Arizona-based indie studio Industry Games' debut PC title Kings and Heroes launched onto Steam Early Access today. A first-person action-RPG, the game takes place in the seamless, open-world environment of Sandaria, filled with dangerous dungeons to explore solo or alongside a group of allies in Co-Op gameplay supporting up to 7 additional players. Dungeons and exploration zones are randomly generated, suggesting a fresh experience with each new game.
Customizable characters can be assembled from one of six races, such as Humans, Elves and Goblins, and five distinct classes including Champion, Cleric, and Wizard, among others. The Steam store page promises a “huge world to explore”, filled with over 50 unique enemy types and tons of loot to explore over 500 levels of crafting with. The game promises a roguelike experience of penalizing death; dungeon wipes end the journey and force players to regroup in town to prepare for a new adventure, though characters themselves are not lost.
Founded in 2013, Industry Games is lead by talent from notable studios, including Valve Software, Blizzard, and Turbine, come together with the goal of creating community-driven video games. “We're super excited for Kings and Heroes to finally be entering Steam Early Access,” said Industry Games CEO, Warren Weems in a recent press release. The company has expressed a desire to deliver modding tools and maintain open paths of communication with the intent of empowering players to develop and grow their games and “make them their own”.
For the first week of Early Access only, players will receive three exclusive items to aid them in their adventure: Benefactor's Ring, Patron's Cloak, and Crown of the Creator. The items offer both a stat and aesthetic boost as a “small token of our appreciation to the initial players of Kings and Heroes,” said Industry Games COO, John Kenison. Current Early Access features include the starting town of Everdale and its multiple settlements, the seamless open world, all possible races and classes, and over 20 potential bosses and craft/trade advancement. Additional dungeons and enemies are planned for further along the development process, including World Bosses and dragons. Also planned, is an assortment of mod tools that will allow players to make and share their own dungeons.
Early Access is currently set to last 6-9 months before going live in the Fall of 2016 alongside Xbox One and PS4 console releases. Currently $29.95 on Steam, the price is set to rise with the full release of the game. Players should be aware that Early Access is early in development, and certain features are either disabled or are as yet unrealized, such as missing dungeons and a Character Creator considered to be in pre-alpha.
While the first day of Early Access has proven trying due to server instability, Industry Games responded quickly with two separate patches to address the most common complaints of performance issues. Immediately bombarded with negative reviews on Steam due to the instability, positive reviews have begun to even out the initial frustration following the dual patches.