To say that the PSP has had an extremely rough start out of the gate would really be an understatement, as it is in dire need of more original and solid first or third party titles. We have seen some interesting attempts at making great games, but most have lacked in the gameplay department, being not overly deep or trying to do too much for their own good. Well today we are checking out a martial arts action game for the PSP from Climax Entertainment. The game is Kingdom of Paradise, and it tries to help and turn the PSP around. Is the game successful? Read our full review to find out!
With any game that has any sort of martial arts involved, there usually is some sort of back-story to get you introduced to the whole scene. In Kingdom of Paradise you take the role of Shinbu, who you find growing in his mastery of martial arts. What ends up happening in the following events leaves your village in ruins and you are really the last hope of the village, so it is your job to set off to literally take out all the clans. The story itself although an important piece of the puzzle, doesn’t play all that huge of a role in the game. My feelings on this storyline are a bit mixed, sure the game has the right frame of mind in doing a story like this, but at the same token it just feels a bit predictable and unoriginal.
So now let’s get into the gameplay itself, which in my opinion is actually very smooth and works rather well. Basically you are given a pretty typical sort of action martial arts feel with the game that just flows extremely well and just feels like a natural system. Kingdom of Paradise really tries to give you a nice easy combat system, that instead of trying to do too much, just gets a good flow of action that works for the most part very nicely.
Now your character Shinbu is not only equipped with a sword, but also has some magical abilities that kind of gives this game a hint of RPG feel to it. These attacks in the game are called "chi" and basically are literally just an amazingly forceful attack that does serious damage. The only stipulation about these sorts of attacks is they take a second to charge, but these sorts of attacks become very useful come later on in the game. This additional attack does help keep things from being just a button masher, but at the same token sometimes they can feel a bit "over effective".
Outside of the main single player mode, there really is a limited amount of things to do. There are some extra goodies that the developers threw in for Wi-Fi support but those are only going to be for the hardcore fans of the game. The overall adventure of Kingdom of Paradise is just extremely enjoyable. This may not be the most fantastic experience ever made, but it does really weel for a platform like the PSP. I do have a feeling the developers could have added more towards making the game a bit deeper, but the overall experience is still an extremely enjoyable one. The gameplay works on a very smooth pace, one that I felt stayed consistent and worked well for the game. The story was not the most original in the world, but it too works well for the game.
Visually Kingdom of Paradise is very comparable to its gameplay, in that everything is done extremely well but nothing more than that. The environments are by far the most impressive aspect of Kingdom of Paradise, as this is where the game shines the brightest. The environments have a plethora of color involved and the amount of detail in the game is actually quite good as well. I have to say that this game has some of the more impressive environments that I have seen for the PSP, and the developers did a nice job of keeping things fresh throughout.
The animation in the game is also pretty good, with some occasional problems; the game seems to flow very nicely together. The character models in the game are solid and work well with the whole Asian theme. The game just has a nice look to it, and although it may not be one of the elite PSP games it still looks very clean.
I have to say that I have been really disappointed with the majority of the games that have come out on the Playstation Portable, but Kingdom of Paradise really impressed me. Kingdom of Paradise just has a really simple yet fun adventure to go through, that for a handheld game is actually quite long. I have to say that although Kingdom of Paradise may not be the best made for the PSP either, it just does everything right and does it in a nice simple fashion that martial art fans are really going to enjoy.
Kingdom of Paradise is a game that I would just classify as an extremely solid title that deserves a lot of credit for just doing everything it needed to correctly. The gameplay is good, the sound is good, and the presentation is good. The game may not go out of its way to impress you, but for anyone who enjoys these sorts of games, it is definitely worth a try. The game has plenty to offer, and in my opinion was just a lot of fun to play through.
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