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September 18, 2021 Jon and Ian Boudreau talk Conquest of Elysium 5, a lo-fi fantasy tactics game with Dwarf Fortress-like procedural world generation. Lead armies of moose, visit other planes of existence that are doing their own thing while you're not looking, and try to make it as a Senator in an era with no Senate. Do you like to control archers with your numpad? We know you do!
Conquest of Elysium 5
September 4, 2021 This week Rob is joined by Ranged Touch's Cameron Kunzelman and PCGamesN's Ian Boudreau to discuss an unusual World War II military shooter that feels more like a tactics game: Hell Let Loose. Hear the stirring tale of trying to explain how to drive a manual transmission to someone who has only ever been in his 2006 Honda Civic during the middle of a war. Find out which war movie officer Rob would be. And by the end, probably have a pretty good idea of whether or not this would be your thing or not.
Hell Let Loose
August 20, 2021 Len, Rowan, and Fraser gather to discuss Amplitude's Humankind, the Civ competitor that has been looming large over our release radar for the past couple years. How does it compare to Sid Meier's finest work, and even this studio's previous 4X forays? Will it reignite the spark for those who have lost their love for the turn-based march through history? And aside from all that, is this game even done?
Humankind, Civilization, Old World, Endless Legend
August 13, 2021 Len, Jon, and Mike discuss the indie space "4X without two and a half of the Xes" Slipways. We dig into the benefits of games designed with very strict rules that eventually let you break most of them, as well as having challenging microstrategy games you can finish in about an hour but aren't totally mindless.
August 6, 2021 Rob is joined by Nicole Clark and Cameron Kunzelman to discuss two recent deck builders: Klei's Griftlands and Abrakam's Roguebook. What do we like and what brings us dismay about each? How do they stack up against other recent paragons of the genre? Where do these types of games fit into the strategy ecosystem? Is boxed macaroni and cheese really that much better if you drop some unsalted butter in there? That's not relevant to the episode. It's just me, Len, asking a cooking question.
Griftlands, Roguebook, Slay the Spire
August 1, 2021 Rob and Rowan are joined by PCMag's Mike Williams to discuss Dark Deity, a JRPG-inspired indie tactical RPG. What lies beneath the outward riffing on Fire Emblem? What kind of characters will we be bringing to battle, and can we make them kiss? Are numbers even real? Why can Len never come up with a clean way to wrap these episode descriptions up? Is she really just going to let it go out like this?
July 23, 2021 Troy, Len, and Jon gather by the fire to discuss Old World, the new ancient world 4X from Civilization IV designer and prolific 3ma guest Soren Johnson. Does the tighter timeframe help or hinder it? Is it just ancient Civ? Is that even a bad thing? How many more questions can I come up with? Does this description still look too short? This is probably a good place to stop, right?
July 13, 2021 Relic has announced Company of Heroes 3! Rob and Len were given a chance to give a bit of the new dynamic campaign map a go. Now they're joined by Relic's David Littman and Matt Philip to discuss what we saw and how this long-awaited sequel is coming together. You can check out the pre-alpha preview yourself by heading over to companyofheroes.com.
Company of Heroes 3, Company of Heroes 2: Ardennes Assault
July 2, 2021 Rob, Troy, and Fraser have only a curtain wall and a micromanagement puzzle between them and the invading hordes as they discuss Siege Survival: Gloria Victis. Who will hold out, and who will secretly leave the postern gate open to put an end to the suffering? When are we going to do a show on Going Medieval? What is a siege, if not a larder persevering?
Siege Survival: Gloria Victis
June 28, 2021 Rob and Rowan are joined once again by Three Kingdoms opinion-haver Brian "Chef Lu Bu" Smawley to discuss Creative Assembly's very odd pronouncement of ending support for Total War: Three Kingdoms. Where did it land and how do we feel about the state it's in? What do we wish had made it in? And what the hell is going on with gates?
Total War: Three Kingdoms, Dynasty Warriors
June 20, 2021 In one of our biggest panels ever, Rowan, Fraser, Len, Jon, and Mike are joined by Sin Vega to discuss the many city builders currently stewing in Early Access, or which had a long tenure there. What is the role of Early Access for this genre, and why does it seem to be such a popular starting point? Also, what would we like to see in the next generation of city builders?
Cities Skylines, Workers and Resources: Soviet Republic, Dwarf Fortress, Rimworld, Industries of Titan, Cliff Empire, NewCity, Ostriv, Frostpunk, Terra Nil, The Last Haven, Surviving the Aftermath, Going Medieval, Chang’an of Tang Dynasty
May 29, 2021 Rob and Len are joined by behind-the-scenes mastermind Mike to pursue some millennial agriculture fantasies, step on some grapes, and grit their teeth through a bit of sus localization. Will they taste victory, or find themselves sprawled in an alley with a bottle of $8 chardonnay wondering why they thought they could drop out of school and join a punk band? Are these hypotheticals getting more weirdly specific all the time? Does anyone even read the description anyway?
Hundred Days - Winemaking Simulator
May 25, 2021 Michael Hermes makes a port of call as Rob, Nick Capozzoli, and Matt Flanigan take to the high seas in Ultimate Admiral: Age of Sail. Rob hates the land combat, Matt hates the way the ships behave like sports cars, Capo greets both with measured approval, and Michael thinks we're all being a bunch of picky jerks looking a gift-horse in the mouth.
Ultimate Admiral: Age of Sail
May 8, 2021 Rob, Jon, and Len have taken up their swords and strapped on their sandals to party like it's 2004. What did the original Total War: Rome do right that the series hasn't since? And does it hold up beside its younger, prettier siblings? And why is no one talking about Lone Star? Seriously. It's a great movie.
Total War: Rome Remastered
April 30, 2021 Troy and Rob are joined by Kotaku's Luke Plunkett to discuss Unity of Command II's Barbarossa expansion. How much of the frustration you feel leading the Germans on the Eastern Front comes from any given game, and how much of it comes from the mere situation of leading the Germans on the Eastern Front?
Unity of Command II - Barbarossa