Karnage Chronicles Review: Eat my sword!

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Karnage Chronicles header

Karnage Chronicles is in my opinion on of the best VR adventure RPG games on the market right now. If you want a fun and polished game that allows you to either engage your enemies in melee combat or to snipe them from afar, just go and get it. If you are not sold on it from the first two sentences then keep reading and you probably will be sold by the end of this article.



Available for Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and Windows Mixed Reality, this Steam early access experience offers full motion controls and a standing or room-scale play area option. Karnage Chronicles can be experienced alone, in single-player, or with friends, in the Co-op or multiplayer modes.

Karnage Chronicles crossbow shooting at goblin in cave

Story and dialogue

The story of the game unfolds right before a horrific event that will create a rift in the fabric of the cosmos. You take the role of a Murkwraith. That is a type of construct that can be either a warrior or an archer. You get sent on missions by another mechanical construct named The Collector. The story is presented through a simple dialogue system that gives you the option of one or more phrases that you can choose to say. The gist of the story is that The Collector wants things and you go get them for him. As simple as that.

Gameplay

The game gives you two options of locomotion, smooth and teleportation. They are both fairly well implemented and allow you to use the one that is more intuitive for you. You can switch between the two types of locomotion on the fly which makes it easy to use the one that is most suitable for the situation you have gotten yourself into. Through the game you have to fight goblins, wolves, spiders and some other creatures that I will not spoil here. In combat you can choose to either fight your enemies up close or personal or try and catch them off guard with a ranged weapon.

Karnage Chronicles goblin charging at player with sword and shield

Sword and shield combat is done very well. You have to block attacks from the direction they are coming from and try to swing at your foes where they are vulnerable. Getting a critical hit is very satisfying and so is shooting your enemy in the foot and watching they suffer. The enemy AI is also done fairly well. They try to block your attacks and dodge your arrows. Karnage Chronicles has an expansive inventory system that lets you organize your items and loadouts with little to no fuss. Dead enemies drop money and items which you can use to buy new weapons, armors, potions and other items. The store is run by a charming little devil that doesn’t speak a word but mimics where to find certain items in the store.

Karnage Chronicles wolf and goblin

Visuals and audio

The game looks nice and stylized and it really puts you in its universe. The good graphics are complemented by the creative level design. It turns the levels from boring caves into beautiful playgrounds of death. The environment truly comes to life with all the little details that have been sprinkled in it. Everywhere you look you will see an interesting flower, that makes sounds when you shoot it. Or maybe a small creature that is looking at you with fear. Or even a big bad guy walking in the distance, doing his own thing. The music is pretty good and blends in with the gameplay seamlessly. The voice acting is also done fairly well, even though there isn’t much of it in the game.

Overall

I would not have known that Karnage Chronicles is an early access game if it weren’t for the big blue label on their Steam page. I definitely plan on replaying this game in the near future. Hopefully you give it a try as well. You can find it on Steam and on the Oculus store.

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