A Kingdom of Snorings.
A god game is a construction and management simulation that casts the player of controlling the game on the large scale as a divine entity... if you believe what you read on Wikipedia. In reality, it is a genre comprised of building just about everything, bossing other people around, and hiding in the clouds. Odd that a deity would be sheepish. But in A Kingdom of Keflings, a download on the Xbox Live Arcade, you skip all that high and mighty garbage and instead are on the ground with your subjects, the aptly named "Keflings".
[image1]A Kefling is a tiny, mythical creature that can't do anything on its own but wander around like fantastically useless Lilliputians. You must first show the lazy plebes how to do simple things like chopping down trees or digging up rocks. You do this by picking them up and setting them down in front of whatever task you wish them to do. Perhaps it's less a matter of them being stupid and more a lack of motivation. Once you have shown them how to do whatever it is, you then have to show them where to take whatever material they're cultivating. So for quick learners, they're still pretty thick. Once you've gathered enough materials, you then have to build things.
Yes, you have to build things, which in the grand scheme of things, makes you less a god and more an enormous day-laborer. First, you have to gather the different parts of whatever it is you're building (bedroom, kitchen, observatory, waterslide) and then assemble them in predetermined arrangements, like a set of incredibly boring Lego blueprints. The game tells you exactly how to arrange the pieces and also bold-facedly tells what to build next, so there's no strategy involved. To make this lack of strategy even more insulting, you're told what to build next by the mayor or king or overlord or whatever. So much for being a deity.
[image2]There's no variety in just what kind of crap you build; it's just more and more stuff to clutter the surrounding countryside. It’s like Baby’s First God-Game where all the thinking is reduced to a puzzle with only two pieces and somebody has already put them together. This is great if you have some sort of vendetta against wide-open spaces and thinking, but otherwise you're probably better off playing another, better game.
You get to use your Xbox avatar, which is a fairly shallow reason to try this game, and playing it for that alone is admitting Microsoft was right in forcing players to use NXE, an OS that's even less intuitive than the "Blades" OS. One might think a feat of making a game this shitty would be insurmountable.
There really isn't much more worth mentioning about this game. Seasons change, but it doesn't make any difference. You can play with up to three friends, but making other people play this would make you a pretty lousy friend. The only reason to play this to the end with a group of people is if you were all poisoned and you wished to die sooner.
[image3]You'd think a company called "Ninja Bee" (Ninjas being the coolest thing since Fonzie, and bees being creatures that build hives without being told) would have made an at least decent game about building things. Within the first hour, I was looking through the menus to find a disaster to wipe out the whole unstimulating lot of them. In most god games (most good god games, that is), you can relieve the frustration of tedious monotony by slaughtering your minions. But sadly, Keflings are magical creatures that can't die, no matter how you neglect or beat them.
With as advanced as gaming technology is getting, a game like this would be a great achievement if it was designed and programmed by a single person…and it was all done underwater with their eyes closed… and if they were seven.