Dreadlands Gameplay Preview – Turnbased Strategy Akin to XCOM and Wasteland

Dreadlands by Blackfox Studios, published by Fatshark – March 10, 2020 (Early Access)
MSRP: $19.99 (Steam) – https://store.steampowered.com/app/1054690/Dreadlands/

Dreadlands is a turn based strategy game set in the wastelands. It feels very similar to X-COM and Wasteland 2.

You start the game by picking one of two gangs.

The game starts you off as a fresh gang in the Dreadlands. You get to pick your gang, which determines your tech tree. As of now, you have two gangs available to pick from. One focuses heavily on ranged combat, and the other focus heavily on technology, such as land mines.

You travel through a large world map and choose your encounters. When you clear these maps, you recover loot and materials for your base as well as level up your units.

You can unlock additional facilities in your base as you progress in the story mode.

Back at your base, you can do story missions to unlock core facilities, such as a medical bay, a workbench, and etc. They unlock additional functionality as well as upgrade the appearance of your base.

For game play, it is pretty standard turn based strategy fare so fans of the genre will feel right at home. Taking cover is very important as being exposed will leave you vulnerable to heavy damage from the enemy. Attacking an enemy with a melee attack will leave them in a locked state, where they can only be attacked by melee attacks, unless they are knocked back from the attacker or choose to disengage. Many other features and mechanics are in the game as well, such as a pinned state, negative status effects, and an overwatch ability. Most actions take one action point and each unit starts with two actions points at the start of each turn.

You can use four cards each map, each with a unique ability.

The game adds in a new twist by allowing you to use four tech cards with a wide variety of effects from healing units in the next turn, to jamming enemy weapons once they fire, to laying down bear traps.

The developers have a roadmap available with additional features coming along, such as PvP related content, new tribes, new base additions, and etc.

Did I mention you start off with a bear?! Bearhanded combat. Unbearable puns. This game has it all.

Overall Dreadlands is a very solid addition to the turn based strategy genre. It strikes a great balance in difficulty by not making it incredibly challenging and frustrating but also not a cake walk. It still requires players to think and play strategically. Did I mention you have a bear on your squad?

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