Flagstaff: Chapter Two
Don your armor, prep your spells, and grab your favorite fluffy towel; Flagstaff: Chapter Two is here! The next installment of Joel Esler's cute and silly RPG offers the same relaxed dungeon crawling as the first chapter, plus new enemies, new powers, and a new hero to play.
If you played Flagstaff: Chapter One, then the mouse-based controls of Chapter Two will be familiar. On your turn, click a character to control him or her. Click on the tile you want the selected hero to move, or pick a power and click on the character(s) you wish to target. You can only move your hero so many spaces a turn, and powers can usually only be used within a certain range, but Flagstaff intuitively shows you where these limits are. You can also move all your heroes at once, and you can speed up character movement by clicking again as they move. Once you have done everything you wish to do, click the "End Turn" button and see how your enemies react. As you defeat foes, you can level up by selecting a new power for one of your heroes, or by upgrading an existing power. Explore, kill enemies, level up, and figure out what is behind the dungeon's infestation.
Environments in this chapter of Flagstaff are the same randomly generated stone-walled dungeons as Chapter One, but there are some new faces this time. In addition to the classic Knight-Ranger-Wizard-Priestess quartet, you now can also play as the King, who offers an interesting mix of pugilism, leadership, and towel-based powers (really!). Several wizardly "sauciers" offer a bit more challenge than the fragile skeletons and guards of Chapter One, and a boss fight lends some variety to the standard hacking and slashing. Still, if you select your powers well, the game shouldn't put up too much of a fight. Flagstaff remains more about the silly story and casual pace than about seriously challenging veteran RPG players, but the design is cute and distinctive, the heroes all have interesting and balanced powers, and the pace is perfect for a light bit of dungeon crawling. Chapter Two builds on the promise of Chapter One, and tantalizes for the next installment of the Flagstaff series.