The idea of playing as King Arthur and retracing his footsteps to greatness are nothing new in the gaming world; there have been middling attempts at it for decades. This means that when someone has a new approach to the experience that isn?t terrible it is worth a look even if the new approach is summoning the best parts of the Total War games to do it. The result is an immersive experience unlike those that fell in line before it.
One of the most memorable experiences, and the one that really left a lasting impression on me, happened fairly early in the game in the form of a one of the countless quests given out. Another king, on the other side of the island, wanted help exploring some unknown area. Considering that this was early in the way, and that I would have to cross several less than friendly territories just to get to the starting location of the quest I never managed to complete it, or even think about it twice. Several turns later I received a message that the king had decided to go out on his own anyway. A handful of turns later, I was informed that he was missing and feared dead and a little after that the people found his body. For the rest of the game I knew exactly why his people weren’t super happy with me.
This is one of the fundamental things that make King Arthur so good; the game is constantly giving the impression that things will continue regardless of the player?s action. Little touches like the aforementioned quest give the impression that, even with the bird?s eye view which almost entirely removing player from close contact, the digital people of the world they are still programmed with emotions and can manage to hold a grudge– even if it is only for key moments.
The game plays very much like some of the Total War games, with massive army management and some governing choices of areas to make sure that they are less likely to rebel after being taken over. What King Arthur manages to do differently, though, ends up making the game; all of the units that are taken into battle can be leveled up with additional skills and stronger attacks, becoming all the more valuable the longer they have been in service.
Although this does end up leading to one of the odder feeling quarks of the game, at the start of a battle the choice is given to either directly control the battle or to let the computer decide the victor through a quick battle feature. The only luck that I ever experienced with auto battle took place during the tutorial levels of the game on a second play-through, all other times the computer seemed to decide that my military might was rather lacking and simply destroyed my entire army. I am not calling the computer bias towards its own kind, but on loading a quick save and playing the battle myself I was more than easily able to defeat every army I had lost to very decisively.
The auto saves are another amazing feature packed in. Once a round, the game auto saves progress up to four saves. It ends up being so reliable that the only time I ever really needed to make a hard save was when I knew I was probably doing something terribly stupid. It really is rather rare for a game to auto save in such an intelligent manner that it deserves mention in a review.
For the hopeless strategy fan out there that can’t get enough massive battles with enemies ranging from mystic beasts to the Saxons, King Arthur should have been bought the day that it came out. As a matter of fact, the only people out there that should take a moment and think about the purchase are those that simply hate strategy games, even though the game may convert some of them. Like so few games before, it King Arthur – The RPG has managed to make many an early morning “quick game” turn into a late night session of “just one more turn”.
Not As Good As: Forcefully taking over England in the real world Also Try: The Saxons expansion Wait For It: The Steam Christmas sale, cause why not
Stay with MyGamer on Twitter: www.twitter.com/mygamernews