Kingshunt Hands-On Preview & Interview - A Game Forging Its Own Path
Kingshunt is an up and coming game currently in development at Vaki Studios. We had the opportunity to play through a vertical slice of Kingshunt with the developers to get a look at the game that is aiming for a niche not occupied by any other at the present time. How well the game progresses through development, through testing, and into release remains to be seen, but at first glance, Kingshunt seems to be onto something truly different.
Kingshunt is a “third person online multiplayer action game” where up to a hundred players are taking part split into 10 5v5 matches. It combines tower defense, real-time strategy and hack’n’slash to pique the interest of a variety of different types of players.
During gameplay, one team is defending their base and building towers to keep the attacking team at bay. Attackers can control a number of different types of minions to bolster their ranks. But this isn’t just a tower defense game. Players are actively involved in taking the fight to the opponents. It is here that the third person hack’n’slash angle becomes apparent.
Our gameplay session featured four different types of characters: Healer, Tank, Ranged DPS, and Melee DPS. There was a fifth class that was unavailable and developers are actively working on a Ranger class, though it is not yet in the early build. Each one has their own strengths and weaknesses -- DPS is definitely high risk, high reward while tanks are absolutely formidable. Like any MOBA, players have access to four abilities and an ultimate. Some abilities have longer cooldowns than others, so there are a lot of strategies involved with timing skills for use at the right time.
As the match progresses, players gain experience points that can be spent to unlock passive abilities like faster running speed and so forth. These points can be spent automatically or a player can actively choose which “cards” to spend points on.
Battle is frenetic and fast-moving, with the primary matches able to be completed in 20-30 minutes across a couple of different stages. Once the first round of 5v5 matches are complete, winning players move to the Titan Battle in the center. How exactly this works is unclear, but the game is in early development and more information will be forthcoming in the weeks and months ahead.
All in all, we had a good time playing Kingshunt, even at this early stage and we are encouraged by the fact that Vaki is really trying to do something unique. If you’d like to get involved in Kingshunt, you can head to the game’s site to sign up for testing opportunities and you can also join the Discord server to chat with the devs about the game and its development.
After our gameplay session, we had the chance to ask the team a few questions.
MMORPG: Will players be able to customize their heroes?
Teemu Jyrkinen: Customisable heroes; Hero Skins, customisable Towers&Minions and Runes: Runes are a mechanic in Kingshunt which allow players to upgrade their heroes in-game by increasing their stats or incorporating active and passive abilities into their hero's build. Players choose a Rune deck to bring into a match and then purchase these cards with souls.
MMORPG: Will there be a way for players to upgrade their abilities or combat stats?
TJ: Not basic MOBA style abilities but they can upgrade their stats, abilities and passives with Runes. Custom "decks" to players to upgrade their playstyle and hero.
MMORPG: You mentioned esports. How do you envision Kingshunt esports?
TJ: E-sports is in our timeline but later after game launch. We want to see how the game grows and what people want to see from competitive games. We have plans for intimate fast-paced 5 vs 5 matches but it might also be a massive 50vs50 tournament.
MMORPG: Monetization is always a hot topic. Obviously, developers need money to continue developing a game. How will Kingshunt be monetized?
TJ: Yes, it is. Kingshunt will be free to play title. There will be in-game purchases like Hero cosmetics, a battle pass similar to Fortnite and in-game currency. There is no pay-to-win logic!!
The plan is to do a pre-sales later this year for early access for beta and game launch.
Future updates and expansions are mainly new characters, new challenges, new towers/minions and new runes.
MMORPG: Will there be different maps with different mechanics to challenge players to approach the battle differently?
TJ: Yes, Maps are always different with different Guardians and Neutral catapults and Invade portals. After the launch, we will introduce new Titans and environments. Example: Cultural similarities to Greek and Norse mythology. We want to bring all big Titans from different cultures.
MMORPG: Any plans for a battle royale mode?
TJ: Maybe :D We have talked about this quite a bit. It might be fun with hack'n'slash combat with unique heroes.
MMORPG: How will Kingshunt be published? Are you self-publishing or will you be published by an established firm?
TJ: The plan is to self-publish but we have conversations going on with major publishers. Currently, we are aiming Q2 2020. But this year we will have bigger alphas and beta fall 2019.