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Skyshine´s BEDLAM Review

Skyshine's BEDLAM Trainer
 CHEATfactor Game Review by:  Joe Sinicki Reviewed on: PC 
 

Welcome to our CHEATfactor Game Review of Skyshine's BEDLAM. We review the game and then factor in how the available cheats affect the overall game experience. For better or worse, our reviews will help you decide whether or not to use cheats when playing the game.

On paper Skyshine's BEDLAM shouldn't work. It 's ambitious features list reads like a complete mess, the virtual equivalent of a street performer trying to juggle dull chainsaws...that are on fire. Yet somehow, Skyshine pulls it off, mostly at least. It's a punishing strategy game that isn't afraid to punch you right in the mouth with it's often absurd difficulty but also doesn't hesitate to make you feel like a complete badass when your plans come together and you're successful on the battlefield. BEDLAM is not for everyone as some are sure to downright hate it before long but those who stick with it will be rewarded with one hell of s strategy game.

 
...literally packed with content and plot to read...
Skyshine's BEDLAM Review Screenshot
 

In the far future the majority of the world has dried up and everyone; humans, mutants and even robots are vying for whatever resources are left. When rumors spread of a paradise-like area known only as Aztec City on the other side of the wasteland the race is on to reach it first and by any means necessary. Your goal is simple - reach Aztec City first and don't let the evil Viscera kill you in the process. If it sounds a lot like Mad Max that's because it's pretty much the same thing, as interesting as it is. All I could think while playing BEDLAM was about how great Fury Road was.

That's not to say that there's not any plot or backstory with BEDLAM, in fact that's pretty far from true. The game is literally packed with content and plot to read through for nearly all of your settlers and pretty much anyone you come across. An unseen narrator fills you in on what you need to know and as a result everything comes across as much more manufactured than it really is. I couldn't help but feel detached from even my longest running units and settlers but perhaps, given the choices and decisions I had to make it was better that I didn't get too attached to anyone in the game.

It's that choice that makes BEDLAM so interesting and unique. The game constantly reminds you where you are in terms of your goal with the map always showing you where you are compared to your enemies and Aztec City.  The game gives you a lot to see and do but you'll have to juggle a lot of information to make some key decisions. Pretty much anything you do will cost fuel and meat resources (meat being what you use to feed your settlers and keep them alive) and if you run low on either you may have to make some pretty drastic decisions like where to find these resources and the game goes to some pretty dark places like canibalism and burning dead settlers for fuel in it's narrative. There are event choices in the world too, like risking picking up a group of hitchhikers in hopes they'll be good additions to your crew or whether to spend time looking in uncharted areas for resources.

You're going to get into a lot of fights in BEDLAM but luckily the game's combat mechanics are well done and rewarding. If you played last year's stellar but overlooked The Banner Year the system will likely feel familiar in BEDLAM. With each turn you're given two action points with which to either attack with a specific unit or move with a specific unit. Each of your units has a specific function or ability that allows you to strategically plan your attack but they've also got their own share of weaknesses to think about. Your smaller units can move across almost the entire battlefield but don't deal much damage while the bigger tank-like units are the exact opposite. Your opponents have the same battle format and limitations but they've also got what the game calls the “blitz-o-meter,” an attack that's shown in the form of an ever filling meter that allows your enemies to basically use super attacks on you. Most battles where the blitz-o-meter fills up don't end well so it adds an interesting race against time feel to each battle.

 
...requires expert planning to be successful...
Skyshine's BEDLAM Review Screenshot
 

If a character or unit dies in BEDLAM, they're gone for good and that's a lesson that you're sure to learn quickly and repeatedly. This is a game that requires expert planning to be successful and one wrong click of the mouse can send your entire party into a very dangerous situation. There's certainly a sense of accomplishment that comes with a successful battle and the perks that come with it, given in the form of power cells that can be used in a number of ways to either help your mission, your settlers or your equipment but the game sometimes seems to be trying extra hard to not let that happen thanks to some questionable design choices. Key among these choices is the fact that you're not allowed to decide where your units are placed at the start of the game which often puts you in an instant and somewhat unnecessary hole when you start the game.

I'm not going to lie, there were countless times when I couldn't even get past some of the game's initial battles when playing on the harder difficulties and it sometimes made me think twice about whether I wanted to jump into a session with the game or not. Don't get me wrong, I'm all for a challenge but it's no fun when I start out with literally no chance to win. Sure, you could turn the difficulty down a few notches but then you're also forgoing a lot of the rewards the game gives out for successful battles so what's the purpose really?

Skyshine's BEDLAM seems to have come out of nowhere as one of this year's most endearing and interesting strategy games. It could have been and almost should have been a complete mess but for some reason it works and works well - just make sure you're up for the challenge as Bedlam is as punishing as it is rewarding. If you're up for the challenge though you won't find many games more interesting than this.

 
Overall:  8/10 Presentation: 7 Gameplay: 8 
Lasting Appeal: 8 CHEATfactor: 7 
 
 
CHEATfactor
 
CHEATS USED: Add Manpower, Add Fuel, Unlimited Combat Powers, more
 

When I was using the trainer for Skyshine's BEDLAM from Cheat Happens I couldn't help but think of one of those “in case of emergency, break glass” panels. It's the ultimate fail safe and let's you out of some pretty dire situations when resources are low. Having the ability to add fuel or manpower at will will make sure you're pretty much always able to keep moving towards Aztec City and if not, you've always got access to the unlimited combat powers feature as well to take out your enemies with.

 
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