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Promising but Unfinished

Fortress Saga made me realize that it’s been quite a while since I’ve played a gacha game I can say I liked without qualification. CookApps’ and Burger Monster’s idle RPG won’t make it on that list, but it has a certain charm. Unfortunately, charm can only get you so far.

The game follows a young man named Louis and his friends on a quest to protect Cor, a sentient seed from the magical World Tree. Cor powers the titular walking fortress, which Louis and his friends use to battle monsters in their journey across the land.

Decades ago, Louis’ grandfather was one of several heroes defending the world from the evil god Vanus. They won, but not without the world tree sacrificing itself in the process. Presumably, Louis will eventually need to plant Cor to regrow the tree. However, I can’t tell you because the game’s story isn’t finished. As of this writing, players can only access the prologue and first chapter of the main story, and two short side stories. I know this isn’t unique to Fortress Saga, but I still don’t care for it, and Fortress Saga is especially bad in this respect.

Louis has only just left his hometown, this is supposed to be where the story begins. I’m not invested in these characters yet. Granted, if I was invested, I’d complain that it gets you hooked then leaves you hanging. I suppose the best solution is to just tell a complete story at launch, but I don’t even need that. A complete Act 1 would be enough to make me happy.

The Things I Like

You might think I’m being a little hard on Fortress Saga. Maybe I am, but that’s not because it doesn’t have other things going for it. I like the design of the walking fortress, resembling a cross between a castle and a warship. It’s also basically a miniaturized Howl’s Moving Castle, down to the skinny legs and the talking fireball as a power source. Come to think of it, Louis kind of looks like Howl a little bit, though that’s where the similarities end.

That said, I am a big fan of the character designs overall. While a lot of gacha games are essentially waifu collection simulators, Heroes in Fortress Saga are aesthetically diverse and dripping with personality. While usually animated as chibi sprites, they also have more detailed anime-style portraits. Fans of excessively elaborate costumes might find them a little plain, but I personally prefer Fortress Saga’s cleaner character designs.

While we’re praising things, I’m also a big fan of the game’s music. I’m not really a music expert, but I know what I like, and I like this. It really captures the epic fantasy adventure vibe that Fortress Saga is going for.

Fortress Saga forest

Great Presentation, but Little Else

However, I’m less enthusiastic about the gameplay. It is an idle game, so gameplay mostly means clicking through the numerous upgrade paths. The sound designs and animations are good, and it’s satisfying to watch enemies get thrown around. However, I would have preferred at least a few minigames to shake things up. I wouldn’t necessarily call it boring, but Fortress Saga definitely gets old fast.

Do I like Fortress Saga? A little. I certainly like its art and music. However, the story was unfinished and the part that’s there just didn’t grab me enough to want to come back later. I also didn’t care to keep playing just to see damage numbers go up. Fortress Saga isn’t bad for what it is, and what it does well it does fantastically. Unfortunately, it just doesn’t do enough.

Is It Hardcore?


Fortress Saga deserves a lot of credit for its great art and music, but offers too little else for an unreserved recommendation.

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