Kingdom Come: Deliverance Review

For a while now I have been itching to play something different, not necessarily brand new but something that steps out of the mold that most games these days all seem to come from. Kingdom Come: Deliverance scratched that itch and except for a few bugs (some typical/hysterical and some odd), it was a joy to play and I will absolutely be heading back out into the very detailed world Warhorse Studios created.

Minor Spoilers Ahead

 

The game starts with Henry being woken up by his mother who’s informing him that his father, the towns blacksmith, needs your help and is growing more impatient by the minute. Once I was given control I wandered the home and took some extra time to speak to Henry’s mother. After dicking around and eating every piece of food I could find I finally ventured out to see my father. From this moment on it became very clear to me that in this game when someone tells you to do something you better do it.

 

 

I was scolded by my father for taking my sweet time getting to him and for my apparent late night behavior the night before. He then gave me a few tasks to do while he finished working on a sword he was crafting for Sir Radzick Kobyla: collect back pay from the town drunk, retrieve the recently delivered hilt, and bring Father back a cold beer. After retrieving the hilt I made my way into town to collect the owed money. I approached Kunesh and was greeted with hostility. He claimed he didn’t have the money and told me to fuck off. Well, fuck face, I will not be spoken to like that and informed him I would beat the piss out of him if he didn’t pay up. To my surprise he gladly accepted the challenge. In that moment, I learned Henry was in fact a normal young man with zero fighting skills. Kunesh beat my ass like he owned it all while calling me a “cunt” and telling me to run home to mom…I did… and she patched me up…fuck you, Kunesh.

After being patched up I told my father who essentially told me he expected him to do that and that he would deal with him later. Off to fetch beer. I arrive at the tavern and purchase a nice cold one. On my way out I ran into some of my friends who were none too pleased with a man named Dutch mouthing off about the king and being pro Sigismund. They asked me if I wanted to go throw horse shit at Dutch’s freshly painted white house. Come on, I’m a better person than that…so after my poo flinging adventures and fistacuffs with a very angry Dutch I returned to my father with the beer. He sent me back out because it was warm. PRICK. So, again I set out and returned to my father with COLD beer and all is well and we work through the day finishing the sword.

 

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This is when all hell breaks loose. Henry notices smoke on the horizon followed up by a massive army heading towards the town. In a panic you are told to run to the castle and inform Radzick. The town is burning, people are being slaughtered and Henry is almost to safety when he hears his mother screaming. He turns to see his father fighting off well armored soldiers. It seems he’s going to make it until he’s stuck in the back and drops to his knees. His mother runs over to him only to be met with slashes from swords and boots to the face all while the laughter of soldiers can be heard. With nothing to be done I continue toward the castle but the gate has closed

 

Radzick yells over the wall for me to flee to the neighboring town of Talmberg and try to get help. While running through the carnage to find a horse I come across a group of well armed Cuman soldiers having their way with a local girl who Henry is friends with. In that moment I’m left with making the decision to save her from her horrible fate that would most certainly end in both of our deaths or use it as a distraction to sneak by and steal the soldiers horse and flee to Talmberg.

 

Welcome to 1403 Bohemia. All that and a few other spoiler free events took place in the span of the first two hours of the game that truly set the mood. Right from the start you are thrown into a war, undertrained and vulnerable. Kingdom Come: Deliverance is a Action RPG with survival elements that puts you right in the thick of it with moral decisions that have huge impacts to the story and world around you. If you don’t eat you can die, if you don’t sleep you can die. Piss off the townspeople and they jack up the prices and or refuse to speak with you entirely. Everything from bleeding to death to death by mud butt is a thing in this game. It also absolutely lets you know you are not a soldier and your lifestyle as a soft, lazy peasant boy is very apparent. In the first 5-10 hours I was getting my shit pushed in by local drunks and smelly bandits. I couldn’t read, didn’t know how to bandage myself or even know how to repair my own weapons. Pretty shitty for a blacksmith’s son. But by hour 100 I was a face stabbing, Cuman murdering machine. It was to the point where I was going out of my way to pick fights with anyone because Big Dick Henry wanted to show the world he was here to stay.



The combat system is a lot like the one in For Honor. You have directional based attacks and defense. The type of Armor you are wearing make all the difference as well as the weapons used against your foes. No magic potions or attacks; it’s all swords, fists, and arrows here and it’s perfect.  I’m not going to sugarcoat it though, in the opening hours this game is tough. Everyone can best you and if you skip the recommended training sessions with the captain it’s even harder. Honestly though I think that’s what I like most about it. It’s a challenge that pays off if you are willing to take time and learn. Sure, theres still a few well armoured guys who still put me in my place but where I’m at I can easily take down most enemies (lots of wayfarers..) in a couple of swipes.

 

That brings me to the skills system. They absolutely make all the difference. From learning combos to special perks all the way to becoming a learned scribe. While skill trees are nothing new in games, Kingdom Come: Deliverance makes use of them. I learned a skill where I could eat rotten food carefree and another where I didn’t have to pay for bathhouse privileges. Henry was swimming in wenches and always had a stat buff for being a slut. Hell, there’s even a skill where if you don’t bathe and your man stink is just right you get extra speech perks with the ladies. The drawback is the smell of your ass can peel paint and your stealth skill drops.  The game doesn’t force you to play in any way except the way you want to and it’s extremely refreshing.

The story, in my opinion, is probably one of the best in gaming and extremely well voiced. While the concept of a man seeking revenge for the murder of his parents does sound cliche, it’s everything that happens in between that really stands out. I think the quest where I had to perform a drunken serum will absolutely go down as an all time favorite moment in gaming for me. Picking fights with locals after getting kicked out of a bar with the local priest ending in a legit orgy will never be topped! After completing the main story i’m still wanting more and i’m excited to see where future DLC will take it.

 

What Warhorse Studios did with the game world should be set as an example to all other open world games. Going into “woods” in other games always consisted of scattered trees and a few bushes here and there as filler and always ended after maybe a few hundred feet. Not here. Forests were densely populated with trees, high grass and shrubs all with excellent sound design. On multiple occasions I had to stop and open the map to try to figure out where the hell I was on a hunting expedition or while trying to locate a bandit camp. Towns have just as much detail and some have dozens of NPCs roaming and most of which can be interacted with.

Now like any open world game there are some issues. You have your typical texture bugs where it decides to not load randomly and the random NPCs doing weird shit like walking through your conversation like a rude asshole and sitting NPCs who won’t stand up or look at you during a conversation. Then there’s the horse controlling like a brick greased with shit. While I did eventually get used to it there were still plenty of times I hopped off Pebbles and beat his face in with a mace because he couldn’t jump over a fucking 2 foot tall fence or randomly threw me off almost killing me because of a stone in the road. Lots of game reloading because that fucking horse had it coming. And speaking of reloading..that save system.

 

Please, Warhorse, change it, I beg of you. I absolutely understand sleeping in an owned bed and major moments autosaving but I shouldn’t have to buy saves from merchants and then be penalized with debuffs for using them. Not to mention one to random encounter ending in your death can force you to lose hours of progress if you forgot to save or stop at an owned bed.

 

 

All that though I still feel that Kingdom Come: Deliverance is a must play for any RPG fan looking for a great story and fun gameplay mechanics. To think that this was a Kickstarter project is unbelievable. This small team accomplished something most huge AAA developers have yet to do with open world games and I highly recommend it.

 

8.7/10  

  • World feels alive and is highly detailed

  • Excellent voice acting and sound design

  • Freedom of choice

  • Fun and addicting combat

  • Oddly designed save system

  • Texture and NPC bugs

  • Fuck that stupid Horse    

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