Mordred, King Arthur is dead, and you were the one who killed him. The afterlife has now been cursed by Arthur. You must do what you do best to bring peace to the island of Avalon: Kill Arthur, or rather, the several terrible villains into which his soul has been warped. Fans of Neocore Games’ earlier turn-based dark fantasy, King Arthur A Role-Playing Wargame, will appreciate the concept behind King Arthur Knight’s Tale.
Expect your beloved Arthurian figures to resurface in some warped afterlife form, and to take part in fights between a handful of powerful knights and hordes of adversaries utilising a complex combat system, rather than retellings of traditional romances like Malory or movie renditions. For what it is a big adventure that is arguably too repetitious for its own good it’s a lot of game.
King Arthur Knight’s Tale
It’s 120 GB in size, and it’s a massive, unoptimized game that’s delightful despite, or perhaps because of, its flaws. It contains everything I would expect from a setting rescuing lovely maidens, killing dragons, fighting giants it’s all here, with a grimdark twist, spread throughout a strategic RPG that may easily consume 70 to 100 hours of your time as you join with the forces that exist in Avalon The Old Gods, Christianity, Righteousness, and Tyranny.
Tristan and Isolde appear, but Tristan is now a rotting corpse Percival appears, but the Holy Grail quest can no longer be completed; and Gawain is off committing fairy holocaust.
The dream of being an armoured knight is something that Knight’s Tale gets exactly perfectly. Your characters are mostly tanks, and when utilised right, they’re like ploughs ripping furrows in hordes of foes one round at a time. It’s highly rewarding, and the rules of Knight’s Tale are based on it. Fight mechanics are an excellent strategic RPG since they encourage you to think about things like facing, spacing, unit kind, and more.
Characters have three different health bars Armor does not directly reduce incoming damage, but it may be reduced by armor-reducing strikes. Hit points are exactly what you believe they are, and they are fully replenished from mission to mission. Vitality is more long-term, a health reserve that can only be regenerated by resting in the Camelot hospice.
Furthermore, losing Vitality increases the risk of long-term complications such as broken bones and disease. But have no fear as long as you avoid enemies who can break it, armour will protect all but the most daring knights from lasting harm.
Your knights are almost always outnumbered to compensate for their capacity to absorb punishment. Your knights are virtually always outnumbered to compensate for their capacity to absorb all of that punishment. While early game battles are frequently on level ground, by the mid game, it’s unusual to come across an engagement in which your four knights are pitted against 12 or more adversaries.
Some will even hurl several hundred adversaries at you, some of which have the ability to call even more villains into the battlefield. Because your knights can only do so much in a single round due to a rather restricted action point system, gaining additional action points through better equipment, abilities, and special weaponry becomes the crucial move.
Being outmanned also implies that the direction your heroes face is crucial in Knight’s Tale combat. Though it may not appear so at first, keeping your character’s front arc towards the adversary is crucial since it allows shield users to parry strikes and everyone to avoid deadly backstabs.
King Arthur Knight Tale Game Screenshots
Given how important it is, it’s odd that there isn’t a visible signal when you’re flanked. As a result, you must always double-check all of your characters’ facings before concluding your turn or face the consequences. Before concluding your turn, double-check all of your characters’ faces or face the penalties.
Unfortunately, combat encounters don’t always live up to its intriguing rules because, while there are lots of highlights, there are just too many of them, lowering the average. Terrain is frequently monotonous, lacking in variation, or just non-existent. For seven or eight bouts in the same mission, you’re typically pitted against the same four unit types, sometimes with a monster thrown in, in various combinations.
Some bouts are just a waste of time: 12 of the same adversary at the same time, or worse worse, short interludes of two or three easily dispatched adversaries that take longer to start and end than they do to fight.
Between these lengthy tasks, you return to Camelot, where you can renovate structures, make lordly decisions such as resolving lordly conflicts, and purchase new equipment. There’s nothing really profound there, no major research tree or anything, but it’s a fun little interlude between excursions.
And make no mistake Knight’s Tale is all about adventures. You have a circular table with 12 knights with several alternatives in the wings, but there are about 30 characters to gather, so you constantly kick the ones you don’t like out.
You may train your benched party members off-screen to keep them levelled up, but there are enough missions that you’ll need to run two or three distinct teams of knights at once, especially on the tougher settings. I put 65 hours into finishing King Arthur Knight’s Tale, albeit I eventually stopped doing side quests and rushed straight to the finale since I was tired of the same old conflicts.
King Arthur Knight’s Tale took me 65 hours to complete. The experience of sending teams on epic missions is important to the Arthurian sense, and I enjoy it, but individual quests in Knight’s Tale are just… way too long chevaliers.
You roam over the area, continually being attacked and startled by opponents, picking up small trinket-filled chests, and performing what I’d call the un-knightly equivalent of busywork for minimal return. In XCOM or Fire Emblem, there’s a reason you don’t have to go looting after the mission: it’s not fun.
If the storylines were good, I may be lenient with the missions, but they don’t deserve it. Some of them are amusing, unique takes on your Arthurian heroes’ storylines, but the most are stale fantasy cliches or obvious treks from beginning to end. At its best, the one-note dark fantasy prose is adequate; at its worst, it’s uninteresting and full of grammatical problems.
However, the entire plot is interesting. It’s entertaining to battle in this strange afterlife where no one knows what the new rules are. The narrative delves deeper than you might imagine, encompassing not just Arthurian mythology and Christian myth, but also pre-Christian Britannic rituals such as Welsh and Irish gods and spirits.
It also flows neatly into the optional post-campaign game, in which you combat an invasion of giants and other fabled animals after defeating the villainous Arthur. However, this story was already much too long.
The original themes of the narrative are remixed into a recognisable shape in King Arthur Knight’s Tale. It’s ambitious and long, with deep tactical mechanics that emphasis careful placement and facing to help your tiny group of highly armoured knights beat several times their numbers, but it’s let down by a weak plot and monotonous level design. The nasty, scowling characters and knightly fantasy atmosphere are entertaining, but if you’re like me, you’ll be bored long before the dark retelling’s conclusion.
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- May 21, 2022