Sir Paddy Investigates: Kyn - HighrezGaming

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Sir Paddy Investigates: Kyn / 29th of August 2015

Okay, so I was wrong, I can admit that (just not very often), but when I first turned on Kyn and was greeted with the myriad issues that I had with it, the game made me do a little bit of sick in my mouth. Why, you ask? Well…

Oh, good Lord, the controls are just plain daft, hold X to rotate the camera?! It's 2015, did the developers not have 3 button mice?

Oh dear God, what is Vinborg, and why do I care to return there?

Jesus Jones, did that dead little girl shrink from adult size to child size after I brought her back from the dead?!

Bugger me! I've accidentally quick saved in this losing battle and now I am stuck and have to restart the game!

Piss the bed! I can't see a thing, I'm playing in 4k and the text is miniscule!

The devs have stated on the steam community that there's no config. file to edit, so there’s no bloody way to change some of this nonsense?!

So, as you can see, there's a lot of problems with Kyn, I'd call it archaic, but it makes mistakes that ancient Infinity Engine games didn't make, so take from that what you will. It drops you right in like a naked baby in the woods, with extremely limited tutorialising (that really ought to be a word), this would be fine as I'm generally happy at not being panhandled, but things just aren't intuitively designed. The only rationale for some of these mad design decisions I can think of is that they were trying to make it feel less like other games that did this right. So much so, in fact, that it feels as though it resides at the polar opposite of right! And no, I don’t mean left.

I mean Jesus Christ, I have to hold a key to rotate the camera, I could almost understand that if this was an iOS port, but it's not, it was built for computers, and modern ones at that!
The game does little to endear me to its story, technically I'm dropped in as a naked baby in some gentle farmland. Apparently I'm a special warrior who just came out of the cave of trials...I'm amazed the developers didn't consider the cave of trials to be a good place to add a tutorial maybe. The first task that it presented me with was the overly simple sounding goal of going home or something, though whilst doing that, you get the opportunity to kill some things on the way.

So, I turned it off, because I was uninspired by this quest to go home after some off-screen character development. Oh and it’s worth mentioning that there's a "crafting" system in there somewhere, but anyway, back to the task at hand, which brings me back to my opening gambit.

I was wrong. Give everything a second chance, even if you're playing a game that's obviously a buggy, indie developed Unity Engine powered mess of a game.

After I rebound the keys to make it was less awful to rotate the camera, I actually grew to like it. The actual interesting bit is its surprisingly in depth combat system. Though each party member can only have a few slotted abilities at a time (Diablo 3 style), they can swap these out when out of combat (Diablo 3 style) and you seem to be able to respec any time (this feels like something they accidentally left in post-beta, but I enjoy it). What this adds up to is the ability to entirely re-customise your party for upcoming battles.

The coolest part is the "pause" system, unlike all those old school RPGs like Baldur's Gate, and the more recent Pillars of Eternity is that pausing merely slows time vastly, and you have a limited amount of time slowing, it's effectively bullet time where you need to think fast, reposition characters and set off their abilities before resuming normal time.
This system mixed with limited abilities per character gives you something surprisingly in-depth and tactical which, along with the game’s five difficulty levels that can be switched between, gives Kyn a quite lovely system where the combat is as in-depth as you like.

I can't honestly recommend the game as something you’d play without the in-depth combat, this is one for the strategic RPG lover playing on the highest difficulty level, at that point it becomes interesting and surprisingly tense, but I genuinely give zero shits about the story, everyone is obnoxious and full of nonsense. Maybe it's a language barrier issue, maybe Tangrin can't write a good story to save themselves, I am glad though, that I turned this back on. I'm actually having a blast with this.

Oh, but as for that crafting system that I mentioned earlier, it’s still as bland and thoughtless as all hell though. Pity.

Paddy Maxson
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