Top Critic Average
Kingdom is a truly beautiful game that takes the core concepts of strategy games and cuts the genre's mechanics to the bone. This minimalism cuts both ways, leaving some parts of the game obtuse or frustratingly uncontrollable. Despite this, Kingdom is relentlessly addictive and replayable.
Ultimately Kingdom is a game that's easy to love. Combining exploration, micromanagement and strategy in a way that continually feels personal and intimate is no easy task, but it achieves it by forcing you to do everything yourself. While simplicity is the key to the game's mechanics, keeping everything on a very human scale is probably at the core of how it makes you feel. Very few strategy or management games manage to present things on a street level scale, but Kingdom does it perfectly and it's all the better for it.
Kingdom very cleverly reduces a complex genre down to something digestible, but that same simplification struggles against its later scope. When your land grows too wide, traveling end to end becomes a chore (it can waste entire day/night cycles), while getting to that point requires gaming somewhat imprecise AI.
Kingdom has solid ideas that get lost in its own simplicity. It's a little too conceptual, and I found that it had a hard time holding my attention after a few in-game days. It has a whole kingdom out there to explore, but it just isn't varied or interesting enough to warrant the type of commitment it ask of the player.
Kingdom is clever and definitely a fresh experience. A solid management system is held back by a lack of control and stumbling AI. Growing your kingdom is a satisfying feeling, however you'll be pulling your hair out by the time it comes crashing down.