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Choice Provisions
Jan 12, 2016 - PlayStation 4, PC, PlayStation 5

OpenCritic Rating


Top Critic Average


Critics Recommend

4.8 / 10
PC Gamer
44 / 100
6 / 10
6.5 / 10
Game Revolution
4 / 5
Attack of the Fanboy
2 / 5
75 / 100
Game Rant
3.5 / 5
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Critic Reviews for Tharsis


4.8 / 10.0

Tharsis can never stop reminding you that you don't have control over its interstellar disaster, just the illusion of it. Every time I watched my ship fall apart, and every time I watched new events propagate across the ship that were completely impossible to stop, I felt like, win-or-lose, Tharsis was having all the fun.

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Tharsis is well made, but not well designed—an attractive, interesting board game idea, but only the first draft.

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Tharsis is a captivating but sadistic game of chance that puts your fate at the mercy of dice.

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Tharsis is a good way to spend 10-30 minutes to see what happens on the next journey. It's a very harsh battle against the unknown, and can be utterly soul-crushing. Perhaps too soul-crushing, actually. Players will, at times, feel so defeated and useless that playing again seems pointless. And maybe that's the point, considering the circumstances. I wouldn't recommend to marathon Tharsis in an attempt to complete its journey, but instead to boot it up every once in a while and hope for the best.

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I'm sure the punishing difficulty and numerous unfair dice rolls will turn many gamers against Tharsis, and that's perfectly understandable. However, the reward of actually beating the game truly elevates my spirit. I can only hope that the developers will continue the story with another punishing round that occurs on the red planet itself.

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Though the mechanics of Tharsis are often exciting and suspenseful, the game ultimately falls short of expectations due to irredeemably punishing dice rolls.

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How you feel about Tharsis probably depends on how you feel about board games, soul-crushing challenges, and shorter gaming experiences. If you love tabletop games, repeatedly dying while learning, or heavily micro-managing resources, Tharsis is a worthwhile way to spend an evening.

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Tharsis has a surprisingly addictive quality, and tabletop fans who want to roll the dice on it should find it well-worth the launching sale price of $9.

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