Kingsgrave‘s trailer begins with echoing, twanging strings, transporting me back to the Rogue Encampment from Diablo 2. It’s dark, nature has overtaken once mighty fortresses, crushing them to ruins beneath her mighty grasp. There’s a moodiness in the air, a gloominess that’s tantalizing, yet the artstyle is top-down and pixelated, akn to Stardew Valley despite its darker theme.
Kingsgrave thrusts you into the (rather snazzy) shoes of a once-fallen monarch, who has been plucked from his seemingly eternal slumber to help stamp out a vicious new disease that has overtaken the land. As your citizens flee and monsters spawn in their place, it’s up to you to defeat this new evil and unite this wartorn world.
Yes, all of that sounds similar to Blizzard’s iconic action RPG series – especially when you throw in the various power-boosting shrines that are scattered throughout the world, as well as gear scaling and looting mechanics. Yet, the artstyle itself is giving Stardew Valley vibes – pixelated and top-down instead of the dramatic, hyper-realistic gore that defines Diablo.
But the similarities to Stardew aren’t just skin deep. You’ll have to collect resources to unlock new abilities, and as you cast the demons back to whence they came you can rebuild your settlements to try and give your now destitute subjects a home. From there, you’ll have to complete their requests which, in turn, lets you acquire some nice little rewards.
As someone who loves a bit of grit and gore, Stardew Valley has never appealed to me, but given the clear Diablo inspirations with Kingsgrave, this feels right up my alleyway. Plus, we won’t have to wait much longer to play it, either.
Kingsgrave will have a playable demo at Steam Next Fest, which runs from Monday February 5 to Monday February 12. So you’ll be able to try it out when the festivities kick off.
Yet, somehow, it gets even better than that. The Kingsgrave release date is set for Wednesday April 17, meaning you’ll be able to try it out next week, then won’t have to wait long before you can play the entire thing.
In the meantime, though, we have a list of free Steam games to keep you busy, and a rundown of the best Diablo 4 builds if you’re spending your time tearing demons asunder with your new Seneschal companion.