A Kingdom is once again under Fire
The fantastical land of Bersia that the previous game: Kingdom Under Fire: The Crusaders
introduced players to, is back. For those of you eager to discover what exactly the first game entailed I’ve provided a helpful link to the previous review:Kingdom Under Fire: The CrusadersStory
Kingdom Under Fire: Heroes takes place in varying time frames, before the first game and during it. It chronicles the lives of heroes. From the ambitious and dangerous: Leinhart to the fire-tempered young Ecclesian: Ellen. Old favourite characters like Rupert and Morene return but this time as a central focus, expanding the hero choices from four to seven in this instalment.
I won’t say anything else about the story apart from it will answer some questions from the first game, and pose many more.Gameplay
If you’re used to the previous title then it will be fairly simple to leap back into the game and start playing. But do not despair, if you’re a new player to the series then KUF: Heroes has been optimised for a better experience, the difficulty levels have been altered and the control system has been tweaked – especially in regards to the actual battles themselves.
The mechanics of moving your men, positioning your units have been kept the same but a lot of the game menus, interfaces and so forth have been simplified for the new player. You can still move one unit of troops via the line-of-sight marker or you can open the mini-map and issue move orders from that, the cursor changes depending on the context of the action so that you’re never stuck wondering what to do in a battle.
When the action hots up and you come under attack you get full direct control of your main story character, you are able to unleash devastating secondary and primary attacks using your generals who’s actions are now mapped to the white and black buttons, while your own character’s special moves are based on button combinations (B+Y for example) and both types of move use SP (Special Points or Skill Points).
Each unit will have access as well to special abilities, bought from the ‘town or city’ menu in the Single player side of the game. These can range from fire arrows to spells and other abilities; some of them are passive and affect certain things like the morale of the men.
SP is built up by killing enemies and those are the basic mechanics of the game.
At the end of a mission you’ll get some gold, some experience and you can use these to outfit your main hero, your generals and your units with new skills, armour and equipment.
The control system is tighter than the first game and the moves are a lot easier to pull off, once again however the developers have ticked a few people including me off by not allowing for an option to highlight the enemy general or make them really stand out, so where you could be having fun slaughtering masses of enemies – you’re left wandering around at the near end of the battle looking for an Orc amongst some other ragged Orcs who might have a fur coat on or a horn different on their helm.
This doesn’t really bother me all that much but I can see where novice players will get fed up and go to play Dynasty Warriors 5