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PlayStation Vita  header logo

New Little King's Story

For: PS Vita

Grand re-entry

Product: New Little King's Story | Developer: Marvelous Entertainment | Publisher: Konami | Format: PS Vita | Genre: Adventure | Players: 1 | Version: Europe
New Little King's Story PS Vita, thumbnail 1
The original Little King's Story was one of those hidden gems of the Nintendo Wii that seemed to pass a great number of people by. The real-time strategy/role-playing/city-building adventure was incredibly ambitious and received widespread acclaim, but it didn't sell very well at all.

Those who did play the game always hoped that the little king would have his day - and thanks to a sequel on the PS Vita there's hope that it may still happen.

New Little King's Story follows on from the original, offering a lot of the same gameplay but with new elements here and there. If you've never visited the little king's kingdom, this is a great place to start.

Story time

New Little King's Story continues the tale from the previous title, as the kingdom you originally created is besieged by evil creatures and you're left to build a brand new place from scratch. Note that it's not necessary to have played the first game - you'll be perfectly fine starting from here.

After setting out from your castle and exploring the surrounding areas you can expand your territory, earn money to purchase new items and buildings, kill evil enemies, and save the princesses, all of whom are trapped in beams of light.

You can't do all this by yourself, however. By walking up to your villagers and calling them to command, you can persuade troops to stride gallantly behind you, ready to chop down trees, dig up holes, smash baddies in the face, or carry out any other jobs you want doing.

Not all villagers can do everything, however - you need to choose classes for them, converting them into woodcutters, royal guards, builders, and so on. The class a person is currently holding determines which jobs they can do.

The gloriously simple controls are easily the best part of the game. Hit Square and the next villager in line will rush forward to take part in whatever needs doing. Hammer Square, and all your guys will rush forward. Hit Circle, and they all come back to you. Think Pikmin, and you've got the idea.

Now this is a story all about how my life got flipped, turned upside down

Progress through the game requires you to explore every possible area, class, purchase, enemy, construction site, and quest.

There's no real guiding hand in New Little King's Story. Rather, you're given a slight nudge towards all the possible things you could be doing, and through picking your own route you slowly but surely build your kingdom up to greatness.

There's always plenty going on, too. Boss battles allow you to open up entirely new areas on which you can build new class workshops and homes, while festivals and laws give your kingdom its own special personality.

There are plenty of new elements on top of the previous title, too. Online rankings allow you to battle it out against friends, while a new apothecary store grants you the ability to mix up items with players online and create brand new items.

Throw a gorgeous combination of 2D and 3D art into the mix and you've got a title that serves the PS Vita and its loyal followers very well indeed.

Little issues

New Little King's Story falters in all the same areas that the previous game did, because it's incredibly similar.

There's little to distinguish the two games from each other, and if you've played the original you'll no doubt get a feeling of deja vu throughout. It's not a huge issue, but we definitely would have liked to see more new elements thrown in.

This similarity means the first game's bugbears are back. Trying to assemble a good spread of class types in your army is tricky, and the sorting methods available don't do enough to help out. Having to sort out your troops at the start of every single day can be a pain.

While we applaud New Little King's Story's open-endedness, we do so reservedly. We found during out play-through that it was sometimes a bit too explicit about how to proceed, and we'd end up simply wandering for an hour before we finally worked out where to go next, which could be pretty dull at times.

The game also suffers from a good deal of slowdown -especially when you're carting around 20+ minions and walking through a crowded area. It would appear that the PS Vita is not up to the task of rendering that many little people.

But this is still a title that deserves a spot in your Vita game collection, thanks to its unrelenting desire to provide you with the tools for fun and push you out of the door, ready to find your own path. Vita owners looking for a class-act RPG to occupy their time should look no further.
New Little King's Story
Reviewer photo
Mike Rose | 26 September 2012
New Little King's Story is a tale worth telling. A great real-time strategy / role-playing hybrid, now on the go
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