Kingdom Come: Deliverance is a new Medieval RPG developed by Warhorse Studios and published by Deep Silver. The game is set in the medieval kingdom of Bohemia, a part of the Holy Roman Empire in 1403 and follows the story of Henry, the son of a blacksmith. Not much is known about the story so far, but it is said to be in a fully interactive world with a lot of repercussions, as the world around the player will react to the actions the player makes. There is a deep world built into this game, and every part of it is meant to make the game feel more real. The goal of the game is to transport players back in time to Medieval Europe, and it looks like it might be able to do that.
Where did the Game come from?
In 2011 Mafia and Mafia II director Dan Vavra opened Warhorse Studios, a developer with the passion of changing and pushing the RPG genre. In 2013 the Czech developer announced its debut title Kingdom Come: Deliverance to release on PC and the soon to be announced PS4 and Xbox One. The game was later announced to be based heavily on real historical events and characters with a world and combat system designed to be as accurate as possible. The developers at Warhorse set out to create an ambitious title that could push the limits of an RPG experience and promised to be different than other medieval RPGs by excluding magic from the experience.
Originally set to release in the summer of 2015, the game has faced several delays to push it into February 2018, worrying many fans. But developers have been very insistent that every delay has only made the game better. In 2014 the developers launched a Kickstarter campaign to see if the game was worth investing in with a goal of $300,000, and destroyed that goal with over $1,000,000, showing how enthusiastic fans were for the game.
Not much is known about the story other than it’s based on a true story and the player will play as Henry, the son of blacksmith, who is the sole survivor of a raid on his home town, which is burnt to the ground in the process. The story seems to follow Henry as he works his way up in the world, fighting alongside the king and his army and eventually commanding his own squad. Nothing has been confirmed about where the story goes, but something interesting about the game is the way it approaches its quests. If a player is given a quest, they have several ways to go about it, from stealth, going straight in to fight, or avoiding it altogether.
Reputation and the AI
Early footage of the game from several sources shows the NPCs of the game not waiting for players to simulate real life. If the players wait around for an hour in real time, the NPCs may have already gone off and done the objective without the player. If the player does not show up, or shows up late, it gives them a negative reputation that they must then work out of. If a player goes in swords drawn and tries to win every fight just by bashing down enemies, it can give them a reputation of a butcher. Any action the player makes with any NPC will affect their reputation. Because of this, every decision is important and forces players to think about what they want to accomplish, and what they want other characters to think of them. The reputation of the player, then, is the most important thing, as it can change the willingness of NPCs to join them on quests.
Warhorse has worked with experts in medieval weaponry in order to make the game as realistic as ever. This creates a sort of class system for players to choose if they want to be an archer, a bard, or a knight, and master weapons such as maces and swords. The system creates fights that are meant to be fun in one-on-one combat, as well as giving players the ability to handle multiple enemies at once. The main issue with combat that Warhorse wanted to address is how to make skill necessary in a realistic game. The fight is all about positioning and observing enemies to figure out their weaknesses. If somebody does not have a helmet on, the player might opt to attack the head, full armor means the player will need to poke at the joints.
Players also get the option of up to 16 equipment slots to fill with armor pieces. Each armor piece adds more protection but also weighs down the player, so wearing a full set of armor will make players less agile in a fight. Having a full armor set with a helmet could even impede vision. If a player wants, they can wear no armor for full agility, which would then create new problems with injury management. If a player gets injured in a battle they must attend to it immediately if it is bad enough, as an injury in the game could get infected and the player could die.
There is a lot about the game that players are going to have to manage, including the need to sleep or eat. The realism in the game is a huge point the developers have stressed throughout much of the process. This ambitious RPG looks to add a new level of authenticity to the genre with a rich living world and a combat system that could take some time to get used to.
Kingdom Come: Deliverance comes to PS4, Xbox One, and PC on Tuesday, February 13th.