Tenderfoot Tactics – Overview

Written by Marcello TBL

Tenderfoot Tactics Header

A tactical RPG inspired by Final Fantasy Tactics where elemental magic interacts with the natural world to have complex consequences.

Tenderfoot Tactics

Background story

For a generation, the terrible Fog – one vast, voiceless, and cruel spirit – has been eating the once-thick forests of the mainland. Now, with nowhere left to call home, and granted magic by the friendly spirits of the archipelago, one small party of would-be adventurers set out. Find a way to save the many goblin towns of the rocky coast, discover the truth of the Fog, and, if possible, put an end to it.

Tenderfoot Tactics Overworld


Raise a ridge of stone to block the enemy’s approach. Flick an ember into the brush where enemy archers hide, then push a swell of water to intercept the flames before they endanger your own side. Evolve your party into a well-rounded squad to better control the wild complexity of nature, or specialize and hazard the risks.

Tenderfoot Tactics Combat system

Key features:

  • Vast open-world exploration
  • Highly interactive natural systems such as terrain height, soil moisture, plant growth, fluid flow, heat and fire
  • 25+ goblin evolutions: shamans, druids, warlocks, wights, lavamancers, bog witches, knights, and more

About developer

Badru, who does a bit of everything, has been building and self-publishing art games since the Flash days back in 2010, eventually founding the Ice Water Games label in 2014 to promote his first major group collaboration, Eidolon. Eidolon also marked the first time Badru would work with Michael Bell – the attic-dwelling professor who produced the award-winning soundtrack for Ice Water’s seminal title – and with longtime friend Isa Hutchinson – who worked on their first project together as a writer.

A subset of the Eidolon team, including Badru, Michael, and Isa, plus visual artist Zoe Vartanian and writer Jeffrey Klinicke, worked together shortly afterward on an adaptation of Klinicke’s novel The Absence of Is, for the Antholojam collection Zoe Quinn produced in the wake of GamerGate.

Tenderfoot Tactics Combat phase

Just months later, Badru, Michael, and Isa found themselves working under the creative direction of Zoe Vartanian on Viridi, a sort of relaxed Tamagotchi-like with a pot of succulents as your pet. Viridi would help the team reach the mainstream, getting coverage from the New York Times, National Geographic, Fast Company, and other major distributions. But just around Viridi’s release, various team members became distracted by the world of stable employment outside of the independent space.

After years of sparse output, the Ice Water Games label is now being revived and broadened, with such titles as Fire Place, Rainstorm EP, and Ritual of the Moon releasing in the course of just a few months’ time – and more soon to come. Simultaneously, Badru, Michael, and Isa are striking out separately from their old label for the first time with Tenderfoot Tactics – which they feel is perhaps less appropriate to the audience they’ve cultivated with their previous titles.

Release date & platform

Tenderfoot Tactics is still under development and its release date is planned for late 2019 early 2020 for PC. In the meanwhile, you can wishlist it on steam.

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Marcello TBL

Italian Dad in love with Turn-Based RPGs and Indie Games. In 2018 he started Turn Based Lovers and now he can't live without it.

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