This is Gaming Cypher’s PC review for Flat Kingdom, the newly released 2D puzzle platformer that has been in the works for over two years by Fat Panda Games following Steam Greenlight.
The story unfolds with six malicious entities being sealed away into six different jewels and hidden throughout the Flat Kingdom. A prophecy foretells of widespread ruin and chaos upon the kingdom should the jewels be stolen. The player, Flat, is a geometric shape capable of taking on many forms, is summoned by the King in order to chase after the mysterious thief who had kidnapped the Princess and escaped with one of the jewels. Flat embarks on a journey across Flat Kingdom chasing after the mysterious thief, to recover the lost jewel and the Princess.
Gameplay in Flat Kingdom revolves around Flat transforming between his three shapes, Circle, Triangle, and Square in order to solve puzzles and defeat enemies throughout the level. All the shapes have different attributes, and eventually, different abilities. The circle is the best-rounded of the three shapes, with average speed on land and water as well as the ability to double-jump. The Square is the slowest and heaviest of all shapes, being able to endure certain traps as well as destroying obstacles. The triangle is the lightest and fastest of the three shapes, being able to move across the platform quickly and making long jumps. The shapes can “activate” different abilities, some obtained throughout the game, by transforming into a different shape after inputting an action. For example, transforming into a Square following a double-jump as a Circle allows the player to crush certain platforms to open up a new area. Enemies also have different attributes, taking after the three different shapes. Square beats triangle, triangle beats circle, and circle beats square.
Overall, Flat Kingdom was an enjoyable experience, with cute and unique graphics and simple controls. The starting tutorial does a good job in teaching the basic controls and abilities for Flat. The level designs overall are very good, with an enjoyable soundtrack, colorful graphics, and filled with enough enemies and obstacles. There are special music tracks for different areas as well as for different bosses, a nice way of keeping the game “fresh.” The bosses are definitely a highlight in Flat Kingdom, exploring various mechanisms and strategies. There are bosses you can physically fight and damage, while others take up the entire screen and can be only damaged by the environment. One lackluster portion of the game is the development of the story. The story fells very cliché, with a very typical development which can only be reinforced by hidden “pages” throughout the game. The cut scenes following the defeat of a boss felt repetitive, with almost the same dialogues. Certain areas feels slow, or forces the player to painstaking grind through a bunch of easy obstacles. Besides for solving the puzzles and the weak story, there are not any mechanisms that prompt further gameplay. Other areas involve a huge jump in difficulty, with either pixel or frame perfect jumps up ledges or a complex series of jumps. For example, the only way to make a jump across a chasm requires a transformation mid-air from Triangle to Circle, then utilizing the remaining double jump to make it up the ledge.
Overall, I would rate Flat Kingdom a 7 / 10, as there are definitely areas in the story and gameplay that can be improved.
Watch the Flat Kingdom launch trailer:
Flat Kingdom is available for PC on Steam and Humble Store.