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We hadn't yet rounded up any E3-based previews for Warhorse Studios' Kingdom Come: Deliverance, and since there are still some spilling onto the Internet, it seems like a good time to right the wrong.
Nonetheless, PSU managed to get some hands-on time with the game, which takes the form of medieval action-RPG set in Bohemia (now known as Czech Republic) in the year 1403. Think Elder Scrolls' first-person combat married with a grounded realism pays as much attention to historical accuracy as it does gameplay, and you have a good idea of what to expect.
The demo presented at E3 had me hooked within minutes just because of a simple mini-game. An important part of Kingdom Come: Deliverance is combat — how do players expect to fight if their swords are rusty and dull? Rather than going to the inventory and selecting a repair kit or a whetstone, players will be able to go to a grindstone and sharpen their sword through a small mini-game to keep it at its best stats.
It's actually easier to intimidate people if you take advantage of KC's unique armor and equipment system. Armor adds to a reputation system that keeps the world feeling alive and reactionary rather than set in stone and stale. Lowly peasants may freak if they see you walking around like The Mountain on Game of Thrones, and they'll really super freak if you're just carrying around a scimitar willy-nilly. Our demo driver was quick to point out how armor layers on your avatar to provide protection against the various pointy things trying to kill you in Bohemia. You can have up to four layers of armor that all link together in a way that makes physical sense. You won't be putting layer after layer of metal plates on, for example. You'll have to lay down some leather armor and then put on the heavy stuff, adding to the realism of the world. Be careful, however, as heavy armor will make you noisier and thus easier to detect.
One of the most beautiful aspects of the design of Kingdom Come: Deliverance is the works of art that are featured in the game. However these are not just things that they Google searched and pasted into the world; in fact, they hired an actual painter to digitally draw works of art that would've existed in 1403. Another is the game's soundtrack, which Spoka is assisting on. Currently there are placeholders in for the demo, but in the next couple months the score will be recorded in one of Prague's most famous venues. (My guess is it'll either be at the Rudolfinum or the Klementium.)
The importance of wearing proper armor against what your enemies are using for weapons, as well as your choice in weaponry based on what your enemy is wearing, can’t be understated. There are RPG things like leveling to get up proficiency and weapons and other things, but every character in the game has the exact same amount of health. So, you can’t just cruise your way through something because you have outleveled the area. The strategy of using the correct weapon at the correct time, while constantly adjusting your armor, will be the most important thing in every encounter you have. It even comes into play with your horse, as you’ll apply that layering to their armor as well.