After the critical success of Sword of the Stars – The Pit, Kerberos Productions brings us a reason to go back into the pit with some new content. Mind Games adds 10 new floors to the pit with new enemies, new room types, and new items. Two new classes, Ranger and Psion, are available to tackle the new content along with new skills that can do everything from healing to manipulating enemies. There is also a new difficulty level for those that thought insane was too easy and a endless mode for those that don’t want the game to end. Is it enough though to make us want to delve deeper than ever before into the pit?
A new stat called Power has been added to govern the Psi points a character has which powers the new Psionic abilities. Psionic powers are separated into 6 classes (Empathy, Manifestation, Mecha Empathy, Redaction, Telekinesis, and War Mind) with 4 skills in each class. These powers add a wide range of new things to the game like the ability to heal and reduce hunger or paralyze and drain life from enemies. You now can manipulate enemies, yourself, items, and by far the coolest manipulation — reality by creating items from nothing. There is also a new non-Psi power called Engineering that manipulates combat devices and the project auras in rooms. The wide array of new skills add a lot to The Pit providing new ways to tackle the descent.
The Ranger class has skills that are a balanced mix of the Scout and Marine from the main game. She ends up being quite the powerhouse due to the all around nature of the skill base plus being of the Tarka race which allows up to 3 moves per a turn and an increase in natural healing with the ability to hit multiple enemies with a melee attack.
The Psion class is heavily focused in the new psionic powers to the detriment of all other skills. Proper use of the psionic skills is needed to survive and might end up being the easiest class to play The Pit with once learned but that learning is key.
Several new types of rooms were added with themes such as libraries and cryolabs but two very special rooms make a big impact on the game. The Biodome is a room that is actually a whole floor by itself featuring a large open space area that is filled with outdoorsy stuff like plants giving a whole new aesthetic to the game. Then there is the “Metagame” room. It is free of monsters and provides a place to bank experience and items for future playthroughs. Once you reach a metagame room, you can choose to start new characters from that room take the difficulty of The Pit from brutal to pretty easy on all but the hardest difficulties.
While the new classes, abilities, and “Metagame” room make the game easier, The Pit has not become cake. The additional 10 levels before you reach the bottom amp up difficulty. New enemies like the Mind Wolves which go invisible are extremely dangerous. The new difficulty level almost makes using the “Metagame” room necessary to the point that only the hardcore will try runs without it.
Mind Games expands on The Pit by bringing in new ways to play extending the replayability of the title. The game is made more accessible with not only the new powers and classes but mainly with the “Metagame” room changing how the game is fundamentally played. The great thing about all of that is that if the hardcore players want a more vanilla experience but want to consume the harder content they can ignore the classes and not use the room. This DLC is must have for everyone that owns The Pit.