Slay the Spire is one of the most elegantly designed games in recent memory.
The joy of a singleplayer card game like Slay the Spire is that it puts absolutely and utterly brilliant broken combos within your grasp. It feels good to deal 50 poison damage to something. But it feels even better when you drop a series of cards that sextuples that amount of poison, kills an enemy, and triggers a corpse explosion that cascades splash damage to all of the other things that are trying to kill you.
Slay the Spire has zeroed-in on this feeling of linking cards together to produce avalanches of damage, defense, or utility. Plenty of games put this domino-effect sensation at the center of their gameplay loop, like when you collect enough Diablo gear to unlock some obscene damage multiplier, or when you Call enough Duty to temporarily become a helicopter.
Slay the Spire’s achievement is the way it makes this feeling of power simultaneously so potent and elusive. This is an intricately designed deck-building game grounded in deliberate balance, populated by confounding enemies, steady rewards, and tactile decks of cards that play like efficient, beautiful machines of your own creation.
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