I Am Bread is an interesting release from Bossa Studios. It is currently in Early Access, and shares the same style of controls as Surgeon Simulator. However, there is a lot more to it than just toasting a slice of bread.
If you are interested in role-playing games such as Baulder’s Gate, Diablo, and Final Fantasy; Blade of Rage may be right up your alley. It is a fantasy RPG for the PC that has been in development for the past couple of years. My views below are based on the short alpha demo, as well as the official website. Bear in mind that this is the work of a single guy, Don McPherson (alias: LoneWolfDon).
With an RPG, you obviously expect a good story, fleshed-out characters, and a reasonable combat system that is not just about smashing the ‘attack’ button. Due to the demo being fairly short, I cannot comment too much on the story, but can discuss the other two areas.
As far as I can tell, there is only three main characters: Rage, Gudu, and Vespa.
Rage seems your average human who has no quarrels with anyone. He was raised by his grandfather as a Spell-Blade, otherwise known as a warrior magician, in a small, secluded village. After his grandfather’s peaceful death, he leaves his home for currently unknown reasons.
Gudu is a dwarf but, due to his mother being human, he is slightly taller than most. Unusually, he has chosen to become a cleric, and often refers to ‘The Stone’ as a God-like entity. He seems more of a friendly chap, rather than a hot-headed warrior who charges into battle unnecessarily. I hope to see him interact with other dwarves, as I suspect he may be outcast by them for his size.
Vespa is a warrior who, unlike females in similar titles, dresses conservatively. She is confident enough in her abilities that she is happy to take a mocking stab at the others by saying how she maybe the one protecting them, rather than the other way around. This is something you do not see too often, and I look forward to seeing whether this continues throughout the entire game. I am also interested to learn why she took up arms, rather than her brother.
Combat is challenging from the beginning. However, it is not impossible if you use magic, special moves, and items to your advantage. Use them, but do not abuse them. Some spells or attacks can be more effective against certain enemies, so I would advise not blowing all your mana on weaker enemies that can easily be dispatched with standard attacks. Every time you are successfully attacked by an enemy, you earn rage points. These are used to deal special attacks, and wear off at the end of a combat scenario.
Overall, I found the combat mechanic to provide a sufficient challenge, while remaining possible. I am interested to learn more about the characters, their backgrounds, and how others react to them. I like the style of the graphics, although I would like to see an improvement in the quality before release. Music did not flow, but added to whatever scenario I found myself in: from fast-paced, high pitched tunes for combat, to slow, ominous music for crypts.
If you would like to support Blade of Rage, you can vote for them on Greenlight, or help play-test the current version. There is no set release date currently, but the developer hopes to have it finished by the end of 2014, or Q4 2014.
– Callum Goss