A surprise hit in my book and a much belated review, I meant to write this up a while back. Expeditions:Conquistador is the kind of kind of game that sits in your backlog for months and when you finally get around to playing it you realise what you've been missing out on.
There's a solid hex-tile based battle system at work here- employing line of sight, cover and flanking mechanics married with a variety of different mission objectives. In some battles the odds are truly stacked against your team, both in numbers and positioning - every encounter feels fresh and satisfying, particularly when you take down key characters during pivotal moments in the narrative. The game boasts a strong musical score throughout the adventure, helping to set and underline the mood during key moments in the game and it ties together the overall package beautifully.
The events system is where Expeditions:Conquistador truly shines, employing excellent writing with plenty of flavour and flair sprinkled throughout, easily on par with, if not exceeding the beloved triple A darlings of the industry. As you'd expect there are skill checks locking out certain character builds from particular actions. A great deal of flexibility is afforded to the player in how they choose to roleplay their character and you see the consequences of your actions and attitude reflected throughout the game, with allies becoming enemies and vice versa as you strike out across the continent - you really get a good sense of agency as you progress through the game. There's a good amount of narrative branching, particularly in the second campaign, even if some of it is just for flavour it's incentive to revisit the game and see things play out different at a later date.
My only gripes with the game are the camera is too close whilst navigating around the map and it only pulls back so far, panning the camera is also more restrictive that I would have liked. Neither of these issues really hampered my experience with the game. I'll be there day one when the developers release a sequel to this; they've more than proven themselves on all fronts.