Parents' Guide to


By David Chapman, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Medieval art comes to life in quirky hand drawn battles.

Inkulinati package artwork featuring medieval drawings of animals.

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

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Is It Any Good?

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Sometimes, a story just seems to write itself. In Inkulinati, that's a very literal statement. The game's style is based on the medieval practice of adding illustrations within the margins of manuscript pages. By bringing these pictures to life to fight it out on paper, it makes for some unique interactions and twists to the usual turn-based strategy formula. The Academy mode serves as a decent tutorial for learning the basics, but it still takes a lot of practice to learn many of the nuances of the gameplay. Moving units around and managing ink reserves feels clunky at first, and some actions seem almost counterintuitive. In a lot of ways, Inkulinati feels less like a video game and more like a board game. And once you adjust to that and get more familiar with how the mechanics of the game operate, it starts to feel a lot more natural and gets easier to fully appreciate.

While there's a bit of a learning curve to playing Inkulinati, the game is instantly entertaining. There's just something fun about watching the wackiness unfold on the page, and the game is chock full of wackiness. Where else would you see a furry devil with an extra face on its rear, farting on a sword-wielding rabbit, before a chainmail covered hand swoops in from on high to bop the book and knock everyone to the ground? And this is in just one turn. Meanwhile, as the action takes place in the margins of the pages, the written narrative of each battle unfolds in pithy text up above. Sure, it can get a bit repetitive after a while, especially when the story starts to reuse some of the same lines, but it still often makes for a silly tale good for at least a few good chuckles. Inkulinati might not been the deepest or most user-friendly strategy game, but its quirky presentation makes it well worth the paper it's written on.

Game Details

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