Introducing Happy Bastards!

It’s great seeing people lol watching the trailer for our new game, Happy Bastards – especially because that’s the reaction we were hoping for when recently talking to press about the game! I’m Mattieu Bégin, Creative Director and Game Designer of Happy Bastards, and if you couldn’t be at the press event, then this post is for you! We’re treating you like the press and share everything we recently showed them – and answer some of your questions about this twisted Tactical RPG coming to Steam.

“What is the point of Happy Bastards?”

You know all those fantasy games where you’re the chosen one on some noble quest? Not here! In Happy Bastards, you’re doing all these questionable things just to get ahead. Get rich or let someone else die trying. Or, as we say in the tagline, “Who needs XP when you’re famous?”

You see, I am a HUGE tactical RPG fan and Happy Bastards is heavily inspired by tactical greats such as Darkest Dungeon, Battle Brothers, XCOM, and Into the Breach. I love that these games are very challenging, have deep tactical combat systems, and let you manage a group of warriors. We are taking all that and expanding upon it in a way that we think feels distinctly different with Happy Bastards, a game that rewards you for being a shameless opportunist.

“Who are these Bastards – and how do I control them?”

This is your band of mercenaries. They are the suckers who will do your dirty work, suffering the consequences when things don’t turn out as planned.

You recruit, upgrade, and customize these procedurally generated bastards–but they also have personalities of their own…and they don’t always blindly follow your orders.

The bastards speak their mind and cause trouble (or pleasantly surprise you), in and out of combat. It is part of the game’s tactical challenge to keep them in check based on their personality traits, interactions with other bastards, and morale.

Who said being the boss was going to be easy?

While we wouldn’t say these bastards are disposable – they can gain XP – your mercenaries are just a means to an end for Kev.

“Who the hell is Kev?”

Kev is a wannabe hero. He doesn’t have any skills, can’t fight, but he’s got a big mouth and is more than happy to let everyone else do his dirty work — so long as he can get all the glory and fame. What Kev lacks in class, he more than makes up for in determination. Sound like anyone you know? Well, that’s YOU in Happy Bastards.

Now, mind you, Kev is our best take on being your worst possible self. You can customize the look, gender, and name of your glory-seeking leader.

Heroes in this world are the rock stars of their time. Think Mötley Crüe or Guns N’ Roses-levels of sex, drugs, and rock – but with sex, ale, and swords! People admire heroes in Kev’s world and they are willing to blindly do whatever heroes want. So, OF COURSE, Kev wants in on that action.

You probably got a taste of that from the trailer. It shows the main way to earn fame in the game: Kev recruiting mercenaries that go out adventuring, and when you come back to town, you brag to the populace of your adventuring exploits. Still, there are plenty of other bastardly ways to earn fame…but that’s another story for another blog post.

“So I’m always rooting for the Anti-Hero in Happy Bastards?”

Something funny happened during SGF: Several people told me that Kev made them think about their own D&D campaign characters and these people are kindred spirits. You see, Kev was inspired by fun D&D campaigns I’d run with buddies as the DM. (So this probably tells you a lot more about the people that I hang out with on weekends.)

As you’ve gathered by now, Happy Bastards is intentionally morally bankrupt. I get it. Some players don’t feel good about not being the good guy in games. Don’t think about it so much. The world of Happy Bastards is so clearly a parody, full of ridiculous characters and situations. Just go with it — be the anti-hero.

“Can you go into the gameplay more?”

There is actually a lot to be deduced even right now if you look at the trailer carefully. Feel free to pause the trailer video! We wanted the trailer to mostly establish the tone of the game, as a starting point for this campaign, but we do already give some quick glimpses for what’s ahead.

I wish I had a demo to let all of you play right now. Hell, that’s the first thing everyone in the press asked me. However, the game is still early in development. Please keep following as the team works under the direction of our glorious leader, Kev.

Happy Bastards key art


In the coming months, we’ll dive into the various game elements that make Happy Bastards truly unique. We’ll talk about its open world that features a dynamic simulation of NPCs. We’ll give much more details on the various mechanics of the combat system (remind us to tell you more about tag-team abilities and meatshielding). We’ll tell you what to expect from the bastards you recruit as mercenaries, including some tips on babysitting them.

It isn’t us just sharing our progress, though, we want to hear from you! Join our Discord and ask your own questions, tell us what you’re liking, and what you’d like to see more of in the game!


This is the start of our journey together and we plan to share a lot more as game development continues. The only thing we ask: Wishlist Happy Bastards on Steam. It’s a small button click that goes a long way to help us as we build the game. Best of all, it’ll keep you updated as we get closer to Early Access and full 1.0 release!

Thanks so much for your interest — and helping us make the game we’ve always wanted to play!