Would You Shake the Hand of Fate?
Of course you would, if you crave for bloody adventure half as much as I think you do. If I got it right, you are already putting your boots on and strapping your sword-belt, eager to march on and gain glories and riches long unseen.
Beware, because brutal force and sizzling blade would carry you only that much through the challenges Fate holds for you. The Hand of Fate is full of strategic decisions and careful resource management throughout treacherous dungeons. Fortunetelling has always been a tricky proposition, especially when you have two decks to manage. To be successful one has to select the proper cards by gauging the impending danger in the deck-building phase
Unlike other deck-building games like the Guild of Dungeoneering and Card Hunter, Hand of Fate combines the turn-based dungeon-crawl with high-paced encounters in which quick reactions count more than any strategy outside the battle. Thanks to the shady host of this deadly game, Hand of Fate has managed to achieve the sensation of a dungeon-crawl similar to the likes of the Darkest Dungeon but the outbursts of action really enliven the experience, making the fights extremely enjoyable. By stepping up the speed this game provides a nice deviation from the roguelike nature of the genre.
There can be little doubt there, the creators from Defiant Development have done a stunning job in the artistry of the game. It is set up immaculately, creating the distinct atmosphere of a perilous dungeon, a mysterious quest, which will test your wits and guts like never before. Planted along the way by the host you will see many surprises: fallen foes will rise again to drag you underground, bandits will gang up on you to steal your coin and rob you from life, visions from beyond this realm will lead you into temptation or solemnity.
As victories mount, so will the loot. Every quest yields hefty rewards for the daring, helping them to advance further and explore more of whatever Fate has stored up her – or his? – sleeve. A sword of tempered steel or a mighty war hammer would help you slain the foes; hardened armor will soften the blow, and a shield would help you counter the incoming attacks.
All these items are necessary but hardly enough to tackle the mounting curses each mission bestows upon you. That’s why securing the favor of the gods is yet another thing to consider. Curses and blesses work somewhat similar to the quirks in the Darkest Dungeon, but many of the blessings have very visible impact in battle. Having a single foe struck by a righteous lightning early on could boost your chances by quite some margin. Similarly, a curse which doubles the cooldowns of your artifacts – another cool mechanic, which provides additional tactical layer to the battles – could impair you severely.
Hand of Fate is an excellent roguelike-RPG, which manages to make questing in a collectible card game an inspiring activity without compromising the strategic element. From the building of the deck through choosing the right items and securing enough supplies for the quest ahead, everything is full of tough choices.
The more you play, the tougher the game becomes, defying your skills and haunting your dreams. Dreams, weaved by the sagaciously cruel Hand of Fate.
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