About the Game
PORTAL KNIGHTS IS A sandbox game where you create a character, explore various worlds, and gather objects to build and create items. It’s very Minecraft-esque, in that crafting and building is the name of the game.
IN ADVENTURE MODE you go on a quest as a Portal Knight. The Hollow King has Fractured the world or something like that, and you need to visit various realms to put everything back to the way it was. I think? I have been paying attention to the game, but truthfully the tale is kind of set dressing to the building aspect. And I have been gathering and building a sh** ton, son! Along with all the building blocks at your disposal, you can also craft weapons, armor, magic, skills, chests, and other odds and ends to help you in your adventure.
THERE IS ALSO CREATIVE MODE where all you do is build. You have an unlimited supply of blocks, furniture, and knickknacks. This lets you build the biggest, flashiest, world your creative mind can conjure! Your character can fly, and breathe underwater, indefinitely. You can choose any of the different world types, (deserts, tropical landscapes, forests, marshes, and all that) as a local for your creative worldbuilding endeavors.
What I Like
CRAFTING AND EXPLORATION is by far the funnest part of the game. I’ve come to realize, in the last few years, thanks to games like Fallout and Farsky, that I like games where you get to create crap! In Portal Knights, you mine various blocks, and combine them into useful things like ore, weapons, armor, and crafting stations. It’s freaking addicting, I tell you!
THE VISUAL DESIGN is nice. It does remind me of Minecraft, of course, but I’m glad that they didn’t go for the full-blown-pixelated visuals. I’m sick of that. I mean, every time I play a game like Minecraft, or the countless clones, it always just makes me think, “Why didn’t they just add a bit more detail?” They’re good games, don’t get me wrong. However, I grew up in the pixel era, so this visual boom means nothing to me. My first console was an Atari, then an NES, and so on, so I’ve been there since the beginning! Damn, I’m getting old… am old…sigh.
But I appreciate the detail they added to the Minecraft-esque world, in Portal Knights. It’s cute, it’s colorful, and minimalistic, with just enough detail for it to keep me visually entertained.
ADVENTURE MODE has a pretty cool story. This is the campaign of the game. It isn’t the most epic yarn ever weaved (woven?) but it gives me a reason to keep going. I’m interested in exploring the various worlds and uncovering the truth about what Portal Knights has to offer. As of yet, I’ve only fought one major boss, and I believe I’m only 21 worlds in, but the tale and creatures so far have my attention.
LOCAL COOP is awesome! I don’t play with people online very often, and I’m always on the lookout for a game that I can play with my wife or daughter, locally. I love that we can play, side by side, in split-screen mode. Yes, it isn’t as intuitive as playing online, since half of your screen is taken up by the other player, but it sure beats needing another system, and another copy of the game, to play with someone sitting right next to you.
What I Don’t Like
THE CLASSES ARE LIMITED to only three types: Swordsman, Archer, and Mage. That’s it. Forever. And as far as I know, you never unlock another class? Which is a shame, cause I’d like to have a variety of more weapons and play styles? Duel wielding, especially!
CREATIVE MODE is an interesting idea. In Creative Mode, you get to create a world from scratch, with access to every block and decoration in the game. Which means that you can build a house, or castle, maze, or town from scratch! But the issue is that there’s nothing to do, other than build. No monsters, no story, no gathering.
And the flaw in the building process is severely glaring in Creative Mode. So, when you place blocks, you can only place them. One. At. A. Time. There’s no way to create, or destroy, a large section of your build. And when you have infinite blocks, the building gets old, fast. At least it did for me.
The beauty of Adventure Mode is that you have to mine and gather your blocks. So, you can never fully build in one go. It gives you something else to do, to break up the monotony of just places blocks in such a slow, daunting manner. I know a lot of people can enjoy it, but it’s not for me.
I also wish that you could move buildings from Creative Mode into Adventure Mode. Or something similar. Then again, moving buildings in Portal Knights is nonexistent, since you have to rebuild and start over, every single time if you want to head out to a new world. It’s upsetting. A blueprint system would have been nice, too.
BEING UNABLE TO AUTO-SORT things is annoying. I’m a clean freak, and I always have to keep things organized. I put items in folders, I name tabs respectively, and make sure things are marked or written down, so I can find them again later. So, sorting your inventory in Portal Knights, which is constantly changing, moving, and being placed into storage boxes to make room, manually, becomes a chore.
YOU CAN’T MASS DESTROY or mass create blocks, and it is kind of frustrating. Like I said in Creative Mode, placing blocks one at a time is tedious. The ability to create or destroy big sections would have made building larger structures less daunting. Also, God Mode, where you see everything from the sky, and adding the ability to drag and place a row of blocks (in one go) would have been a Godsent. See what I did there?
LASTLY, THE GAME tends to freeze and stutter every so often? Which is strange, because I’m not playing online. Just split screen with my daughter. I can’t remember if it happens when I’m playing solo, so it might just be that the PS4 can’t handle all the chaos going on in split-screen? Not sure, but it’s annoying.
DO YOU LOVE those beautiful Playstation Plus free games? I sure freaking do! The game for this wonderful January 2019 New Year is mo fuggin’ Portal Knights, son! I’ve never played it. I think I might have heard about it before, maybe? But it was never anything that was on my radar. I picked it up because I thought it would be something interesting to play with my daughter. And it’s free. Free is always good.
I DOWNLOADED THE GAME on a whim. After the initial set up, I decided to see if my daughter and I could play coop together. I had no idea this game was going to steal my freaking soul, dude. Honestly, it’s that good.
ALL IN ALL Portal Knights is freaking addicting! And best of all, my daughter is as enthused about the game as I am! We play together all the time. She loves to build, albeit randomly, and likes to change her clothes, gather ingredients, and just explore. It’s something she’d be into, cause she likes any game where she gets to craft, explore, and dress up her characters.
IF YOU EVER GET a chance to pick the game up, you should give it a try. It’s free for Playstation Plus members, until February 2019. Other than that, you can pick it up on PS4 or Steam for $19.99. That is a freaking steal, dude!
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