Parents' Guide to

Skyshine's Bedlam

By Jeff Haynes, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Postapocalptic strategy is violent, punishingly difficult.

Game Mac , Windows 2015
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What you will—and won't—find in this game.

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This incredibly difficult strategy game will put even the most hard-core player's skills to the test. Skyshine's Bedlam is interesting thanks to its random game elements. Even if you take the same path through the wastelands each time, you'll never be guaranteed to run into the same scenario twice. This unpredictability makes each playthrough fresh and exciting. Another great feature of Bedlam is that your crew members aren't simply faceless grunts you send into battle; each character has a unique backstory, which can affect gameplay. For instance, some battles can be avoided completely if you have the right people in your squad, which earns you extra gear or crew members. This makes you much more cautious about whom you deploy into conflict, especially if you think they might be helpful later. It also makes you more connected to your troops when they're lost in battle, and you really feel their demise hit home.

But one of the biggest issues with Bedlam is just how incredibly difficult the game is; even on the easiest setting, players will be very hard-pressed to succeed in their quest to make it to Aztec City. Among random catastrophes, plagues, or mutinies on board the Dozer, virtually anything can wipe out your entire team. It's even harder when it comes to battle -- you only receive two actions for your troops per turn to move or attack enemies. Since your team is frequently outnumbered by two to one, you often have to try to think multiple steps ahead to have a chance to survive. The difficulty spikes further if you encounter a mini-boss that can dish out a ton of damage. These characters can obliterate your squad by themselves, but they usually come with large gangs of troops themselves, making the fight tougher than it needs to be. Though you do have the chance to convince these mini-bosses to join your side when battle is over, the odds are significantly stacked against you that your squad will survive unscathed. Needless to say, strategy gamers looking for a steep challenge will definitely find it in Skyshine's Bedlam, but other gamers may find themselves frustrated by the sheer difficulty.

Game Details

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