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Game Info:

Fort Triumph
Game Title: Fort Triumph
Developed By: CookieByte Entertainment
Published By: CookieByte Entertainment
Released: April 26, 2018
Available On: Linux, MacOS, Windows
Genre: RPG, Strategy
ESRB Rating: Not yet rated.
Number of Players: 1 offline
Price: $19.99 

Since writing this preview, a new update for this game has came out adding in new features.

Have you ever been playing a turn-based strategy (TBS) game and just really wanted to Spartan kick an enemy into a pit? Have you just wanted to be able to kick a spider all across the map? Well Fort Triumph has the sweet foot action you are looking fun. Fort Triumph is an early access TBS game with a physics system that allows you to move everything with the kick of a foot. Seriously, you’ll be kicking a lot.

Fort Triumph is set in a fantasy world where you have magic just seeping up out of the ground. The game also does not take itself seriously at all. For instance, the skeletons have a business like structure with monthly goals and different positions and identify as unloving instead of undead. The spiders, which can talk to you, have a money jar for whenever they make spider puns and have a weekly, democratic election to decide who will lead them each week. Within the world, you take the role as a band of budget heroes.

This game presents the story in chapters. Each chapter consists of a world map and a couple of different main, story quests. Currently, there is only the prologue, which is basically a tutorial that has three missions and no world map, and the first chapter which is currently not fully complete and is lacking the last few story missions. Overall, I really like the content presented so far. The main story bits are a little sparse, but the world map allows for you to make some of your own little stories. One thing I really like about the world map is you actually have all of the different factions on there and you are able to gain favor with them. Also, when I say it has all the factions, it has all the factions. The skeletons are even on there so you can befriend them. Now, this befriending and gaining favor could still use some more work, but it looks like a fun way to make each run different. If you are not hostile to a faction, you can recruit some units from them and the better your relation is with them, they will offer you some better units.

Fort Triumph
Highlights:

Strong Points:  Solid and simple combat; funny story; a worldmap that allows for play between battles; interesting integration of physics.
Weak Points: Humor is subjective and the humor has more jokes aimed at adult audiences; the bigger story missions are limited; content is limited so the game can’t really increase in difficulty; maps are repeated pretty frequently.
Moral Warnings: There is a lot of killing in this game including civilians being executed; magic and the undead.

While the world map is fun to travel around, the main part of this game is the TBS combat. This game operates on a two action system which allows you to do two actions per turn per unit. This is a lot more simplified than some traditional TBS games, but it really fits with the setting and your group of characters. Currently, your group consists of four units, one each from the four different classes. The devs have said that in the future, they’d like to allow for you to do more to set up your squad so you can mix and match classes, but currently you are locked to one of each plus one bonus slot for the faction unit I mentioned earlier. Currently, your squad consists of two ranged units, the ranger and the mage, and two melee units, the paladin and the warrior. While the melee units are pretty good, I think it really helps to have the two action system with how much of your team is melee focused.

Each of your units is pretty good, but I do think that, as of right now, the warrior and mage are the best while the paladin is a bit lacking. This could be due to the skill system. In this game, when a unit levels, they will be allowed to choose between two abilities to learn. These abilities are chosen randomly from all of the abilities that the unit can learn. While this is nice, it can lead to you not learning the abilities you really like until much later which can make the unit a little lacking early on. Currently, I’d say the best abilities are ones that are physics based. Anything that can move objects are really important. If you can knock a unit into something, it will be damaged and stunned which will make it not be able to attack on its next turn. Also, if you can knock something into a pit or water, it will instantly die. It is all of this which makes kick, in my opinion, the best ability in the game since it is a starting ability and is very versatile. That, and it is super fun and satisfying to kick a tree on top of an enemy.

As mentioned previously, the story is not very serious and is pretty comical. I was fairly surprised at how much I laughed at the story. I’m also glad that it only had a few pop culture references since a decent bit of those types of jokes from other things tend to not be as funny years later, although I do feel like the few ones this game did make will probably last. Also, even though I did find the story very funny and engaging, I get humor is very subjective so it might not be for everybody.

Fort Triumph
Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 80%
Gameplay - 16/20
Graphics - 7/10
Sound - 9/10
Stability - 4/5
Controls - 4/5

Morality Score - -86%
Violence - --/10
Language - --/10
Sexual Content - --/10
Occult/Supernatural - --/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical - --/10

The controls for this game are pretty good. It can sometimes be a little tricky to aim at certain things, but you can always rotate the camera to be able to better target what you want. It was really nice that they included a slider to change how fast enemies and player units act. Some people might want the turns to go super quick and can follow all the stuff that happens while people like myself need it a tad bit slowed down so I can keep track of who everybody is and what they are doing. I have not had many issues with the game while playing it. I think it only crashed once, although there was a time where I somehow had a file deleted and the game went into dev mode. Luckily, the devs are quite active on the Steam forums and they helped me fix my issue real quick.

The art is a little cartoony and pretty colorful. It to all look good except for on the snowy maps it was a bit hard to see the outlines for the movement ranges. The animations are sometimes goofy, but I believe this is supposed to be that way due to the amount of humor. This is also effected by what you have your combat speed set on so if you do have problems, you can change it. One nice touch when it came to the animation is that when a character goes to fire from around a corner, they actually properly step out of it to shot. If there is a block next to them, they will actually climb up onto it before firing. This isn’t much, but it is not a feature I’ve seen too much in other TBS games.

The maps were also nice, but they did repeat quite often. For instance, each settlement you attack has the same map. The main missions do have a randomized map, but some of the layouts can be more difficult than others. I do hope to see more get added in the future. I also found the audio to be quite nice. The music to be fairly lighthearted and I never got tired of listening to it. Sounds are a bit comical, but as above I chalk this up to direction they are going with the humorous nature of the game. I do hope they add in more as production continues.

Fort Triumph
Combat in this game is very cartoony in nature, but it does have a lot of killing. Not only are you killing goblins, skeletons, and spiders, you can also attack other human settlements where you will fight some of the same units you have in your party. There is a point in the prologue where the enemy executes some civilians held hostage and certain maps will have some random dead civilians on it. Enemy corpses also seem to persist and not go away. The game also has some different corpses depending on what you killed it with. For instance, there is a burned variant, but it isn’t really graphic and it's only a charred decal over the regular dead body. I will say that when I was playing it, it didn’t feel too violent for younger players, but I’ll leave that up for the purchaser to decide. Luckily, there is a free demo of the game which allows you to play the prologue so you can decide for yourself.

I didn’t find much vulgarity in the writing. I don’t remember any curse words nor do I remember any gross out jokes, but they could just be slipping my mind. I’ll also admit that I haven’t yet played all of the story missions, but I believe I read the campaign stops after you do so, so instead I decided to keep messing about and doing random battles. I will say though, and this is not for the morality of the game, that some of the jokes might not be for kids. They might not find it funny that the skeletons talk office politics or that the mage is trying to do enough stuff to get her tenure at a wizarding school. That might be funnier for the adults. So far, the magic seems to be very standard fantasy stuff, but there was some people being killed and revived as skeletons. The savage does also dress in a manner similar to the women in the Flintstones so it is a tad bit revealing.

Fort Triumph is a game I happened to find by chance a while ago and I am really happy that I did so. I have enjoyed my time with the game. I was also highly impressed with the amount of content it had with its first public release. Granted, it still needs some more work and some added content, but I was not displeased with my purchase of it. The game can be a bit violent, but it doesn’t do it in a particularly graphic way which might make it more suitable for kids depending on the buyer. The game is also simple enough that a kid will probably have more fun from it than they might would some of the other more complicated TBS games out on the market, but with the direction of the writing I believe an older person will find more enjoyment of it. I also have to say that I like how active the devs are with the community and how much they accept feedback. I truly think they’ll be able to finish fleshing this out to be a really good game in the end.

- Paul Barnard (Betuor)

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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