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Wartales - Review @ RPS

by Hiddenx, 2023-04-13 16:01:43

Rock Paper Shotgun reviewed the tactical RPG Wartales:

Wartales review: a grimy medieval fantasy RPG rife with emergent stories

No long stories about beans this time, promise

‘The Tank’, I’ll admit, is a monumentally uninspired name for the mace-wielding brick privy of a man I’d bestowed the dubious honour of soaking up hits in place of my squishier mercs, but when sandbox tactical RPG Wartales let me assemble a party of 12 mad lasses and tapped chaps, the stash of good nicknames was always going to be the first casualty. So, The Tank he lived, and also died. Questing endlessly in this grimy medieval world won’t cut it. You’ll also need to keep your troupe paid and fed, so when evening fell to find nought but a handful of foraged mushrooms and a single mouldy apple I’d pried from the fingertips of a disemboweled bandit, it was time to get creative.


The presentation is probably a bit nicer than it honestly needed to be across the board. The music is lovely, all driving war drums layered with whimsical, slightly discordant European folk instruments. The minigames are all great aside from that bastard slide puzzle. Also, get this: I once picked two locks on a three lock chest but broke my last pick on the final one. I came back to it about three hours later with a fresh set of picks, and the two locks I did last time were still open! This sounds incredibly minor but I feel it exemplifies a sort of coherence and persistence about the world that I feel is crucial to the soul of this sort of game.

And this here is sort of the key to Wartales, I think. It feels consistent. It’s workmanlike without being uninspired, fascinating without being flashy. It’s like a loveable cockney chimney sweep with a sparkle in its eye. It might be too mundane to scratch the itch for high adventure, but if you’re feverish for a grounded low fantasy ramble with the occasional giant rat, Wartales will cure ya. Also, apropos of nothing: I still haven’t played Battle Brothers yet, so I don’t know. Go away.


Information about


SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released