Detailed, vibrant and well animated.

Sound: Great sound effects and the soundtrack is brilliant

Stranger of Sword City

Stranger of Sword City

Stranger of Sword City is a dungeon crawler with an interesting mix of fantasy and reality. The world of Escario is an interesting, but unforgiving place to explore, so brace yourself for quite a challenge. Battles are frequent and tough, but you have total control over how you want to shape your party of monster slayers. Tracking down and killing all the Lineage type creatures will also keep players busy for ages, so don’t expect to finish this game in a day. If you are looking for an old-school dungeon crawler and can handle a challenge then Stranger of Sword City is the game to play.

Gameplay: Tough and unforgiving, but also very rewarding.

Graphics: Beautiful artwork, but the dungeon textures could have been better.

Sound: Features Japanese voice overs and some nice background music

Sakura Dungeon

Sakura Dungeon

Sakura Dungeon offers a nice fusion of traditional step based dungeon crawling and the manga visual style that has made developer Winged Cloud (in)famous. Despite all the erotic content (mostly censored in the Steam version) the game doesn’t skimp on the role playing elements either. It might not be as in-depth or complicated as other dungeon crawlers, but definitely offers a fun and compelling experience.

Gameplay: Explore dungeons, defeat cute monster girls and then recruit them to your party.

Graphics: The 2D visuals look great despite the lack of animations.

Sound: Great music, but limited sound effects and no voice acting