Rogue's Tale is a single player turn-based dungeon crawling game. The game takes place in a place called Frostmourn Keep and its underlying dungeons located in the World's End Mountains. The goal is to overthrow the current king of the Frostmourn Keep and become the new king. A demo version and game guide can be found on the homepage. Key features: - Classless character building where you can choose to be the kind of rogue you want. - Seemingly unfair, untimely and unforgiving deaths which are also permanent. - Ways to counter these deaths by learning the game mechanics. - Random dungeons and encounters. - 24 talents to build your character with. - 30 spells to build your character even further. - 30 heritages that make your next character stronger. - 30 challenges to complete once you get the hang of the game.

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This game is not well-balanced with respect to the difficulty the player experiences as the game goes in.

Basically it seems there is too much randomness and not enough procedural stuff going on in the design of levels. As others have pointed out, you can start out surrounded by three enemies. Also you can start out in a room with multiple locked doors to get out and it is boring as hell battering yourself on the doors and losing most of your hp, then resting for tedious amounts of time until the game will let you try again (there's stamina points to consider in addition to hp). You can even die on doors before you get attacked by a monster.

The developer seems to offer two excuses for this:

1) Once you have played for a while you get these persistant character traits or perks or something that make it all much easier, so you'll never be in danger of dying on the first few levels.

--well that just sounds boring the other way round. Am I to assume that the only time I will ever have fun on the first few levels if for some small, unrepeatable time when I have gained some perks but not all, such that the first few levels are not too hard and not too easy?

2) A run can last 10 to 20 hours so what do the first five minutes matter? The implication being that players should keep starting over until they get a good start position.

--I'm not going to keep starting over until I get a good starting position to make up for the developer not being able to procedurally write starting positions that are not super-deadly. A roguelike game written in 7 days, in the upcoming 7drl competition (starts 9th march) would be roundly criticised if it operated like this game does.

The above things are my main objection but there's also the cringe-worthy way the tutorial calls your character your "toon", the fact that full keyboard control seems to be thrown in as an afterthought, the assumption being you'll use the mouse.

Seriously, don't buy this. Get Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup free


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