GSY Review PC

I know what you're thinking : another deck building game! And you're… right. That being said, Monster Train is probably the first game of the genre that can seriously pretend to be the successor of the mighty Slay the Sprire, and here is why.

Snowpiercer

The Boneshaker is a massive train attempting to bring the last Pyre back to the frozen heart of hell, which has been conquered by heavens. Not an easy task since you'll have to progress through regions defended by angelic soldiers and champions. These enemies will assault your huge locomotive and climb its four floors to destroy the Pyre. Hopefully, you have your own minions and spells to stop them. Once victorious, you'll have to choose between two paths, each leading to various events and shops allowing to increase your power before moving on to the next region. In short, Monster Train brings some fresh air in the genre just by inverting the mechanics of its model. A good start. Yet, it is its depth that keeps it on track.

Adam's Family

During combat, you'll have to manage 3 floors simultaneously, the fourth (the Pyre) being on auto-defense. The cards you draw at each turn allow you to cast spells or creatures, but you'll have to carefully use them. You need to think about the position (front unit block damages), the space available on each floor (creatures have a size), not forgetting that a spell only affects one floor and of course, the numerous synergies between cards. Five hellish clans are available, each with its own set of cards and relics that you'll progressively unlock. Hellhorned rely on physical strength, armor and offensive spells. Awoken are more defensive units, protecting themselves with thorns and healing spells. Stygian Guards are heavy on magic, buffing your spells and weakening enemies. Umbra reenforce themselves through cannibalism. Finally, Melting Remnants are strong but short-lived and must be kept alive as long as possible.

The light at the end of the tunnel

For each run, you'll pick two clans, the main one giving you a champion that can evolve in different ways. You call also improve every card with an open system of runes. For instance, you can give a creature more strength, more life, double attacks, but you can also reduce its cost or size, bring it back to your hand when it dies… And it's the same with spells. Between cards, relics and runes, the possibilities are just insane. Furthermore, you must adapt to very different types of enemies that, if not killed in one turn (save for the champions), will climb up to the next floor. They can be strong, have huge shields, skip floors, cast spells on you, gain or lose power… Sometimes, the champion comes and boosts them up, which also makes it vulnerable to your attacks before the final fight. Each angelic army has its own perks and you must constantly adapt.

Baby one more time!

Each victory unlocks alliance ranks, up to 25. Each rank imposes certain conditions (stronger enemies, useless cards, etc.), some random starting cards and a special power for the final boss. This turns each run into a puzzle you must solve, building your deck around unfamiliar cards or finding new synergies. A sheer pleasure of constant discovery that will make you come back again and again for one more run.

Verdict


As a Slay the Spire fan, I've tried many other deck building games and Monster Train outclasses them all. It's both a familiar yet fresh concept. The mechanics are simple to understand but have tremendous depth with an incredible number of variations to uncover, and while it's a rather simple-looking 2D game, the art and soundtrack are great. I did not have the opportunity to try the multiplayer mode before launch but the solo mode is awesome enough to make Monster Train a must-buy. Embark now!
  • Les plus
  • An inspired twist on the formula
  • Easy to play
  • Crazy depth in terms of mechanics
  • Great art
  • Even better soundtrack
  • Les moins
  • Nothing really...

8 images

  • We reviewed Monster Train - 8 images
  • We reviewed Monster Train - 8 images
  • We reviewed Monster Train - 8 images
  • We reviewed Monster Train - 8 images
  • We reviewed Monster Train - 8 images
  • We reviewed Monster Train - 8 images
  • We reviewed Monster Train - 8 images
  • We reviewed Monster Train - 8 images
phillipstuerzl
phillipstuerzl
Commented on 2020-05-20 18:45:13
No videos?
In reply to
Driftwood - Dictateur en chef
Driftwood
Commented on 2020-05-20 19:45:34 In reply to phillipstuerzl
There's a presentation video in French on YT, that's all cryo could do in the time he had. Sorry. :(
In reply to
phillipstuerzl
phillipstuerzl
Commented on 2020-05-20 20:30:38 In reply to Driftwood
No worries. Was just curious/surprised.
In reply to
Sdarts
Sdarts
Commented on 2020-05-21 22:35:55
Thanks for the review and video.

I went to Gamersyde's French side and saw a bit of the gameplay. The game looks very interesting with a unique premise. I'm not into card battlers, though the few I've played recently have all been very good. Maybe a game for a discount sales event.
In reply to
About the game
Platform
PC
Published by
Good Shepherd En...
Developed by
Shiny Shoe
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