King Arthur PS2 Review

Video games usually turn out to be horrible movies so it is only logical that movies make horrible video games right? That could have been the idea up until early 2004 when Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay was released. That broke the deathly spell that has been plagued upon movie based video games. Well Konami was hoping to fall along the same lines of that success with King Arthur, but is a four month separation from the movie’s release too late for the game to be interesting at all?

Assigned to the project of developing King Arthur is Krome Studios. Krome Studios only has a few other previous titles in the past. Included as such are Ty the Tasmanian Tiger and it’s sequel, while also creating Jimmy Neutron: Jet Fusion afterwards. As you may notice, Krome Studios doesn’t have a past with creating action games at all and King Arthur is their first big journey into the action genre.

I wouldn’t want to disappoint anyone with story spoilers but King Arthur isn’t the same old King Arthur we may have enjoyed as children. Yes all the same characters show up throughout the game and movie but this isn’t exactly the Knights of the Round Table we grew to love. We are stuck with some Samarian mercenaries working for the Roman Empire doing their dirty work. The plot never amounts to what it could have attained with such an epic story that we have heard as children.

Back on track with the video game portrayal of the movie’s adaptation of the King Arthur plot. Re-enacting all crucial events of the movies was bound to happen but the game doesn’t add anything to the already feeble storyline. Movie clips are scattered throughout the video game, as Krome Studios try to add to the atmosphere that was sorely lacking already. If they sought out to achieve the similar environments and the same type of presentation from the movie, they were able to accomplish that but that feat isn’t nearly that hard to fulfil.

Addressing the visuals, they do the movie justice with the representations of the characters from the movies. Everyone is distinctive and even from the back, their details are easily distinguished. The fighting is able to kick in with a lot of action but nothing feels epic at all. The music whilst lacking also, still feels close to what the movie had. If I had to rate this game on how it stayed true to the movie, this game would have been an overwhelming success. But we are judging this is on it’s own merits of improvement rather than just being a straight replicate of the movie.

It is merely a hack-n-slash game at its core. Krome Studios tried to make it a little complex with few combos. There are five attack buttons with another to block so there are some commands that you will want to figure out before you move on further into the game. When you do realize all the potential in the action with the combos it ends as soon as it starts. The potential with making strides in the hack-n-slash genre comes to a screeching halt when the depth in the actions is quite shallow.

There is co-operative play for those who want something to play with a friend. However, the camera system is constantly nagging and will weigh down the gameplay with a friend. So, not only will you be upset by the time your session ends, your friend might just not want to play anymore co-operative games with you again. The A.I. of the enemies is laughable and only ruins what could have been with such great warriors in the King Arthur legends. The levels are long and quite tedious so it becomes apparent not even half-way through that the game is just too boring to complete.

King Arthur could have been a marvellous depiction of the legends and tales we have heard of, but it is nothing more than a Braveheart wannabe. The beauty of this game is only skin deep and there’s nothing here to see that will make you play it for more than one sit down or rental. I say skip and pass up the chance to play this game when there are other hack-n-slash titles out on the market already. If you must play every hack-n-slash, King Arthur is decent at times but overall it’s just way too disappointing to overlook the mistakes.

6 out of 10