Crusaders Games

Horror Adventures

Some adventuring games are set outside of the fantasy realms and move into more horror or perhaps more real life based settings. This list leans more towards being more successful at the solo or two player count and a game scenario is usually playable in one evening without requiring ongoing save positions :

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1. Nemesis (2018) / Lockdown (2021) – Awaken Realms

This is a co-operative and optionally competitive hybrid survival game set on a dark space ship, with a strong aliens theme and amazing production quality and excellent alien miniatures. Each of the characters have unique skills and strengths in their card deck, and you will play to survive and escape from the ship, but with your own secret agendas and objectives to complete, some of which can be traitor style if selected. Playing Nemesis produces tension and atmosphere and you will soon be needing multiple rooms or items to survive or remove contamination, as well as ensuring the ship is not destroyed by fire or mechanical breakdown. While the game is geared more towards one shot game sessions, it is not a dungeon crawler and there is a short campaign story book and an aftermath follow on story box. My more detailed overview > Nemesis

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2. Machina Arcana (2019) – Adreama

A solo or co-operative Lovecraft themed horror tactical adventure, which evolves over a number of story chapters progressing during the game. Set in a steampunk world, with themed equipment and upgrades, explorers will be navigating underground complexes, fighting off spawning creatures and learning the secrets behind each mission. It is very story driven, and there is a lot of tactical interaction with the map tiles which enable you to trigger traps, explode barrels, use workbenches and initiate events, which is really fun, and it also self balances for the number of explorers. The 2nd and 3rd edition improved the rules and production of the dashboards, and all the artwork and components are excellent, making it an even more engaging experience. My more detailed overview > Machina Arcana

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3. Eldritch Horror (2013) – Fantasy Flight

A great co-operative survival game with a Lovecraft theme and a countdown doom tracker. Your hero characters will navigate around a world map looking for clues to stop the emergence of an ancient one. They will adventure, find weapons and equipment whilst also gaining conditions that weaken them. Gateways and monsters will appear in cities to make things tougher and over time the places in danger will escalate making this a tense affair as the doom approaches. The game tells a loose story as it progresses, and whilst it is not always fully joined up thematically it remains good enough to keep everything interesting and allows your investigator to have their own journey. It remains one of the great co-operative games that provides a tough challenge but is not overly rules heavy and therefore is relatively easy to teach and play. My more detailed overview > Eldritch Horror

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4. Nemo’s War 2nd Edition (2017) – Victory Point

This game was specifically designed for solo play merging an adventure storyline with strategic battling against the ships which slowly fill the oceans of the earth. You will captain the nautilus, and choose a motive to search for treasure, discover scientific knowledge or wage war which will change the end goal emphasis for success. The game flows smoothly and each round is not overly complex, with most actions allowing you to wager extra influence on the dice roll by gambling the welfare of the crew, the ships hull or nemo’s own abilities looking for a success roll. It has great theme and art, and has adventure events drawn into a story deck which changes each game. Gameplay is strategic in nature and over time you will learn hidden depths, but it is tough to score highly and surviving is a measure of success in itself. My more detailed overview > Nemo’s War

Previously Owned Aventure Solo or Co-operative Strategy Games… due to space and funding restrictions i regularly trade out games to try newer ones, producing an ever changing favourites list, but one of these other great games may be right for you :
Spirit Island (2017) – clever co-op card game and a highly regarded strategy game with spirits that have unique ways of playing, however it is a strategy puzzle and does not contain any adventuring. It is a great game but does have a gaming hump which tends to mean that after a while winning or losing seems an inevitable result rather than being in the balance until the end
Robinson Crusoe (2012) – a worker placement survival game with an exploratory feel, but really tough and always felt a little on the complex and lengthy side to me, however it is a great survival game experience