Hero of the Kingdom – What We Think:
After your pleasant rural home is destroyed by a bunch of roving bandits, you must leave the comfort of your childhood countryside in search of your father. Hero of the Kingdom (not to be confused with “Heroes of the Kingdom“) is a charming little pixel-hunting game wherein you work your way from being a simple son of a peasant farmer to being enlisted as a soldier in the king’s army, and continually progress in skill sets and unlockables.
The game features a surprising amount of depth considering the lack of character stats. Instead you have Power and Fame points. Power points which can be recovered by resting and eating, are used to perform any tasks in the game – from fishing and collecting algae from the bottom of a lake, to fighting. Fame points are a form of Experience currency, rewarded after completing quests and used in unlocking new abilities and that range from hunting to foraging for new varietals of fungus.
Bag of Holding
While your backpack appears to be infinitely large, you must possess certain items before you can undertake certain tasks: to collect flowers you must have an empty sack, to harvest herbs you must have a basket per harvest, to fish you need a rod and bait, and so on. At times, roving the countryside, performing fetch quests and discovering little nooks and crannies hidden in the landscape felt like 1C’s King’s Bounty series, minus the hexagonal combat sequences.
The music is quaint and fitting, something you may hear playing in the background at a Renaissance Faire, and the minute detailed graphics are actually a lot of fun to poke around at with your mouse pointer.
Though it feels at times like a tablet game gone straight, there is nothing IAP-ish about Hero of the Kingdom, which ends up more like a casual gamer’s version of isometric RPGs like Avadon – the sort of D&D campaign you might play if you enjoy sitting around on Sunday afternoons putting together jigsaw puzzles of Thomas Kinkade paintings while sipping honey tea.
I don’t find much wrong with that, and in fact rather enjoyed the adventure that unfolds via the surprisingly engaging, well-crafted storyline. Though it feels like a lot of other games, I found Hero of the Kingdom to ultimately be something all its own – a cross between a hidden object game, an RPG, and a point-and-click adventure – and it wasn’t at all hard to lose hours lost in its curious little world of wonders. Roughly five or six hours to be precise, at is should be noted that the game is rather short and offers little to no replay value.
This is a title that invites you to sit back and just enjoy the ride. “Enjoy” is a word that too often forgotten in the final consideration of a game experience, so I applaud Lonely Troops for succeeding in that. But I also mean it when I say, sit back, because the storyline is quite linear and you are essentially following a trail of breadcrumbs to your final destination. If that is OK with you, then you are in for a treat in Casual-game-land.