Deck-Building games are my bread and butter, and I love it all the more when a developer pushes to experiment with the gameplay format in new ways. The roguelike deck-builder has become the norm for adapting this style of gameplay, but games like Baten Kaitos and SteamWorld Quest have used its foundations to present more linear, story-driven role-playing experiences. While SOULVARS, the newly-released Switch title from publisher SUEISHA GAMES, might have originally been released as a mobile-only title, it is by no means a quick and dirty port, or a low-effort affair. There’s some strong tactical foundations and expansive customization to be found here, if you can hand wave some of the game’s weaker elements.
I rarely dabble in simulation games, but I think their unique brand of resource management does have some crossover with role-playing games. However, tech tree progression often feels less about player-expression than it does overall optimization, and combat in simulation titles is rarely a priority, unless you’re talking about games with an action role-playing design philosophy and simulation elements. However, a number of Western-designed simulation games have been implementing combat into simulation games, and Nova Lands is no exception to this trend. This science fiction simulation title combines elements of combat, exploration, and resource management to deliver a straightforward play experience with a few brilliant moments of character and personality.