Noble Fates – PC (P)review

Noble Fates – PC (P)review
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Genre: Colonial base building survival simulation
Developer: Xobermon LLC
Publisher: Xobermon LLC
Release Date: December 14th, 2021
Edited by AlexKnight2005

Imagine you had a chance to build up a brand new kingdom out of thin air. And then imagine becoming a ruler of that kingdom. Ask yourself a question. What kind of ruler would you be? Good or evil? If you think you have what it takes, welcome to Noble Fates.

In this game, you will become Kiern, a novice Kontra. Kontras are demigods with the ability to influence and control people. As a novice, you are trying to prove yourself worthy to the gods, yet you don’t seem to achieve your goal. But at some point, you get approached by a group of four wanderers. They recently left their kingdom and stumbled upon an old crown at the moment when the game started. Now it is up to the player to set the new course and show their ability to reign. You will face many difficult challenges, like keeping our kingdom together, interacting with other rulers around your lands, and dealing with the forces of the demon underworld.

Even though the graphics are not focused on too many details, the game certainly has its appeal to it. Its minimalistic polygon design fits the game incredibly well, and whether you decide to go with high or low graphic settings, there’s always a lot to appreciate.

And while the game is running with a very minimalistic design, the artwork that goes along with it is beautiful. Lovely painted and almost comic book style explores the backstory and welcomes you to the very original gameplay.

It is very hard to fit Noble Fates into a single genre. Different aspects from survival games, real-time strategies, focused on micromanagement, and many RPG elements. And if all of this wasn’t enough, most of the game builds upon a strong morality system.

Now, this is something that makes the difference from other games. All people you will be controlling have a very long memory and will judge you and others based on how you act. You always need to keep an eye on what the people like or dislike and make sure to not make them upset or angry enough so that they leave your land. Their mood and respect towards you can be affected by many things. The clothes and weapons they get, jobs you assign them to do, and even what you get them to eat.

For example, when it comes to food, the obvious way of getting it would be farming, foraging, and hunting as usual. But the twist comes with the fact that you can make food out of all of your enemies. Did you get raided by a group of marauders? You might find out that your meat storage gets full after that. However, not everyone will be happy about that. And the challenging part is to consider all pros and cons of what you are doing.

You will also spend a lot of time talking to everyone. Not only to raise the morale of your people, but you can also make the visitors like you and offer you better prices at trading. Even though the dialogue system is sometimes very simple, it doesn’t give you too many choices and can feel a little bit repetitive. But if you are determined enough and your kingdom has enough prestige, you might even make them join you, which is an important part of this game. That is because nobody is getting younger, so your population will age and pass away at some point. This leads us to a little confusing subject of time. Because the developers decided not to go along with a normal time. The year has four seasons that cycle regularly. But confusingly, every season has three years instead of months, whereas every year takes one day. And this might take some time to get used to.

A very interesting part of the gameplay are the RPG elements because as your people do their jobs, they will be getting experience points and slowly level up their health, damage, and also skills. And to utilize the skills to their best, you will be able to set up priorities for their jobs. You can also let them live autonomously, which is sometimes inefficient since inexperienced peasants will do many jobs and thus do much slower.

In addition to job settings, you can set up a schedule for everyone, making them sleep, work or eat regularly.
But leveling up is not the only way to increase their skills. Equipment will have a skill bonus and increase its owner’s prestige. Which also affects their morale. And speaking of equipment, another challenge you will get is that everything has its expiration date. Clothes will get worn out, food will rot, and swords will rust. And so you need to keep an eye on that and ensure you have enough resources to keep getting new things. And also, focus on actually giving people the equipment because even if you have the items stored, you have to give them to your subjects manually.

All of your adventures are accompanied by a nice and fitting soundtrack. The only weaker part is that only a few songs are playing in the background. But in no way does that interrupt the game experience, and there might be more coming up as we slowly get out of the early access. Alongside the soundtrack, the sound effects help a lot with the immersion. Birds are singing, soothing rain, or even the sounds of crafting, building, and fighting. And since talking to others is an important part of the game, even the characters make sounds. Even if it’s not fully voiced-over, you will get various grunts and mumbles.

The controls are easy, similar to all other strategy games. The only big difference comes when you switch to control your ruler, which transforms the game to a 3rd person’s view, allowing you to directly do anything you need him to do.

The game is still in early access, but that doesn’t change the game experience. And with getting closer to full release, the developers are promising many interesting features, such as romancing, enchanting, or raiding other kingdoms.