Brigandine: The Legend of Runersia
Top Critic Average
Brigandine: The Legend of Runersia allows you to see your influence and dominance grow across its vast world, but isn't varied enough to keep you invested
Brigandine: The Legend of Runersia is a wonderfully crafted grid-based strategy game with plenty of planning needed. Some battles will be tough, but winning is rewarding every time. There are times when you'll be frustrated by your units missing attacks while the enemy beats you down, but that just forces you to adapt.
Overall, Brigandine: The Legend of Runersia is in-depth and complex enough for intermediate players whilst still being just easy enough for beginners to get into.
With two distinct but well-integrated strategy modes, Brigandine offers a huge amount of gameplay that feels both old school and fresh at the same time. A fantastic tutorial eases new players into the game with little friction, and the seeming complexity becomes quickly manageable. While the graphics are nothing to write home about, the care taken in each story thread is evident, and the tactical gameplay offers a ton of replay value. Brigandine is an utterly unique offering on Switch, and should appeal to RPG fans and strategy buffs alike.
Phew! There sure is a lot going on in Brigandine: The Legend of Runersia. It may seem a little overwhelming at first, but as soon as you find your rhythm it goes by faster than you think. Strategy games are not my bread and butter. There were evenings I told myself I had just a few hours to play, only to be completely sucked in. Color me pleasantly surprised with my overall experience. I may never feel brave enough to attempt Hard mode but there is a strong likelihood that I won't be deleting the game from my hard drive as soon as this review goes live.
There's a beautifully detailed game just waiting to be explored inside of this sequel to a forgotten cult classic, one that will have hardcore RTS fans in their element if they can overlook a clunky campaign flow and dive deep into its many layers of strategy. Fortune favours those who are bold and prepared in Brigandine: The Legend of Runersia.
Brigandine: The Legend of Runersia takes the exact same core gameplay of its 1998 predecessor and transports it into a brand new storyline whilst giving the whole thing a modern lick of paint in the process. The story, although an improvement on the original game, is still pretty bland stuff for the most part and battles are certainly where this one finds its main groove. Those fights may be a little on the slow side and are inherently repetitive affairs, but they're still rather enjoyable nonetheless and give you a reasonable amount of choice in how you take on your enemies and evolve and upgrade your troops. There's a ton of content here and, in the end, the whole thing feels like a pretty successful celebration of what made the first game a cult classic in the first place. It's not going to be to everyone's tastes, however, and if you like your strategy action to be a little more intense, you might want to stick with something like Wargroove or Fire Emblem: Three Houses instead.
On paper, there are a lot of cool things about Brigandine: The Legend of Runersia. Lots of characters, monsters, tactics, mechanics, elements, and more to play with. Seriously, it's overwhelming, to say the least. Where things fall off the rails is how much management is involved. You could, quite honestly, spend 20 minutes picking who to send get gear, which locations have the best monsters to summon, getting people to the right places, and deciding the ideal play to fight. That is a lot to ask from any player for a relatively unimpressive strategy RPG. When push comes to shove, the goal is to spend a bunch of time so when you move characters across a grid and attack whoever or whatever gets in your way, it won't end in total defeat. Maybe if there was more or it took longer for everything to unfold but in its current state, it really won't appeal to everyone.
Like a JRPG version of "Risk", Brigandine is strange yet compelling tactical game.
Series veterans and new recruits alike will find plenty to like in this streamlined strategy/tactical RPG.