Griftlands' period of Epic exclusivity has ended and it's now buyable on Steam (with a demo too). The latest from indie studio Klei, it's followed their usual model of being available in a limited alpha before being released in Early Access. While most of their alphas have been on sale directly from the Klei website (though I remember having to get Don't Starve and its demo through the Chrome Store waaaay back in 2012), the Griftlands alpha has been exclusive to Epic for the last year. Presumably it achieved the same end—limiting the amount of players trying it out before it's beta-ready. Which it now.
When Griftlands was first revealed it was an open-world sci-fi RPG with a slick art style, and though it stopped being open-world it kept that cool art. It's now a Slay the Spire-esque card game, although one that strays further from its inspiration than, say, Monster Train. For starters it's forgiving about permadeath, which feels necessary given its focus on story.
The other big difference is that the card-based battling comes in two flavors, one for fighting and another format that simulates negotiation. It's social combat, and a neat way to dramatize the back and forth of haggling or a tense situation that could spill over into actual violence if mishandled.
If you bought Griftlands on Epic you'll be able to activate it on Steam as well. I just followed the process described here, and found it painless. Which is nice.
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Jody's first computer was a Commodore 64, so he remembers having to use a code wheel to play Pool of Radiance. A former music journalist who interviewed everyone from Giorgio Moroder to Trent Reznor, Jody also co-hosted Australia's first radio show about videogames, Zed Games. He's written for Rock Paper Shotgun, The Big Issue, GamesRadar, Zam, Glixel, Five Out of Ten Magazine, and Playboy.com, whose cheques with the bunny logo made for fun conversations at the bank. Jody's first article for PC Gamer was about the audio of Alien Isolation, published in 2015, and since then he's written about why Silent Hill belongs on PC, why Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale is the best fantasy shopkeeper tycoon game, and how weird Lost Ark can get. Jody edited PC Gamer Indie from 2017 to 2018, and he eventually lived up to his promise to play every Warhammer videogame.