In the whole of the game, only one metaphor hit home for me. Sometimes when you manage to reach another person's vault, you find it empty, pillaged by a previous robber. There's nothing to take away, and all the time and effort you've put into the endeavor has been wasted.
That doesn’t mean that nobody will, but as a gameplay experience it is bleak, brief, and terribly frustrating. It certainly makes you think, but not about anything very complex.
By accepting that there is so little permanence at play in The Castle Doctrine, the almost overwhelming sense of uncertainty that pervades it becomes easier—and more satisfying—to cope with. In this way, what The Castle Doctrine offers is a brilliant but horrifying depiction of a risk society at war with itself.
The Castle Doctrine is a statement game, to be sure, but the statement seems to be that the only way to win is to not play The Castle Doctrine.
The Castle Doctrine’s best parts show, parts that scream originality. It’s not easy by any means, nor is it particularly intuitive, forgiving, or even enjoyable at times, but The Castle Doctrine makes the agony of defeat and the frustration of over-complexity meaningful, and in some ways, much more fun than what you’d expect it to be.
At times rewarding but ultimately frustrating, The Caste Doctrine is more of a psychological conversation starter than a game. Only if you're a masochist or put in the necessary time to master your defenses will you find real enjoyment in the gameplay.
Every player begins Castle Doctrine as a middle-aged man with a wife, two kids, $2,000, and access to a bevy of materials that could make a home a practically impregnable fortress. There were three kinds of walls, doors, switches, power sources, pits,...
The Castle Doctrine is an online home-invasion simulator that sets you up with a pixellated wife and two children, hands you $2,000, and asks you to create an elaborate deathtrap out of dogs, corridors, doorways, complicated switches and wiring,...