The recent release of Kingdom Come: Deliverance has been met with critical acclaim, seeing over a million copies sold over all platforms in its first two weeks. However, reports have suggested that Martin Klíma, executive producer for Kingdom Come, is not completely satisfied with how the game turned out.
Although the game was released as a AAA title, Klíma compared Kingdom Come to an indie game, though not exactly fitting in the indie category, either. He told press that he wished the studio “had more time to polish the game before release, that’s what a AAA game deserves.”
“I don’t see KCD as competing with the likes of Assassin’s Creed or Shadow of War. We simply don’t have resources to create a game like that,” he said. “I don’t view us as an indie game either, though. The trend I see in ‘real’ AAA games, like the ones I mentioned above, is toward making games more and more forgiving, better suited to the most casual and absent-minded players; they are games that in effect are ‘playing themselves.’ So, you have all those different markers, prompts and handy hints that you never have to think about what to do next.”
This is not entirely wrong. I can see why the companies that make these games take this approach, and obviously there is a demand for it, as evidenced by the sales of these games.
On the other hand, we see a trend among indie games that are both more original and less forgiving, but because of limited budgets, they have to go for a format that is somewhat simpler to develop. Many of them are 2-D platformers or top-down scrollers.
Kingdom Come is an attempt of bridging the two; it is an indie game at heart – more hardcore, more demanding, more fierce – but with the visuals and production values of a AAA game.
Kingdom Come is highly popular, though, so it seems that Klíma has little to worry about. In fact, developer Warhorse has already declared a sequel for the future, so it would seem that the game should be marked as a great success so far. Maybe the sequel can correct the concerns that Klíma had for the first game.