19 September 2022
A perfect excuse to trundle around the Pauper’s Ladder world again
Pauper’s Ladder is a charming indie adventure game about dashing around the countryside trying to become the most virtuous by dealing with random encounters and completing trials associated with wealth (giving it away), strength (beating baddies), or knowledge (crafting loads of cool stuff). You also get a pet bird, which tends to be a major draw.
The Moon Towers adds a ton of new biome cards, most importantly the regionally-effecting moon towers themselves. The towers might give certain monster types in the region more powerful attacks, or provide some kind of limiting effect. Talents, one of the other major upgrades, offers players a simple bit of asymmetry – your pauper gets a minor power, like being better at unarmed scraps for example.
What we have always loved about Pauper’s Ladder is the way the world changes as you move through it. Each step you take you’re exploring and adding new cards to a region – maybe it’s a useful item, an event, or a dragon. The dragon might make it impossible to move through the area without fighting it – forcing long treks around or a brave charge that might leave the player battered. The new additions to The Moon Towers add even more of that, meaning you can have both the obstacles of hostile enemies in the way while also have a region-wide status effect. The original wasn’t lacking in a variety of events, but the expansion really mixes it up.
The Moon Towers also adds an officially supported solitaire mode. While the original could always be played as a solo game with only the lightest of hacking at the rules, the official timer and health sheet makes it all a bit more pressured. Not too much of course, there’s ways to prolong your time in Brighthelm if you wish, and why wouldn’t you? A perfect excuse to trundle around the Pauper’s Ladder world again.
Christopher John Eggett
PLAY IT? YES
Designer: Paul Stapleton
Publisher: Bedsit Games
Time: 45 minutes
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