I roll some digital dice and they rattle across a post apocalyptic board. I'm facing down a horribly mutated rat that could shatter my leg bones or wound my hands.
There's a crate to search as well. It might contain food, supplies, or another survivor who can aid me in my quest not to die.
I roll a knife and an action. The knife lets me take a swipe at the rat and means I won't take any damage. The action lets me look through the crate, but it's empty.
This is Nyheim. It's a single player roguelike boardgame that's all about wandering through a post-pandemic wasteland, and while it's not finished yet, there's a lot of interesting stuff going on here.
High times in Nyheim
You move around the board searching different areas. Some are safe, containing places to sleep and heal your injuries. Stack two wounds and you end up dead.
But you can place the wounds on characters of your choice, meaning you can survive longer with more people in your team.
You can get cards that you can use to keep alive too – marks on them show you what extra skills and benefits they bestow.
The dice are eight sided, and you can shuffle the loadout of them before you even start. It makes for a slightly different game every time you play, and finding the right selection can be the difference between life and death.
As boardgames go, this isn't the most complex. But the simplicity of the mechanics means that it's easy to jump into the experience without wading through rules.
The game is set to release around August time, and there are still some rough edges on the build, but it's the ideas that shine through.
There are shades of zombie survival games here, like Last Night on Earth, but it's a little less frantic. Death stalks you at every turn, and then it grabs you, and you break your leg, and you have to start over again.
Between now and release there'll be more added, from items that cross over between play-throughs, and more specific objectives that you can complete instead of searching.
Nyheim is an interesting blend of genres and concepts, and things look like they're coming together pretty well. It'll be good to see how everything pans out when the game hits mobile later in the year.