Renowned Explorers: The Emperor’s Challenge DLC Review
Since it’s initial release in 2015, Abbey Games has continued to support their awesome game, Renowned Explorers, with fresh new downloadable content. This year is no exception, and they’ve released a new piece of DLC called “The Emperor’s Challenge”. Does this DLC offer enough new content for seasoned explorers to enjoy? Come along on an expedition with me to find out!
The Emperor’s Challenge features a storyline separate from the primary game. Much like the primary game, you’ll be required to assemble a crew to square off against your rival Rivaleux however, in this DLC, you’ll be doing so in an effort to win the blessing of Emperor Guangxu. The Emperor will present new challenges, and winning the challenges is the only way to beat Rivaleux. Sometimes beating a challenge means limiting your plan of attack – which could pose extra challenging. It’s a nice little twist and forces players to approach the game in a different way, which should appeal to veterans of this strategy/adventure game.
“The Emperor’s Challenge DLC only adds a small amount of new content but its small price tag makes it a great impulse buy that fans of the original game will get their money’s worth out of.”
The Emperor’s Challenge provides much of the same style gameplay that you’ve played in Renowned Explorers so far. You’ll start an expedition, explore the map, and eventually come to the area’s primary treasure – which is accompanied by a battle with one of Rivaleux’s henchmen/henchwomen. Battles are still played out on a grid, much like you’d see in a game like Fire Emblem. Attacks are split between Aggressive, Friendly or Devious – each of which will have a different effect on different enemies, depending on the enemies demeanor. It’s designed to be a sort of like “rock-paper-scissors”. However, it often becomes more complicated because the attacks and different chains of attacks cause different emotions. Some enemies you can defeat by being overly friendly with them (it’s kind of like killing them with kindness!), other enemies, you can kill in a more traditional way, by attacking them physically with the Aggressive option. It’s a unique system that takes some practice and patience to master. Between expeditions, you’ll still get to customize your crew by buying new equipment, leveling up characters, and some other tasks to help better your chances of victory.
The Emperor’s Challenge DLC doesn’t add a whole lot of new content to the overall package. You’ll get four new recruits which include an exotic dancer and “the world’s youngest” diplomat. You’ll also get just one new expedition. And all of this is wrapped in a brand new game mode which you’ll select from the main menu. The new game mode will probably take you a few hours to complete, but has a good amount of replayability, since different crews will present different challenges and opportunities. Like the primary game, you’ll be able to choose from the more relaxing “Discovery Mode” or the more challenging “Adventure Mode”. Within these two modes, you can also choose between four difficulties. Even playing Discovery Mode on the Normal difficulty, I found the game incredibly challenging.
The Emperor’s Challenge DLC only adds a small amount of new content but its small price tag makes it a great impulse buy that fans of the original game will get their money’s worth out of. Especially considering a single play-through of the Emperor’s Challenge mode will probably take you a few hours and you’ll likely play it more than once. Renowned Explorers is a fun, but challenging game, and it’s very commendable to see Abbey Games still supporting it with new content two years after it was initially released.
*** PC key provided by the publisher ***
- Four new characters
- One new expedition
- Brand new mode
- Amount of new content is a bit light