“It isn’t the passing of time that makes us age,
but time spent in vain.“
As the end of the year approaches, almost everyone does one (or even both) of these two things: write a chart of the best stuff of the last 12 months, or make generic comments about the passing of time.
Now, about the first point. I’m terribly sorry to our dear Marcello 😀, but I’ve always found charts – whether on music, video games, novels… – quite useless.
The reason is quite simple. Take for example Tales of Arise, which some consider one of the best RPGs of 2021. While it may be a great game, for me, though, it isn’t even a real RPG (!). So, in the end, it’s all essentially just a matter of “taste”. Everyone has their opinion about almost everything. A chart is just a specific way to express it. Let us not forget what a long time ago Democritos said: “Nothing exists except atoms and empty space; everything else is just an opinion“.
About the “passing of time”, I think that the quote at the beginning of this article is, well, rather self-explanatory. Generally speaking, I hate phrases like “I’m getting older“, “time goes so fast” or something like that. Nobody gets old while he conserves his curiosity and his sense of wonder.
I’m that kind of person who always tries to avoid making an analysis of his life. Maybe I’m just a coward, but I simply prefer to look forward instead of behind me.
And, talking about future, we can safely say that this month looks to offer many promising games like the amazing Expeditions: Rome, Lost Scavenger and the unique Reverie Knights Tactics. And thinking that I still have a huge backlog…
Turn-Based RPGs & Strategy Games set to be released during January 2022
THE MONSTER BREEDER – 3rd JANUARY
The Monster Breeder is a turn-based fantasy game that tries to mix two vastly different components.
The first one essentially gives the player a chance to buy some creature eggs and, subsequently, tame and breed them until they become strong enough to fight in the arena.
The second one, however, is the real combat phase that puts your characters and your beloved monsters against other teams in the arena, fighting for gold and glory. But beware, one of the main features of this game is permadeath, so choose wisely!
On Steam at the beginning of the next year!
ALDER FORGE (E.A.) -7th JANUARY
Alder Forge is a turn-based RPG, in the vein of classic JRPGs. Here, you have to lead a party of 5 heroes in a story-driven adventure, taking place in a handcrafted and imaginative world.
Each character will have a unique story to tell and their own set of skills. The developers promise an “adaptive turn-based combat system” (whatever this means!), which is easy to use, but difficult to master.
If you are a fan of JRPGs give it a chance. It may surprise you!
MONADS II – 7th JANUARY
Monads II is the continuation of (try to guess) Monads I. As such, it’s a perfect blend of a tactical RPG and a puzzle. You’ll have to use your wit in order to win each scenario of its thrilling campaign, by taking advantage of your characters’ skills.
The game is clearly inspired by the great classics of the past, like Final Fantasy Tactics. At the same time, it does try to break new ground. For example, it completely eliminates randomness, which means that the same behavior will always lead to the same result!
On Steam soon!
LOST SCAVENGER (E.A.) -16th JANUARY
Many years ago, I played a very “indie-ish” game, called Neo Scavenger. The game has become somewhat of a cult classic over time. It was hard, ruthless, and… extremely fascinating.
Well, Lost Scavenger can boast, not only a very similar name, but also a similar appeal.
The game puts you in the shoes of an ordinary guy who finds himself thrown into a harsh world overrun by a strange and deadly Mist. You’ll have to fight for resources, ally with other survivors, and discover the secrets of this world.
Would you be able to find the way to your home world, or will you adapt to live under the Mist domain?
MAGE TOWER – 17th JANUARY
Something in-between a strategy and a puzzle game. Mage Tower is described as “an RPG game that blends fixed number turn-based with 2D platformer action adventure“. Here, the player must match their equipment and use limited resources to win the devilish challenges in carefully designed levels.
- A horizontal scroll game with a fixed number of turn-based levels as the core gameplay
- Smooth 2D manipulation: dash forward, double jump, and use your sword to kill enemies immediately
- Powerful equipment system, up to 12 equipment strategies can be set
- Get new equipment and skills constantly! A flexible combination of skills and equipment is the key
- The follow system allows the player to get help from NPCs
- Rich level elements, including attack gems, defense gems, buffs, keys…
- 2D pixel animation brings life to countless characters
- The unique visual design brings a unique beauty to the game world
- Up to 200 kinds of monsters! 10 epic boss battles! More than 400 monster skills! Face fierce enemies and defeat evil demons on your journey
WARNO – 20th JANUARY
Eugen Systems are best-known for their WARGAME series of real-time strategy games. Their newest game, WARNO, releases on 20 January and takes a slightly different approach. Like its predecessors, WARNO – an abbreviation of Warning Order – takes place in an alternate history where the Cold War has escalated into a global conflict.
Players command historical units fielded by the countries of both NATO and the Warsaw Pact, and must carefully deploy these to best counter the enemy.
EXPEDITIONS: ROME – 20th JANUARY
Well, if you are a real turn-based lover, you certainly have heard of Logic Artists. This is the team behind some very good strategy RPGs, like the impressive Expeditions: Vikings.
What usually characterizes their games is a high historical accuracy and a good level of realism (so forget about wizards or things like that…), without sacrificing exploration and adventure.
This time, the developers at Logic Artists have decided to direct their attention to the ancient Roman Empire. You are a Legatus who, along with 5 unique companions, has to lead your armies in 3 different war campaigns. While, at the same time, your own personal story unfolds amidst political intrigues and choices that really matter!
- Create your own Roman Legatus! Customize your character’s look, gender, class, and skills to match your playstyle and role-playing fantasy
- Engage in tactical turn-based combat powered by an extensive skill-based action system where each weapon affects your strength on the battlefield
- Adventure with 5 unique companions discovering their extensive backstories and unique personalities
- Explore a beautifully realized, colorful world across many different environments, including North Africa, Greece, Gaul, and Rome herself
- Experience a historically inspired story of political intrigue and personal drama through a fully voiced narrative where choices matter and consequences are far-reaching
- Level-up each character and select from a variety of skills and passive abilities to explore a wide range of tactical options
- Loot, Craft, and Equip a variety of weapons, armor, and tactical items to customize your game even further, providing a tremendous range of tactical options for each character
- Lead your legion on 3 extensive war campaigns across Greece, North Africa, and Gaul. Recruit legionaries, improve your war camp, conquer regions, exploit resources, and defend your territories as you lead your legion to victory
REVERIE KNIGHTS TACTICS – 25th JANUARY
Developed by indie studio 40 Giants Entertainment, Reverie Knights Tactics is a true story-driven RPG. It features turn-based battles on a 2D isometric grid, as well as decisions that alter the story and the way characters progress during the game.
Embark on an expedition to Lennorien, the long-forgotten elven city to save those you’ve lost, while fighting the goblin menace! Lead your party of heroes, each having distinct special abilities and skills, allowing you to use varied battle strategies. Discover a fantasy world featuring a complex map and scenarios in an epic adventure, visual novel style! Craft new items and accessories from the treasures you collect and use them as a tactical advantage every time you configure your characters.
- Beautiful Hand Drawn Art: Meticulous multilayer artwork from pencil sketch to full detail color
- Decision-driven Storyline: Make several choices during your quests, affecting the story and other characters’ reactions
- Character Customization: Customize character’s performance attributes, skills, and accessories for improved abilities!
- Item Crafting: Collect powerful items as you explore the world and discover combinations to create new items
- Exploration: Travel over an expansive map, unlocking secret quests, solving puzzles, and exploring scenarios and evil dungeons!
- Up to Four Hero Characters: Control 4 different heroes, each one with distinct, special abilities and skills, allowing for multiple battle strategies
- Battle Phases: React to your opponent’s strategy and come up with the perfect tactic every turn, challenging you to think ahead
- Interactive Battle Scenarios: Manipulate parts of the battle environments, and use scenario effects to your advantage!
- Multiple Battle Grids: Each battle contains a different isometric grid, resulting in a unique experience
As usual, on Steam!
INVASION: NEO EARTH – 28th JANUARY
Retro turn-based strategy in a sci-fi world of sinister alien invaders. Take command of troops, tanks and planes as you position your units for the perfect strike or unbreakable defense. Plot the course of humanity’s war against the insidious Sectyd by choosing your own missions.
The year is 2087- a freak meteorite shower brings unwelcome visitors. Take command of Earth’s defense forces to deploy soldiers, grav tanks, robots and jets on battlefields across a retro sci-fi style world. Customize each unit’s weaponry with an array of explosive hi-tech guns. Choose your battles to direct your campaign against the insidious, alien Sectyds.
- Turn-based strategic action, reminiscent of the 90s
- Bombastic Synthwave and Heavy Metal soundtrack
- Campaign with branching mission choices
- Customize every single unit’s weaponry, choosing from an arsenal of futuristic guns
WARRIORS: RISE TO GLORY! – JANUARY
Have you ever dreamed of being a powerful gladiator fighting for freedom at the risk of your life? No? Ok nice, this means that… I’m not alone!
Anyway, Warriors: Rise to Glory! tells the not-so-orginal story of the mad emperor Ayziz, who reigns over the realm of Indiekingdom (!). This deranged ruler decides to use his dark powers to open a portal to different timelines. All for the purpose of making thousands of warriors, from all over the multiverse, fight against each other.
Do you want to know the features? Here they are:
- Fight intense turn-based battles in spectacular arenas
- Create your custom warrior with crazy looks and bestow upon him the most ridiculous fearsome honorary titles
- Gain experience and level up your warrior with better stats and new combat skills
- Enter the arena in individual duels or tournaments to the death
- Test your skills in survival mode and rule the Indiekingdom’s leaderboard
- Earn money as you progress to buy cool gear (or just loot them from these poor bastards’ corpses)
- Please the crowd, and they might help you in and outside the arena
- Decide the fate of your fallen opponents: kill them or humiliate them… and earn rewards based on your decisions!
- Play against your friends in local multiplayer (online coming soon, we promise!)
- Face crazy bosses with unique powers that will put your tactical skills to a test
- Decide carefully, for death is permanent…
- …but do it fast, because some battles are time-limited!
During January on Steam.
CASCADE TACTICS – JANUARY
Cascade Tactics is developed by Mythic Machine Software.
The premise is simple: hire a team of adventurers, choose their classes, upgrade equipment and see how long the group can survive. During combat, enemies and allies can be moved on the battle map, using character skills, in order to gain an advantage over their opposition.
It will feature not only many different classes, like Commander, Ninja, Sentinel and Pyromancer, but also an engaging Dual-class system with interesting synergies.
On Steam during January.
Let me know what you think about the January 2022 releases in the comments below and remember to check out our Youtube channel for cool lists of turn-based RPGs & Strategy Games and Gameplays.