It may take some time when the page for viewing is loaded for the first time...


cover-Medieval Dynasty

Monday, July 31, 2023 8:50:36 PM

Medieval Dynasty Review (Darth_Wayner)

The best way to describe it is an open world walking simulator with maybe one very simplistic mechanic thrown in. Some of what seems like should be core concepts to game play just aren't there.
Where to begin...
Survival: Yes, you need to eat and drink and stay warm but again the game fails on several levels. There are food recipes to be crafted, but it doesn't matter what your character eats. There's no reason to ever go beyond "Roasted meat". This is the basic food staple and can be gotten in limitless quantities. You will never go hungry. Drinking boils down to standing in a pond or next to a well and holding a button. Water is never more than a 30 second run away and no need to boil or purify. Staying warm involves getting 2 or 3 pieces of clothing to put on in winter. Again, done poorly. The player can craft various pieces of clothing, after unlocking the recipes for money, but there's absolutely no reason to. You can buy those few pieces of clothing from a vendor from day one and they never wear out. you also don't need to cover every body part. I could wear a quilted doublet, hat, and gloves and go naked from the waist down with absolutely no effect.
There is "combat", but it involves only 4 hostile life forms...bears, wolves, boars, and bandits. All can be outrun by the player or simply avoided so there's no need to ever fight. I'd say thats a goood thing because there are no armor or swords in the game but that's not necessary either because you can defeat all of those with a wood-chopping axe or basic bow and stone arrows from day one. There are no combat skills that make you tougher over time. The bandits are standing along the road, do not raid your village or preset any sort of mechanic that would have you thinking of defending your village.
The player can gain experience and unlock crafting recipes for tools and weapons (which only include wood-chopping axes, bows, cudgel (club), and spear). Again none of this is necessary. There are wrecked wagons along every roadside and within the bandit camps where top teir bows, axes etc. can be picked up. They respawn every season, so I'm still using the same bow I picked up in the beginning and have a chest full of them at my house yet to be used.
Village mechanics: again, sooo disappointing. So if you're reading this and don't know what the game is about, the core activity is to build a village and recruit villagers to join you. There's no reason to ever do this in the game but frankly if you didn't there wouldn't even be a game to play here, so I'm assuming the player will choose to do so.
Villagers are recruited from a pool of 2 or 3 NPCs that sit around a camp fire in neighboring villages. You simply walk up to them and ask them to join you, and they always do, no "quest" or convincing needed. Villagers have 6 starting skills that range from level 1 to level 3. This skill is simply a modifier to be used in an equation to be discussed later.
Once recruited and in your town, the villagers are completely empty shells programmed to mill around. Their behavior is limited to moving from their houses in the morning, milling around for about an in-game hour, and then moving to their work location where they statically animate for 8 or 10 in-game hours and then return to their houses.
Your village will be composed of houses, two types of Storage buildings and various production buildings. The house is simply used to determine your villager capacity (each villager needs a house to live in). The storage buildings are used for input and output "locations" for production, and the production buildings are for production. The storage buildings are simply points where the *player* acceses the inventory.
Let's go back to where i said the villagers are empty shells. One would think that you might want to put your food storage building near your kitchens so your workers don't have to travel so far - you'd be wrong. As your villagers animate in their work locations, inputs to the process are simply deducted from storage and finish products are added back. So a villager and their skills really end up boiling down to a coefficient in an equation where one commodity is decremented and another in incremented - that's it...the whole game in one sentence. Your villagers have a "mood score" which is probably just another coefficient for the coefficient. I also have not found anything that influences this other than builing them an insulated stone house.
You have to provide food for your villagers, which involves dumping calories into the food storage building where it is decremented at intervals based on how many mouths you have to feed. The villagers suffer no damage from wild animals, do not require warm clothing in winter, do not care what food you give them to eat. All of this renders advanced cooking recipes, the need for weapons and clothing completely pointless which means there's no reason to build a sewing hut or smithy.
The herbalist hut is used to "gather" herbs (which just appear in your storage if you have a villager assigned) to make potions, but is completely pointless since there is virtually no combat.
There are no NPCs in the world aside from the static bandits and the other empty shells that walk around the neighboring villages for show or to sell goods. Therefore, there's no reason to consider village placement aside from being close to a cave to mine materials (which you don't need, see below) or a village to sell stuff. No traveling caravans, wandering brigands, people to talk to.
The game only perfroms changes at the end of each season. There is a food rotting mechanic, but it is so basic that it's almost nonsensical. The state of food is only updated at the end if the season and the "quality" is reduced by a certain amount depending on where it's stored. Vendors have limited coin and inventory is static - until season change, where their inventory and money is reset. Resources in the world also respawn pretty much every season.
To sum up:
Weapon/tool crafting skills/smithy: Unnecessary, there's nothing to fight and your villagers don't need weapons. Your wooden hoe made from sticks will work just as good as the iron one.
Potion crafting/herbalist hut: Unnecessary, there's nothing to fight and your villagers don't use potions.
Clothing crafting/sewing hut: Unnecessary, you can buy the 2 pieces of clothes you will need for the whole game, your villagers don't need clothes, and you won't need to make a bow string.
Workshop/recipes: Completely unnecessary unless you want to make wooded bowls or plates for advanced food recipes but...
Food recipes/kitchens: Unnecessary since your villagers are happy eating dried meat from the hunting shack.
Hunting shack: onl needed if you don't feel like hunting for meat, but this is really the only thing to do in the game. Fun for 5 minutes. Should I mention that you don't need to feed villagers if you don't have any, and why would you need any if you don't need any of the production buildings?
Fishing shack: Totally unnecessary since your villagers love that dried meat!
Animal husbandry: Only needed if you want eggs for advanced recipes, manure to make field fertilizer to make vegetables, wool to make cloth. See above for the need to make anything other than dried meat for those unclothed robot coefficients!
A few game years in, and gameplay has completely devolved into taking whatever goods I've made around to the villages to take whatever coin the vendors have before they refill their coffers next season. Now, what to do with all that coin...?
As of this writing I have 88 hours into this game. Why? Because I continued playing with the child-like expectation that there was something more here if I just kept progressing - what a disappointment. The addition of some simple mechanics could make this game into something more than the empty husk it is presently.