The Dungeon Of Naheulbeuk: The Amulet Of Chaos. PAX Preview

Here we are back from PAX East 2020, cozily nestled back into our own home and caught up on sleep , oh the blessed sleep.  Big reveal at the...

Here we are back from PAX East 2020, cozily nestled back into our own home and caught up on sleep , oh the blessed sleep. 
Big reveal at the start of PAX was gameplay of Baldurs Gate 3 and their big booth in the middle of the show floor was well visited. But in a small booth, against a wall, behind the Nintendo Animal Crossing booth of all places, another RPG was having a great showing and if you didn't see it, then you missed out.....But don't worry we got you!

The game is The Dungeon of Nahaulbeuk: The Amulet of Chaos, a turn based RPG by French developer Artefacts Studio. Originally, The dungeon of Naheulbeuk is a role-playing parody that started as an audio play. Taking place in a typical medieval-fantasy world, the characters are anything but your typical heroes. Un-agreeable, irritable and not the top of the line heroes that you might expect.  Bickering and complaining all the way down these adventures are in search of dangerous artifacts and will have to over come foes as well as themselves to make it out alive.

In the playable demo the lovable misfits had to find a way to the thieves den in order to consolidate the debt of a wizard with a gambling problem. The best diplomacy off course,  is a swift bonk in the head with something heavy.

During the exploration phase of the game the group move around fairly freely and you can inspect the environment for various goods etc. We did not see too much of this exploration mode but it was noticeable that during it the characters were all too happy to announce their displeasure with the situation and each other leading to some entertaining dialog. 
The game will be fully voiced and for the studio recently announced, that Felicia Day will be one of the main leads in the game. The cartoonish character designs have a great charm to them and the environments are colorful and full of detail.

Once we encountered the gang leader we were looking for and started our *ahem* diplomacy, the game moved into combat mode. At this point the game combat switched to full turn based gameplay. You get a move and an action for each character, moving is an important tactical choice in order to remove party members in and out of danger but be careful because as you pass within a certain distance of an enemy they can get an attack of opportunity on you and vice versa, just like your typical tabletop RPG.  The game plays out a lot like games such as XCOM. At the top of your screen is your turn order, which can be changed by holding and action or special abilities. Once it is your turn selecting a character will show you where they can go and who they can hit based on their weapons or spells equipped. Release a critical hit or finishing move and the camera will zoom in to give a cinematic view of the action. In once such case we saw the Ogre of the party get a little nauseous and release a devastating belch attack. It is not all about attacking though, you can administer heals and potions as well and maneuver tactically while taking cover behind furniture and other environmental objects.Sometimes the best diplomacy is defense.

Talking about environment, certain items can also be destroyed and used as hazards or barriers in the game. In the demo we saw, the developer broke some beer barrels making the floor wet and slippery. This caused anyone moving through it to go slip and fall, making them lose their option to attack as well as be vulnerable for attacks. Getting hurt is never good in any game but in Dungeon of Naheulbeuk being hurt will have some extra nagative side effects. As characters, players and NPC's alike, lose their health they also become more vulnerable to attacks, have more chance of missing or failing skill checks. Therefore it is real important to manage the health and resources of your team. 

The AI seemed fairly challenging and adaptive in the demo. At times it was making the situation real tense and the victory felt earned. According to the developer their will be 4 levels of difficulty in the final version of the game, including a marathon mode which means no going back and death means death.

The Dungeon of Naheulbeuk will come with about 45 hours of game play and is out due this summer. If you like tactical RPG's and are looking for something a little more humorous then you do not want to sleep on this one. Add it to your wishlist on steam.

Game information:
Title: The Dungeon of Naheulbeuk: the Amulet of Chaos.
Developer: Artefacts Studio 

Publisher: Dear Villagers
Release date: Summer 2020
Platforms: PC


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