Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning is a Remaster Alright

Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning

Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning was a bit of a hit with critics when it released on last-gen consoles and PC way back in 2012.

Designed by Ken Rolston, with artwork by Todd McFarlane and a soundtrack created by Grant Kirkhope, Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning did okay at retail too, but that apparently wasn’t enough. Failing to break even on the game, its developers 38 Studios and Big Huge Games were shuttered. EA has held the rights for the game since then. Well, it did until THQ Nordic bought them in 2018. And so now here we are with a remastered version, along with a clever new name: Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning.

As remasters go, Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning is pretty underwhelming from a visual standpoint. You can tell that the textures have been improved, as well as the lighting, but it still looks like a game from years gone by. You’ll also not be too impressed by the game’s animations or lip-syncing, or its ugly HUD and menus; at nearly every moment you’re reminded that you’re playing something that’s been merely touched up. A bit more work to make it feel like a game released in 2020 would have been appreciated.

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Cut through all that surface stuff though, and you’ll find a game that can still engross. An action RPG, Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning does a good job of letting you play as you like. Want to be a warrior? You can do that, but you can also clad yourself in heavy armour and use magic. Eventually you are pretty much forced to specialise, sure, but the level of choice you’re given is still very much welcome. Ultimately, Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning is a rollicking open world adventure where simply going out and exploring is a joy, and also generally rewarding. Even more so in this remaster.

You see, most of the changes found in Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning are under its skin. It’s been re-balanced, for example, and its loot is better distributed. Furthermore, a new ‘very hard’ difficulty has been added, satiating those who found the original game too easy. It may still look fairly old, and locking onto enemies is still something you inexplicably can’t do, but it can’t be disputed that Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning has never been better.

Kingdoms of Amalur Re-Reckoning

Is Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning worth its price? That’s for you to decide, but it is a massive game, and all of its previously released DLC is included. There’s also the prospect of new DLC to come in the future, expanding the game’s story. If you pick up the Fate Edition of the game, that future content is included. And there’s also something else to consider: if you own the original game on Steam, you can pick up this remaster with 60% off.

So, if you’re after a grand adventure and don’t mind some mildly dated visuals and mechanics, give Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning some consideration, especially if you’ve not played it before. It won’t wow you in any way, but you’re also unlikely to not be taken in by its action RPG charms.

Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning is available now on PS4, Xbox One and PC.

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