Published on April 10th, 2012 | by Charlie0
Review: King Arthur II: The Role-Playing Wargame
Summary: Charlie takes a look atKing Arthur II: The Role-Playing Wargame, is it any good? read the review to find out!
It was a cold winters day… and although I had a whole collection of video games to play, I thought to myself: “I need a change of genre. I’ve been playing FPS’s, Puzzlers, more FPS’s, Third Person Shooters and more FPS’s. I needed a change. I needed something that I hoped would will a void. In came King Arthur II, and with no idea about the story, I took a gamble. And I must say… it didn’t pay off.
To take a gamble and play a game which is strong in story is a big one, but fortunately, you don’t really need to have played the first to understand the story… at least that’s what I gathered. It might help to have learned the basics of the Arthurian legend like I had; that is if you plan to delve into the historic universe. You first walk onto a fairly sized map after you return from battle. A mysterious medallion revives you from battle after giving you the choice to save your villages of citizens or your walls of armies, so already your multiple choices begin so early. The story is told through the idea of multiple choice, so some familiarity of Dragon Age might occur. But sadly, your choices seem very dully portrayed, as you don’t see the impact of your choices; you merely read about it. This is one of the two sets of gameplay mechanics, and is further portrayed when you tend to choose how you deploy your decisions in the game. For example, say you send forces into a territory ran by another king/queen FOR another king or queen. You may lose reputation for entering the territory of another King/Queen, but gain reputation for the King/Queen you’re doing this for. Get it?
The other gameplay mechanic is the actual battles. For somebody like me, it’s a rough concept to grip a hold of. You need to choose where your enemies are deployed to, who they are deployed on, whilst ultimately trying to remember who are your enemies and who are your own soldiers, because it gets rather swampy out there. A lot of what you’re doing is mere guesswork, especially since some units are specialized to certain enemy units. What they are is, as I just said, guesswork. If you want to try and get the best out of your troops, when you’re on the world map, you’re required to upgrade your troops; but it comes at a price. Sometimes it’s also quite hard to keep track on what set of troops have leveled up; or in fact if there is really any point in putting in all that work into leveling up your troops, considering you may just end up losing the entire batch in battle, making your leveling up pointless.
What also makes the gameplay more pointless is the auto-battle system. The heart of the game is where you play the battle segments in 3D view, where you’re pointing and clicking your way to where your troops should go. But why not just skip all of that? Auto battle allows you to skip what might be hours of gameplay and just follow along with the story. It makes me wonder if that’s a good thing or not. The game isn’t amazing in terms of graphics, where you’ll find each solider just a clone of another; sure that happens in most RTS. It’s not an easy game either, considering that some leaders might have danger icons above their head, so a battle against them might seem pointless for a while.
When playing on the world map, I literally found myself just waiting for something to happen, turn after turn. When playing on the world map, you play in turns, where you can only move a certain distance throughout the maps. Each turn is a season, so you might only be able to travel a few hundred miles throughout a season… makes me wonder if the season system has any point to it; you got to remember a season is 3 months, and you could travel a lot further than is shown in the game in 3 months. You can’t do anything in winter however, since… it’s winter. Nobody is going to fight during the blistering cold, so instead, you’re better off using this time to upgrade your villages, rekindle your troops. Upgrading your villages allows you to upgrade your armies, since building upgrades on villages allows for better armor and weapons and so forth.
You might even encounter quite a few bugs too, for example I found myself stuck on an island after teleporting, unsure on how to get off it. I had to literally try and teleport to other areas to get off that island, since you can’t walk over or through water.
King Arthur II is also rather confusing for me too, because things can get out of hand rather quickly. One minute I had a whole bunch of allies on my side, and then the next thing I knew, I had everybody against me, forcing me to blade them down. King Arthur II was just a plain weird experience, one I just don’t think I want to play again. It’s not a game I enjoyed thoroughly, and if you ever think: “Oh it’ll be like Starcraft”, then think again because it’s nothing like Starcraft; in fact it’s so much less.