Games of the Year

Battle Brothers

Battle Brothers Screenshot 1
Battle Brothers Screenshot 2
Battle Brothers Screenshot 3
Battle Brothers Screenshot 4
Battle Brothers Screenshot 5
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Battle Brothers is a turn based tactical RPG which has you leading a mercenary company in a gritty, low-power, medieval fantasy world. You decide where to go, whom to hire or to fight, what contracts to take and how to train and equip your men in a procedurally generated open world campaign. Do you have what it takes to lead them through bloody battles and to victory? The game consists of a strategic worldmap and a tactical combat layer. On the worldmap you can freely travel in order to take contracts that earn you good coin, find places worth looting, enemies worth pursuing or towns to resupply and hire men at. This is also where you manage, level up and equip your Battle Brothers. Once you engage a hostile party the game will switch to a tactical map where the actual fighting takes place as detailed turn based combat. Manage a medieval mercenary company in a procedurally generated open world.
Promote for 50G

Game Discussion

Review by Anonymous
Review from Steam

I am Chinese. I use the translator to talk with the author now because I want the author to understand that this game is great. This is all I want. I love you because you have created the world I want

Review from Steam

If you're looking for something tactical, that will make you think, where your decisions make a difference, you don't mind some bad luck RNG, permadeath and view save scumming as a way to "try different things out", Battle Brothers is for you. Kinda like Xcom in a toned down fantasy setting.
Have a poem about Battle Brothers:
To arms, to arms
We make our stand
Upon this hill
As brothers, a band
Here come the orcs
With club and axe
To cleave our limbs
And make us into snacks
They said it'll be easy
Just take the contract
Even paid up front
And now we are trapped
Some brothers will die
Others be maimed
But should our band survive
Our name will be famed
If you like tactics
And adventure grand
You'll love this game
As you build (and lose) your merry band

Review from Steam

100 hours and I still suck at this game. Really bad. I die at around day 20/30 if I'm lucky, and I constantly rage. I actually mostly shout and rage than have fun, but I keep coming back. You'd think I'm joking but I'm writing this in utter disappointment and loss of hope, because I know that I'm about to start a new run. I don't know what keeps taking me back to this game, you'd think I would have uninstalled a long time ago, and I have made such promises, but I have failed to deliver. I just want to see the light at the end of the tunnel, I want heads to fly and moods to soar to eager, I want the arenas to chant my name and for my band to become immortalised in history. Is that too much to ask for?
Now in all seriousness, I don't find it to be a downside that I keep coming back to the game even if it causes me immense rage, the game is teaching me how to lose and so far I'm getting better at that. Each new game I have approached with a new mindset, with something different to test out, and at this point I actually feel a slight excitement underneath the rage of losing, because I know that this time I can make a difference. For example, "My character just missed twice in a row, I'm so angry because he's now going to die and he had his chance to not to" then I think to myself, "If he had fast adaptation those 2 misses would have gave him 20% extra chance to hit and plus with a spear that's a 40% on top, 2 hits and my bro could have made the difference this game, but now it's too late, better try this in the next game" Or my new favourite tactic of buying what I call flesh armour, cheap 80g cripple that has body parts worth of armour equivalent to a 50-100 not including cheap gear, and in return for his sacrifice we might actually get some gear that would have cost 3x his price. See at first I would have bought an indebted, but the 0 upkeep means nothing if he's going to die the next fight and I'm paying 200g instead of 80g and 4g upkeep for a cripple. And there is always a chance they might live to level up, before you know it I'm steam rolling and a cripple now is worth 300 points of health with armour put together that I had saved up from our battles. That's just an example. The game is pretty complex, if you got the time and patience to learn, I suggest you give it a go, try watching tutorials and reading guides but for me it's grindstone and blood baby, going in raw, just how I like it, even if it turns me a bit insane in the process. The end result will fix it all, I am sure of it. No bros sacrifice will go unnoticed. By the way the hardest habit to get out of in this game is retiring when odds don't seem to go your way, this game is a mental hurdle first before skill, first you will learn more about yourself than about the game, to control your own emotions is to control a bros life and his potentially promising future.
I would have made this a negative review but my playtime and dedication would contradict that. And this game absolutely holds up to my first impressions, yeah it's expensive, but the complexity and difficulty and the time it takes to learn makes up for it all. It doesn't seem all that much when you first get it, it seems a bit bland and repetitive, but then once you keep going and going you realise that the game is exactly how you first imagined it, for me it was mild gritty fantasy with many decisions exploration and plenty of RPG elements, you're running a company in a very dark world where everybody is a resource, death is as common as a cold, and being a hero is not a common luxury.

Review from Steam

I'V WON...... HOLY CRAP I'V WON.
It took a total of 139 hours and I had to come back to the game a total of three times and watch probably 4 hours of youtube videos to learn the tricks. but i am champion of battle brothers!!!!!
I am 40 and don't play many games. If i can do it, you can do it!!!!
Wait there are EXPANSIONS!!

Review from Steam

Game couldn't even get me to play for 6,200 hours. SMH

Review from Steam

The game delivers exactly what it promises.
Most reviews are spot on, and so, I'll try to avoid creating an echo chamber with my two cents.
Yes, this game is difficult. At times, it's completely unfair in my eyes. But it's not the AI. Or bad luck. Or difficulty settings. It's a severe lack of intel. Many, many, many losses could've been prevented had there been a way to learn something about what I'm going up against beforehand.
Example: (Most) Zombies stay down if you remove/crush their heads. Seems obvious, I know, but, the point is, not once have I seen this mentioned in almost 200 hours of playing. (Perhaps on the loading screen tips, but, I can't read them since it loads instantly.) This lead to early encounters where my men were ill prepared and eventually overwhelmed.
The next expansion, Of Flesh and Faith, seemingly implies that most people lack knowledge on creatures, which, provides a solid *in game* contextual counterargument to what I have to say. BUT! There's many people who have proven they know a ton about these creatures through various events.
It would've been nice to seek knowledge from them instead of Google. Be it random anatomists/beast hunters/scholars, a library/alchemist/taxidermist, or one of my men simply saying something during the pre-battle phase.
That's my rant. You've been warned. Lovely game.

Review from Steam

This game is the quintessential diamond in the rough. Full stop.
In a sea of bland, uninspired trite, this game stands, a luminous gem.
That occasional game you happen upon that evidently shows the passion the developers have for it.
Game design is a series of interesting choices, and Battle Brothers delivers that in stride. The premise is that you run a mercenary company in a procedurally generated world, and the RNG of the game is harnessed to make every person you choose to hire in your team to stand out with various traits, every level up you make with your roster meaningful. Every battle you face, unique in it's own way. Your battle with bandits will feel radically different compared to facing Nomads, or Alps, or Nachzehrers. Where as Bandits might tend to hang back and pelt you with arrows or bolts to force you to fight on their terms, Nachzehrers will try to overwhelm you and will even bolster their power by consuming their dead allies to become even greater threats. Using one single approach to all your battles will get you killed quick, each foe requires different approaches to come out sitting pretty.
Your main form of engaging with the world is by taking contracts from settlements, and they come in different varieties. Escort a caravan, deliver a package, find a map location, retrieve a family heirloom from thieves. The options you're given with how to make ends meet are vast and cater to many different playstyles. Want to play it a bit safe after taking a beating from a tough contract? Go with a package delivery. Want to really test your mettle early on? Get in on gutting some orcs. One of the best aspects of the game is that you're entirely in control of the pace. You decide when you need new hires, when you need new weapons, armor, accessories or even if you want to even bother buying armor, and rather just take it off your dead foes.
The game has the courage to trust you with how you want to play, where you want to play it, and when you want to engage with the various battle mechanics. It manages this great sense of freedom with solid, and very challenging gameplay. If you're new to the turn based tactical games, you may want to opt to go for the beginner difficulty. To those who want a game that finally stops holding their hand and really test them. This game is for you. It's challenging, and at times, quite difficult, but usually not outright unfair.
Of course it's not a perfect game, the RNG, as with any game can get quite frustrating. And for people like myself who try not to savescum it's infuriating at times to hire an expensive bro, like a hedge knight only to find that he's got some pretty poor stats all around. And while I appreciate the variety, there are some enemies that are straight up unfun to fight. The Alps for instance, aren't terribly fun to fight. They're not horribly difficult once you've figure out the best method of fighting them, but the fights are long, drawn out and a little too rng in who is targeted and whether the guy dies. A good portion of the best approach when fighting Alps is to simply have numbers. Alot of it is having better action economy than they do and you know killing them quickly. And that approach isn't terribly fun, imo.
The same goes for the Hexen, I don't think mind control mechanics are really fun in any game, but Hexens in particular are quite frustrating until you have a few dedicated crossbowman and resolve boosting potions. Otherwise you'll likely be losing a guy or two, or if your early enough in the game, there's a decent chance it'll be a game ender if you stay and fight. Assuming you have a decently large fighting force though, you'll probably get through the fight.
That all said, this is an fantastic game, a game this good comes once every few years. The fact more people don't know about it even, baffles me. This game deserved game of the year for 2017 (The year it officially released) more than any other game that year. Yet, this game seems to not get the audience it deserves. So, if even one other person ends up buying this game due to my review. I'll consider that a win.

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