This, more than any other aspect of Knights of Pen & Paper 2
, is a category where fans of the first game would have said, "Don’t go changin' on us" and the developers clearly took this to heart. Think turn-based and think 8-bit and you’ll be right on track here. It’s not about grinding and 100+ hour epic adventures, but there are nods to both styles of play. What the franchise seems to do better than any other game out there is pay homage to all the RPGs ever, in a very accessible and compact format. It's a bit like comparing the popular card-game Munchkin
to tabletop RPG gaming, but in videogame form.
There are a limited number of true side-quests and secrets, so it's mostly about following the linear path of a story that doesn't always make sense, but always gets laughs. The running joke is about 2nd Edition versus 1st, a dilemma that will feel familiar to all tabletop gamers. The joke feels overused at times, but always prompts a grin if not a chuckle or guffaw. As you play through the storyline quest, you're free to stop off in a town for grinding, but there's not a huge incentive to do this. Mostly, this is a lean-back experience and a break from the complexity of whatever epic RPG or tabletop experience you may be playing elsewhere.
Gaming references and culture references are peppered throughout the game, even more liberally than before. Gameplay elements are really consistent between the two games, making it easy to pick this one up and start playing immediately. Crafting, character building, and using equipped items all feels really familiar, in the best possible way.