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The Kindred (PC)

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From the minds of husband and wife team Matthew and Helen Dudley comes The Kindred, an agricultural and societal survival game in a voxel style…think Minecraft farming.

Published by Nkida Gaming Inc and Developed by Persistent Studios, this game is an objective driven game designed to bring out the builder, creator and farmer in you. These very cute characters, known as Kin, are an instant community who work together to create their own little civilisation. This is achieved through building homes and fences, creating crop fields, mining minerals and chopping trees, gathering supplies, herding and housing animals and occasionally needing to gather your supplies from them.


The voxel world, blocks upon blocks, is laid out in a beautiful mix of colours and each map is unique based on difficulty set and world size. You are given an assortment of lush green hills and valleys, trees for harvesting and those supplying wood, minerals of all varieties for crafting, and each map has a strong water component flowing through it giving you a great feeling that this world is all your own. Cows, sheep and chickens can also be found across the area and can be corralled for your own farm.

A lot of the strategy of the game is based on clever use of resources. You need meat, but how much can you take without wiping out the animals completely? How many trees can you afford to cut down? And how do you source plants that you have no seeds for?


The game introduces you to each of these concepts gradually, but it’s not without some effort on your part. As a survival game not everything is explained and your Kin depend on your skills and planning in order to survive and build a sustainable world. Your Kin do not speak audibly but give you a clue about what you need to do through speech bubbles as they work and move around. They do need a bit of attention but as long as you have everything available to them they are fairly self-sufficient.

At the time of my Early Access (Alpha) play through, a tutorial was included to explain the basics of making beds and tools, creating a working power supply and harvesting crops for sustenance. It did not however explain some of the low level requirements for looking after your Kin. I am hopeful that this will be included at a later time in production. The game does, however, provide you with some simple objectives to create your world and gives you a rough idea of where to look to complete them.

Controls and navigating menus can take some time to get used to but are effective. Moving around the map and altering perspective is easy, and they have even included a first person angle if you want to get down on the ground with your Kin. Selecting the item you want wasn’t always fluid in the Alpha trial, but with some polishing this should improve.

Moving your Kin around is simple and effective and they have a nice, simplistic range of actions available. But what I liked the most about the character control was that it was mostly task based. For example, if there was a full field of crops ready for harvest, rather than select and command each Kin I could simply highlight the entire crop and choose the harvest action. All available Kin would move together like a swarm of locust to quickly clear the soil ready for the next crop to be seeded. This reduces fiddly controls and doesn’t waste time.

There was no multiplayer or cooperative modes available for me to try, but they are promised in the final product. This could bring a very interesting game play to The Kindred and I’d like to think it would work well. There is even a promise of cross platform multiplayer.

The soundtrack which ran behind the gameplay was a very relaxing and unimposing tune which was enjoyable enough and did not detract at all from the focus on the tasks at hand.
You are given multiple maps, difficulties and save slots allowing you to start as many little communities as you like. The Kindred is the kind of game that you could sink many hours of gameplay into, and as there is no story line as such the amount of time it will pull is entirely up to you. I spent a good 12hrs on the game and I felt that I had barely scratched the surface. My dwellings were still very simplistic. My farm was running well and I had plenty of supplies, but there was still a lot I could have done.


The Kindred is available through Steam and will play well on just about any PC or laptop, but the stats can be found with the game at the link below.


-Remutha


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AGE

aussie gamers express

building

crafting

farming

indie

kindred

pc

steam

strategy

survival

voxel

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