Before it went digital, Colt Express was a board game published in 2014 and developed by Ludonaute. It is a 2 – 6 players board game with amazing illustrations by Jordi Valbuena and Ian Parovel, while Christophe Raimbault did the design. Since its publication, the game had numerous expansions and based on the publisher it sold in almost half a million copies worldwide.
Digital board game Colt Express was developed by Asmodee Digital and released in 2016. The game is available for $3.99 on the Apple Store and $3.49 on Google Play, as well as on Steam. When it comes to the story, it’s the same as in the board game, only now you can find your opponents across the world.
It’s the Wild West and you are one of the outlaws getting ready to rob a train. However, you are not the only one there and so you have to bit your competitions and steal as much as you can for yourself. This means you will have to develop strategies and plan every move in order to succeed.
However, don’t be alarmed that this is a digital edition of a board game since even if you never played one, you will easily understand the rules and moves. Colt Express offers a tutorial and a rulebook which will explain certain aspects of the gameplay, characters and karma system, as well as online ranking.
Of course, the digital version is not the same as the tabletop one, although the developers did a great job with the art and transferring the method to the mobile devices. On the other hand, that is only the matter of which medium you prefer more since the digital one seems more interactive with animations and effects of the constantly moving train.
Multiplayer mode is pretty awesome with a “Quick Play” option, which offers to find you a match immediately. Colt Express uses 1500 ELO ranking system, which is already present in certain digital board games and was developed for chess. The game starts you with 1500 rank, and you can go up or down on the leaderboard depending on your play. The karma system gives you points every time you complete the game but also takes away points if you quit a match.
When it comes to the single-player mode, you can play the Story Mode and progress through chapters. Each of those chapters is dedicated to the Bandit and is actually a game for itself with different goals and conditions. A normal game in the single player mode is quite simple and there is no AI which can be put offing for some players, although here it is not such a big deal. If you finished Story Mode, you unlocked some variants you can use here which will make the game more interesting and richer.
In the end, it all comes down to whether you are an old-fashioned tabletop game player, or you are open-minded and accepting when it comes to the digital editions of board games. Just like in the real world, you may face the lack of players to play against. However, this is something that developers will certainly look into in the future since may digital board games possess this flaw. But, in the nutshell, this is a beautiful and entertaining game that can replace its tabletop edition, at least in the event when you can’t gather your friends in one place to play.