Those of you who have been reading my blog or interacting with me on Twitter are likely aware that I’m a huge fan of gaming in many forms; I don’t limit myself to video or computer games alone. I’m a huge fan of board and card games; I’m a long term fan of the near-peerless collectable card game, Magic: The Gathering for example.
I’m also a sucker for video games that have board or card game elements – turn-based strategy, for example, or card games with added features like power ups, stories or character progression.
It’s through PC card games like those described that I first became familiar with Grey Alien Games. Their PC titles Regency Solitaire and Shadowhand are two fantastic versions of solitaire that have brilliantly implemented extra features – I find basic solitaire to be a fantastically satisfying and relaxing experience; with stories, power ups and RPG-style loot collecting, it becomes even more compelling.
Regency Solitaire is a beautifully designed game that pays tribute to the fiction of Jane Austen, with its period story of mannered romance. The art and story are wonderfully evocative of a bygone age; it really is a truly special game.
Shadowhand, with its darker tale of an aristocratic highwaywoman (I know that sounds somewhat oxymoronic, but it does work in the context of the story) and added focus on combat, with RPG-esque looting and character abilities, is a similarly superb game. A prequel to Regency Solitaire, it has similarly beautiful art and makes a fantastic companion game. Though similarly based around solitaire, it’s a very different game in practice.
So as you can probably imagine that, upon learning of Grey Alien’s upcoming strategy card game, Ancient Enemy, I couldn’t be more excited. A collaboration between Grey Alien Games and Jim Rossignol – whose team, Big Robot, produced the excellently British survival FPS Sir, You Are Being Hunted (which featured terrifying, yet gentlemanly, steampunk robots) – Ancient Enemy is billed as a challenging combat card game in which you can equip your character to face specific enemies, set in a mythical world in which evil has already won.
From the screenshots and footage, it looks to be an evolution of the Shadowhand formula, albeit one that steps away from the period drama and Dick Turpin-esque stylings of the previous game. It has a similarly appealing art style, however, with a foot firmly in British mythology and folklore. It looks fantastic.
You can add Ancient Enemy to your wishlist via the game’s Steam store page – and, just as a separate note, if you have yet to sample the delightful charms of Regency Solitaire or the swashbuckling danger of Shadowhand, both are currently in the Steam sale (as is Sir, You Are Being Hunted) – and both are well worth the investment to keep you busy until Ancient Enemy arrives.
I’ll no doubt review Ancient Enemy when it releases, so if this particular hybrid of card game, combat and British folklore floats your boat, keep your eyes peeled for further coverage here on my blog.
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