D&D General Solasta: Crown of the Magister Offers A Hidden Fifth Edition Computer Gem

Seven years in, one would think there would be an official Fifth Edition video game by now. There are plenty of ways to play D&D electronically, such as the upcoming Dark Alliance action brawler or mobile versions of classics like Baldur’s Gate. Computer versions have yet to completely scratch the itch of playing a game with a Dungeon Master who can react to unexpected plans and adjust...

solastacotm-goblins-fight.png

Seven years in, one would think there would be an official Fifth Edition video game by now.

There are plenty of ways to play D&D electronically, such as the upcoming Dark Alliance action brawler or mobile versions of classics like Baldur’s Gate. Computer versions have yet to completely scratch the itch of playing a game with a Dungeon Master who can react to unexpected plans and adjust storylines on the fly. But they can still tell great stories and help out the dry periods when you can’t get a group together for whatever logistical reason.

Solasta: Crown of the Magister seeks out the audience looking for a computer RPG that uses the 5e rules set to tell its story. Kickstarted in 2019, it recently came out of Early Steam access looking to hook people who love D&D 5e and either can’t get enough or can’t get any. They sent me a code to try out the game after I covered it for a previous article. And while there’s some rough stuff going on, the underlying experience was engaging.

The game uses the 5e OGL as the basis for its game engine. Anyone familiar with 5e will know how combat works and those who don’t will learn soon after an amusing tutorial level where members of your party are telling tales of their adventures about how they got to the tavern. Unfortunately, this also means the game is restricted to the content available in the OGL, which means six base classes and humans, elves, dwarves and halflings as character options. There are some unique choices like snow dwarves or marsh halflings, but the options are far more limited than the standard Player’s Handbook.

The game also is rough technically. The character models are not great up close, load times can be a bit long and there are occasional sound glitches. The voice acting ranges from bad to decent with everyone speaking in an accent best described as a solid Ren Faire English. An official D&D game would have a lot more polish in these areas and it can be a little distracting sometimes during cutscenes or other non-combat moments.

The combat, however, is great. Not only does it run on a smooth version of the 5e engine but the set piece battles offer great variety. There’s a vertical aspect to the dungeons that’s really stunning and it opens up encounters in a way that rarely happens in tabletop grid combats. The game encourages exploration and tactical thinking in a way that makes fights more dramatic than they would be with a more grind-focused setup. The game wants you to fly and rain down spells or find that rock that you can push down on some zombies. Dungeon Masters looking to make their home game battles more dynamic should take note.

Another dynamic element is the party construction. Rather than a main character and sidekicks, the dialogue choices come from the entire party. Their personality traits affect the choices but it’s fun talking with quest giving NPCs as a group rather than a main character. It made me feel a little like a film director choosing when my sarcastic fighter would say something or my noble paladin would step in to smooth over negotiations.

The game is also expanding. It plans on adding some classes as well as setting up a Dungeon Master mode where players can create and upload new campaigns beyond the first. As a nice touch the game offers notes on skill choices that won’t turn up often in the main campaign but might still be useful in future content.

Fans of 5e looking for battle action and a decent high fantasy storyline on their PC should check out Solasta: Crown of the Magister.
 

log in or register to remove this ad

Rob Wieland

Rob Wieland


log in or register to remove this ad

Dausuul

Legend
I think Solasta is best described as 2021's Neverwinter Nights. The engine is great and its dungeon creator mode offers a lot of soon-to-be-tapped potential. However the campaign that's actually included with the game is a bit of an afterthought quality-wise, not "bad" but nowhere near what you'd be expecting if you're used to classics like BG2, Kingmaker, Pillars, etc.
Hmm. In that case I might buy it. Try it out, see how it plays, give the studio a little revenue so they can make 2022's "Shadows of Undrentide" and 2023's "Hordes of the Underdark." :)
 



GreyLord

Legend
I think it's a great game. It may not look like the latest Assassin's Creed, but I still find the graphics nice to look at.

I'm not sure about others experiences with it, but I have found that it doesn't have many bugs on my mid-grade gaming laptop (1060 Nvidia, 8 GB), though it may get buggy on lower end laptops or desktops (Intel chipsets, etc).

This game hews the closests to a 5e gaming experience one can get presently, far closer than any of the competitors games I've played.
 


Is it less buggy? Oh yeah, way less than 2077 was at launch. Is it pretty buggy and clunky and incomplete? Also yes.
People have unreasonable expectations. Baldur's Gate 1 and 2 where riddled with bugs at launch. Planescape: Torment even worse. A PC game is an incredibly complex piece of code, especially when you are using tools you didn't create yourself. Unless you have an army of full time paid beta testers (like Blizzard uses) there is no chance of finding them all before launch.
 
Last edited:

Azzy

ᚳᚣᚾᛖᚹᚢᛚᚠ
People have unreasonable expectations. Baldur's Gate 1 and 2 where riddled with bugs at launch. Planescape: Torment even worse. A PC game is an incredibly complex piece of code, especially when you are using tools you didn't create yourself. Unless you have an army of full time paid beta testers (like Blizzard uses) there is no chance of finding them all before launch.
It's also worth noting that this is Tactical Adventures' freshman effort. Things can only get better from here.
 

EthanSental

Legend
Supporter
My 5 year old somewhat gaming related laptop does have issues sometimes with the game. Im 6-7 hours in and enjoy it so far. No glaring issues that detract while I’m playing it. my 40 year old self isn’t as committed at playing for hours like my 20 year old self on Planescape and other RPG games from the time frame so it may take me a while before I get to the ending…maybe they will have some DLC by the time I get there!
 

Mike Myler

Have you been to LevelUp5E.com yet?
Loved it, got a little uppity with the occasional bug (the only one that got me angry was sneakily starting a fight, finishing it, and then getting popped directly into dialogue with an NPC not on the screen beforehand), wish it was longer.

Absolutely going to email these people about...things.
 

Voidrunner's Codex

Related Articles

Remove ads

Voidrunner's Codex

Remove ads

Top