Shadows is the next chapter in the Heretic Kingdoms saga. Experience an epic adventure with challenging gameplay, a gripping storyline and enchanting graphics. Take on the role of the Devourer, a demon that swallows the souls of the dead and then brings them back into the mortal realm as his puppets...
User reviews:
Overall:
Mixed (292 reviews) - 66% of the 292 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Nov 20, 2014

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Buy Shadows: Heretic Kingdoms - Digital Deluxe Edition

 

Reviews

“A well-designed adventure into dark RPG-worlds that has nothing to hide.”
90/100 – http://www.spielemagazin.de/spiele/shadows-heretic-kingdoms-pc/

“Shadows breathes new life into the genre”
4/5 – Calm Down Tom

“It's different than the games it gets compared to, but in many ways, it's far richer.”
RPG Watch

About This Game

Shadows: Heretic Kingdoms is the next chapter in the Heretic Kingdoms saga and takes place 20 years after the events of Kult: Heretic Kingdoms. It’s an epic adventure with challenging gameplay, a gripping storyline and enchanting graphics. In this isometric action RPG, the player takes on the role of the Devourer, a demon that swallows the souls of the dead and then brings them back into the mortal realm as his puppets. It's up to him to either thwart a major threat and save the world, or to plunge it into complete disaster…

Story


After four of the five members of a secret order known as Penta Nera were murdered, their souls were swallowed by a pack of Devourers. Since then, they move around the mortal realm as the puppets of the Devourers, as a demonic Penta Nera, and ravage the land in search of the essence of souls.
The fifth member of the order, bent on revenge, makes use of the only way to stop them and summons another Devourer: this one is different from his siblings. He can absorb multiple souls, but sometimes becomes more human or schizophrenic, the more souls he absorbs. He can stop the demonic Penta Nera and save the world, or he can plunge it into complete disaster...

Key Features Of Shadows: Heretic Kingdoms

  • Extensive freedom of choice, affecting the course of the game
  • Gripping storyline in a world full of myths, destinies and legendary creatures
  • Two game worlds in one: Wander between the worlds and risk a glimpse into the dark shadow world, where you will also face enemies and solve mystic puzzles.
  • One dark hero, 15 different characters: Devour the souls of your enemies and use a lot of different characters and combat styles.
  • Complete a variety of diverse quests and face creatures in battle that you could only imagine in your worst nightmares!
  • Huge number of fantastical creatures with unique fighting styles and challenges
  • Unique party system

Press quotes:


System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP/Vista/7/8; 64 bit
    • Processor: x86 processor, 2.5 GHz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: nVidiaGeForce 260GTX or higher
    • DirectX: Version 9.0a
    • Storage: 5 GB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7 / Windows 8; 64 bit
    • Processor: x86 processor, 3 GHz +, quad core
    • Memory: 6 GB RAM
    • Graphics: nVidia GeForce 560GTX or higher
    • DirectX: Version 9.0a
    • Storage: 5 GB available space
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated! Learn more
Overall:
Mixed (292 reviews)
Recently Posted
( 10.0 hrs on record )
Posted: April 1
The dumbest arpg control system ever - the characters are so F..INg dumb that U cant imagine! In battle i am pointing on the enemy with the mouse i am clicking like crazy but the dumb heroe just stands, looks and accepts the hits, stupid mouse control, not polished well enough. DONT buy the game. the WORST mouse operated arpg of ever
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Fitz
( 13.7 hrs on record )
Posted: March 30
Good game but I didnt know its not finshed and its just part 1. I would get it on sale other wise don't buy it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Mr Zerker
( 1.2 hrs on record )
Posted: March 24
Put simply... This game is horrid... controls are sluggish, the combat is lame.. Graphics are so so.. I just gave up...

Helpful? Yes No Funny
b.pegg
( 12.0 hrs on record )
Posted: March 16
i've never written a review before, but i felt like i needed to write one for this.

i would have enjoyed the game had combat not been so broken. The combat is broken in that you will make one attack and no matter how many times you click after that you wont attack, and in order to make another attack you have to move. this defeats the purpose of having a stationary attack. it got to a point where i was running around in circles waiting for cooldowns to do any damage instead of attacking. not to mention the damage in completely unbalanced

Dont make the mistake i made and waste your money on this game
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Whack!
( 26.9 hrs on record )
Posted: March 8
Good game but nothing amazing and definitely lacks the polish of big budget studios.

For an indie game, though, especially one that got tied up in the Bitcomposer mess? Recommended, and I understand that whole situation has been resolved and the devs got their game back so I expect improvements to be incoming.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
cioran
( 21.1 hrs on record )
Posted: February 12
Excellent ARPG. I'm one of the half dozen or so people who purchased the classic ARPG Heretic Kingdoms at release and enjoyed it quite a bit, so I was excited for this somewhat belated semi-sequel (same world, different characters). It really delivers.

It has all the appeal of the original and its bizarre, dark anti-theistic world of the Heretic Kingdoms setting as well as great art design and graphics, rock solid controls and an interesting combat mechanic whereby you can change to a different character/form on the fly. Each form has different strengths and weaknesses and multiple ones are frequently viable in a given area. Bosses are fun, enemies are challenging without being overly difficult and all-in-all this is just a great game.

Just an FYI, this game series is single-player and campaign oriented and plays more like the Dungeon Siege or Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance than the more loot-driven, frequently multi-player oriented games like the Diablo series or Titan Quest.

Additionally, Book 2 has not been released. Even if it never is, it's still a great game and the ending doesn't feel abrupt.

If you like ARPG's, buy it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Dethrom
( 1.0 hrs on record )
Posted: February 10
Way to many bugs, got a refund! Good game btw but the bugs kill it. Hasn't been updated in a long time.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
SlacK CaT
( 13.5 hrs on record )
Posted: February 2
If you think you would like Diablo 3 mixed with Warcraft then you should like this game.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Mr Retro
( 2.9 hrs on record )
Posted: January 24
no one mentioned the fact that with the digital deluxe version you were supposed to get the next chapter of game but I guess its non existent now
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Samurai Vader
( 1.9 hrs on record )
Posted: January 23
Shadows: Heretic Kingdoms is a hack'n'slash RPG with a great story idea - you play the role of The Devourer who, as his name suggests, devours the souls of heroes. But this way, he also gives them a new life! In the end, this leads you to ability to switch between The Devourer and any of his collected hero souls. From beginning, you start with only one picked hero but as you go through the game, you'll find more characters - every character coming with its unique skillset. But don't get too much hyped about tactical group management, you can play only one character at time.

Whole graphic style feels pleasant in terms of the genre (and competitors as Diablo III), the atmosphere is good thanks to nice soundtrack and well-made voice acting, though it depends on specific characters - for example the princess (mage beginning character) was sometimes cringeworthy like Obara Sand from Game of Thrones.

Every environment has two version - the real one (for living characters) and the spiritual one (for The Devourer). This split is a nice idea and it's well implemented in the game, as you can swap between characters to get into/from spiritual world to run out of big group of enemies - only elite minions and bosses are in both environments.

Interface and the game controls are something that feels totally unoriginal. I think the developers might have wanted to be more close to casual and current generation of (MOBA) players, so the interface and control keybindings are similar to League of Legends (or Dota 2). As a huge hack'n'slash RPG fan since the first Diablo, this felt really bad to me, seeing even small details, as the health regeneration counter in the health bar, made my impression pretty much worse.

Another terrible thing is the AI of enemies. Many of aggressive minions won't attack you even if you are next to them, until you attack them. Enemy mobs also don't have much idea about pathfinding and walls, so if they can attack from range, they'll try to shoot you even through the wall. And they will fail.

What is almost a must feature in RPGs to have as a resource besides health? There should be something, right? Mana (magicka), rage, whatever you may think of but there's nothing! All character skills are only cooldown-driven (run and spam skills while you can), the blue resource you can see in screenshots is "soul essence" that is used by The Devourer to ressurect dead characters.

Besides mentioned cons there are also some smaller bugs like missing item icons or bugged achievements (couldn't unlock achievement for getting characters to level 2). Also, it's good to warn you that there's no autosave! That means, if you die, you have to load your latest manual save, in good old style. If you are too much spoilt by today's games, you might accidentally lose some of your playtime if you die and forget to save your position sometimes before.

Overall, I understand why Shadows: Heretic Kingdoms gets many positive responses, though I felt more like I was playing a fan-made custom campaign for already existing game (and I believe it's a lot because of the interface and controls, it does not fit the game). It's not bad and it might be worth getting on sale but otherwise I'd rather recommend you checking for some other ARPG.


For more reviews, join Samurai Vader's Point of View group and follow my curator page, I'm always happy to see feedback about my reviews.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Teimoli
( 1.3 hrs on record )
Posted: January 10
This game is at best 2.5/5 stars. The combat system is buggy. Skills frequently fail to complete activating and continually clicking to attack causes stuttering. You are unable to view the sell price on items and if you accidentally sell something, the buy back is the full price of the item instead of what you sold it for.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Max60
( 18.8 hrs on record )
Posted: January 8
Cannot get this ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ game to run!!! It is driving me insane. Have tried everything...still won't work. Have now deleted it and will try and download it from another source. I really wanted to play this game.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Secret Ah Manna
( 4.7 hrs on record )
Posted: January 4
PROS
-the game is fairly cheap to buy
-has a combat system where the main character can change into other characters
-the game looks fairly ok but not great

CONS
-the game is really cpu intensive so if you have a doule core and your trying to watch a video on the side its not going to happen
-the controls are extremely clunky, awkward, and not every fun to play
-the time i takes to switch between characters takes way to long for any meaning full combios to be achieved
-the voice acting is really flat, i wish this game just didnt have voice action at all and spent their money else where
-the game isnt very polished, if there is dialog going on and you pause the game. the voice will continue to speak all the way through even though the game is pause.
-on the edges of some maps the characters will clip through objects and environments.
-not enough enemies and the amount of damage you do is very little also the cooldowns dont help with the flow of combat either. over all the combat is very clunky and dull.

CLOSING THOUGHT
the games isnt horrible but isnt great either. the just isnt very fun to play. i think its just how they have the damage amount and cooldowns set up. combat is just really long, clunky, dull, and over all not very fun to play. I would say just skip this game you wouldnt be missing anything important.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 18.6 hrs on record )
Posted: December 25, 2015
Solid.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
rewsta
( 0.4 hrs on record )
Posted: December 18, 2015
If you like Diablo then you will like this.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
brassi77
( 20.7 hrs on record )
Posted: November 23, 2015
I usually do not like ARPGs, and skipped this one by due to not being interested in arpgs and thinking the "shadow world" mechanic sounded bad. I bought this while bored and was very suprised by how much i liked it. It is a very well done game. Clearing every area twice isn't so bad. I like my demon and my main guy so far, I enjoy the charcater building and there being no resets of skill points requiring thought.

Combat is fast and slow, with almost limitless heals and sometimes extremem damage spikes to help with the mechanics. It has just the right challenge level and combat is very well done considering you have potions, 3 alive people to cycle through, the demon, and your soul bar heals and reserrects.

The game has a pretty decent crafting system. The rpg aspects of quests and npc interactions are actually very heavy for an ARPG and plays like a real crpg. Production value is high and the voice overs are actually really good for the demon, my fighter character, and the others I've heard.

I am happy i bought this game, even at the current full price of $20. I just bought the orginal and am going to play that through now and then come back to this. I skipped almost all arpgs back in the day like this and sacred, etc, but am now learning to appreciate the heavier ones like Divine Divinity.

For some reason this game, S:HK reminds me of Lionheart. It isn't very similar but it has repetetive combat that somehow doesn't bother me. This is a different sort of game than the ones I usually go for so is hard for me to recommend it to people who usually play crpgs, but I think most crpg fans will find this to be a good game whereas Torchlight, Diablo 3 type arpg fans may think it is to crpgish and slow.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
28k
( 8.1 hrs on record )
Posted: November 12, 2015
This game is beautifully made, voice overs are great, quests, loot, crafting. But what is at the heart of every game like this, combat. Now I will say, combat in itself is just as well done as the rest of the game. However, someone on the dev team needs to understand the importance of mob spawning and placement. For me this is where the game literally falls apart. there is almost no space to manuver in this game as it is, then add the mob spawn logic. Take two steps and mobs spawn in around you in a circle and attack, This is a game where tactics do not exist, its simplhy a matter of stepping forward, getting encircled with spiders, taking boat loads of un dodgeable damange and spamming pots, lots and lots of pots.

I find in annoying enough to stop playing even though the rest of the game is literallh a masterpiece. All I can ask is that as you redesign and update your game for the re-release, try to create a more fluid combat dance between the player and the mobs. Dont rely on cheap spawning tactics to create articfically difficulty.

There is also an abundency of console type boss fights, tiny little rooms, no where to move, lighting fast bosses that do tons of damage. There is no pacing to these events they are just pot swigging marathons, or as suggested in the loading tips, over level your character and go back to fight bosses.

Unfortunantely I will have to give this game a thumbs down. I am the owner of just about every top down Diable style game available on steams, literally dozens and there is somthing magical about a game when they can get mob spawning, combat fighting spaces, mob and player speeds, functional CC down riight. I just dont think this game has that criticall component. What a shame.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
NikNukNak
( 6.2 hrs on record )
Posted: October 21, 2015
The way the controls are laid out in this game makes no senses in any way what I am used to from this types of games, after several tries I can’t get used to them and the game overall is just endless frustration is should just be scrapped.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
ksts606
( 1.2 hrs on record )
Posted: October 6, 2015
Fastest uninstall ever.
Buggy and boring gameplay.
Cheers.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 90 days
12 of 14 people (86%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
Recommended
21.1 hrs on record
Posted: February 12
Excellent ARPG. I'm one of the half dozen or so people who purchased the classic ARPG Heretic Kingdoms at release and enjoyed it quite a bit, so I was excited for this somewhat belated semi-sequel (same world, different characters). It really delivers.

It has all the appeal of the original and its bizarre, dark anti-theistic world of the Heretic Kingdoms setting as well as great art design and graphics, rock solid controls and an interesting combat mechanic whereby you can change to a different character/form on the fly. Each form has different strengths and weaknesses and multiple ones are frequently viable in a given area. Bosses are fun, enemies are challenging without being overly difficult and all-in-all this is just a great game.

Just an FYI, this game series is single-player and campaign oriented and plays more like the Dungeon Siege or Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance than the more loot-driven, frequently multi-player oriented games like the Diablo series or Titan Quest.

Additionally, Book 2 has not been released. Even if it never is, it's still a great game and the ending doesn't feel abrupt.

If you like ARPG's, buy it.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
13.7 hrs on record
Posted: March 30
Good game but I didnt know its not finshed and its just part 1. I would get it on sale other wise don't buy it.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
26.9 hrs on record
Posted: March 8
Good game but nothing amazing and definitely lacks the polish of big budget studios.

For an indie game, though, especially one that got tied up in the Bitcomposer mess? Recommended, and I understand that whole situation has been resolved and the devs got their game back so I expect improvements to be incoming.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
1.2 hrs on record
Posted: March 24
Put simply... This game is horrid... controls are sluggish, the combat is lame.. Graphics are so so.. I just gave up...

Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
12.0 hrs on record
Posted: March 16
i've never written a review before, but i felt like i needed to write one for this.

i would have enjoyed the game had combat not been so broken. The combat is broken in that you will make one attack and no matter how many times you click after that you wont attack, and in order to make another attack you have to move. this defeats the purpose of having a stationary attack. it got to a point where i was running around in circles waiting for cooldowns to do any damage instead of attacking. not to mention the damage in completely unbalanced

Dont make the mistake i made and waste your money on this game
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 180 days
153 of 181 people (85%) found this review helpful
10 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
8.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 12, 2015
This game is beautifully made, voice overs are great, quests, loot, crafting. But what is at the heart of every game like this, combat. Now I will say, combat in itself is just as well done as the rest of the game. However, someone on the dev team needs to understand the importance of mob spawning and placement. For me this is where the game literally falls apart. there is almost no space to manuver in this game as it is, then add the mob spawn logic. Take two steps and mobs spawn in around you in a circle and attack, This is a game where tactics do not exist, its simplhy a matter of stepping forward, getting encircled with spiders, taking boat loads of un dodgeable damange and spamming pots, lots and lots of pots.

I find in annoying enough to stop playing even though the rest of the game is literallh a masterpiece. All I can ask is that as you redesign and update your game for the re-release, try to create a more fluid combat dance between the player and the mobs. Dont rely on cheap spawning tactics to create articfically difficulty.

There is also an abundency of console type boss fights, tiny little rooms, no where to move, lighting fast bosses that do tons of damage. There is no pacing to these events they are just pot swigging marathons, or as suggested in the loading tips, over level your character and go back to fight bosses.

Unfortunantely I will have to give this game a thumbs down. I am the owner of just about every top down Diable style game available on steams, literally dozens and there is somthing magical about a game when they can get mob spawning, combat fighting spaces, mob and player speeds, functional CC down riight. I just dont think this game has that criticall component. What a shame.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
36 of 53 people (68%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Not Recommended
1.9 hrs on record
Posted: January 23
Shadows: Heretic Kingdoms is a hack'n'slash RPG with a great story idea - you play the role of The Devourer who, as his name suggests, devours the souls of heroes. But this way, he also gives them a new life! In the end, this leads you to ability to switch between The Devourer and any of his collected hero souls. From beginning, you start with only one picked hero but as you go through the game, you'll find more characters - every character coming with its unique skillset. But don't get too much hyped about tactical group management, you can play only one character at time.

Whole graphic style feels pleasant in terms of the genre (and competitors as Diablo III), the atmosphere is good thanks to nice soundtrack and well-made voice acting, though it depends on specific characters - for example the princess (mage beginning character) was sometimes cringeworthy like Obara Sand from Game of Thrones.

Every environment has two version - the real one (for living characters) and the spiritual one (for The Devourer). This split is a nice idea and it's well implemented in the game, as you can swap between characters to get into/from spiritual world to run out of big group of enemies - only elite minions and bosses are in both environments.

Interface and the game controls are something that feels totally unoriginal. I think the developers might have wanted to be more close to casual and current generation of (MOBA) players, so the interface and control keybindings are similar to League of Legends (or Dota 2). As a huge hack'n'slash RPG fan since the first Diablo, this felt really bad to me, seeing even small details, as the health regeneration counter in the health bar, made my impression pretty much worse.

Another terrible thing is the AI of enemies. Many of aggressive minions won't attack you even if you are next to them, until you attack them. Enemy mobs also don't have much idea about pathfinding and walls, so if they can attack from range, they'll try to shoot you even through the wall. And they will fail.

What is almost a must feature in RPGs to have as a resource besides health? There should be something, right? Mana (magicka), rage, whatever you may think of but there's nothing! All character skills are only cooldown-driven (run and spam skills while you can), the blue resource you can see in screenshots is "soul essence" that is used by The Devourer to ressurect dead characters.

Besides mentioned cons there are also some smaller bugs like missing item icons or bugged achievements (couldn't unlock achievement for getting characters to level 2). Also, it's good to warn you that there's no autosave! That means, if you die, you have to load your latest manual save, in good old style. If you are too much spoilt by today's games, you might accidentally lose some of your playtime if you die and forget to save your position sometimes before.

Overall, I understand why Shadows: Heretic Kingdoms gets many positive responses, though I felt more like I was playing a fan-made custom campaign for already existing game (and I believe it's a lot because of the interface and controls, it does not fit the game). It's not bad and it might be worth getting on sale but otherwise I'd rather recommend you checking for some other ARPG.


For more reviews, join Samurai Vader's Point of View group and follow my curator page, I'm always happy to see feedback about my reviews.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
21 of 28 people (75%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
20.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 23, 2015
I usually do not like ARPGs, and skipped this one by due to not being interested in arpgs and thinking the "shadow world" mechanic sounded bad. I bought this while bored and was very suprised by how much i liked it. It is a very well done game. Clearing every area twice isn't so bad. I like my demon and my main guy so far, I enjoy the charcater building and there being no resets of skill points requiring thought.

Combat is fast and slow, with almost limitless heals and sometimes extremem damage spikes to help with the mechanics. It has just the right challenge level and combat is very well done considering you have potions, 3 alive people to cycle through, the demon, and your soul bar heals and reserrects.

The game has a pretty decent crafting system. The rpg aspects of quests and npc interactions are actually very heavy for an ARPG and plays like a real crpg. Production value is high and the voice overs are actually really good for the demon, my fighter character, and the others I've heard.

I am happy i bought this game, even at the current full price of $20. I just bought the orginal and am going to play that through now and then come back to this. I skipped almost all arpgs back in the day like this and sacred, etc, but am now learning to appreciate the heavier ones like Divine Divinity.

For some reason this game, S:HK reminds me of Lionheart. It isn't very similar but it has repetetive combat that somehow doesn't bother me. This is a different sort of game than the ones I usually go for so is hard for me to recommend it to people who usually play crpgs, but I think most crpg fans will find this to be a good game whereas Torchlight, Diablo 3 type arpg fans may think it is to crpgish and slow.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
88 of 96 people (92%) found this review helpful
Recommended
17.5 hrs on record
Posted: April 10, 2015
Updated Note: The developers seem to have the rights to the IP now and by all accounts are working on getting the second half of the game!

When it comes to ARPGs, Shadows: Heretic Kingdoms travels down the road less traveled, managing to not only deviate from what has become a tired and overused model but to do so with style. ARPGs very rarely have a captivating story but I found Shadows: Heretic Kingdoms to be an exception, that's not to say it's as good a story as found in story-driven games, but it does it's job well and draws you in. Add in exceptional voice acting and great aesthetics and you have a game with a lot of good components working together. I found myself quite immersed with this game and had more urge to play through this game start to finish than any other ARPG since the Mass Effect trilogy.

That's not to say this game is flawless, it does have it's problems but I found that the pros far outweighed the cons. I had some crashing issues on a single map, I found the developers use of foreshadowing was a bit heavy-handed at times, and the game started off a bit slow due to the nature of how combat works. The game does start out with a fair amount of story telling, but once you get through that you are left to delve into the combat with a fledgling group.

Combat revolves around the demon you play, who can bind the souls of deceased beings, making them a part of your party. At the beginning of the game you have just the demon and the main hero in your "party." You only control one party member at a time, but each party member is unique and brings something different to the table, this is a very interesting dynamic that makes combat a lot of fun...when you actually have a full party to choose from. Fortunately after a few hours of play you should have a full team and from there on out combat is generally well paced and far more fun to play. There is a party limit of four, but you can always travel to your home base and change the roster. During combat you can switch to any of the active party members. I found this to add a lot to the combat, you can change the unit you are playing on based on situational factors and also rotate characters based on their spells cooldowns. I thoroughly enjoyed the combat once I had a full party. Individual spells might not be the most exciting but the fact you can switch characters at any point more than makes up for it.

All in all, I really enjoyed the experience in Book 1. I was definitely eating this game up and was only putting it down to play co-op games with friends. The story was a lot of fun to follow throughout and I enjoyed going through most of the dialog, I didn't even skip over the voice acting by and large (just about all dialog is accompanied by voice acting). The combat was equally enjoyable once I got into the core of the game. Add the two elements together along with everything else the game does great and you have the exceptional game that is Shadows: Heretic Kingdoms (Book I). I'm definitely keeping my fingers crossed that Book II sees the light of day, it would be a shame for the series die after such a strong start.

P.S. The game has an awesome orchestral soundtrack, here is a sample: https://youtu.be/IeTPR0teXZw
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383 of 524 people (73%) found this review helpful
6 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
7.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 22, 2014
I have played this game for four hours at this point and am unsure whether to give a thumbs up or a thumbs down. This may be a product of not playing the game enough but in most games I play, by 4 hours you usually know where the game is going.

So this is what I know so far and what I believe people will find useful if they are looking at buying this game. I bought this game because I wanted to try another arpg that marketed itself as being different from the usual model. This game does that. It is story driven and has characters that very much have their own flare and personalities. The voice acting is very good and the dialogue always feels important and interesting. However, I feel that even a story driven game should have fun and interesting combat, or at least cool combat animations. In this game I never found myself saying "Holy (explicative) that was awesome" or "This move is fricking amazing". Instead I found myself mumbling "ok, this a stun/aoe" and "Im not sure why I even picked up this second skill". I tried using both the archer and the barbarian and although the archer seemed a little bit more versatile, the abilities used still seemed lack luster. And maybe this was by design in an effort to make a more grounded game. But in my defense I bought a game where you play as a soul devouring demon who controls/ binds with souls of fallen heroes, and that just sounded a lot more awesome than it turned out to be combat wise. Im choosing to leave out anything dealing with bugs and technical issues because the developers do seem to care whether or not the game runs well and have taken the time to roll out a few updates. For that reason I wont judge the game based on how many times it crashes. But I will say this, when a game comes out of early access, beta, or whatever testing phases it uses and is marketed as a finished game, it should be finished. It shouldn't be released with known crashes or unfinished graphical features (like vsync). With that said the game is under 35 and should get a little slack for technical issues. For me personally it's the combat that kills this game. I plan on finishing the game after the crashes get fixed because I spent money on the game and because it does have a really interesting story line. But if I had known now what it plays like then I woulnt have spent more than $10 on it.

So in conclusion, if you dont care too much about combat or gameplay and mostly judge games based on story and concepts, then this is a game you will love. However if you are like me and want a visceral combat experience where you can feel progression at every skill point, then you will be underwhelmed by this game. As a general piece of advice, give this game another month or so to iron out tech issues. This will be a good game for some and a poor game for others, unfortunately for this reviewer it just wasn't up to snuff. The only reason I chose "No" is because I had to choose something and I wouldn't tell my friends that this is a must have. If you need a number this is a 60/100 and thats assuming tech issues get resolved. I hope this review was helpful(:
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110 of 143 people (77%) found this review helpful
Recommended
17.0 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: June 13, 2014
PLEASE READ FULL REVIEW BEFORE JUST LOOKING AT MY RECOMMENDATION!

Honestly, from the little I've played of this so far, I'm thoroughly intrigued as to where the game will go. I can't say it's the most original feeling experience as it is basically a "Diablo clone" (as much as I hate to use that term), but it does enough of its own thing to warrant my time, I think. Besides, if you're going to go for a style of game play, you could do a whole hell of a lot worse than iterating on solid design to begin with.

PLEASE REMEMBER THIS IS AN EARLY ACCESS GAME! If you're wanting to try this game to see what it's about, maybe watch a YouTube video or something first as I can't recommend the game for $26.99 as is. That being said, if you're like me and are able to look past some major game flaws with an open mind while being a fan of the genre, this isn't the worst purchase on Steam.

As is, I would recommend having a decent rig for playing, since there are currently no options to "tune down" any of the graphic settings beside resolution to work well for lower end machines and even on my high-mid machine it chugs like a beast due to lack of optimization (that will surely come much later). I streamed my first impressions of the game and I feel like that was a mistake and may have made the game look much more choppy than it actually was, but I feel like the most I got at any point in time playing was 25-30fps. It isn't unplayable, but added to the sluggish movement feel and kinda janky item pickup, some parts felt more arduous than they will when I can tweak the settings to make sure I get my full 60fps minimum.

TL;DR Don't be silly and think you'll get an objectively "good" product right now for the price, but there is enough in here to show glimpses of a future solid title.

P.S. Shameless video play plug and to the devs, I'm sorry my streaming made the game look like it performs worse than it actually does :-(

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HblXseaXGzs
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100 of 130 people (77%) found this review helpful
Not Recommended
31.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2014
Warning: Stream edition is missing retail gameplay
I’m not talking about the game being release in two halves. There’s actually locked doors and three quests in part 1 that can only be opened in the retail edition. It’s not available on the steam version, even to earliest of the early adaptors like myself. And there's nothing in the game to tell you this, so expect to waste time backtracking because you don't know which bits you were supposed to come back to with your new shiny, and which bits were never meant for you at all.

Chapter 1 is great. There’s a good mixture of combat and plot. Chapters 2 & 3 and the other hand is just combat. The combat’s not bad, but that’s really all there is to Chapters 2 & 3 so if you looking for something other than grind, stay away.

I played through to the end, but wished I hadn’t bothered.

Pros:
  • Excellent art design. Each level is both pretty and functional. The ability to switch to a ‘ghost world’ gets twice the millage out of each level without it feeling tired or forced.
  • The ability to switch between characters is quite cool and well implemented. All characters receive XP whether they are in the party or not, so there’s no penalty for trying one out. The characters each have a distinct feel even though they all fall into one of three classes (ranged, magic, melee).
  • Bosses are varied and feel special.
  • In the configuration settings, you can change the ‘highlight loot/interactive area’ key from push-and-hold to toggle-on-and-off.
  • Tom Baker voice over.

[b[Cons:[/b]
  • There are no movement keys. It’s right click to move, left click to attack. This makes most combat stationary and a battle of health bars rather than something dynamic and exciting. There is some ability to kite by switching between ghost and meat characters (and you’ll be doing that a lot in chapter 3).
  • Some of the later levels have you backtracking across multiple levels without fast travel no apparent reason.
  • The game engine does not support multiple CPUs or GPUs (source: dev posting in the comments). My 4 core, GTX 970 SLI config could barely manage 40FPS on max settings.
    Mob difficulty level is all over the place, typically at the start of a new chapter.
  • Skill are unbalanced.
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135 of 201 people (67%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
30.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2014
If you are looking for another Diablo game, this is not it.

Cons:

EDIT: No more crashes happened after that first one so I guess this is a non-issue
"It still has some technical issues but I only experienced 1 crash so far and you can say I abused the game quite a lot. Most games can't take the amount of Alt+Tab that I throw at them but this one did. :)"

EDIT: this getting stuck has not happened in a long time.
"The most annoyng technical issue I ran into is related to collision when the character gets stuck on a level difference, and that usually happens when there are 7 enemies around him."


EDIT: the con mentioned on the next row has been solved and combat is now more spectaluar and you can see clearly who you hit (can be seen in episodes 16+ of the series I linked below)

"The combat could be a little more spectacular, and by that I mean, a few more clues of who your abilities hit when you use them." <-not valid anymore as of 03.dec.14

EDIT2: the below mentioned con has been addressed in the patch from 04.dec so now all enemies are manageable.
"EDIT: but I can add a new con and that is about game balance. Some enemies are to tough, some are not tough enough and some characters get loads of good gear, and others you spend 6 levels with the same thing. I know that in this game, stats don't scale like in other arpg's but still it is a little annoying. "

Pros

EDIT: there have been 3-4 patches since launch and they have fixed almost everything that I had a problem with. I really like that they moved pretty fast on issues that mattered and not just promises. I also like they interact with the players here in the Steam Community forums and are open minded about stuff. (I don't have any relation with the developers, I just find them to be some of the cooler people in the business about how they handle stuff)

This game has a nice story, interesting characters and awesome voice acting.

The developers are invested in making the game awesome, and the progression the game has seen in the last 6 months is really impressive, so I have very high hopes, they will fix all the annoying stuff. :)

I find combat to be more satisfying than that of other arpg's because you need to employ tactics when fighting enemies, not just spam Blizzard of Fire :) (I have hundreds of hours of D3 but sometimes it annoys the hell out of me :))

I have made a playthrough series with the hunter/archer and there you can see the tactics I talk about. Once you get past the first chapter, (on normal mode) you will need to synergize your abilities if you want to be able to kill the enemies efficiently. For efficent killing speed, you'll need to use your puppets in synergy. Also you'll need to synergize your Devourer and your Puppets since some enemies need both to be killed.(you can see this in episode 8 of my series if you want)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v5M3T6ArHoE


EDIT: If you feel that my review is solely to boost my videos, please do not visit them, but go and find gameplay footage on youtube from other people. There is plenty to choose from. I wrote this review because I love this game, how it progressed and how it is still progressing.

Edit:

If you want to see why I am optimistic about this game take a look at how the game was 6 months ago compared to how it is now and you'll see the progress I am talking about.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-7ADizNWHe8
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35 of 42 people (83%) found this review helpful
Recommended
19.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 24, 2014
This game is amazingly well done. Excellent story line thus far, flexibility in how you approach things, and an innovative method of dealing with a "party" type situation without having a party following you. You are able to switch back and forth between playing a soul devourer and his many meat puppets. The game pay reminds me on some levels of the genius of the old game Soulbringer,in that you uncover things and sometimes need to accomplish objectives both on the mortal plane, and on the astral.

The environments are stunningly beuatiful, especially when playing using the DirectX 11 drivers. This is an amazingly well-done game. This is not your typical hack and slasher. Some moral grey areas throughout on potential situations. I have not played far enough through with multiple playthroughs to determine how this affects the overarching story or potential endings yet, but I cannot wait to keep on plugging away and explore those sorts of options. A very enjoyable game. Well-done.
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43 of 56 people (77%) found this review helpful
Recommended
1.5 hrs on record
Posted: August 27, 2015
After some embittering issues with their publisher, Games Farm has re-acquired control of their IP - including their classic Kult: Heretic Kingdoms. Rewarding customers with more game instead of a paywall was how they decided to celebrate.

Any dev who puts their fans first will always be a winner to me.
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46 of 62 people (74%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
18.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 26, 2014
Gameplay Review

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PLIimXdq5c0

+ Visuals & Level design
+ Voice Acting
+ Easy to get to grips with
+ Exploration and questing
+ Fluent movement
+ Dual-realm mechanics and puzzles
+ Moral choices
+ Easy to sink hours into
+ Multiple characters to choose from
+ Expansive maps
+ Very challenging bosses

- Story is poorly presented
- No co-op
- Combat is slow to begin
- Gear Drops are fairly rare
- Prologue is a poor first impression

Overall I would recommend this game for people who are willing to give it a chance. Once you get past the first couple hours, combat becomes more fluid and exciting and the story begins to open up. Not recommended if you are looking for a fast paced ARPG focused on gear and loot drops.
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22 of 23 people (96%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
24.0 hrs on record
Posted: March 12, 2015
OK from Scratch.. i had a real Love/hate thing going at the beginning.. it was somewhat confusing and the whole issue between the Devs and the Publisher and the ? regarding Book 2 ... Get to act 2 before you make any hastey reviews as i did.
Act 2 the game became really pretty amazing.. you worked out the wrinkles and confusion you get a few more puppets and that changes the entire play value.. if book 2 never comes book 1 alone is well worth the asking price imo.. a very attractive game sound/ graphics/mechanics all i would rate fairly high.. but the true fun comes once you have a selection of puppets to control.. it was a game changer for me.. i sincerely hope book 2 makes it to release it desreves to.
for 20 bucks i got a good deal
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70 of 106 people (66%) found this review helpful
Recommended
3.5 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: June 13, 2014
Overall, in just the short time I've had to play it, I would recommend this as a game. Yes, it is Early Acess (pre-alpha), combat feels a little slugish, same for picking up items, art work (for what ive seen) has been awesome, sound track has been engaging, need click+hold attacking. On the upside, switching between members is fun, seeing both the light/shadow sides and being able to level both seperate is a great thing to have. In its current state, I'd give it a 7/10, but I strongly believe it will only get better from here.
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25 of 29 people (86%) found this review helpful
Recommended
13.1 hrs on record
Posted: June 25, 2015
NOTE: I'm still playing this game, and haven't finished the first book yet, I'll probably update this review as soon as I've finished my first playthrough of book 1.
Also, I'm trying to keep this as spoiler-free as possible, so some things may be worded quite vaguely. My apologies for that.

Shadows: Heretic Kingdoms is one of the most interesting games I've ever played. The gameplay is similar to that of Diablo 3, in that you have the same camera perspective and you basically spam your abilities to kill enemies. However, this game does it with a simple twist, the ability to move between two realms at will.

What this simple mechanic does, is that you actually need to think whenever you're fighting against a group of enemies, as some of them are exclusive to one of either realms. I thoroughly enjoyed battling a boss, and using this to my advantage.

The story of the game has been pretty good so far, and the characters that you control are quite interesting. The fact that your characters have their very own story adds a huge amount of replayability to the game which is really nice.

Despite all the good points though, some players may not enjoy the game that much due to the rather slow progression in stats and power, I haven't had any trouble with enemies on normal mode yet, but you don't feel very powerful either, since you'll die quickly if you stay within the range of your enemies' attacks. Do take note that I play a ranged character, it is possible that melee characters do not suffer from this issue.

I personally believe that the slow progression is kind of nice. It really is a great feeling when you finally level up, like you really accomplished something. And usually you do notice a change in power due to the scaling as you invest skill points into skills or passives.

Graphics-wise the game is absolutely gorgeous, particle effects in combat are not over the top and flow nicely. The environmental art within the game is great too. Alongside the music and narrative it really immerses yourself within the game.

One should most definitely buy this game if they enjoy a good story with a large amount of side-quests and simple, yet mechanically interesting combat.

TL;DR
If you would enjoy a game with a fair amount of exploration and story. Buy this.
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39 of 54 people (72%) found this review helpful
Recommended
9.6 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: October 30, 2014
I had been jumping from game to game looking for something with an interesting story to follow that wasn't long winded as heck. This game is pretty interesting because you get to play as a demon and its 'puppet(s)'

When I first started playing I thought it was going to be just the demon and one character...then I found another puppet...I also went to the soul place and saw many soul diases.

Best Mechanic (Pre-10/30/2014 Patch): Collecting new puppets.
Worst Mechanic (Pre-10/30/2014 Patch): Loot, The RNG hates me...
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