Thursday, December 4, 2014

Massive Chalice Impressions


Massive Chalice is a strategy game like no other. You play as an immortal ruler who carries on a 300 year war against an enemy called the Cadence. Since the game takes place over 300 years it's your job to create more hero's by creating royal bloodlines to carry on your kingdom. These bloodlines create adorable babies which will grow up to become hero's and continue the fight against the Cadence.


The strategy part of the game is a blast. It plays just like Xcom, so you take turns attacking then defending. During each battle your hero's can level up by defeating enemies. You could save your hero for battle, or have that hero retire to royalty. You create more heroes by pairing a single hero with another hero of the opposite sex. Depending on the characters age and level they can have higher or lower rates of fertility. Though picking better matches could mean taking your best hero off the battle field, but in return getting lots of heirs to your kingdom. Without babies your kingdom will die off and you won't have any hero's to fight off the Cadence. When hero's pass away they are gone for good so it's important to manage your kingdom well, and make plenty of babies.


Now Massive Chalice is a long term strategy game. It's not about winning each individual battle, but looking at the bigger picture of making sure your kingdom survives. It's not just about turning your kingdom into a baby factory but also about researching new skills, abilities, and building new structures. For instance some buildings are used for training children into becoming heroes. Kids don't become hero's till the age of 15 so the crucible is used for increasing there levels before they enter battle. Instead of having a level 1 hero each time they turn 15 you could send high level heroes to the crucible to train children to become a hero at level starting at level 2. Though again by putting a high level warrior into the crucible you lose a good warrior on the battlefield.

What's interesting is how time speeds up and slows down in the game. The game takes place over 300 years of battle with the Cadence, so time slows down when battles take place. At the top right of the screen there is a play button where you can start speeding up time, or pause it whenever you wish. Time stops as well when research is completed on buildings, skills, and items. Also the game has a few random encounters where you're presented with multiple choices to pick from. The decisions you make can either lead to new research, new skills, and maybe even a new hero. Make the wrong decision and you could lose a hero, land, or even have a cursed hero.

Honestly I am not a big fan of strategy games. Usually there a genre I pass over but Massive Chalice even in beta is well worth the money. It's a game thats not just about how well you fight with your heroes, but how well you can manage a kingdom in the long run. I couldn't stop playing this game and kept coming back for hours on end. It's a game with as much polish as Xcom, but with the awesome mechanic of making babies. Who doesn't want more of that in video games? You can purchase Massive Chalice on Steam right now. 

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