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An ambitious but frustrating game

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Dice Legacy is a game that immediately piqued my interest, especially given my addiction to Civilization 6. So how did this really cool idea come about? Well, it’s complicated because this game is a bit peculiar and something a bit different from anything I’ve played.

As a disclaimer, I’ll mention that I probably played 20-30 games and never won, so I found it difficult. But I also think that the difficulty varies from player to player. Since I’m a new player, I’ll talk about my general thoughts on the game and end with my thoughts on the DLC.

Let’s start with the most basic things. The game looks really awesome. The cutscenes, art, and even the sound production are excellent. The art style is almost that old Disney mix between realistic buildings, structures and characters with cartoons. The music is peaceful and relaxing but will get tense when winter comes or you are attacked. The dice art looks cool and comes apart easily, which is really nice considering each class does its own thing.

Dice Legacy gameplay is fun but has a very steep learning curve. The basic loop takes peasant dice to do your starting job. These must be on the right roll to gather, fight, build, etc. You take these dice and can upgrade them to a different class such as soldier, merchant, or citizen, each with their own abilities. As you roll each die, they lose stamina. In the Switch version, you have to launch them in groups unless you lock down what you need.

Winter adds temporary difficulties as you must constantly burn wood to keep your dice warm, abandon all plans, or risk freezing your dice until summer arrives.

There are perks to help with dice or resource bonuses, but nothing changes the game. You can only have 12 dice at a time, which must contain all of your classes and whatever else you need. Luckily, there are deep and nuanced tutorials though they break the game to show them off, so you’ll never feel too lost just trying to figure out how you should run, what order to integrate, and what classes you need.

The most frustrating thing about this game is that I was playing it on the Switch. It’s one of those games that’s really hard to optimize for a controller. I was hitting ZR/ZL to roam the landscape over and over to get my dice where I needed them to go to get the job done. I imagine this is done much more simply on a mouse. There’s also a pause and fast forward feature, which is great if you need to lock in a lot of dice before a roll or if all your dice are frozen and you just want winter to end.

Dice Legacy Corrupt Fates

The Corruption DLC seems to add a huge new level of depth with cultists doing politics that are a bit darker and even more technological. Unfortunately I didn’t get to see many of these things as my runs were usually cut short before I could see too many as I was still trying to learn the basics and see everything the game had to offer.

Dice Legacy is a ton of fun, but it’s very deep and takes a lot of time to learn its intricacies. A lot of my frustrations with this game came from using a controller and struggling to learn how to optimize those controls while learning a survival strategy game.