New Little King’s Story (Vita) Review
Title: New Little King’s Story
For months, my Vita has sat relatively untouched with no reason to play it.
However, the recently flux of Vita games has finally given the handheld some good titles, starting with New Little King’s Story from Konami.
NLKS, a sequel to the Wii game, follows Corobo as his castle gets overrun by a new evil. Corobo and a handful of followers and aides set up a small camp away from his kingdom and prepare a counterattack with a new Royal Guard he’s building.
When you start in this new area, you’ll start with relatively nothing. Your citizens are lazy and don’t contribute to much, you’re broke and the city has nothing. By finding a few stacks of wealth outside your small castle, you can finally build up a few professions to make the Royal Guard and be on your way to having a full army.
The army plays a variety of roles in the game. Early on, you’ll have access to only a farmer and soldier class, but as you progress you’ll unlock miners, lumberjacks, archers and more to help with the main quests. There are also random jobs that can fill unique spots on the Guard, such as Merchants, which can find hidden treasures or open giant purses in the world.
At first, you’ll have only a limited number of troops to control, but the amount will change as you progress in the story. Controlling the troops is simple: you face the way you want them to go, hit the Square button and they’re go running straight for the target, whether it be an obstacle or enemy, in front of them. If they get there and can’t do anything, whether because they’re the wrong class or too many people are already on it, they’re return to the ranks.
As you get a variety of troops, you’re able to switch the format by tapping the Triangle button to bring up different classes. In addition, all troops can be returned by tapping Circle.
As troops level, they gain more health and power, letting them survive longer before finally getting knocked out and taken out of the team for a few in-game days. Corobo can also attack some as well, but he only has a few bars of health. Losing a few soldiers isn’t bad, but losing Corobo automatically ends the game and starts you back at the beginning of the day.
In addition, each troop can also be equipped with new weapons, armor and helmets, and each one can also marry if they fall in love with each other and have a kid, but doing that will take them out of the party for a day.
Battles quickly become strategic as you decide what characters to use and which ones to hold back. Boss battles also can become fairly interesting as you ebb and flow to avoid their attacks while trying to find opportune times to strike yourself. Helping add to the strategy is the princesses you save which can follow you into the field. While only one can follow at a time, they can add different abilities to help your team.
Your troops can also help you find plenty of items out in the wild. The items can give you more money used to upgrade your castle and items to equip in them. However, the one thing I noticed is that your bag does have an item limit, which forced me to sometimes have to dump items while exploring the world to get room for better loot.
While troop and city sizes can increase quickly, helping you manage troops is a platform outside your castle, which can let you summon the previous Royal Guard you used the day before or summon all the people to pick who you want in your party that day.
One thing I noticed with the troops is that they don’t always react with objects how you expect them to. I sometimes saw troops run forward a little ways, stop and come back, or see a log they were supposed to chop up and stand there confused.
Another problem troops have is figuring out what to do in small areas. In some holes enemies can lurk and a bigger hole is formed. Unfortunately, trying to clear enemies can instead result in sending troops down the hole, letting enemies get a cheap hit in. The touchscreen offers better targeting but when two objects are close together it can have trouble deciding what to select.
The game also has some technical issues as well. It especially becomes obvious when you get a bigger Royal Army. The game can start quickly slowing down, causing frame rates to take a dive. Also, other bugs can sometimes pop up as well. I noticed troops frequently getting stuck on walls or appearing on water.
Moving on from that, the game does feature an alchemy mixing idea where you can pair up with players online to power up items. However, it’s a feature I ended up avoiding because of the multiple dialogue boxes, like the terms of service and connection that you have to sit through each time.
Graphically, the style looks nice in the world when you aren’t hit with slowdown. The music is good as well, but there really isn’t much else to report here.
Even with these problems, New Little Kings Story is an enjoyable Vita title. The controls fit the handheld nicely and there are plenty of sidequests and story missions to keep players occupied. Give this a look if you have the handheld.
|Graphics||6.5||The graphics look good, but the graphical glitches do hamper a bit.|
|Gameplay||7.5||The controls work good for the most part, but you’ll find some bugs as you go through the story.|
|Sound||6.5||The music is good, but there really isn’t a lot else to say about the sound.|
|Lasting Appeal||7.5||There are quite a few story missions and optional missions to take on, plus you can always keep leveling your characters up and finding items.|
|Fun Factor||7.0||I enjoyed my time with the game. However, every great or really fun moment eventually became hampered by a bug or graphic slowdown.|
|Overall||7.0 [ Good ] legend|