Wintermoor Tactics Club Review (Nintendo Switch)

Game: Wintermoor Tactics Club
Genre: Adventure, Board Game, Strategy, Role-Playing
System: Switch (originally on PC)
Developers | Publishers: EVC | Versus Evil
Price: USD $19.99 |UK £17.99 | 19,99 €
Age Rating: US E10+ | EU 7+
Release Date: September 10, 2020 (US) October 9, 2020 (EU)

Many thanks to Versus Evil for kindly providing a review code!

I am quite a fan of tactics games like Fire Emblem. As you’ve probably noticed if you’ve read my previous reviews, I also enjoy games set in a school (I will forever blame Harry Potter for this). So the premise of Wintermoor Tactics Club was like the call of the sirens to me: “Play me CJ!” it cried. “You know you want to!” So I did. Let’s find out how that went!


Wintermoor Tactics Club. Players get ready for battle in this grid-based RPG fight. The first step is to pick a good starting position.Those are some intimidating looking critters I have to fight!

You play as Alicia, a student at Wintermoor Academy in the early 1980’s. She has found her place in the Wintermoor Tactics Club playing Curses & Catacombs with fellow tabletop RPG players Colin and Jacob. The tabletop oasis they’ve built for themselves on campus is threatened when the principal announces an interclub snowball competition. The catch? Anyone who loses has their club disbanded! Why is Principal Enfield taking their clubs away? You’ll just have to play to the end to find out for yourself.


Wintermoor Tactics Club. A map of Wintermoor Academy. It shows all the buildings you'll need to travel to.The map of Wintermoor Academy

The game is a solid story with grid-based tactical RPG battles. There are three main play areas in this game: quests, campaign levels, and challenge levels. As Alicia wanders around the school, fellow students request her help. When you complete these side quests you’re given items for your RPG characters, which you can equip on your character sheet before playing Curses & Catacombs. Playing additional challenge levels also offers items to use with your assorted characters.

Wintermoor Tactics Club. chapter has a different club you have to fight. This one is The Psychics club.The game is broken down into chapters. Each chapter has a different club you fight at the end.

However, the meat of the gameplay is in the campaign levels and snowball fights. The characters play through campaign levels in Curses & Catacombs, teaching you the strategy of this tabletop RPG world as you go, and then you transfer these skills to the “real” snowball fights at the end of each level (which also are grid-based battles). As you add new players, new play styles are learned. Everyone can be leveled up by equipping items gained in quests and challenge levels. The result is a multilayered play experience: You’re playing a tabletop RPG game within the larger game of navigating Wintermoor Academy as Alicia. I really enjoyed this aspect of the game.

Wintermoor Tactics Club. This image shows the attack selection wheel. There are currently two attacks available.This attack generates tactics points.

Like many games of this type, there’s a meter that allows you to launch more powerful attacks. In this game it’s the tactics meter. You fill it with smaller attacks each turn, and then when you’re ready you can select and use one of the more powerful attacks.

One handy feature is that if you fail a level three times in a row, you unlock an option to play without dying. This is great if you get stuck. Completionists will want to know that you can replay most battles as you go, but once you pass a certain point you can’t go back. If you want to go back and replay at the end you’ll need to use one of the many auto saves.

Anything I particularly like in the gameplay?

Wintermoor Tactics Club. Alicia's chatacter uses a chaining attack. It's very effective.Chain attacks are powerful and fun. 

I really enjoyed chain attacks in this game. This allows characters with certain abilities to target a tile and have the attack hit everyone in the surrounding tiles. There are also some neat things you can do to expand the range of these attacks, such as using magimist (a magic mist). This led to some excellent team-ups later in the game, with one character’s attacks laying down magimist and the other chaining a widespread attack.

The difficulty level definitely ramped up at the end. I found the early battles fairly easy or easy-ish, but later on I was using the no die option. I will be going back to tackle these battles again and try to pass them without that option.

Wintermoor Tactics Club. Chart showing the medals you can earn in a battle. You can replay levels to gain more medals.There’s a medal system that rewards you for certain metrics.

I also liked that you could undo any character move (prior to launching an attack) as a free move. You can also redo up to two entire turns per battle, a great option if you’re a grid-based RPG newbie.

Wintermoor Tactics Club. This shows the examine mode. You can see the stats of an opponent.

There’s a nifty examine mode that lets you check out the stats of your opponent. I especially liked that it tells you what type of character that opponent will target. This enemy targets the closest character, but some target other stats. It’s useful for planning initial character placement. It also shows what your opponent’s armor stats are. Armor stats are in two varieties: physical and magical. Your optimal attack against that enemy will depend on which one is lower.

Anything I didn’t like?

There are a couple very minor glitches. Pausing intermittently and some glitchy walking animations. I found it all to be very, very minor and no big deal at all.

Players might want to be aware that one character considers themselves an anarchist with the associated behavior and language (causing problems around school, derogatory language toward police, etc.) Just something to be aware of if you were thinking of letting your kids play.

The one thing that really threw me for a loop is that one of the items you can equip your anarchist teammate with is a barely disguised reference to a notorious book. Not normally a problem per se, but this is so thinly disguised that I wouldn’t want it in my google search history. It was obviously intentional and I seriously question its inclusion, particularly in a game with this rating.

Graphics, Music, and Length

Very nice! The graphics are charming and colorful, depicting the school and it’s diverse inhabitants very well.

The music is well-suited to the action. Some may find it repetitive, but you could always turn it off if you like. There’s a pop song at the end that added to the 1980’s vibe of the game that I enjoyed quite a bit.

The game took just over 10 hours to complete, though it would have been longer if I’d been a perfectionist. It didn’t feel too long or to short. In fact, there were sections where I didn’t want to put it down! I tend to play in short bursts. Feeling unable to put the game down is a rare experience for me.  

The Story & Characters

Wintermoor Tactics Club. Alicia's room. She's examining one of her shelves.One of my favorite subgenres too!

This game shines for me here. I was totally involved in Alicia’s quest to keep her club together and find out why their principal forced the clubs to participate in the snowball fights. Using visual novel style interactions and scenes, Alicia gets to interact with members of the other clubs, make a diverse group of friends, and learn about herself and others. The game covers some great themes, but I don’t want to go into details as I’m afraid of spoiling things I found to be very touching. Which leads me to…

The Conclusion

This game is awesome. The ending had me laughing and then in tears. Other than the reference noted above that I really wish they hadn’t made, this was easily one of the best games it has been my pleasure to play on the Switch to date. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and am definitely going to be using the many autosaves from my first play through to go back and tackle some of the battles again.

Final Verdict: Two Thumbs Up!

Two Thumbs Up Rating

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