God games have been around for the longest time. Players have fulfilled their desires to create and ruin civilizations over the past three decades. Do you want to lay waste to insubordinate peasants? Unsurpassable powers are usually one click away and satisfaction of watching peons bow down is just as gratifying. So it’s a pleasure to see NinjaBee returning to their fledging Keflings franchise, a softer look at the God genre.
Adding in new features such as cooperative play – both online and offline – and multiple kingdoms to explore, A World of Keflings is a charming sequel that is much more involving than the original. Jumping in and out of cooperative matches is simple: invite a friend to join yours or go to the search and view custom matches to select the appropriate player(s) to play with. Want to fast forward to chapter 6? Jump into an online match with three other players and experience it without having to endure the previous five.
The cooperative experience is a fresh breath of air. When compared to the original, the multiplayer component propels the overall enjoyment from start to finish. There were times within the first title that were drawn out; when all I wanted was for the game to fast forward to the excitement, it instead served up hours of resource collecting. Now, with up to three other players joining playing alongside the player, time flies by at a fast rate and resource collecting is much easier to accomplish. If there is one essential way to play A World of Keflings, it’s with a full party slaving away at the game world to work in tandem –misbehaving party members can be booted by the host – to build the perfect world for their keflings.
On that note, NinjaBee still limits the players on how many keflings can inhabit the world by the hearts they collect to put in the houses they build. With no hearts available – and hard to find or earn by the way – it takes awhile for the speed of the game world to kick up a notch. To top it all off, to put together a building, one of the worker keflings must be removed from duty and must be forced to wander in circles around the building being nothing but a set piece.
If players have never experienced the Keflings thus far, then here’s a quick breakdown. Controlling an Xbox Live Avatar, players construct buildings such as work sheds, architects, machinists, keeps and the like. Along the way, players earn new blueprints to continue towards building a castle and solve dilemmas for their little keflings such as finding the lost princess, bringing odd eyeballs to the witch, and crafting specific objects. Nothing too taxing or complicated; the objectives simply carry the light plot forwards.
Speaking about the plot, players are capable of alternating through several themed game worlds to help unique keflings through their problems. Starting out in the Ice Kingdom and advancing to the Desert Kingdom, each offers colorful backdrops but no gimmicks; don’t expect to have snow or sandstorms affecting gameplay. Throughout the story, players will meet builders who will need to be thawed out of ice, broken out of amber and other clever introductions. The builders will carry building pieces across the land to assist in the process of construction and even finish the work if it is left unfinished. Anyway you look at it, they are handy and help remove tireless backtracking.
Returning players will be glad to hear about the inclusion of pushing buildings, along with bringing in Avatar props and pets. While neither are extravagant or revolutionary additions, both at least give a little more incentive to stick around beyond the early hours of A World of Keflings. As an easy to pick up and play Xbox Live Arcade game that has hours upon hours of replay (although, expect the longevity to be cut into with cooperative assistance), A World of Keflings is an excellent improvement over the original.
Beware though, a few bugs resides that need ironing out such as tasks not being removed after or accepted as completed by keflings. They may potentially confuse gamers and have them get stuck as they spend unneeded hours trying to solve a problem with no solution.