PAX East Preview: MechKnight Chronicles slashes into view

mechknight_pax

The PAX East show floor is filled with all kind of games and projects each year, and like anything trying to gain attention, location is key. Dinosaur Games learned this firsthand in the best way possible while showing off a pre-alpha build of their upcoming MechKnight Chronicles directly next to the ever-popular Fangamer booth. While a spot like this might help generate initial attention, it became clear that people were waiting in line to play less because of proximity and more because the preview build shows a lot of promise. Fans of Treasure’s Guardian Heroes or The Behemoth’s Castle Crashers might want to pay attention — this one stood out among the crowd.

“PAX East was INTENSE,” said Dinosaur’s Jesse Sosa. “The response we got was overwhelmingly positive. We all missed out on seeing anything else at the show because we could not leave our booth. There were just too many people there to try out MechKnight. Although, that’s a problem I was perfectly OK with having.”

The formula is tried and true: Players progress through the level from left to right and destroy any and all enemies that get in their way. The levels are fairly wide and allow you to do battle at any point on about half the screen. A boss will show up at the end of the stage which can be more easily dispatched with a friend due to the two-player co-op. The controls are familiar as well, so don’t expect any crazy schemes using the right control stick. Button-press combos are the order of the day here. MechKnight may feel like something you’ve played before, so you shouldn’t look toward this one for something wholly unique. Dinosaur’s first project is notable because of how well it hits these familiar notes, even at such an early stage in development.

The build at PAX East had two selectable characters, but Dinosaur is planning to have ten when the game is finished. Roy is the first of the pair from the demo. He’s a knight with fire-based attacks. Tina is some sort of assassin with the power of wind on her side. Dinosaur said they’re going to provide as many elemental alignments as possible, but there will definitely be some overlap. There are statistical differences between the characters as well. For example, Roy is a bit slower but slightly more powerful than the lithe and nimble Tina, who packs a bit less of a wallop. Both characters controlled smoothly and had the proper amount of weight despite their subtle differences, which gave MechKnight a comfortable feeling.

The game is currently slated for release in Q1 2014, though the team said potential funding could push this date back in order to build the game out further. Their plan is to release it on any and all systems possible, but they stressed the game’s appearance on the upstart Ouya system above all others, so for now, look toward the little-box-that-might for a landing spot.

Posted on by Anthony Swinnich in Ouya, Ouya Previews, PC, PC Previews, Previews