WASD Coverage April 2024 - Last Spartan: Glory Over Madness

Review by Adam Ray

There's a certain appeal for me, a high level Dungeon Master, taking a warrior through a long string of battles and seeing how well they go when rolling dice. Last Spartan is another Roguelike Deck-Builder that I sampled at WASD, but offers some familiar genre tropes but some wildly new takes.

In the story of the game, with its strong and gritty pulp artwork, King Leonidas lost the war against the Persians because strange eldritch beings rose from the Aegean Sea and cursed the 300 Spartans with Lovecraftian Madness. Now he must walk alone to defeat these monsters.

Instead of building a deck of cards, you take powers to meld onto a row of five dice. The dice represent King Leonidas' attacks, buffs he can apply to himself, and de-buffs he can apply to his enemies.

The element that makes the decisions interesting, over the high luck factor of the dice, is that you can play exactly how you want. The dice are largely customisable. A visit to the blacksmith after every fight means you can add stronger powers earned on your run and swapping them out the best you can. When you earn a power, you must discard one of the faces on your existing dice, this means your attacks get stronger over time.

During my first run, there was a lot of variance and me just rolling useless heals and buffs but very little damage. After losing to a strange bug monster, I decided to put all my attacks onto two of my five dice, and I was off to the races, applying the other effects before any attacks.

Fans of The Darkest Dungeon are set to be big fans of this game, and it's an unexpected title I did not expect to love.

Last Spartan: Glory Over Madness is set to release later this year, but the demo is available to play right now on Steam.


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