Tactical Mind 2 – Switch review
Tactical Mind 2 picks up where the first game left off, using taxing puzzles to stretch your mind and avoid defeat. It borrows a lot from chess with the grand aim to take the King, or in this case a crystal. It also borrows a lot from chequers as you can upgrade your pawns to make them more powerful. If you enjoy turn based strategy games you will definitely find something here.
Developed by Retro Faith favourites Drageus Games you start the game with a simple tutorial that explains the basics and few nuances about the gameplay. You control pawns in an attempt to defend your crystal. If you lose your crystal the game is over. Taking out the opponent’s crystal and you win the round. Sounds simple but there is a lot of abilities at yours, and your opponent’s, disposal.
Every action in every turn is played out by your panws. Pawns create other pawns, pawns attack other pawns and they gather your energy between turns. The amount of actions you can perform each turn is determined by how much energy you have harvested. Any unused pawns that are adjacent to your crystal will build action points. Upgraded pawns create more energy depending on their current level.
You attack other pawns and the damage dealt depends on the level of the pawn attacking and defending. For instance, if you attack a level one pawn with a level one pawn you destroy it. If you attack a level five pawn with a level three, you will cause three damage. In a nutshell, your level determines both your attack and defence. Taking damage drops the level of the pawn but can be applied again on the next turn.
Tactical Minds 2 is tough in places, some of the puzzles will have you scratching your head. The three difficulty levels will keep you busy for a while and we felt it was best played in short bursts. A puzzle here or a puzzle there between other gaming sessions. It is perfect for handheld quick blasts on the Switch as there is little warrant putting up on the big screen.
Visually Tactical Mind 2 is polished if a little bland. You will not be blown away by its cool presentation but this game is all about gameplay and doesn’t need that graphical wow factor. You will also be fine playing it without sound because there is only ambient background music. If you are experienced with turn based strategy you will appreciate the minimalist approach. It allows you to focus on the puzzle without the distraction of effects and sounds.
Board game style titles are usually very hit and miss. They are either slow or have too much graphics that take away from the gameplay. Tactical Mind 2 is the perfect blend of puzzle and strategy with a simple feel. If you are looking for a balanced challenge that is easy on the eyes it is for you. Those looking for faster gameplay will not be impressed. The slow paced nature and kind learning curve also make this a good starting point for if you are just getting into turn based games.