Expeditions is a fantastic historical strategy game that should be of great interest to fans of other period pieces like The Guild
. It mixes turn-based strategy elements with RPG to great effect and turns out to a nice little treat. You're placed in the role of a Spanish explorer in the 16th Century and given the choice of two campaigns to undertake to the New World. The game starts out in familiar fashion, with a few options in terms of creating your character, with a handful of characteristics to play around with. There are also several crew members to select from an extensive list, each with their own unique personalities and back stories. From here, you move on to the main gameplay, which is split into two parts. The first sees you moving your party around a map screen, picking up resources and experiencing various random events. You have to take into account things like camping and assigning tasks to your crew, and which involves some nice decision making. The next main part of the game is the combat, which is hex- and turn-based. There are plenty of different unit types to take on while the battles actually relate to the story rather than just being random. There are several different endings to the story to discover and which relate to how well your expedition performs, giving the game some replay value. Expeditions really is quite a surprise. The period is well recreated and there's a nice sense of atmosphere, while the exploration and combat work well in tandem. There's a fair bit of challenge too so if you're after something tactical and fun, this should do the job.