Preview code provided with many thanks to Plan of Attack PR.
Foretales is a story-driven card game. You play as a less-then above board bird that ends up with visions of the end of his world. Players will have to make hundreds of choices, and each choice will influence the way that the story progresses.
The Story and Gameplay
The entirety of Foretales is played with decks of cards. Each character and each location will have unique deck of cards that will alter how characters can move through the story. The playable characters have a selection of actions card that they can use to interact with other characters and the environment. For example, the main character Volepain will get cards that allow him to steal, ask people for help, buy, sell, attack, and more. Once the character deck is exhausted, players either need to rest to recover these cards or you lose the game.
Locations are made up of interactable cards that will have items like food to buy and steal, people to bribe, and key NPCs and items to interact with. This game reminds me a lot of those board games designed for people to play on their own like The 7th Continent, Arkham Horror, and Nemesis. This game gives the same sort of feel of these types of games without all the setup.
In the story, Volepain is hired to steal an artefact that completely changes his whole life. This artefact shows Volepain all the potential futures for himself and his friends, and none of them is great. So you play as Volepain hoping to change each of these futures by interacting with the world around him. So it’s one less than reputable bird man against the potential end of the world. No pressure, right?
A Wonderful Roleplay
This game is perfect for anyone who loves the roleplay aspect of TTRPGs and similar games. You really get forced into the mindset of the character and need to choose how the rest of his life will play out by changing the minds of others and altering the environment to help tilt the future in your favor. There are tons of different choices, and with each passing chapter, more choices and possibilities are opened to the player.
I don’t know how many endings this game has, but I believe by all my hours put in that there are at least three, and each is brought about by the smallest differences in choices. Will you steal that apple or pay for it? Will you ask the bandits for help or kill them? Will you chase off the guards or suffer the consequences of slaughtering them? Can you save yourself or can you save your friends? Every choice makes a different, new set of choices that causes the Butterfly Effect throughout the rest of the plot.
The game is a little difficult to get into, but the payoff is massive. Once you learn how all the cards interact and how to move to new locations, everything falls into place and you can move through the world and all the possible choices with more confidence. That being said, the first hour or so was a lot of starting over again and learning how to maneuver around without running out of cards.
A Unique Video Game with a Lot of Soul
Foretales is unique and special. The graphics are amazing, the interactions and movements of the cards are extremely well-polished, and the game is clever. I loved the animations of each of the objects, and the characters are all unique and special. Each playable character has a unique deck of cards that makes interacting with the world completely different from the others.
I can’t explain how much I love this beautiful game. The music, art, and everything about it is fun and worth the confusing first couple of interactions. My suggestion is to fumble through the first few chapters, then start your game over as soon as you feel a little more confident. While the tutorial is thorough, it’s just one of those things that I had to experience for myself before it clicked.
Overall, Foretales is beautiful, fun, challenging (but not too challenging), and unique. I can’t recommend this title to fans of TTRPGs and other roleplaying games enough. You can find the game’s Steam page here.