I have personally never played the first Blackguards game nor am I a large fan of turn based strategy games, but Blackguards 2 really showcased what there is to like about the genre. It had a very simple hex based movement system with a simple and easy to understand combat mechanic and wonderfully crafted environments. I feel that Blackguards 2 is a game that is well suited to the turn based strategy community.
The story of Blackguards 2 takes place several years after the events of the first game and players find themselves in control of a woman named Cassia who had been imprisoned and left in her cell to rot. After many failed attempts over the span of four years, she manages to escape, but at a price as the spiders who inhabit the prison have deformed her figure with their toxins. Cassia sets out on a journey to form an alliance with the remaining three legendary Blackguards who defeated the Nine Hordes so that she may rule from the Shark Throne.
The gameplay of Blackguards 2 is your standard turn based strategy, you perform a move and attack phase and then the enemy performs theirs. The player is able to move a certain amount of hexes depending on the characters traits, slower characters can only move a few hexes and lighter, more agile characters are able to cover much greater distances. The combat is a simple, point a click style, but you can also click on your character to bring up a selection wheel where you can choose from a range of magic and items that can assist you in combat.
Turns are based off of characters speed, so if an enemy is faster than you or your party members, then it gets to perform the first move and attack phase before you, a side bar allows you to see who’s turn it is currently and who moves next.
Weapons all have different traits, for example a spear gives you a defense bonus as well as an extended attacking reach, but lowers your attack while a sword or club on the other hand raises your attack and lowers your defensive traits.
As the player progresses through the game, they can conquer territories, but must be careful as the opposing forces can also try to reclaim their lost territory adding in some extra challenge to the game.
The environments the player is put into range from dingy tunnels and catacombs to lush jungles which all provide the chance for tactical strikes against enemy units, many traps also await the player around the maps so they must tread carefully while trying to find the best way to eliminate the enemy and move to the win zone
As I have stated before, I have never been a large fan of turn based strategy, but Blackguards 2 was for me, a diamond in the rough. The wonderful world design, the challenge, the idea that one move could turn the tide of battle and not to mention the great story. Though not a game I personally would play a lot, I’d have to give this a high recommendation to the Turn Based Strategy community.
Blackguards 2 for PC
Review code provided by Daedalic Entertainment