Welcome to Rivengard
Rivengard, the second release from Snowprint Studios, is a turn-based strategy game in which a band of heroes battle monsters, accumulate treasure and level up. This could describe one of any number of games. So what makes Rivengard special? The artwork, graphics and sound are all excellent, and the tutorial and dialogue are free of clunky translation errors. But what really stands out is the gameplay. Rivengard hooks you quickly and keeps you coming back for more.
Master Your Tactics
The primary mode in Rivengard is the campaign. Every chapter of the campaign is divided into five sections, each containing 15 battles. You spend energy to fight in battles, and you start with a generous supply. As of now, there are three chapters, with more promised soon. With 75 battles per chapter, that’s a lot of content to keep players busy.
Each battle features turn-based tactical combat on a 3D hex map. Terrain plays a big part of each battle. Characters on higher elevations deal more damage to those below them. Bushes provide damage-reducing protection, while brambles halt forward movement and add to any damage a character suffers. After the first few battles, you’ll be able to rearrange where your characters start out, and this placement can make a big difference.
There are three types of characters in Rivengard: Warriors, Rogues and Mages. The game uses a rock-paper-scissors mechanism. Warriors are strong against Rogues, Rogues are strong against Mages, and Mages are strong against Warriors. This is further complicated by the fact that each faction has an associated element: light, dark, red, green and blue. Light units do more damage to dark and blue units, while blue units do more damage to red and green units, and so on. Awareness of this balance is critical to success. The pre-battle screen shows you what enemies you’ll be facing. Clicking on each one will give you all of this information, allowing you to plan accordingly.
A Plethora of Heroes
Rivengard currently features 50 characters divided into 10 factions, with new ones coming soon. As you play through the early stages of the game, you’ll acquire the five members of the Radiant Order, which will form your primary team. As you collect characters, you’ll be able to swap them in and out of your party, allowing you to experiment with finding the ideal combination. However, new heroes are not easy to come by. While you may get lucky and obtain one at the summoning portal, most of the time you’ll get them by accumulating character shards. Since these are won in certain battles, you’ll be doing a lot of grinding.
Once you have your characters, you’ll want to make them stronger. You do this by leveling them up, ranking them up, promoting them and ascending them to a higher rarity. Leveling is a matter of earning experience through battles. Ranking up involves collecting six pieces of gear. When you have the complete set, your character ranks up by converting the items into permanent stat bonuses. In addition, each character has separate slots for a weapon, a piece of armor and a trinket, each of which can be improved through crafting.
Promoting and ascending your character is arduous, as it involves collecting shards, laurels and other items to improve their rarity level. This is important because your rarity level determines your level cap. However, improving your characters this way is onerous, and once you hit your level cap, you’ll find it increasingly difficult to proceed through the campaign. Once again, this means a lot of grinding.
More Ways to Play
In addition to campaign mode, Rivengard, offers a few other options as well. The arena lets you pit your team against other players’ teams. Onslaught sees your heroes fighting waves of increasingly tougher foes. Treasure Beach has your heroes race to pick up as much treasure as possible before time runs out. You can also join a guild to get access to guild raids.
Rivengard doesn’t break the mold; Warriors of Aternum by InnoGames is just one turn-based game that plays very similarly, and there are many others. But that’s ok, because Rivengard offers up a fun, turn-based strategy game with high production values and challenging gameplay. Give it a try, and you won’t be disappointed.
Is It Hardcore?
Although improving your characters can be a chore, Rivengard offers up entertaining tactical combat that will challenge you and keep you coming back for more.