Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Massive Chalice
 BLOG ABOUT THIS

I have a feeling Massive Chalice is going to be great

11:00 AM on 08.29.2014 // Steven Hansen
  @dtoidsteven

Already in love, already fearing it'll devour my time with an XCOM-like fervor

We've heard little from Massive Chalice in the year and change since its successful crowdfunding campaign that took in over a million dollars following Double Fine's even more successful campaign for Broken Age.

Just like that, though (imagine I snapped my fingers), it exists. It is at PAX and playable if you're there. If you're not, the video below features Brad Muir walking you through the PAX demo. Third option: I played the dang thing myself last week and will tell you all about it. It is good. 

Massive Chalice is structured like recent wonderful game XCOM: Enemy Unknown. There is the boots on the ground layer, which involves action points, movement restrictions, and killing monsters -- the Cadence -- on an isometric plane.

Your troops will be one of several types. The Hunter is basically carrying a personal ballista on their shoulder. The Alchemist has a bladed hook used for melee, but is mainly meant for slinging explosives. The last has a giant battering ram of sorts.

What you want to do is escort your gaggle of fighters throughout levels without getting people killed because if they're killed, you don't get to continue to use them (permadeath). Because of the melee focus, there's no cover bonuses, so you'll want to unlearn that XCOM tic. It's all line of sight and numbers. I got through the demo losing one soldier too many (that is, one), which then opens up to the overarching strategy screen, which is where things get interesting.

Your goal in Massive Chalice is to make it through 350 years of encroaching Cadence. Your characters will die, eventually. Lineage and generations become key, like Fire Emblem: Awakening was mixed with XCOM, but stretched out. You can advance the chronology in large chunks between significant events (or battles) in the same way you'd run a few days on the world clock in XCOM's mission control.

There are a lot of systems at play. You appoint Regents in ten or so kingdoms on the map to stymie Cadence spread and then you give them a partner to continue the bloodline. This detracts from your pool of warriors, however, as Regents can't fight.

It's a sort of retirement spot, then, for your best fighter, but you have to weigh considerations like their age, risk of losing them in battle, and their genes. Some characters carry positive characteristics that can be passed down. Some are cursed with things like asthma, which reduces movement if you exhaust both AP in one turn. The accumulated experience points of a Regent and partner can affect the growth of the child. A parent could die of old age before the child grows up. The child would have the same genes, but have a different growth trajectory based on the stats of the replacement Regent. 

One of the choices you'll make is what to research using the titular chalice. 15 years for improve health. 23 years for a global fertility boost. Adoption is possible too, through later chalice research, and that child can go to same sex or hetero couples. If your two strongest characters are of the same gender, you might want them to raise an adopted child (ages 0-15) to gain 40% experience from each of them during the raising process.

Maybe you just appoint a Regency and partner for two characters whose unwanted traits you're trying to weed out of your lineages (asthma is pretty crippling). 

Muir said it's "like a long form roguelike," in that you can lose the game. You can fail to contain encroaching cadence and have your kingdom slowly devoured. I love it. I liked XCOM for letting you lose.

In that sense, it is divergent, replayable. Your starting soldiers are always different, and the soldiers you'll have to use throughout the entire game will inevitably be different as they age and die. Narrative bits come in the form of random events, like choosing whether or not to send Bella Black to retrieve her uncle, The Walrus, who refused to move from his home near encroaching Cadence. I did. It took nine years, but Bella came back stronger. The team is working on cranking these up, including some nastier ones where, "we just come around and spit in your soup, I guess." 

Massive Chalice does have a more defined narrative, but it's mostly in the endgame, should you survive for that many generations. 350 years. I'm excited to try and get there. I'm excited to fail, and to try again. And I'm always down for playing digital matchmaker (by way of horrible eugenics scientist). 



Steven Hansen, Features Editor
 Follow Blog + disclosure dtoidsteven Tips
Steven watches anime & sports, buys meat out of trucks, dates a Muppet, and is only good at cooking. He stands before you bereft of solace and well on the road to perdition. ('^ω^) more   |   staff directory





 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding *.disqus.com to your whitelists.

destructoid's previous coverage:
Massive Chalice


  Jun 08

Review: Massive Chalice

Great fighter with a glass jaw


  Jun 27

Double Fine's Massive Chalice is officially funded

Over 31,000 backers pledged money for the project


View all:powered by:  MM.Elephant

Ads on destructoid may be purchased from:



Please contact Crave Online, thanks!


Desert Golfing - The Model Mobile Game

Review: Pony Island - Maneiac Crop!

The meaning of The Witness (Part 1 of 3)

Do you even Bebop?

Cblogs of 02/04/16 + Bayonetta and some other one I suppose

Waifu Wars: Your Cruel Device, Your Blood Like Ice..

Best Kickstarter implosion EVER as dev money is spent on booze and strippers

Video Gaming Bits -- Dungeons& Dragons: Tower of Doom

Is Planet Earth more than Blue, such as An?

Cblogs of 2-3-16 + Umbra Smash Climax-isms!

 Add your impressions

 Quickposts
Status updates from C-bloggers

SeymourDuncan17 avatarSeymourDuncan17
If anyone wants to peep me having a quick, unpolished go at some cheesy Sonic music, the fun is here: https://soundcloud.com/justin-stewart-57/i-am-all-of-me-wip
Torchman avatarTorchman
Daily reminder that your waifu is shit. That is all.
GoofierBrute avatarGoofierBrute
While fighting a Lucas, I did Bayo's up taunt, then I remembered what happened to Lucas's Mom in Mother 3. Now I feel bad.
Xeo avatarXeo
Anyone played Digimon Cyber Sleuth yet? I'm hearing great things about it and strongly considering picking it up. Thoughts?
Sr Churros avatarSr Churros
São Paulo's samba schools parade is about to start on tv! It is not as good as the one from Rio de Janeiro, but still pretty good and nice to watch. Also, there is some ice cold beer waiting for me and my girl. Yeah!
Nathan D avatarNathan D
Well, the Guinness is poured, and the Waifu Wars article is under way. Can you guess who it's going to be?
PappaBear avatarPappaBear
Impromptu Quiplash Stream Pre-FNF Come join https://gaming.youtube.com/watch?v=793yaFcpJyI
KingSigy avatarKingSigy
After a long struggle, I seem to have landed in a dream job. It's very exciting and nerve wracking, but I'm happy with where I ended up.
TheBlondeBass avatarTheBlondeBass
Got myself a job for the summer! Now celebrating with some freshly bought Gravity Rush.
SeymourDuncan17 avatarSeymourDuncan17
REMEMBER: Persona 4 Arena Ultimax is on PS+ for PS3! For PS3/PS4 owners like me who have barely used their PS3's since the PS4, remember that Sony still supports it!
LinkSlayer64 avatarLinkSlayer64
*Giggles with glee* img I am loving XCOM 2, even what little of the story I've seen is great! Lost one solider in the first mission. After if course completely failing it XD
Rad Party God avatarRad Party God
So uh... I didn't know Nordic was handing out free upgrades of Darksiders 2 Dethinitive Edition for us owners of the original game + all DLC on PC. I wonder if it's even worth installing compared to the original release.
Jed Whitaker avatarJed Whitaker
Change the text to Destructoid. Make the alien Mr. Destructoid. And make the skulls either just Jonathan Holmes, or all staff. [img]http://www.destructoid.com/ul/339243-/xcom2box-noscale.jpg[/img] We can make it into an unofficial shirt if it rocks?
ChrisHannard avatarChrisHannard
Can any California based Dtoiders confirm/deny how accurate American Truck Simulator is, scenery wise? Apart from the total lack of pedestrians, that is.As a Brit I remember playing Euro Truck Simulator 2 and not recognising a damn thing about Manchester.
ScionVyse avatarScionVyse
Wario getting a look at dat ass the only way he knows how.
Fuzunga avatarFuzunga
Okay, what the hell is Youth Health Mag and why is it always sited as a news source?
ScionVyse avatarScionVyse
I changed my avatar. You want to sue me? My lawyers are ready to trademark suing me so you have to pay me first.
SeymourDuncan17 avatarSeymourDuncan17
The multiple flavors of the soundtrack found in the options of Crypt of the Necrodancer is one of the coolest things I've ever seen a rhythm game do. Been happily replaying the earlier levels just to see a different artist's take on Danny B's original.
Gamemaniac3434 avatarGamemaniac3434
Welp, the steam lunar new year sale got me. By making me get BROFORCE!!!! I feel more patriotic already.
Jed Whitaker avatarJed Whitaker
DICKS! Now that I have your attention why don't you join our [url=https://discord.gg/0koh7AdmqhjF1egd]super unofficial Discord chat room[/url]? No installs required and it is always up. So far no spam, no drama, all fun and chit chat / dank memes.
more quickposts


Contest!


Seriously

Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme


Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo



Back to Top


We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -