PS3 Review: White Knight Chronicles

Is this a knight in shining armour for the RPG nut?

The story of White Knight Chronicles begins in the kingdom of Balandor, where a princess’s coming-of-age banquet is raided by an evil Corporation called “Wizard”. A boy called Leonard grabs the princess’s hand and leads her to safety in the castle cellars, where he finds a strange suit of armour that transforms him into the White Knight – an ancient warrior with the strength to defeat the Wizard corporation forces. Leonard’s transformation into a mighty hero, the White Knight, is the beginning of a life-changing fantasy experience, fighting against the fiercest enemies.

The story is incredibly clichéd and sadly never manages to establish its story as well as it could have, but what of the traditional RPG elements? Well, besides the usual grinding and going to towns…the rest is linear and pretty forgettable. The combat system is done in real-time as opposed to random encounters, but it’s not as deep as other RPG’s. Turning into the knight is overkill for standard enemies, so it’s best to use it for the boss fights that you come across.

The weird thing about WKC is that it lets you create your own character that doesn’t really play any part in the story, doesn’t speak and feels like a third wheel to the game. It’s nice that you can make your own player and customise them, but for them to not play any major role in the story seems odd. Why not have the main character customisable instead like a certain Commander Shepard from Mass Effect? That way you’d get your customisation, but get him involved in the plot. It would have worked well, especially since this is meant to be the first of 3 games.

The one redeeming feature about White Knight Chronicles is that you can tackle the game online with 3 friends to tackle quests, ultimately the game feels like an MMO minus the first M. The major problem for me is that anything you do in the game is written at the top of the screen and the text box is huge, taking up a huge chunk of it and becomes distracting, but also ugly to boot. The second screenshot gives a good example of what to expect in that regard.

The game looks pretty good in parts, but there are some bad textures in parts which let the game down. Character models are a mixed bag, but there are some high-production values to be found in cutscenes. Voice-acting is embarrassing at times, but it’s just not believable and ruins the already clichéd story that never manages to make any real impact. Considering the hype surrounding the game before launch, it’s a major disappointment that the game most were looking forward to, turns out to be a mess both in terms of story and gameplay.

The Verdict

White Knight Chronicles never manages to overcome the hurdles of mediocrity and disappointment following a lot of hype. Most RPG nuts will perhaps overlook the imperfections, but they should just stick to FF13 for now…


  1. It took me 45hours to finally beat WKC. I like the game and I will do a second playthrough after i am finished with Star Ocean 4 and Yakuza3. I don’t transform Leonard into a White Knight recklessly. I only use him when I am in a pinch or clearing areas infested with monsters. I waited for this game for years and I am not bit disappointed at all.
    WKC 8.0/10

  2. I totally agree.
    This game has been treated way too unfairly, based upon petty criticisms.
    I have played through ff13 and still would recommend WKC as a great game.

    The avatar criticism is completely pointless. So what if it doesnt speak, who cares?
    Just assume he/she is the silent type who likes being left alone. And by the way, you dont HAVE to use the avatar in the main game, just use it online….problem solved.

    The game is fun and gives a real sense of vastness and populace as the towns are buzzing with people. The ending is good considering how it really gets you riled up to play the 2nd and 3rd installment.

    WKC 9/10

Comments are closed.