As a reviewer I was often forced to play games I hated, this turned me into a jaded gamer who was fueled only by getting free copies of games and making witty comments ripping apart shitty games. As this proves to be quite the volatile combination, you can imagine I didn’t work with many companies for long unless I tucked away that ball of rage known as video game reviewing and pretended everything was either okay or the best game ever. I had gotten this down to a science writing for that newspaper nobody read (The San Gabriel Valley Examiner Newspaper – which they legally request I remind people I no longer write for) by looking at the back of the box, reading IGN and checking to see what the public at large thought.

After all, I was writing for a right wing republican rag in the middle of nowhere, the staff consisted of mainly the elderly and the near dead who stayed alive much the same way I did, by rage. Sadly most of them focused their rage on the youth of today or the poor, or whatever else elderly republicans want to crush along with freedom and rights. I harmlessly funneled my anger into reviews of Bratz games and Wii titles, finding creative ways of not saying either sucked. A newspaper is no place for honest reviews, and the internet has way too many angry people ranting about stuff, so I simply started ignoring reviews all together. But that would mean the only games I got for free remain to be bottom of the barrel horse petting simulators for the PSP.

So I’m back. I write this blog for you, the reader. It does warm my heart to know that more people read this then I imagine ever read my newspaper article, but it saddens me to think larger companies now avoid contacting me without the backing of a confused elderly hate filled staff that figured my video game newspaper article was less important then the rambling poems of a woman who also happens to buy ad space. So I went back to my roots, the smaller companies, the lesser known developers, the smaller budgets and the newer public relations people. I decided to hit up Ninja Bee on their Xbox Live title Kingdom for Keflings, a game they sent me back when I wrote for the newspaper.

Unfortunately the PR people couldn’t send me a code for the game. I guess they found out I no longer write for the newspaper and must be staunch republicans. But since I am trying to get back to my roots and be honest to myself, the readers and the game, I used some of my own money to buy a game. So in about the first time in 8 years, you will see a review of a game I purchased with my own money.

A Kingdom for Keflings is a pretty fun game, the new DLC is kind of pointless, but cheap and adds some variety to the game, but mainly offers a reason to fix some bugs in the original. You can easily load this title up and play for hours, forgetting what time it is because it has this cheesy soothing vibe to it. You don’t fight monsters; you just gather stuff and build things. It’s an RTS without the fighting. A sandbox mode makes sure you don’t even have to bother with gathering things and the online coop mode makes it easier to play house with a friend or three.

I forget I have this game, then load it up and play from the start and spend hours on it, then quickly forget it again. Yet I always come back to it, when I want to play a game without playing a game. It centers me and its fun. I don’t know why I like it. It’s like catching yourself tapping your toes to elevator music. Speaking of music, this is some of the worst music I’ve ever heard in a game, but thankfully I load up some music of my own or a good book on tape and harvest and build into the wee hours of the morning.

A Kingdom for Keflings is a solid title, that doesn’t stand out in anyway, but offers a unique experience to the Xbox. I don’t regret spending money on it and aside from ripping apart games, it gives me another way to chip away at the mountains of hate in my soul.

Last 5 posts by Brian Jones



Categories: Games, Reviews

9 Responses so far.

  1. I recently started playing this game again and found myself up later than usual trying to build just a few more towers to complete another building. It’s addicting that way because you don’t really want to stop mid build and forget where you left off next time you load it up. But it’s still easier to get back into than other games if you were to set those aside for months.

    I just realized it lacks food crops like some other resource gathering games have. This can be cool though because it’s one less thing to worry about. I guess Keflings are just super beings that don’t need food.

  2. [tlr] says:

    Hmm… Something tells me I got more enjoyment from reading this review than I would from playing the game.


  3. BJones says:

    It is actually a really fun game, you should check it out. It is great for chilling and not stressing while playing a game. A PC version is coming soon.

  4. Steve Taylor says:

    Man, I’ve read a lot of boring reviews of A Kingdom for Keflings, so it was a nice change of pace to read this!

    I helped design the game. One of our goals was to make the game insanely happy. (This is not only where the cheesy soothing vibe comes from, but also why there’s no food gathering, because hey, starving sucks.) My point, though, is that I can’t imagine a better application of the game than to chip away at soul-hate.


    – Steve

    P.S. If you’ll forgive us for not sending you a code for this game, I’d like to correct that in the future. :)

  5. BJones says:

    Thanks Steve, I noticed it was getting pushed aside in reviews, but anyone that has played it, really find the same vibe, it’s a great title and I look forward to new additions and updates, along with other titles from Ninja Bee. I actually did get a code from the original title, I just got the brush off on the DLC, which is only fair, the newspaper didn’t run my original article on this, which was a rather boring review.

  6. Steve Taylor says:

    Ah! Well, that makes sense. Unfortunately, we don’t even GET codes from Microsoft for the DLC, so we have nothing to hand out.

    I sure wish that wasn’t the case. We’d love to be giving out DLC codes to reviewers.

    I even had to buy my own copy, which is a shocking injustice, I’m sure you’ll agree! :)

  7. costumes says:

    I’m pleased someone decided to sooner or later clear things up on this. I have reflected on it numerous times before. :)

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