Convoy: A Tactical Roguelike Review

Developed by Convoy Games and published by Triangle Studios, Convoy: A Tactical Roguelike, originally released back in 2015, has now been released onto the console market. This Mad Max style vehicle-based tactical combat game mixes a few different styles into one, resulting in a unique adventure.

Your ship the Mercury has taken damage and needs to settle down on the nearest planet to find the right parts for repair. But, the planet is not friendly, and you need to send out your MCV in a convoy to search for the ship parts. Naturally, enemies are itching to steal your goods all over the world, so using the local currency (bolts), you need to arrange protection with up to four battle vehicles to escort your MCV as it carries your precious cargo.

The graphics have a 16-bit, comic feel to them. There are a variety of different vehicle designs, but that is where the variety ends. The map is quite basic and the battle scenes are just one long stretch of road with different obstacles. The music itself is very forgettable and is the same looped high tempo backing track. The music changes slightly in battle as a faster tempo track is played over the top of the original track.

Convoy: A Tactical Roguelike is very tactical in each of its sections. The main section sees you looking at a map of the world you have landed on and shows where you are currently located on the map. You have 4 ship parts to collect, but with limited fuel and currency you need to explore and get your hands bloody to collect more resources. In an apparent throwback to the original Fallout games, as you traverse the maps you occasionally come across random encounters. These could be stranded figures, abandoned buildings, traders or just looters trying to shoot you down. Each of these random encounters brings about a chance of giving you an advantage or disadvantage, and there is always a lot of risk in play. Saving someone could lure you into an ambush, and not checking out the abandoned building could see you miss out on crucial fuel or currency. A lot of the time, the encounters lead to battles which are the key part of the game and where you will test your tactical skills.

The objective of the battle is always the same; protect your MCV and eliminate all the enemies. Doing so will usually see you collect some fuel and currency as winnings as you loot the fallen. Each time the battle starts you will see your MCV and up to 4 of your defending vehicles in your convoy. The enemy can approach you from any side, so you need to position yourself correctly to defend the MCV. Each vehicle has armour and health but it’s only the health you have to bring down to destroy the enemy. The weapons on each of your vehicles vary in speed, damage and if they can bypass the enemies armour. You start with 2 standard escort vehicles and you can either improve them through upgrading them at local camps or you can replace them with better vehicles by completing random encounters and side missions. There is also a chance to unlock different MGV and starting patrol cars by meeting certain achievements for some variation.

This game got its hooks in me and made every decision a nervy one. The fragile balance of if you have enough fuel, keeping up the currency to repair your convoy and plotting your way through the map is tough and you to take a risk to get any reward. Having played through to completion the only advice I’d give is not to rush it, make your convoy is full and well equipped as things will get very hairy if you don’t.

Conclusion

Convoy: A Tactical Roguelike, although simple in its graphics and audio, is very accomplished in its tactical gameplay. The story isn’t too thorough, but it’s enough so you know what to focus on. The random encounters make things fun and exciting, and the tactical combat has the right balance of difficulty. The game also seems to rely on the philosophy that if at first, you don’t succeed, try, try again.

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This game was tested and reviewed on Xbox. All of the opinions and insights here are subject to that version. Game provided by the publisher.
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Good
  • Tactically challenging
  • The random encounters keep things unpredictable
Bad
  • The tutorial needed to explain battles better
  • The graphics could have had a bit more attention
  • The game isn’t too long
6
Okay
Gameplay - 8
Graphics - 5
Audio - 4.5
Longevity - 6.5
Written by
Gaming, or, games in general, are in my blood. Just shy of an addiction but still an obsession. From opening my mind on the Commodore 64 I have kept up with the generations of gaming, currently residing on the Xbox One. Gamertag: Grahamreaper

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