Inkulinati (2023) is a strategy game where you fight an opponent using medieval drawings. Using a range of weapons, attacks, defences and abilities, you move your characters, based on real medieval drawings, around the page to defeat enemies as a story about the battle is transcribed above. With period-accurate illustrations and whimsical, often humorous stories, it makes the strategy genre feel fresh (and peculiar) again.
You play a member of the Inkulinati, a secret medieval society whose members use living ink that can be moved around the page with a life of its own. In this way, they battle each other using drawn characters. You take the role of a magical nun, an all-powerful knight or other characters to lead your illustrated troops into turn-based fights against an opposing force and use all manner of strange attacks, abilities, and actions to emerge victorious.
The moves range from conventional, like shooting enemies using bows and arrows, to the bizarre, like using a donkey's trumpeted fart to shock opponents into vulnerability. While it sounds strange, each of the moves is rooted in actual drawings found in medieval manuscripts. You can also create your own Inkulinati member, and during fights, draw obstacles and use your (in-game) fists to knock enemies out. As you progress, you unlock new troop types, each with its own unique abilities and accompanying strategies waiting to be discovered.
The result is a strange yet humorous imagining of the origins of medieval drawings that, through its strategic fights and unusual attacks, invites players to experiment with ever more ambitious strategies and ways to win in a game that offers surprising depth yet still remains fun and lighthearted.
Our examiner, Ben Kendall
, first checked Inkulinati 14 months ago. It was re-examined by Jo Robertson
and updated 10 months ago.