ReviewsReview: Wildfrost

Review: Wildfrost


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Everyone has their favourite season. Whatever yours is, I’m sure you don’t complain when Spring turns to Summer and Summer to Autumn. However, how would you feel if the sun disappeared, Winter was never-ending, and the world was covered with a permanent and bitter frost? Well, you can experience this reality if you undertake the challenging and captivating Wildfrost. I was introduced to this harsh and addictive indie title at EGX 2022, and I loved it. As such, I’ve eagerly awaited its Steam release.

Developed by Deadpan Games and Gaziter and published by Chucklefish, this is a deck-building adventure title. Moreover, it has rogue-like elements at its core, masses of tactical moments, and is cruel, time-consuming, and wonderfully rewarding. What’s more, visually it is sombre, striking, and unique, and it has incredible audio to match. Therefore, if you love the main genre or any of the minor layers, you will cherish every ball-breaking moment you endure.

Big Berry is a companion that'll heal your team.
Pick your companion and take down your foes.

Wildfrost is cold, callous, and unbelievably cruel.

The world has frozen, and all hope is lost. Furthermore, towns are dwindling and monsters rule the roost. Accordingly, mankind is doomed unless a hero steps up. Yet, can one hero and their band of companions traverse an icy tundra and destroy the Wildfrost? This task is not for the faint of heart, and sadly, many brave and unprepared men and women will lose their lives in this brutal and unforgiving quest. However, with planning, luck, and a growing town, you may do enough to complete your journey and save the day.

Wildfrost is a bewilderingly brilliant game that is easy to play once you understand the fundamentals. However, once you have the basics down, there are still development points to learn and the game continues to surprise you. On top of this, there are daily challenges to undertake, a range of side quests to complete, and a town that requires goals to be achieved. Accordingly, this isn’t just about the journey you take, it is also about the greater picture and its subsequent parts.

You may highlight every stat of each enemy you face.
Check out the stats for every enemy.

Combat and a branching path.

If you love Slay the Spire, you’ll appreciate the gameplay progression of Wildfrost. With branching paths and many decisions to be made, you are left pondering how best to progress. Do you take charms, a new companion, or visit the shop? Alternatively, will you grab treasure and gold, and visit some of the strange inhabitants? Whatever option you choose, they always connect at the same node. This cruel merging point pits you against a gang of demented monsters. Additionally, you’ll have to overcome a demi-boss if you wish to succeed.

Each battle is oddly simple once you understand the formalities. To begin, you must place your chosen captain on the battlefield. This area is made up of grids and you may choose any row that is free. From here, your cards are dealt, and the timer begins. As you pick a card, place a companion, or set out your defences, you use a turn. This ticks down your enemies’ counter and when they hit zero, they attack whoever is in their way. Yet, this can be slowed if you use magic, ice, or an array of other special skills.

You are free to take as long as you wish, but that is ill-advised. Why? Well, not only is there a counter for each enemy, but there is also one for the next wave of monsters. Therefore, if you don’t move fast enough, you will be overwhelmed by mushrooms, goblins, wizards, and all manner of deadly beasts. On top of this, the demi-boss is waiting patiently in the wings.

Complete each run and make the town grow.
The town is growing.

Death is all but assured.

My poorly explained breakdown of the combat will have to do. However, I can succinctly tell you that death is all but assured. Consequently, the rogue-like elements play a key part in this excellent title. Yet, unlike its peers, Wildfrost isn’t as cruel. Every run benefits your town and can help you to progress further in any additional playthrough. With permanent upgrades unlocked, new pets to assist you, and a range of items, cards, and charms at your disposal, you become more powerful the longer you play.

Alongside this, every new adventure offers you the chance to play around with your companions, select a new captain, and try out new tactics. Moreover, you never know how the map will unfold, and occasionally, you get an easier run to help you with your side quests. On top of this, the temporary charms can vastly improve your fortunes as you boost a card, reduce a cool down, or increase a hero’s strength, defence, or health. These vital items are a game-changer and must be used at all costs.

Another key element is the use of your companions. If any of your team is injured in battle, you risk losing them permanently. Therefore, you must consider when to play it safe, when to increase your defences, or when to go all-out attack. Thankfully, there is no right or wrong, but whatever you decide, you must live with the consequences.

Wildfrost looks and sounds incredible.

Though Wildfrost has a steep learning curve, you can enjoy what you see and hear from the off. The brilliant fantasy theme and fixed-screen combat moments are great to look at. What’s more, the rudimentary overworld is easy to navigate and simple to understand. Alongside this, a stripped-back UI allows you to check your deck of cards, understand each character’s strengths and weaknesses, and plan far in advance. Moreover, the smooth and often OTT animation complemented the theme whilst adding a little magic to the proceedings.

Deck-builders demand planning, patience, and a methodical approach. Therefore, they can suffer from a lack of drama and urgency. However, Wildfrost has an exceptional soundtrack with wonderfully considered sound effects. I adored the slower, melancholy songs that were brilliantly juxtaposed with the upbeat and aggressive combat moments. Alongside this, the crashing of swords, the explosion of poison and fire, and the cracking and splintering of wooden shields enhanced the atmosphere further still.

Complete tasks and new items will be made for you to fight the Wildfrost.
What is he making now?

An excellent Steam Deck title.

This hasn’t been verified for Steam Deck, but I spent 99% using this platform. As such, I can happily report that it works perfectly, mostly. Subsequently, there were minor issues with renaming your character, but this didn’t impact the game and I didn’t care. When played on a laptop or PC, the controls are responsive, well laid out, and easy to understand. What’s more, there is a thorough tutorial to get you up and running.

The branching paths and seamless, never-ending tactical choices ensure untold levels of replay value and longevity. Alongside this, the daily voyage and its associated leaderboard will draw you back in repeatedly. Additionally, the side quests to evolve your town was interesting and achievable while adding new content to each playthrough.

Wildfrost is a phenomenal deck-builder.

Wildfrost is an exceptional title that’ll push you to your limits. With a lore-infused story, tough battles, and plenty of content, this will not disappoint. Furthermore, the graphics and the audio are the epitomai of fantasy while adding plenty of layers to the atmosphere. Moreover, it is addictive, rewarding, and pretty tough to put down. Accordingly, I loved every cruel minute and I recommend that you buy it here! Can you save mankind from the Wildfrost? Choose a captain, pick your companions, and hope that luck is on your side.


Wildfrost is a fantastic deck-builder with rogue-like mechanics. What's more, it has a melancholy story, incredible graphics, and stunning audio. On top of this, it is challenging, addictive, and grim. However, the tough action will put some of you off. Yet, I urge you to break through the learning curve as you battle to save humanity from the Wildfrost.

+ Excellent graphics.
+ Stunning audio.
+ A great plot.
+ Plays well on Steam Deck.
+ Addictive.
+ Daily tasks make you come back for more.

- It can be extremely tough.
- A steep learning curve.

(Rating: n/a Release date: 12/04/2023 Price: £16.79)

(Reviewed on PC using Steam. Also available on Steam Deck (not verified) and Nintendo Switch.

Daniel Waite
Daniel Waite
My gaming career started on an Amiga and spans many consoles! Currently, I game using an MSI laptop and Xbox Series X. A fan of every genre, I love to give anything a go. Former editor and reviewer for, I'm loving my new home here at Movies Games and Tech. I can be contacted for gaming reviews on the following email:

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<p class="has-text-align-justify" style="font-size:14px"><em>Wildfrost</em> is a fantastic deck-builder with rogue-like mechanics. What's more, it has a melancholy story, incredible graphics, and stunning audio. On top of this, it is challenging, addictive, and grim. However, the tough action will put some of you off. Yet, I urge you to break through the learning curve as you battle to save humanity from the Wildfrost.</p><br/> + Excellent graphics.<br/> + Stunning audio.<br/> + A great plot.<br/> + Plays well on <b>Steam Deck</b>.<br/> + Addictive.<br/> + Daily tasks make you come back for more.<br/> <br/> - It can be extremely tough.<br/> - A steep learning curve.<br/> <br/> <p class="has-text-align-center" style="font-size:10px">(<b>Rating:</b> n/a <b>Release date:</b> 12/04/2023 <b>Price:</b> £16.79)</p><br/> <p class="has-text-align-center" style="font-size:10px">(Reviewed on PC using Steam. Also available on Steam Deck (not verified) and Nintendo Switch.</p><br/>Review: Wildfrost