> # Welcome to GameGrinOS v1.01 > # How can I help you? > # Press ` again to close
Hello… | Log in or sign up
Convoy Review

Convoy Review

Whilst I’m not a big fan of roguelikes - the permanent loss of progress really bugs me - I decided to force myself out of my comfort zone and tackle the science fiction strategy roguelike Convoy. I did, after all, enjoy Rogue Legacy not too long ago, though at least progress in that actually means something.

The main driving force behind Convoy is the replayability. Your ship has crash landed on a planet and it’s up to you to lead a convoy in locating three parts - cheekily lifted from famous sci-fi franchises - required to fix the ship . These include: sonic screws, a flux capacitor, hyperdrive stabilizers and my favourite self-sealing stem bolts. Each is a separate objective, placed randomly on the map which is also scattered with random events and encounters.

As you travel around the main map, you occasionally hit a random encounter which could be anything from ‘There is a man’ to ‘You were ambushed’, along with weather events and really all sorts of things. The random events are displayed on the map as signals, which again could be anything from ‘Travelling sales caravan’ to ‘Ambush!’ - yeah, there’s a lot of ambushes: it’s a Mad Max 2-style wasteland.

2015 04 05 2This is why it's "inspired" - Gibson fought no hovercraft bosses

Along with being placed randomly, the people you have to deal with (purely via text, not even icons or silhouettes) for the main objectives are also random. On two playthroughs I met two different scientists who could construct a flux capacitor, one of whom was clearly Doc Brown from Back to the Future (he made a deal with ‘some bad people’ for ‘an unstable power source’ to power the flux capacitor) and the other was just a mad scientist. It’s a very interesting way to do it, especially as developer Convoy Games expects you to play it multiple times - it keeps things fresh with variant scenarios..

Almost all encounters have two options - fight or talk. Sometimes there’s only one and in others there is a ‘flee’ option, just because you want to try diplomacy doesn’t mean it will work. Sometimes evasion is the best policy. This planet is a wasteland and everyone needs fuel and scrap, after all.

2015 04 03 00002

That brings me to the camps - the one place you can get fuel and upgrades. There are a few around the map, so keeping an eye on your fuel level is critical, and upgrades to your partner vehicles can only be equipped at a camp. Fuel can be rewarded after battles, but not in the quantity you’ll need to keep going. Travelling on the main map requires fuel, and going over rougher terrain will use more fuel, so sometimes it’s more economical to go around a hill than over it. If you run out of fuel you’re not done for - but raiders will attack and you have to hope you have enough defences to take them all out.

The battles are the strategic part of the game, requiring you to move units around to where their firing ranges will be most effective. When you start off, your main vehicle is accompanied by two cars which do the fighting, though you can add more. You cannot control the main vehicle, needing to use the fighters to defend - which means destroying any attackers before they damage you too badly. It goes without saying - once the main vehicle is destroyed, it’s game over. If the fighters are destroyed you can get more, but they are expensive to purchase from camps so you had best keep them repaired when you visit a camp.

2015 04 03 00004Sometimes defeat is inevitable...

The graphics for everything are pretty simplistic, with a top-down view of battles, a basic map and only text for the rest, it’s quite annoying that the opening cutscene has fantastic looking pixel graphics. I can understand why Convoy Games made the decision - no artist is greater than ones own mind after all, and the descriptions of each character let you fill in the blanks - like my above assumption that the scientist is played by Christopher Lloyd.

The tunes used are forgettable, but sound really isn’t strictly required to play. It doesn’t really add atmosphere, other than sounding bleak in the bleak game world. However, the gameplay itself is solid and holds up on its own. Sometimes it’s frantic and requires you to make hard decisions such as helping others for potentially no reward. Do you ambush those guys for fuel? Do you play nice at a checkpoint? Do you kill your way across the wastes? Hand over a guy as a prisoner or fight? There are lots of decisions to make.

2015 04 03 00001The Sonic Screws "need a specific tool to use"

The variety of options makes Convoy a game you will want to revisit. I expected more humour, with the flux capacitors requiring 1.21 gigawatts of power and the self-sealing stem bolts doing “something even your Chief of Operations doesn’t understand”. However there’s not much of it outside of descriptions, which was kind of disappointing. It is all very well written, I just would have prefered consistent humour.

Convoy is a fun and interesting game. I couldn’t say for certain how long it will take to complete it, because there are three difficulty modes and the random generation of the levels mean that some attempts will be harder than others. Honestly, after multiple attempts I still haven’t collected everything required to get the ship space-borne again. But I’m having fun trying, at least.

8.00/10 8

Convoy (Reviewed on Windows)

This game is great, with minimal or no negatives.

Convoy is a fun and interesting game, only slightly let down by the uninspired graphics. Some nice nods to other sci-fi properties and great writing make you want to keep trying time and again.

This game was supplied by the publisher or relevant PR company for the purposes of review
Andrew Duncan

Andrew Duncan


Guaranteed to know more about Transformers and Deadpool than any other staff member.

Share this: