Given the prolonged legal battle between the State of Rhode Island and bankrupted developers, Big Huge Games and 38 Studios, I never expected there’d be any further development of the Kingdoms of Amalur IP. However, in September 2018, THQ Nordic picked up the rights to the IP, and a month later the original game reappeared as backwards-compatible on the Xbox consoles. Given THQ Nordic’s track-record after purchasing old IPs, a remaster was all but guaranteed. Arriving over eight years since it originally released – and with another subtitle so stupid I can’t help but smile – KAIKO has provided us Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning and promised a brand-new expansion next year.
The result is… fine. Much like their work with the Darksiders Warmastered Edition and Red Faction Guerrilla Re-Mars-tered, this is another competent but low-impact remaster that succeeds in bringing older, often overlooked games back into the spotlight. The problem is the aforementioned games were priced at $20 (~R300 locally when they released), whereas Kingdoms of Amalur: Re-Reckoning is being sold at twice that (and mores still if you want the “FATE Edition”). That said, those who never played the original might find it worth the asking price, and, as such, I’m going to break this review into two parts: the first covering the game, the second the extent of the remastering.
The world may exist as interconnected zones, rather than a continuous open world like The Elder Scrolls games, but it packs in almost as many quests and just as many locations.
If you never played the original... you’ll probably think the upscaled visuals and higher framerate is all that’s on offer. Thankfully, there’s more to it under the hood.
Enjoys games with awesome stories and characters, along with new and interesting hardware. Dislikes day-one patches and driver updates.
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KAIKO, Big Huge Games
PC, PS4, Xbox One
8 September 2020
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