Game Review - Into the Breach

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America started the giant monster movie genre and Japan took the concept of “Kaiju” and ran with it. For whatever reason, video game adaptations of these behemoth beasts never completely took off. We have the Rampage series and the King of the Monsters iterations, but nothing quite as big or as smart as Into the Breach. It’s about time titan-sized tactical chess was released upon the world.

Subset Games, makers of the masterpiece Faster Than Light, have waded through space and time to bring us another sci-fi turn-based strategy game. Although it’s quite different from their last outing, you can expect the same level of polish and addictive gameplay. Into the Breach may be small in scope, but there are no chains large enough to tie it down.

As a fearless pilot seated in one of several weaponized mech robots, it’s up to you to protect humanity from the scourge of Vek – a medley of mutated insects capable of mass destruction. Each battle plays out on a tiled eight-by-eight grid that you and your adversaries take turns attacking and defending. With every successful mission, your crew advances toward the Vek hive and collects upgrades and experience along the way. Failure sends a pilot of your choice back to an alternative timeline to start anew, while keeping your current mech’s upgraded attributes. Every move is entirely deliberate, with no random number generator to muddle your approach.

While you’re sure to face adversity, the game never feels unfair. Missteps are painful, but even total defeat results in a clever tie-in with the premise. While enemy types may get stale, bouncing them into lava never does. A variety of environmental effects also help shake-up your surroundings. The overwhelming number of upgrades, weapons, and mechs will keep hardcore strategy fans engaged and Into the Breach also serves as a perfect way introduce newcomers to a turn-based model. Protect the grid and protect Earth!

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