Inscryption is a new game from the developers of Darkest Dungeon, Red Hook Studios. It’s an atmospheric dungeon crawler with roguelike elements. The game features procedurally generated dungeons and permadeath.

Inscryption is a horror game that has been in development for quite some time. The goal of the game is to escape from a dark and gloomy world where you are being hunted by a creature. We had the opportunity to try out this game at PAX West 2019.

You’ll know what to anticipate from most single-player card games, but Inscryption shakes up the concept in clever, fascinating ways that will tempt you to keep playing. The majority of roguelikes are repetitious by nature, but Inscryption will keep you captivated until you find out how to escape its craziness.

Inscryption starts with you imprisoned in a tiny chamber with a mysterious person. With deadly purpose, his evil eyes gaze blankly into your soul. You are compelled to play his horrible card game. To win, you must sacrifice animals, battle with them, and properly plan. And there’s a soul in each card. As you attempt to find clues to escape the hell you’re in, Inscryption plays with this fascinating concept in a variety of ways. It’s as if you’re playing two games at once: a card game and an escape room, and it’s a lot of fun.

Devolver Digital provided this image.

Furthermore, the card game is entertaining in and of itself. You have four separate panels on which to put cards, and you must defend each lane against pursuing opponents, much as in Yu-Gi-Oh. You’ll also go straight for the gamemaster. Some scales on the left should be tilted in your favor. This is how your life points are calculated. A cost, attack power, and life force are all assigned to each card. The price depends on how many sacrifices you want to make on the field. There are special powers associated with your card that will alter the formula in a variety of ways. Birds, for example, may attack the opponent head-on while ignoring what’s in front of them. Others strike opponents in a diagonal direction. The game’s clever design will keep you on your toes, particularly when it comes to the well-crafted boss fights.

You are on a board that, like Slay The Spire, provides you with various objects, cards, and power-ups based on your path. Some routes will lead to more difficult fights in the future, while others will be simpler. This aspect seems to be random, since these events and fights appear in various locations with each run.  

Devolver Digital provided this image.

You’re being forced to make choices that may have serious consequences for you. At a campfire, for example, you may improve the strength or health of a card. You may go for seconds or even thirds, but doing so will put your card in jeopardy throughout the run. You may combine two copies of the same card to produce one boosted version via another interaction. As a result, encryption makes every playing interesting, keeping you coming back until you reach the finish.

The components of the escape room are also well-implemented. There are a number of riddles to solve in the area, but you’ll need to use the card game to discover clues. Both are intertwined in fascinating ways that will put your mind to the test. If you see anything unusual, that’s usually the best thing to do.

The creepy aura of Inscryption draws you in. The gamemaster’s deranged eyes will haunt your dreams, and the chamber itself is decorated with occult symbols. As you’re trapped in a chamber of black and green, the one way out flashes in white. The gamemaster is watching your every move while you try to find a way out, and it’s unsettling to say the least. The cards also include rough artwork that complements the game’s perverse nature.

Overall, anybody who like horror games or card games should play Inscryption. It effortlessly combines card and escape room components, and the complex game design will have you going back for additional plays in this roguelike. You may not want to be strangled, but this game will keep you engrossed from beginning to end. To accomplish so, you’ll just have to die a lot.

The publisher gave a code to the writer for review reasons.

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