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TommyTheWiseGuy

WHAT is the deal with Kenshi?

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I've been trying to play Kenshi off and on for the past six months and I REALLY don't get it.

Every time I've checked online for other peoples opinions, the game gets insanely praised.

 

It's not that I have a problem with the difficulty of the game, but from what I've played it just feels so empty. The map is huge and content is so thinly spread, which wouldn't be a problem if each location felt truly unique, which it doesn't. Locations seem copy and pasted, you see the same pub and store layout in just about every city. The description of the game makes out like you're just another person in the land and the world will live around you, which now reads like total baloney considering 90% of the inhabitants won't even talk to you.

 

It doesn't feel (to me) like there is any incentive to play on into the game. While leveling up your character(s) is satisfying, when you think about why you're leveling up your character(s) you find you don't have much reason.

 

Within the first few hours of my most recent play through, I had managed to get enough cats to get (seemingly) some of the best armor and weapons purchasable, after which I found myself stuck on the question, what do I do. 

 

It doesn't feel like the game offers any real customization of ones characters aside from them just being skilled at tasks. It just seems like everyone online is using their imagination to impose personality on these empty husks (which is fine but this is a video game and you could do that with rocks).

 

The game misses so many opportunists to let the player express who they want they're characters to be, when raiders chase after you, there should be many ways to resolve the encounter. You could have an option to persuade/intimidate your way out based on a skill, they could demand a certain amount of valuables from you, they could keep a party member hostage and force you to complete a mission for them, depending on your race and gender you could persuade them in other ways... you know what I mean). Instead they hit you with sticks until you fall down and then they leave all your gear.

 

I DON'T GET IT.

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You can always make your own settlement. I simply enjoy crippling people and putting them in cages. There's not much else to do. You level up, get fat loot, get cash, explore.

You can also destroy factions that you don't like, some of their cities will be taken by their enemies, and the Holy Nation dudes will be hungry if you destroy their farms. It doesn't really matter, they can't starve to death. Hungry bandits and Dust Bandits will fuck off and leave you alone if you give them money.

 

For me it's a murder hobo simulator and stealing random shit for the lolz, later on it becomes a colony management game with endless base defense. I'm pretty sure that bandits took your stuff or at least money once they knocked out all of your dudes, or maybe it was added by a mod.

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You got it right in the first sentence of the second paragraph.

 

"It's not that I have a problem with the difficulty of the game, but from what I've played it just feels so empty. "

 

It's clear the developer or small team involved managed to get the engine part down.  They were not able to make a completely 'living' world or give the player a point to it.  As such it becomes a huge sandbox and that's it.  While those games can be fun, having a little direction or a side plot is never a bad idea.

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On 5/18/2020 at 9:14 AM, TommyTheWiseGuy said:

I DON'T GET IT.

So it seems. I've only recently got Kenshi and I find it highly enjoyable. Like in any good sandbox game out there, you set set your own game goal and challenges. My current playthrough is a single slave. First challenge was to get out of Rebirth (I got it on the 2nd try) and subsequently I'm creating a band of misfits (mainly non-humans and females) to take down the Holy Nation.

 

Long story short, look up Kenshi challenge modes for ideas on how to play. No stealing, no crafting, no building, limited number of characters, the list goes on.

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On 5/30/2020 at 7:50 AM, kamycek7 said:

So it seems. I've only recently got Kenshi and I find it highly enjoyable. Like in any good sandbox game out there, you set set your own game goal and challenges. My current playthrough is a single slave. First challenge was to get out of Rebirth (I got it on the 2nd try) and subsequently I'm creating a band of misfits (mainly non-humans and females) to take down the Holy Nation.

 

Long story short, look up Kenshi challenge modes for ideas on how to play. No stealing, no crafting, no building, limited number of characters, the list goes on.

Not saying the game needs a story or anything, but I think it leaves too much to the imagination. If it's really going to put all it's eggs into the Sandbox basket, then I think it should have some more systems.

 

I think it's cool that you're finding ways to enjoy the game more, but I feel like a game shouldn't need you to deliberately restrict yourself for you to find new ways to enjoy it. I don't know why all role playing games don't have a system where you can be talented at one thing, but then be heavily penalized at another, sort of like the quirks in Fallout New Vegas but more major.

 

Like I said, I think people like making up personalities and relations between their characters in these kind of games, but I don't think that's good enough. In a world that is supposed to be an RPG, your characters personality and relations should be a huge aspect of the game at all times, in Kenshi it just kind of determines whether or not people attack you.

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On 5/30/2020 at 1:50 AM, MADcat17 said:

Think of it like a huge sandbox where you can do whatever you want. Mods do help with the emptiness of the base game.

 

The problem is that most of the gameplay is just grind.  Grind for stats, grind for cats, grind for materials to make a settlement and then spend the rest of your life fighting off the waves of bandits that attack it every thirty fucking seconds.  Exploration is really only there as a means to acquire research materials.  The lore, while interesting, is still kind of lacking - "There was once a great, advanced civilization, it fell, we're living in the aftermath."  OK and... that's it? 

 

Having some kind of plot or story to find out more about that lost civilization would be a great place to start, or having the ability to discover ancient relics that let to something other than "make swords that are more stabby" in the end.  Imagine finding lost records from thousands of years before describing life in that world before it fell.  Imagine finding some kind of compact fusion generator in a ruin that could power your whole colony.  Imagine discovering a new type of farmable plant with healing properties.

 

So yeah... so much untapped potential, and sadly 90% of the mods revolve around anime (because of course they do) rather than adding any sense of real content.

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I think you may have missed the point of the game. It doesnt care about you. It is a sparsely populated world and you are in it. What you do is up to you. A sandbox. 

 

Imagine Fallout without the story/quests. That is a sandbox.

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1 hour ago, rdrakken said:

I think you may have missed the point of the game. It doesnt care about you. It is a sparsely populated world and you are in it. What you do is up to you. A sandbox. 

 

Imagine Fallout without the story/quests. That is a sandbox.

So, Fallout 76 at launch?

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On 5/18/2020 at 9:14 AM, TommyTheWiseGuy said:

I DON'T GET IT.

I share your feelings. I watched the trailers and read descriptions and thought "So... ok?" I played Conan Exiles for a while where it's similar, although there is at least some story and stuff. But it has multiplayer and there i see more sense to come up with your own story and things. Imho... when i play a single player game, i want to be told a story. When i have to tell it myself, i want somebody that listens, otherwise it feels... wasted. But ofc that's entirely subjective and not every game has to be for everyone. 

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On 6/19/2020 at 6:35 AM, rdrakken said:

I think you may have missed the point of the game. It doesnt care about you. It is a sparsely populated world and you are in it. What you do is up to you. A sandbox. 

 

Imagine Fallout without the story/quests. That is a sandbox.

I totally get that part. I would LOVE if more game shared the design of a world that treats you as if you were just another NPC rather than all being power fantasies.

 

However the game should make ME care about IT. And Kenshi just makes me feel like I've wasted hours playing a really primitive simulation, and I've spent countless hours modding skyrim.

 

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14 hours ago, TommyTheWiseGuy said:

However the game should make ME care about IT. 

 

A sandbox should not MAKE you or anyone do anything...it then becomes the opposite of a sandbox. Stick to themepark games if you need guidance. Games like this are not meant for many people.

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17 hours ago, TommyTheWiseGuy said:

I totally get that part. I would LOVE if more game shared the design of a world that treats you as if you were just another NPC rather than all being power fantasies.

 

However the game should make ME care about IT. And Kenshi just makes me feel like I've wasted hours playing a really primitive simulation, and I've spent countless hours modding skyrim.

 

The Sims series does exactly that. One can even switch between families to further drive home the general lack of importance of one's individual sims. The Third installment is even semi-open world with a decent amount of world building options. 

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6 hours ago, rdrakken said:

A sandbox should not MAKE you or anyone do anything...it then becomes the opposite of a sandbox. Stick to themepark games if you need guidance. Games like this are not meant for many people.

I'm not saying the game needs more guidance, I'm saying the "Sandbox" should have more sand it... and less toddler shit, because did I mention in the first post how bad the game looks?

 

But seriously. I'm not asking Kenshi to be more like Fallout (if that's what you mean by themepark games).

 

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Not being condescending or anything, cause sometimes text can be taken wrong. But I don't think the game is intended for you, its a pretty niche audience it aims for. The developer wanted a game that he wanted to play, and the game never lied or misled anything about what it is or isn't. It makes it pretty clear what it is.

 

He is making a Kenshi 2, but it'll probably be pretty much the same game with improvements (whatever they may be) and better graphics.

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5 hours ago, Sylandras said:

Not being condescending or anything, cause sometimes text can be taken wrong. But I don't think the game is intended for you, its a pretty niche audience it aims for. The developer wanted a game that he wanted to play, and the game never lied or misled anything about what it is or isn't. It makes it pretty clear what it is.

 

He is making a Kenshi 2, but it'll probably be pretty much the same game with improvements (whatever they may be) and better graphics.

I don't think whether or not the game is for me excludes it from being criticized. I want to clarify that I'm not saying the game has to be what I want it to be, of course not, it can be whatever the creator want and if I don't like it then too bad for me. My original post just trying to get a discussion going about how I and other people feel about the game.

 

Also I'm actually super excited for Kenshi 2 and I hope it's more my thing.

 

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On 6/22/2020 at 11:45 PM, TommyTheWiseGuy said:

I'm not saying the game needs more guidance, I'm saying the "Sandbox" should have more sand it... and less toddler shit, because did I mention in the first post how bad the game looks?

 

But seriously. I'm not asking Kenshi to be more like Fallout (if that's what you mean by themepark games).

 


Again, this type of game is clearly not for you. It fits right in with others just like it. ARK, Conan Exiles, Space Engineer, Bannerlord...and they should not change. Mid range games of this type are already being made. The Fallout type games. Enjoy those because those that play this style of sandbox love them.

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On 6/28/2020 at 3:15 AM, rdrakken said:


Again, this type of game is clearly not for you. It fits right in with others just like it. ARK, Conan Exiles, Space Engineer, Bannerlord...and they should not change. Mid range games of this type are already being made. The Fallout type games. Enjoy those because those that play this style of sandbox love them.

Sandbox is a blanket term and none of those games you just mentioned have much in common except for not having a  distinct, predetermined goal. Again, not my problem with Kenshi.

 

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On 7/3/2020 at 1:10 AM, TommyTheWiseGuy said:

Sandbox is a blanket term and none of those games you just mentioned have much in common except for not having a  distinct, predetermined goal. Again, not my problem with Kenshi.

 

How many more times are you going to show this genre is not for you?


All of the games I mentioned are sandboxes.

All of them having the ability to build what you like.
All of them have open worlds where you actually dont matter.

All of them have no set goal.

All of them have very large worlds with content spread thin.

All of them require YOU, to create incentive to play, for YOU to say "What do I do now".
All of them have just skillsets for characters to do tasks...like almost every other game ever made as well.

You have your opinion, your opinion clearly tells everyone that you need to avoid these types of games. There is nothing wrong with that, no gamer enjoys all types of games...the problems come from those that just cannot accept that simple fact.

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At least in case of Bannerlord and Kenshi we are talking about RPGs. Pretty old school also. With improving skills and parameters but without special abilities. Which is so refreshing.

In original M&B you couldn't even build that much save for few improvements in villages and then you couldn't even see it. But you could assume a role of a knight/mercenary/merchant/bandit and deal with NPCs (who were reacting on you!)

 

In Kenshi you can build a lot and develop new tech but you are supposed to assume some role as well. Except that in Kenshi you rarely meet named characters and even less often they are worthy of your attention. So what makes it a sandbox is lack of any storyline and quests. Ergo it is unfinished RPG not a sandbox by design. In fact many so called sandboxes nothing more than unfinished games.

 

Definitely bad for all of them and it isn't a coincidence that many mods for original M&B included a storyline. Some attempts to improve dead world of Kenshi were made as well, such as new dialog mods and new NPC mods. However what we are waiting for is a story. Few interactions with some NPCs giving a hint about the past (or about local area) truly shine and without them Kenshi would be boring.

 

"This game is not for you" is a lame excuse. Player's actions only worthy if there is a goal. For a while your goal is to explore/invent/build/conquer. Then you have nothing. All of it was pointless. If this is the end - than it comes too fast. And its sad cause just when you finally made it to the top you realize that all this time you have been masturbating but there won't be an orgasm.

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On 6/23/2020 at 4:41 AM, FauxFurry said:

The Sims series does exactly that. One can even switch between families to further drive home the general lack of importance of one's individual sims.

The Sims does different thing. Every little sim actually an individual and aside of his or her skills have quirks and habits, hobbies and preferences. Sims have relationships and they do recognize and react on each other. They love and hate, like or dislike each other and they can act on their own. Kenshi probably closest to The Sims but not the same. In Kenshi characters undeveloped and won't do anything on their own although there is mod which allows you to assign default NPC behavior to your squad so they will perform some activity but it's very limited in comparison to complicated character behavior in The Sims.

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