Kitaria Fables Impression
Kitaria Fables is well on its way to providing a fun, creative RPG that offers a variety of flavors for players of every type to enjoy, with enough flexibility to make the game fit their preferred mold.
Following in the footsteps of games like Rune Factory and Harvest Moon, Kitaria Fables is an upcoming action adventure/farming hybrid RPG designed by Indonesian developer Twin Hearts and published by PQube. Recently, RPGamer was given the opportunity to attend a Q&A session with PQube’s head of development, Harrison Lewis, and get some hands-on time with a preview build of the game.
Developer Twin Hearts makes no secret of its influences, and Kitaria Fables wears its inspiration proudly on its sleeve. The game mixes real-time action combat (albeit with a deceptively cute and colorful coat of paint) with its versatile crafting and farming gameplay elements. Crafting even extends to the game’s magic system, with spells that can be crafted to complement the melee and ranged fighting options. Kitaria Fables eschews traditional character classes, instead letting players utilize all available fighting styles simultaneously.
Players take on the role of Nyan (more formally Nyanza von Whiskers), a feline soldier who’s been dispatched to the far-flung Paw Village along with his trusted companion-in-arms, Macaron (who’s definitely not a cat, or anything else identifiable for that matter). Nyan has been charged with protecting Paw Village as there have been reports of nearby wildlife becoming aggressive of late. Many years ago, creatures in this world were corrupted by an influence known as The Calamity, until it was repelled by a legendary hero. Since then, peace has reigned and wildlife has returned to normal, with this latest development being a troubling omen.
Shortly after arriving at Paw Village and meeting its mayor, Nyan is given access to his late grandfather’s homestead, Thunderbunn Farm, which acts as a base of operations for Nyan and Macaron from here on out. The village is populated entirely by cute and cuddly animal characters, which is right in line with the look and feel of the rest of the game. Kitaria Fables features a beautiful, hand-painted look. Everything is bright and colorful, and the music sounds like something pulled straight out of a fairy tale. Taking on requests from Paw Village’s inhabitants, Nyan and Macaron begin exploring the areas outside of the village, running afoul of the corrupted wildlife, and unravelling what’s behind the strange recent events.
Combat in Kitaria Fables is smooth and easy to get a grasp on. While the game recommends the use of a controller, a keyboard-and-mouse setup works well too, with WASD controls and the mouse handling basic combat mechanics like locking on to enemies, attacking, and dodging. Special skills and magic spells, once they’re acquired, are mapped to the numeric keys, and are easily visible on-screen via the UI. Enemy attacks are indicated by on-screen highlights of the danger area; some enemies swipe their melee weapon in an arc in front of them, while others may be preparing to fire projectiles that continue to trace a path straight ahead. If Nyan finds himself in the highlighted area, a quick dodge roll is required to avoid damage. This setup works pretty well and allows for handling of even large bosses or groups of multiple enemies without a nasty learning curve.
The game’s preview version wasted little time getting me stuck right into the narrative. After Nyan and Macaron’s arrival at Paw Village (and a quick fur pattern change at Thunderbunn Farm), I was off to an area called Byriver Field to slay some orcs and recover a lost satchel for a young villager. The final game will feature over 100 of these quests, which serve to bolster the narrative, let players develop relationships with the villagers, and provide materials and resources needed for crafting. The story isn’t just a means to an end here; before I’d gone much more than an hour, I’d already been put on the path to gather powerful ancient magic relics, beaten the first dungeon and boss, started to learn magic, and got an inkling of a deeper drama existing between the land’s rulers and its common folk. It wasn’t even until after all this that farming and crafting options begun to become available. Rather than Nyan leveling up in a traditional manner, gear can be upgraded via the village’s blacksmith. Those simply interested in participating in Kitaria’s main campaign will also be happy to know that farming, while recommended, is largely optional, and doesn’t have to make up the bulk of playtime.
Kitaria Fables is well on its way to providing a fun, creative RPG that offers a variety of flavors for players of every type to enjoy, with enough flexibility to make the game fit their preferred mold. Those looking to tackle over thirty hours of story content and complete dungeon runs (perhaps with a friend by their side using the game’s drop-in/drop-out local co-op functionality) will have the option to do so, while others who want a slice-of-life farming sim with adorable animal characters will also be well served. Kitaria Fables will see its full release on September 2, 2021, and be available for PC via Steam, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and Nintendo Switch.