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Genre: Action, Adventure, Indie, RPG
Release Date: 28 Jul, 2015
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Developed by: Tangrin
Store: Kyn on Steam
Developer status: Indie
Release date: July 28th, 2015
Retail Cost: $19.99
Top down real-time combat (Think… Diablo meets Dragon Age)
Select individual/multiple party members and right click to make them move
Six Playable Characters (Start with two, Bram & Alrik; unlock the others via quests/missions)
Able to change up skills and stats at anytime (except in combat)
Only two normal skills + one feed skill
Feed skills are attached to different elemental/spirit stones that change the dynamics of the ability
Quest based system is straight forward and pretty generic
Crafting system advertised as a big deal. Has to be done at town blacksmith between missions and while the gear is good it is basically buying good gear with money + materials. Doesn’t feel like real crafting because it doesn’t have much depth to it
Movement can be a little janky at times; especially after looting a chest
Game looks really good, nothing that would blow your socks off but for an indie dev it’s solid
Characters are hard to see up close in action but they all have unique looks and each weapon and armor has it’s own assets
Able to change character’s two main color schemes anytime
FX: Battles sounds and other SFX all sound great
Music: By Will Bedford (UK) is good; in the first mission I found the BGM to be too “Lord of the Ringsish” and it got on my nerves a bit but other tracks are quite nice
Voice Acting: This game could have used real voice acting, at least for the main characters. It is really done a disservice without it.
Set in a “magical viking world” but is pretty light on story content.
Trailer for the game made it seem like a light hearted buddy adventure; but without any voice acting and sometimes too-quick back-and-forth dialog that pops up when you are running around in a mission it’s hard to get a feel for the characters
That said if you really read the dialog and pay attention there is some story to be found here
Maps are just non-linear enough to be fun to explore and find out of the way chests
However some maps felt like the map was designed first and then if some parts weren’t needed for the story/quests they just threw a treasure chest there as filler (or worse, they didn’t and it was a dead end)
Kyn offers a lot of gameplay at a low price and is a very solid title for a new indie release. While a majority of the game is middle-of-the-road tried-and-true it is pretty fun and combat can be a surprising challenge even at normal difficulty! All in all I am looking forward to playing this game more even with it’s short comings and I would say its a safe title to buy.
Disclaimer; while I was provided a copy of this game for review purposed I was not compensated for my thoughts, ideas and opinions those are all my own.. When starting a new game, the game switches into window mode and 1024x768 from 1920x1080. Then, there is an empty map and you are asked to press Tab, but nothing happens. Ever.
The second time I tried, it showed a "Start Game" button, but I was unable to reach it, because the mouse is confined to a 1024x768 area in the middle of the screen and is not letting me move to the bottom of the screen.
There is also no way to go back to the menu from that part of the game.
Devs stated that they only patch if there is enough demand, so let's find out how negative reviews work as a motivation to fix shwo stopping bugs.. Kyn is one of those games that I was unsure of at first. I initially did not like it as I thought it was a mix between Titan Quest/Diablo and Five Guardians of David with some casual character building elements thrown in, and while that is enjoyable, I was not hooked when I began the game. While I started out not liking the experience, I pushed through beyond the first 30 minutes and it is actually a very great game with a surprisingly deep character building system and fun dialogue and plot points to set it apart from other more serious ARPG type games (this I personally like). You can add and remove points into your character on the fly so if you like playing a mage-esque character you can remove the skills from Body (Warrior) and Control (Archer) and shift them to Mind (Magic) or have a combination to build an all round Jack of all trades sort of character. You can then equip magic sensitive armours and weapons to the characters or vice versa and really play about with the different combinations.
This reminds me of Kingdoms of Amalur in which you could go to the Fateweavers and reallocate your points whenever you found one. Overall, the story starts off simple in which two warriors exit a cave and try to return home, you have various quests to complete in the first map but in the end, you find out over the course of several missions that there is a bigger problem on the horizon. I don't want to give too much away but it is very interesting and will be coming back for more trying out different tactics of where to have a warrior or mage or archer type character in the party.
I would definitely buy Kyn again as what started out (in my mind) a little dull, has turned into a very unique adventure that I am looking forward to completing and replaying in a different style.. It's like Dungeon Siege with a sprinkle of Titan Quest and a dash of crafting.. Review updated after 80%+ completion.
TL;DR? Scroll down to pluses and negatives.
Visually Kyn resembles Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons (though less polished), which I'm going to admit I find very pleasing. The music sounds at times like it could have come straight out of Torchlight 2, generally it has a fitting Celtic vibe. The atmosphere of the game is, therefore, highly satisfying.
Gameplay-wise, this puts me in mind of an MMO more than a typical hack&slash. You hit space to slow the game to a crawl, issue commands to your fighters, then hit space again to see the commands executed in real time. You don't need to keep clicking to attack. You cannot pause for long, which gives the game a more intense feel than others with a Real-Time pausable combat system.
There are no classes in the game, though quickly you learn that you'll need to specialise your fighters to get the most out of them (I immediately modified my starting heroes so that one was a ranged healer and a melee fighter). But specialisation is somewhat simple: just pump all your stats into 'Body' for a fighter; 'Control' for an archer; 'Mind' for a mage or healer. This lacks the depth of a Diablo 2, or a PoE.
The game plays as a series of small challenges. You traverse areas fighting mini-combat challenges and solving puzzles. These often involve splitting up your fighters and stepping on switches and are a nice diversion from thwacking goblins and skeletons. The combat, however, is too easy on Normal difficulty and only really becomes a pleasurable challenge on Hard upwards. You literally have to micromanage every action your heroes take to keep them alive - especially when the suicide-bomber skeletons appear. This is why it feels like a series of combat challenges. Enemy types can become repetitive, however, and some are downright irritating (Hydra, I'm talking about you).
Unfortunately the enemies quickly become repetitive. Literally, you fight the same four enemy types throughout. Worst of all, they are imbalanced in diffiulty. You start on Mission 1 fighting skeletons. When they reappear in Mission 15, they are as easy to defeat as they were in Mission 1 - its like they haven't leveled up with your characters.
The game revolves around a central hub 'village' in which you are given missions. You then hit a 'Start Mission' button to get transported to a mission map. Kyn isn't open world and you backtravel backtravel through previous areas. This create problems later when you need increasing amounts of money and loot to upgrade your equipment - and cannot afford it. You basically need to grind, but cannot: you cannot revisit old areas and enemies do not respawn. As a result you need to make a decision: upgrade some equipment, or upgrade all for only some of your team. Shame.
Loot is a real problem. You don't get better loot on quests and from enemy drops than you can make or buy. To get loot you sometimes have to perform interesting (but lengthy puzzles). The most egregious of which is one where you have to rescue a creature from a cage. To do so you have to undertake a time-consuming puzzle involving a series of mine carts. Takes ages. Reward: I got a shield that I immediately sold as it was so much worse than the others I had equipped - or had access to.
The plot is workmanlike. The biggest problem is in team composition. You start with two guys. By the end you have 6. But you have no choice in who you fight with. There are a few NPCs you spend time getting to know (including one, Keira, who you do a load of quests for) but they don't join you. Instead you are joined by a bunch of heroes you don't care for, and cannot substitute them for those you do. A shame and I hope they allow Keira to join you (this would also re-balance the total lack of women in the game). On this note, there is a disturbing amoung of misogynistic language from some of the heroes towards the end of the game (the enemies are continually referred to as '♥♥♥♥♥es' and 'she-♥♥♥♥♥es', for instance).
My main criticism (and probably why some websites seem to think this is still in Early Access) is that the interface is unpolished. To save your game you have to hit escape (opens menu); then select the file you want to save to; hit 'Overwrite' and then 'Cancel'. There's no prompt to say 'Save Successful' and no visual indication you have saved the game. Most frustrating are the shops. Whatever you sell shows up in the display of any shopkeeper, implying they share an inventory. Yet if I go to the Blacksmith to craft an item, he won't have any of the crafting materials. You have to constantly trudge between Blacksmith and Vendor to craft items, with increasingly lengthy shopping lists. (I had to start making actual shopping lists on a pad of paper, you need to buy that much loot).
+ Nice visuals
+ Nice soundtrack
+ Interesting gameworld
+ Puzzle solving
+ Occasionally Complex combat mechanicsc
- User interface could do with some tweaks
- Repetitive enemy types
- Unrewarding loot
- Broken vending and crafting mechanics
- Normal difficulty and below are too easy
- Disturbing lack of female characters and misogynistic dialogue in the later stages.
I won't bother completing it, life is too short. But I will revisit in a few months and I hope that the devs (who are still working on the game) have fixed the vending mechanics, difficulty, added more playable characters and sorted out the lack of enemy variety.. There was a mission where you had to escort 5 squishy villagers through a map full of unclearable mines and undestroyable rapid-fire towers. If any of the villagers died, the mission immediately ended.
One of the first abilities you get in the game allows you to resurrect people from death. But you can't use it on the villagers.. This a fun and unique top down RPG. The graphics crisp and entertaining, gameplay is very smooth and quick to learn. Worth the download for sure.. Encountered no Bugs or crashes. Had fun. The Game also has an interesting story. 24 Hours for a playthrough isn't that much, but 20 Bucks for the game isn't either ;). definitely recommend!
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