Chances are you’ve heard the story of King Arthur countless times by now, which is why with its latest title Neocore Games is turning the tale on its head.
Set for release during the first quarter of 2021 for PC, King Arthur: Knight’s Tale places you in the shoes of Sir Mordred, King Arthur’s nemesis. Technically, though, you should be dead, and so should King Arthur – a fierce battle resulted in both being mortally wounded. The Lady of the Lake did was she thought was for the best and brought back Arthur, but now also reviving you and instructing you to finish what you started, something is obviously amiss.
And so King Arthur: Knight’s Tale tasks you with killing King Arthur. But are you the hero? That’s for you to decide. A turn-based strategy game with RPG elements, choice will play a large role in King Arthur: Knight’s Tale‘s campaign. As you travel across Britannia, vying to take down Arthur once and for all, you’ll be met with many moral dilemmas. Your choices will not only affect your path through the game, but also how it ends. So, you could be an unlikely hero if you want, or you could take the opportunity to plunge the land into chaos – it’s your call.
You won’t be alone on your journey, however. Sir Mordred will gain the companionship of many heroes on his adventure and they are key to overcoming the game’s most monstrous challenges. By engaging in battle Mordred and his band of heroes will gain experience and level up, allowing them to obtain new skills. New equipment can be found and equipped, too, to further their abilities. About 30 heroes will be featured in the game, but they won’t follow Mordred blindly. Should you make a decision they don’t agree with, they will let you know.
Combat itself appears to be your typical turn-based affair, with both the player and the CPU taking it in turns to move their characters and perform actions. To emerge victorious in battle, players will need to make the most of the five classes of hero available to them. It’s also advantageous to scout ahead, lay traps, and occupy higher ground to get the drop on your enemy. Speaking of which, there will be seven enemy factions, offering up over 50 different units for you to defeat, as well as 10 fearsome bosses.
King Arthur: Knight’s Tale utilises a traditional grid-based system, but the environments in which you’ll find yourself engaging in battle look sumptuous thanks to photoscanned assets and a physically based rendering engine with DirectX12 support. The movements of your heroes will also impress thanks to motion-captured animations. It very much gives the impression of a next-gen game, which is probably why it’s also earmarked to land on Xbox Series X/S and PS5 should things go well.
Something particularly exciting about King Arthur: Knight’s Tale are its Rogue-like elements. Death is final in the game, and should your characters get injured, cursed or diseased, their healing will take time. There will be times, then, when you need to perhaps put your best fighters on the bench in order to give them time to recuperate. And if they do fall in battle, that’s it, they’re gone forever – no reloading or anything. It’s actually possible to run out of heroes while playing the game if you really make a mess of things, forcing you to restart from scratch.
That might sound like a bit of a hardship, but with multiple choices to make, over 50 points of interest to find throughout Britannia, and dozens of side quests to discover, multiple playthroughs are likely to be rewarded. And for those who do conquer the game’s main campaign, multiple endgame modes await, allowing players to further develop their heroes with yet more skills and additional equipment.
A passion project for Neocore Games, it’s hoping to finish development on King Arthur: Knight’s Tale without compromises. For that reason it’s hoping to find funding via Kickstarter. With a beta release planned for November, it’s also hoping to put player feedback at the heart of its game design philosophy, shaping and fine-tuning many of its aspects as its final release draws near. Ultimately the game’s success will determine what platforms it makes its way to in addition to PC.
You can watch the trailer for King Arthur: Knight’s Tale below, and as you’ll see, it looks very nice indeed. The fact that it turns the myth on its head and places you in control of Sir Mordred also make it an interesting proposition. If, like me, you can’t wait to get your hands on the game, perhaps give the Kickstarter a look and make a pledge.