Wigmund. The Return Of The Hidden Knights Early Access Review
Early access has become the way forward for many PC developers. We’ve witnessed plenty of unfinished cash-ins, granted, but when used correctly, you can fine-tune gameplay with consistent feedback. Making that jump next is Wigmund. The Return Of The Hidden Knights is a medieval-themed adventure RPG by The Scholastics. Unfortunately, I can’t really tell you how it plays, since I couldn’t get past the first area. This isn’t a case of Wigmund being too difficult, unless you count repeated gameplay crashing as an added challenge. Genuinely, it was unplayable.
For further clarity, this review build was running on version 0.7.4c. Now, as a PC game, you’ll likely ask what my setup is, if it can’t run this small indie game. You can find my specs here but, as a general point, using a 2-year-old PC that runs Gears 5 at max settings should have been fine.
Even on the lowest graphics, Wigmund crashed again. Sometimes that gave me Unreal Engine 4 “fatal errors”. Others, it crashed without any warning after dying. There’s autosave in place, and you can manually save outside combat, but basic progression shouldn’t need to rely on save-scumming.
So, what could I play? Well, Wigmund starts at chapter 3 and presently, I’m unsure if that’s a deliberate plot setup or a restriction of early access. The Scholastics has confirmed only two out of six locations are currently present, also lacking the promised open-world map. The opening takes us straight to the King’s castle, playing the titular character. You’ll be accompanied by two companions, Cyneric and Wigstan, seeking answers to what happened with your King, battling through hordes of strange creatures.
Wigmund holds a standard moveset, letting him slice enemies with his equipped weapon in different motions. This isn’t a game where you can just mindlessly slash your way through, advancement requires some defensive manoeuvres. You can block incoming attacks, quickly dodge with a step backwards, and even parry attacks. Food items are scattered about like apples and fish, offering gradual health restoration, but they won’t save you from poor strategy.
You’ve also got special attacks, allowing Wigmund to charge his blade or perform a ranged strike at surrounding enemies. Equipment is scattered around the level too, allowing some in-depth armour customisation that goes from helmet to boots. Should you fancy a new weapon, I was able to locate different swords and an axe. What I was able to play seemed fun and relied on your defensive strategy. It felt a touch uninspired, but when dealing with a game that repeatedly crashes, immersion is a tough thing to build.
Unfortunately, there’s not a lot else I can say on this one. This isn’t a case of Wigmund having a few bugs, or a Cyberpunk 2077 situation where it’s outright glitching. What I was able to play worked, and it feels like there’s an enjoyable adventure to be found. However, if I can’t access it without the game frequently shutting itself down, that means nothing. I hope The Scholastics get this fixed quickly because right now, I cannot recommend Wigmund in this current state.