boxart
Game Info:

Renowned Explorers
Developed by: Abbey Games
Published by: Abbey Games
Release Date: September 2, 2015
Available on: Windows, macOS, Linux
Genre: Turn based strategy
Number of Players: Single Player game
ESRB Rating: Unrated
Price: $19.99
(Humble Store Link)

That curious sense of adventure is within everyone. Whether it's a new direction you've never traveled before or that brand new restaurant down the street, we are always ready to try something new. When we were children small hills and holes in the wall become tall mountains and mysterious caves. We don't lose the adventurous spirit as we get older. We can't go explore the deep reaches of the Caribbean or the lost Mayan temples on a whim. However, with Renowned Explorers: International Society you can live out those dreams. This lovely gem is brought to the world by Abbey Games and the quality sparkles like the treasures you will be tasked with retrieving. 

Renowned Explorers challenges the player to create a cohesive team with different roles. Those roles include fighters, scientists, speakers, and scouts. Whoever you choose as the captain will give your crew special abilities. The first map will always give you the option of a robust tutorial which teaches you what spaces on the board game like map mean and how to make the most out of your score. Each map tasks you with collecting gold, fame, and research through different event spaces. Spaces marked with treasure chests will give you a chance at obtaining a treasure which will be where the majority of your score comes from. 

Renowned Explorers
Highlights:

Strong Points: A game with heavy replay value and great imagination. This game is designed to give you a reason to play again.
Weak Points: Complex games deserve detailed explanations. While this game is not hard to learn a bit more in-game advice for new players might be nice. 
Moral Warnings: Unless you find punching sheep offensive or retrieving a voodoo doll to lock it away in a museum then there isn't much in the way of offensive material.

 

Everything you gather adds to your Renown points which is what you need to beat your rival, Matthieu Rivaleux, and become the World Renowned Explorer. Science is spent on research trees which are basically different builds for what you can earn through exploring. Gold will get you new equipment for your explorers that teaches them skills and increases their stats. Status will allow you to purchase entourage members and specialists. Entourage members can increase the value of status, gold and research you earn. Specialists have strong effects such as teaching a crew member a skill or adding powerful bonuses to your team as you explore. 

The sounds, while repetitive, are not displeasing to the ear. The graphics are very stylized and always a pleasure to look at. It really adds to the value of the treasures I find in each stage when they have such detail to their art. The game's replay value is extremely high, with 148 achievements, hundreds of treasures and plenty of ways to explore each location. You'll find yourself coming back for more. 

Renowned Explorers
Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 90%
Gameplay - 18/20
Graphics - 10/10
Sound - 7/10
Stability - 5/5
Controls - 5/5

Morality Score - 88%
Violence - 7/10
Language - 10/10
Sexual Content - 10/10
Occult/Supernatural - 8/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical - 9/10

The only problems I personally have with the game are very small. While the tutorial is decent, some finer points could use more explanation for new players. An example of this is how you build your crews. While you can solve encounters in devious, friendly, or aggressive ways, you won’t understand how the crew you build will somewhat dictate what treasures you find on a stage. A devious crew won’t achieve as much in Mali as a friendly crew will. The game doesn't need to hold my hand, but emphasis wouldn't hurt.

There isn't much in this game that could be morally disturbing. While some treasures you could retrieve include shrunken heads and voodoo dolls, your crew never uses them as anything more than museum pieces. Violence is cartoony and strange; you might find yourself punching a sheep or saying mean things to Dracula. With over 88 hours in the game so far I have found no bad language or grotesque sexual content.

Renowned Explorers will make your inner child get ready to sail the seven seas again. With fair challenge and plenty of wonder, you'll enjoy exploring the secrets of the world.