Notions have spread in recent years that traditional turn-based RPGs have fallen out of fashion, particularly in the AAA gaming space. But while it may hold true that turn-based RPGs rarely receive resources and funding on the level of the average AAA game, the genre still has a sizable audience today. Classic turn-based RPG franchises like Dragon Quest and Pokemon still find plenty of success, and a whole host of indie titles have catered to fans of the genre in their own ways. These trends likely won’t slow down anytime soon, especially with publisher Raw Fury’s recent publisher reveal of Skald: Against the Black Priory, an RPG that leans hard on the old-school aesthetic.
Of course, with a new announcement usually comes a new trailer, and the one for Skald clearly gets across its intentions during the short time it lasts. The game depicts its world and characters in a classic, Commodore 64-style, 8-bit aesthetic, and the characters even move around in a grid-based world rather than a fully seamless one. Bizarrely, though, the trailer features fully-voiced narration that distracts from the style the rest of the trailer goes for. Maybe the voiceover would have fit better if it was bit-crushed like many old-school voiceovers often were.
Any more details
According to the Steam page, Skald sees players exploring “a dark fantasy world, full of tragic heroes, violent deaths and Lovecraftian, cosmic horror.” As they do so, they will engage with a “branching story mixed with rich exploration and crunchy, tactical, turn-based combat that will seem familiar yet innovative to RPG fans, old and new.”
Classic RPG fans will likely feel right at home with Skald, but some may still view it with skepticism. Fortunately, a free prologue chapter released back in June remains available on Steam. So, players have the perfect opportunity to get a feel for the game before its slated 2022 release.