While Xbox 360 owners have been able to enjoy both, A Kingdom for Keflings and A World of Keflings, NinjaBee’s simulation games, PlayStation 3 owners have had to suffer as exclusivity has got in the way. Well, that is no longer the case as NinjaBee has finally brought the simulated love over to the PlayStation 3 in the form of Akimi Village. Have NinjaBee just thrown something together to make PS3 owners happy or is the next step in console simulation games?
Akimi Village’s story is that you take control of a young child, girl or boy, and you must save the Akimi world from the “gloom” (darkness covering parts of the map) that is currently enveloping it. The Akimi elder promises to return you to your own world once you have completed your task and thus begins your adventure. You will only speak to the elder at certain points throughout the game and the story isn’t really that deep but as this is a simulation game, that’s not really a problem at all.
Now, that you are free to move your character it is time to get to work. You begin the game with a small number of Akimi that are under your control. These Akimi can gather and transport resources or work in buildings crafting different things. As you are around three times their size, they leave the construction of buildings to you which can be done by placing down certain materials next to each other on a clear area of the map. Some buildings may require water nearby but this is easily pointed out by the schematic that is shown in the corner of the screen. Being bigger also allows you to help the Akimi gather or transport resources should you find yourself with nothing else to do but it’s your choice except for a short while at the beginning of the game where you will want to accelerate the start-up process.
Once you have built some of the basic buildings, you will have the opportunity to upgrade your temple which is situated at the top of the map. This leads to the expansion of your land by clearing some of the gloom and also frees some of the trapped Akimi in these areas. Unlike the Kefling games where you had access to the entire map from the beginning, this way of playing feels much more rewarding as you progress your way through the map an area at a time. Although the upgrading of the temple leads to such wondrous things as this, there didn’t seem to be any real bonuses to upgrading your other buildings, other than having to do this in order to progress through the build tree, although some of these buildings also seemed a little pointless and more for the look of your village rather than having any practical use.
You control the Akimi by picking them up and placing them next to a resource or into a building where they will change into suitable clothing depending what they are doing, which makes identifying them much easier. A gathering Akimi will sport a nice little basket on his back while an Akimi transporting resources will pull a rickshaw around, which when upgrading will have wings to make it go faster. The Akimi in the buildings don’t tend to change much in appearance but then, they also don’t leave their buildings so you don’t need to bother them once they have been placed. Providing you structure your village well, you shouldn’t have any problems with Akimi bumping into each other and it’s not difficult to send them on a different route should problems arise.
Akimi Village has a very different look to the Kefling games and is set in an Asian style world which works very well. The buildings look very nice and for those of you who like to have a beautiful looking village, you will not be disappointed in the design of these architectures and the Akimi that inhabit them. Akimi Village is a very fun game and if you like to spend hours and hours collecting resources and building a small empire then for less than ten pounds, this is the game for you.