Lady Dawn (NeedtoKnow Gaming)
Jade   United States
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Stay in the Know, Gamers <3 (Please Read)
Ohai there! I'm Jade, though I go by Dawn across my various channels and social media. I'm a long time gamer, a content creator, an avid lover of the written word, and a bit of a tech geek. I'm pretty friendly, so drop a message on my profile if you'd ever like to chat.

I play all sorts of games, though my favourite genres are rogue-like, strategy, and virtually anything with crafting. I'm a girl, yes--and a gay one at that. I'm engaged to the lovely Neenja Niko.

The fianceé and I post gameplay videos of indie games--from demos to alphas/betas to completed games--on YouTube. We have fun and expose a variety of titles and genres to the gaming community. We also host the occasional Twitch [] stream, if you're into that sort of thing. Finally, you can follow our Curator Page above where we'll post reviews and Early Access Reports.

We post a few times a week and the games featured in my "Game Collector" tab below are typically the ones for which we're working on gameplay.

Thanks for reading~
Review Showcase
8.3 Hours played
Children of Zodiarcs (CoZ) is a tactical, turn-based RPG featuring a motley crew of young thieves who find themselves caught up in a dark conspiracy involving ancient powers and spoiled nobles. Take these underdogs to the top of the food chain with a unique mix of card and dice mechanics and overcome overwhelming odds.

Kickstarter backer here.

The hierarchy is immediately made evident in CoZ--and more importantly the fact that you're somewhere near the bottom of it. The game does a good job of explaining the fantasy world it's sent in without bogging you down with irrelevant details and names, building atmosphere and immersing you in it. Yours is a dark and dismal world where violence us a constant and meals are not guaranteed, but somehow the battlefields still manage to be interesting to look at with little details and particle effects to add a layer of realism.

Combat in CoZ is a bit slow paced, though in response to complaints the developer, Cardboard Utopia, added a fast forward function. In typical turn-based fashion, you and the enemy have your own phases during which you'll move your units and use abilities. Abilities are tied to the card system: you select the skill you want to use, after which you're taken to the dice roll screen where you essentially affect the effectiveness of your attack. Dice dictate which end of the range--shown when you highlight an enemy to attack it--your damage will fall into and also what additional buffs/snuffs will be applied. There are a few different markings on your dice: crystals add power, stars activate the special effect listed denoted on the card, shields protect you from counter attack damage, if applicable, and hearts recuperate health. You can reroll up to two dice should you not agree with the outcome of your initial roll.

CoZ is combat-focused, meaning there's no over world to explore and you'll never have control of your characters outside of a combat situation. This means that you'll be fighting back to back battles and learning the story through dialogue exchanges before, during, and after combat. There are also quiet moments after you've cleared a battle node where you can view an oftentimes humorous discussion between your party members.

In lieu of equipment, your party management boils down to crafting and equipping dice sets and deck building. Each dice set has six dice and the ones that aren't marked with a lock icon can be upgraded or traded out for a different one if you so choose to.

Crafting is a matter of consolidation. Depending on what die you want to craft, you need to select sets to meet an icon threshold. Please note that the entire set of the dice used to craft will be destroyed, so this is a good way to get rid of low level or cursed dice sets. Sets with cursed red dice can be totally reborn by crafting to replace the negatively effected die.

I don't want to spoil the story, so I'll just comment on the quality of the writing. The story is a bit cliched in some parts, but the exchanges between characters are believable and oftentimes humorous. The narrative is delivered via character dialogue on and off the battlefield with a few still images--hand drawn, by the look of it--sprinkled in. The music is orchestral and suited to the atmosphere, bouncing between quieter, more melancholic tunes and lively, adventurous scores.

  • Battle precision. There's no lucky critical hits because you control (to a degree) exactly how much damage you do to the enemy.

  • The writing is very good, which I feel is important to an RPG.

  • Character design. From your ragtag group of heroes to the elaborate armour the elites' guard dogs wear, every outfit is a detailed, not to mention cool, affair.

  • Deck and dice management are unique and allow for tailoring your gameplay experience.

  • Regular developer support. Cardboard Utopia hears feedback and uses it to make the game better, which is always a huge plus.


  • Long battles. The "us against the world" thing gets old very quickly when it makes battles take longer than they should.

    For battles that don't require you to kill all enemies, you'll be running from point A to point B. This feels far less tactical and more of a headlong rush/lash ditch effort.

  • The grind. I'm no slouch at tactical games, but I still had to go back to the skirmish battles and level up more often than I would have liked because the enemy overpowered me. There's an easier difficulty for those who just want to enjoy the story, but the difficulty wasn't the issue, just the balance between story battles.

.Bottom Line.

Children of Zodiarcs is a solid strategy RPG with unique gameplay elements and an interesting story. It isn't perfect, but with continued support from the developer, it's getting better and better every patch. Personally, I would have liked for there to be more to do between battles, even if it meant going to a battle field and searching for points of interest using the same turn-bases formula, sans enemies, but the game is still fun in short sessions. I recommend this to fans of the genre, though those who aren't as enthusiastic about it may find themselves losing interest.

If you found this review helpful, please give it a thumbs-up. For more reviews like this one follow the NeedtoKnow Gaming Curator page <3
Screenshot Showcase
Children of Zodiarcs

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ValkyrieMoon Sep 21 @ 4:21pm 
You sure have great taste in games, I am looking over yours. I am finding many I never knew about but I think I would love. Very Cool!!!
acid rain Sep 21 @ 3:04pm 

𝒽𝒶𝓋𝑒 𝒶 𝑔𝓇𝑒𝒶𝓉 𝓌𝑒𝑒𝓀𝑒𝓃𝒹
熊two Sep 15 @ 6:57pm 
ValkyrieMoon Aug 31 @ 8:20pm 
Oh good, I love your streams. Yes, I used to play the Y games back with my old handheld nintendo. I still have it and all the games, still pull it out now and then. I may have to buy that game sometime, looks amazing. I am inbetween games right now, just deciding what to get into right now.
ValkyrieMoon Aug 31 @ 7:23pm 
I hope you are having a great week, Happy Gaming
Chienne Aug 29 @ 1:43pm 
Your reviews are epic!