Genre: Casual, Indie, Strategy
System: Steam (Windows) (also available on Nintendo Switch)
Developers | Publishers: rokaplay
Controller Support: Full
Price: US $ TBC | UK £ TBC | EU € TBC
Release Date: July 1st, 2022
Review code used, with many thanks to rokaplay.
Beasties is a casual strategy game where you battle monsters in a match-three-style game.
The Beastiemaster is Missing!
The Beasties live in complete harmony with humans. But the harmony has been cracked by the mysterious disappearance of a Beastiemaster. So the guild of Beastiemasters sends you to an isolated village to investigate and find the beastiemaster.
Your character is similar in looks to a board game character like Cluedo. It looks like an image was pasted onto a plastic stand. It’s rather odd-looking to watch, as the way the characters are animated, they hop rather than walk. But then I guess you would hop too if you were an image pasted onto a stand.
Match – Three
You are tasked with finding the missing beastmaster in this Pokémonesque mash-up with match-three gameplay. You’ll complete a few minor fetch quests, battle monsters, sorry, Beasties, collect some Beasties, and train them up. And before you know it, just when you’re getting into the swing of things, it’s all over, and the credits are running.
You’ll start in a small village with a few NPCs in it. Once you talk to all the NPCs, you are off on your first quest. Leaving the village, you arrive in a forest-like area with long grass. As you move through the area, some random beasties battles pop up, similar to the way Pokémon random battles occur. To battle a beastie it’s a case of playing a match-three game and matching three or more gems together.
Use Special Attacks
To attack a Beastie, you are battling; you must match three or more grey gems on the board for your lead beastie to launch an attack. Each beastie in your team has a special attack, by matching three or more gems of a particular colour the lead beastie in your team will pull off its special attack. You can tell which gems to match to have your beastie pull off a special attack by the little icon attached to each beastie.
The match-three battling is fun, and every so often, you get a chance to catch a beastie and add it to your team. However, the beasties in your team don’t level up during the match-three battles. Instead, it’s a trip to the village to level them up. Returning to the village, you can have an NPC level up your beasties using the Dawn stones you receive after a battle. I found that odd, I must say; in other similar games, once the match-three battle is over, your team would level up automatically.
In the early part of the game, I battled a beastie at a higher level than my team. After catching the beastie, I added it to my team and used a few Dawn stones to level it up. Each battle after that was a breeze as my new beastie was so overpowered compared to the beasties I was battling. This leads me to think the balance is off in the game.
Visuals and Controls
The game does look great with its handpainted animation, and the music is nice though it does get a little repetitive listening to it on repeat. You can use a controller or keyboard and mouse to control your character’s movement. I used a controller, but I did try out both systems, and they both work equally well.
Beasties is a very casual and easy game offering little challenge that reminds me of a mobile game. While playing it for review, I kept waiting for something fantastic to happen in the game. Say, for instance, a surprise twist in the storyline or an extra area to explore as there is only one area, a forest. Sadly that never happened. I battled and caught a few beasties and visited all three stalls in the village: a beastie trainer, a blacksmith to mend your only tool and a healer. After nearly three hours of play, I finished the game and watched the credits roll.
For the game’s price you don’t get much for your money, and it is over in a flash. Unfortunately, the game’s storyline also isn’t that great, and like the game itself, it ends abruptly.
Final Verdict: I’m Not Sure