Reigns: Her Majesty
LIVE LONG AS THE QUEEN. $4.09 | www. devolverdigital.com
IJEOMA THE FATEFUL dies famously, forever an icon to disobedient women. Queen Graciela faces an enormous challenge, with religious clashes at their boiling point. It’s a tough gig to fulfil, but Graciela has the benefit of an eternity of hindsight to rule effectively. In the previous game Reigns, you were the King, eternal life through reincarnation a curse from the Devil. Here, it’s a gift from the All Mother, who drops hints every so often to guide you on your way. Those who worship the All Mother occasionally visit you throughout the course of your time on the throne. The setup is remarkably similar to the preceding Reigns. Cards with choices and conversations with only two possible answers appear on screen, and you choose accordingly. Swipe left or right to pick your answer, and the happiness of four key institutions — the Church, the people in your kindgom, the army and treasury — are affected. Some go up, some go down, and while you can see how much you’ll affect these stats, you won’t know until the card’s been flicked away the good/bad work you’ve done. A lot of cards have obvious outcomes, like the Church asking for more money to build a new place for its worshippers (‘yes’, the Church will favour you more, but the treasury takes a hit), though some aren’t. You’ll have to keep things in a delicate balance, as giving one institution too much power (or too little) means game over for that Queen — usually through death. The people may storm the castle as you’re seen to be hoarding money, or the army will form a coup as you’re robbing them of their power (or giving them too much). Only having a binary choice at your disposal is a fascinating mechanic, and during your reign, you’ll need to have a pistol duel with a rhyming owl, outwit your docile husband and establish your place as a valid ruler. Despite these and other new inclusions, Her Majesty shares a lot with the original Reigns to the point where you’re almost playing the same game. Reigns was brilliant, which makes Her Majesty also brilliant, but the same trick repeated has less of an impact.