Trulon: The Shadow Engine (Review)
Thanks to its mobile origins, Trulon: The Shadow Engine presents us with clear visuals, simple but practical menus and gameplay. We could call it an RPG-lite, a role-playing game "in miniature" ideal for newcomers who do not want to lose themselves among the scientific calculations of the Diablo 3 loot, with The Witcher's tactical fights or the greatness of giants such as Final Fantasy. This is a very colorful and simple cartoon game with clear goals, not too complex fights, loot with few statistics and so on.
The story begins with Gladia, a young warrior who realizes that her compatriots are all ill with a mysterious illness. It is no coincidence that all this is contemporaneous with the arrival of monsters that have invaded the surrounding areas, making it complicated to travel or make any commission out of urban areas. So the young protagonist of the title begins a journey to find out what's going on, during which he will meet so many people who will be entrusted with missions as well as other warriors among wizards, thieves and so on who want to join his noble cause.
The gameplay appears initially very classic, not too different from what you see in the games of The Legend of Zelda or Pokémon: we explore the areas in search of our goals, and during the course we encounter many enemies. Here is the true peculiarity of the title: the combat system is in fact a game of cards. Whether you are alone or with a team of comrades, and whether the enemies are numerous or one, the characters alternate with each other and everyone can use their own deck of cards (built during the game) to overcome the challenge of winners .
The cards can be of three main types: attack, which strikes one or more enemies, defending, reducing the effect of subsequent strokes, and utilities, which can, for example, allow us to escape shots or add magical powers to subsequent attacks. Many cards are activated in the turn after their activation, so you will need to keep in mind what the enemy's potential moves are and how to better combine the powers of each character, as there are also many exclusive cards for certain fighters. If they finish the deck cards, there are also some "wildcard" to ensure classical attacks or basic defenses. The difficulty is not too high and the system is not particularly complex, so it's a habit in a few minutes.
As said, this system applies to every combat, both for those that are indispensable to the plot (like bosses) and casual encounters, which are quite common, especially when traveling from one city to another. Obviously we also find many treasures and secrets, useful not only as a loot to enhance our characters but also - through special spheres - to increase the XP earned. Exploring is therefore abundantly rewarded, as finding more cards and more equipment will make life easier for future combat.
Through a world-class steampunk cartoon game,quite anonymous but still cute and colorful, the playing hours fly away rather quickly and the main plot can be completed within a few hours; even by exploring every angle you will hardly get more than a dozen hours to get to the bottom, even because of a not very high difficulty. The plot offers nice characters but a fairly linear story, which is still enjoyable.