Ash of Gods: The Way PC Review

Redefining Turn-Based Strategy in the best way with some deck-building on top.

By R3GR3T, Posted 05 May 2023

AurumDust doesn’t have a long history of releases or much of a background history, but for a small indie development company with an even smaller team, they’re going straight for what they want. AurumDust was founded in 2016 with the objective to create Ash of Gods: Redemption and it was released in 2018, this was their first release in what became part of a franchise of games. From there the team wanted to expand the Ash of Gods universe and its reach but releasing Ash of Gods: Tactics to mobile platforms in 2019.

Ash of Gods: The Way, Review, Screenshots, Turn-Based Strategy, RPG, Deck-builder, NoobFeed

Fast forward to now with their latest release, Ash of Gods: The Way, another entry for the same universe but with a similar captivating story and gameplay. AurumDust kept raising the quality of their releases and the gameplay evolved too, but the entire Ash of Gods series has been one turn-based strategy after another. However, Ash of Gods: The Way has the polished turn-based strategy of Ash of Gods: Redemption and the well-balanced deck-building features from Ash of Gods: Tactics brought together to bring us Ash of Gods: The Way.

As most of you would’ve seen, deck builder games tend to be extremely luck based, though this can make the games incredibly tedious or very deliberate with the cards you are given, making the game boring and monotonous. Ash of Gods: The Way has neither of those flaws, but also both. Somehow, the team behind Ash of Gods: The Way struck a near perfect balance. This gives the game a fair amount of challenge, but it’s also interesting because it’s not impossible to win. You just need to keep your wits about you and play the game to your advantage.

For a turn-based strategy and deck builder game, you’d expect the story to be dry. Though in this case, the story is actually great and well written. It gives Ash of Gods: The Way a certain sense of life and drives you to push forward for the next outcome. The story starts off in Berkana, a land once ravaged by war until an uneasy peace was forged with the Frisian legions that were out to subjugate any and all.

Ash of Gods: The Way, Review, Screenshots, Turn-Based Strategy, RPG, Deck-builder, NoobFeed

Sadly, not much was left after the war ended. You’ll play as Finn, a once frightened child who was picked up and raised by Eik, your adoptive father of sorts. He tells you the story of how the Frisians are preparing for another war by training nobles and aristocrats to become commanders using a game they developed. Those who can prove their tactical prowess get to earn higher ranks and make them into the command at the top, and have a much greater influence among the nobility who want another war. However, Frisia is preparing for another war but Berkana needs more time, and this is where you come in.

You’ll have to take up arms in a different way using cards and eventually, actual people, for a vicious game of strategy and power. Eik can teach you the basics, but you’ll have to accept or request help from others along the way to sharpen your skills and expand your deck to reach the top. Eik will start you off with a simple board and commander to teach you the basics of the game. In Ash of Gods: The Way, your commander is also your lifeline, if your commander goes down, you lose. Simple as that.

In most cases, it’s just a matter of placing units each round and helping to advance forward on the field to bring down the opposing commanders HP. You’ll start with basic units at first, mostly melee types and a few ranged types. Though each unit variant will also have its own unique stats for HP, Damage, Speed, Range, and unique passive effects from time to time. HP and damage are self-explanatory in this regard. Where things become a bit more complicated is with Speed and Range.

Ash of Gods: The Way, Review, Screenshots, Turn-Based Strategy, RPG, Deck-builder, NoobFeed

In Ash of Gods: The Way, your units will try to advance forward at the end of your turn. If they can’t advance forward, they’ll instead attack the enemy unit in front of them, or just stay where they are. This is where Speed and Range come in, Speed is what determines how many blocks your units will move forward, while range is usually dependent on their weapon. As an example – A Guardian has 3 Speed and will move forward 3 blocks if it can, but it only has 1 Range which will only allow it to attack what’s in the next block forward. But on the other hand, a Deserter has 2 Speed and 2 Range, this gives it a fair amount of leeway with attacking what’s 2 blocks ahead.

You’ll need to keep track of what’s going to plan ahead and what type of units you stack behind each other so they can complement each other as well. A great unit line would be a unit with a lot of HP and short range like a Guardian, a medium range like the Deserter, and then a Ranger that can attack past both of them for maximum damage. Though Ash of Gods: The Way isn’t built in a perfect world, and you’ll need to adapt to the situation as it changes, and those changes can happen during a round.

Now this is where it becomes a lot more interesting and versatile. You can’t choose how far forward your units can move, but you can move them into a different lane if there’s an open space. Having the ability for some light rearranging opens up a near-endless number of possibilities for both you and your opponent. Moving a unit to the wrong lane might not be as devastating for you, but it could be a move that’ll break your opponent’s line.

Ash of Gods: The Way, Review, Screenshots, Turn-Based Strategy, RPG, Deck-builder, NoobFeed

Now, it’s nice to have attacking units on the field but your units can sometimes do so much more. Some of your units come with special passive effects like poison or retaliation. Poison will work once but instantly drain the life from the first unit that it attacks, regardless of its HP or damage. Retaliation can be just as brutal if used correctly, a unit with retaliation will return the favor if it gets attacked during your opponent’s turn. These are just examples of some of the more interesting units you’ll get to use, but there are so many more to collect. However, the same can be said for spells and items.

In the same way you draw a unit card at the start of your turn, you’ll also draw a spell or item you can use during your turn. This can complicate things a bit further if you don’t pay attention though, but in the right hands, you can overwhelm your opponent with an onslaught while wiping out his entire army on the field. Item cards can be used on your units, though keep in mind that your units have limited item slots at your disposal. Item cards come with a myriad of different effects like boosting damage, boosting HP, turn-based HP regeneration, conditional stats, and so much more.

Then there are spells too, with a similarly wide range of different effects. However, some spells do come with a cost like having to sacrifice a unit or HP from your commander, give a little to get a lot in this case. However, spells make life a little tricky, and some spells will only affect specific unit races, while others need a type of spellcaster on the field like a Warlock. Though on rare occasion, you’ll also get spells that affect the whole field, and damage a specified target.

Ash of Gods: The Way, Review, Screenshots, Turn-Based Strategy, RPG, Deck-builder, NoobFeed

One important detail to take note of is Unit Race. With items and spells only affecting certain races, or races complimenting each other well, you’ll have to carefully curate your somewhat limited deck for the best result. If your deck isn’t balanced, it will definitely backfire on you, resulting in you losing many matches. Though, this is where the beauty in Ash of Gods: The Way comes in, with such a massive diversity of units, spells, items and passive effects, there are endless deck builds you can run with to suit any occasion. And in this case, you’ll need to know how to rework your deck for the next battle.

The reason behind this is because not all matches are played by the same set of rules. This forces you to keep your strategies versatile. Some matches are straightforward, where you just need to advance and defeat the opposing commander, and others will require you to only take down a massively overpowered unit from your opponent. To make matters so much worse, you’ll also have endurance matches where you can place more than one unit at a time during your turn, which can complicate a match to a whole new degree. Though winning a match will almost always reward you quite well with new cards you can use and add to your deck.

To save the best for last, your commander doesn’t just stand there looking pretty. You can switch to different commanders as well, provided you get more through the rewards or maybe even buy a new one in the shop. Most commanders will come with their own abilities or passives they can use, though they do have a cooldown, a cost, and sometimes both. For instance; Milten is a Monk commander. His ability can heal a unit for up to 10HP, but it comes at the cost of his own and a 3 round cooldown. While this might sound detrimental, you just need to use it carefully because it can turn the tide of a match in your favor.

Ash of Gods: The Way, Review, Screenshots, Turn-Based Strategy, RPG, Deck-builder, NoobFeed

Ash of Gods: The Way features an incredible immersion through dialogue and music. The conversations you’ll hear are fully voiced and play a massive part in the story as it unfolds, though your units are also semi-voiced for grunts, screams, etc. However, their actions come with unique sound effects too. The sound engineering brings more life into the game than ever seen before in other turn-based strategies and it’s a refreshing sight to see. The music shifts depending on the field you’re playing on as well, but the use of heavily instrumental but traditional music suits every match perfectly. It doesn’t distract you from the gameplay but instead gets you even more immersed.

While the game leans more toward 2D animations, you can clearly see that it’s closer to 2.5D with the use of an isometric grid for the field. Each unit you’ll see and use is unique to its role but also quite well-detailed, some might think they lack detail, but the simpler details are what give Ash of Gods: The Way its unique beauty. While the lack of complex shadows and shading can make a game look low-budget, the color palate used does make your units stand out more and help them look a lot livelier, even if they do seem a bit cartoonish.


Overall, Ash of Gods: The Way is an inspired turn-based strategy and deck-builder game that deserves all the praise it can get. From the story to the gameplay, there are almost no flaws to be found, and the gameplay just keeps you coming back for more. Each match is a new challenge with different rules to play by, and this keeps things fresh and interesting. For a small indie studio, the team did a spectacular job with Ash of Gods: The Way, anybody else looking to make a game in this genre should take a few tips from them.

Jay Claassen
Editor, NoobFeed

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General Information

Platform(s): PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch, Mobile
Publisher(s): AurumDust
Developer(s): AurumDust
Genres: Turn-Based Strategy
Themes: Turn-Based Strategy, Role-Playing
Release Date: 2023-04-27

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