Genre: strategy
Release Date: April 16, 2020
Developer: Cookie Byte Entertainment
Publisher: All in! Games


In recent days, we often think of XCOM – in relation to the ambiguous XCOM: Chimera Squad, then in relation to Gears Tactics. Against this background, another game was released almost unnoticed, where there are very familiar (but with their own zest) tactical battles. However, speaking of Fort Triumph, one often has to recall another cult name – “Heroes of Might and Magic”.

Fort for Heroes

Yes, in Fort TriumphHeroes of Might & Magic fans will immediately feel right at home. There are four races in all — humans, goblins, undead, and (unexpectedly) trolls. In the “Skirmish” we select any of them, hire the first heroes in our castle, create a squad and go to explore the map with a single figure. And there are all familiar faces. There are well-guarded sources of resources (money and mana), there are neutral enemies that protect treasures (chests and all sorts of useful artifacts like a necklace that instantly restores the deceased). Sometimes you can beat off the cell where a new hero is imprisoned. Somewhere, purses of gold are just lying around. In place are the altars, which, when visiting, extend the moves or give strength/speed bonuses in the next battle.

Resources go to rebuild the castle – there we build a citadel, increasing the number of hired heroes and giving bonuses for the defense of the fortress; the town hall (and then the capital), which multiplies the weekly increase in gold; a university that provides access to other advanced buildings and at the same time increases the amount of experience gained for victories in battles. Well and so on – there are still many useful buildings.

My castle

There is also an analog of the research that we open for valor points earned in battles. They are focused solely on pumping heroes – they increase their damage, speed or defense, give special properties (for example, the ability to strike back), open new cells in the inventory, increase the maximum size of the squad and stuff like that.

Naturally, after some time, enemy heroes start snooping around the map, who will capture your mines and mana sources and attack your castles. Therefore, it is necessary to create several detachments and always keep one of them closer to its borders, in which case, whirl into the castle and increase its protection. Or you can just keep several fighters right there – although it is better, of course, to bring them out and pump them on neutral monsters. In general, the scheme is extremely familiar.

They are not so different

Yes, Fort Triumph does not have the same level of elaboration of strategy and economics as in Heroes of Might & Magic – some advanced mechanics (like caravans) are simply absent. The difference between the races is also not too noticeable – everyone has the same classes of heroes (paladin, barbarian, mage, and shooter) who pump and learn about the same skills. Research is identical for everyone.

The difference lies literally in a couple of details. Trolls, for example, after building the desired building will learn to grow a thick skin in order to constantly get the effect of partial shelter; the undead can infuriate, and humans can strike back in battle. In addition, it is clear that neither blindness nor bleeding affects skeletons. But the authors, on the other hand, did not promise a 100% clone of “Heroes”, but spoke about exploring the map in the style of Heroes of Might & Magic – and in this sense, they almost kept their promises. Unless you can hire creatures (including neutral ones) on the map. But this is already connected with the features of the local combat system.

Do we fight according to the old scheme?

In Fort Triumph bet on pumping and tactical battles. The latter are already familiar not by HoM & M (although they are also step-by-step), but by XCOM. Here, heroes of different classes walk in turn, using action points for moving, attacking, using magic, and special skills. There is even a “Watch” mode (our favorite “overwatch”), accessible, of course, only to archers and magicians.

In the same way as in the latest releases of XCOM, all characters can take cover, and many of their actions and attacks are shown by a separate camera at a rapid speed. In place is the company its Comoxsky random when calculating the chances of hitting the target. So get ready: use foul language when your fighter misses with a 96% chance of getting there, too.

Now with advanced physics

The main “feature” of the local tactical system, which immediately charges Fort Triumph with a decent dose of identity, is associated with shelters. The game has a gorgeous physics engine that allows you to destroy almost any obstacle that units are hiding behind. At the same time, shelters fall on the characters, stun them and repel them. And if behind the warrior there is another stone pillar or fighter, then the first will push the second, and the second – the third. And so on the chain, you can drop, injure and stun several enemies at once.

Mages are able to bring down obstacles using the Whirlwind spell, and melee fighters with kicks. Archers use throwing arrows or a hook, which you can pick up and push the enemy with the same stone pillar. Or even with another opponent on the way. The direction in which we discard and repulse is different – this also depends on the position of the soldier who performs this action.

Often it’s better not to even beat, but to kick enemies, pushing them against each other and objects of the environment, which, by the principle of dominoes, will hurt someone else and bring down something else. Moreover, this way you can push the enemy right under the oncoming, not spending action points attack (attack of opportunity) of our other hero, standing nearby. Or under the shot of an archer who has sunk into the “Watch”. For the same purpose, the “Rise” ability available to all is used, throwing the opponent to neighboring cells. And this is especially useful when there are very few action points left – both “Kick” and “Rise” spend only 1 MP. With this kind of physics, battles seem funny, unpredictable, and unique.

Everyone goes to battle!

True, after some time, ordinary fights begin to become boring. The fact is that there is no auto-fight function, so every time you have to fight even with obviously weaker opponents – they do not want to immediately surrender or escape. And this is every time the download ( Fort Triumph optimized is not so bad, but not perfect) and a chore of repeating the same actions. It is necessary to twist the speed of battles to the maximum.

The key battles in the story campaign, which so far is only available for the kingdom of people, look really unique. There the conditions are different, and the battles themselves are divided into several stages. But the campaign faces another problem – the imbalance between the characters.

The fact is that there is a bias towards the paladins, who beat harder and move farthest. But they won’t be able to fill the entire squad with them in the story missions – the game without fail will call on the team the strongest representatives of each class. And if you preferred to download only paladins, then in the squad there will be one such hero of the twelfth level, and the archer, barbarian and magician will be the first.

On the one hand, this is good: in this way, the game forces its own imbalance and forces it to pump different classes. And if in your battle your beloved barbarian died, then you have to take another and improve him already, so as not to get a slag in the story mission. On the other hand, in principle, it is not very correct that we are imposed restrictions on the class composition of the party. Work the authors on a “heroic” balance better – and there would be no need for this.

But, one way or another, the plot and key battles in Fort Triumph really keep in suspense and challenge your tactical skills: I replayed some missions for hours so that no one died – you don’t want to lose pumped fighters, as you already understood.

So, despite the simplified strategic part and imperfect balance, Fort Triumph as a whole was a success. The very formula “ XCOM meets the “ Heroes of Might and Magic ” and kicks them, dropping them on stones and columns” looks very fresh and interesting. In addition, the game looks great and sounds great, and the storyline campaign constantly throws up unexpected turns and sometimes successfully jokes – humor, of course, is not at the level of Terry Pratchett, but he can make him smile. The game can drag on for many hours, only if the authors added auto boy, this time would have been reduced without a loss for the fun of the gameplay.

Pros: quite an intriguing story campaign; good humor in places; fascinating study of the card in the style of “Heroes of Might and Magic”; intense battles in the spirit of XCOM, but with the ability to destroy and creatively use the environment; nice cartoon picture; epic, truly fantasy music.

Cons: someone may not have enough depth on the strategic map, although the authors did not particularly promise it; the balance of classes is imperfect; artificial restrictions on the composition of the party in story missions; while only the campaign for people is available.


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