Knights of Pen and Paper 2 is a role playing game that takes place in the fictional world of Paperos (yes, it's a spoof of Westeros from Game of Thrones). The game's plot centers around a group of friends playing a table-top RPG (like Dungeons and Dragons). You'll go on an adventure to save the world from an evil villain.
Perfect for beginners or pros
While most of the story and humor in Knights of Pen and Paper 2 is focused around the traditional table-top gaming experience, you don't have to have played those types of games to enjoy it. Sure, there are plenty of meta jokes about role playing games and the changes in editions for table-top games but the story is secondary to the gameplay.
The combat system has been throughout and is very entertaining. You create your cast of characters by selecting from categories for character type, race, and class. You can come up with unique combinations like hipster-elf-warrior or cheerleader-human-mage. The battles are turn-based so you carefully plan out your attacks. Each character is given a number for each battle, which signifies their turn.
Characters can inflict different status effects on each other like bleed, burn, poison, stun, and weakness. These play a big role in how your party fights. I found the stun effect to be the most useful as you can completely cripple an enemy hoard for one turn. If you're lucky, you can keep using the stun effect throughout the battle and come out unscathed.
You'll want to pick your characters carefully to take advantage of the different attributes for each class, race and character type. Each character has a different chance at rolling different colored dies, which affects everything from battles to camping safely. You could just throw caution to the win and create a random character but you'll likely have to grind a bit in the game to keep progressing. You can't really "mess up" by choosing randomly but it'll make your life easier if you choose wisely. This makes Knights of Pen and Paper 2 accessible to anyone.
Knights of Pen and Paper 2 also includes a crafting system. You can find recipes for creating powerful weapons and trinkets to buff your characters. While not as robust as other RPGs, the crafting system is useful for enchanting your weapons and creating more powerful consumable items.
An RPG built for mobile
Although Knights of Pen and Paper 2 is available on desktop, it's best played on your mobile device. The game is designed so the story stays short and sweet and the battles can be played on your commute home. It's extremely easy to pick up on your phone or tablet easily. You're allowed up to three saved games so you play through the game with different characters multiple times.
However, there is one big difference between the desktop and mobile versions: in-app purchases. Although there are in-app purchases in the mobile versions, the game makes it easy for you to complete the game without paying a single penny. The game is so well balanced that you'll have enough gold (usually) to purchase everything you need. If not, you can grind a bit for gold or pay real money for a lot of in-game currency.
Most of your in-game money will be used for purchasing items, weapons, traveling and investigating areas. Investigations let you roll dice to earn magnifying glasses to unlock treasure chests. It feels a little tacked on but does give players a reason to revisit an area to look for rare items. Trust me; you'll want to find some of the rare items in these chests.
I was pleasantly surprised that Knights of Pen and Paper 2 played so smoothly. I usually get stuck in RPGs, making me grind to gain enough levels to defeat a particular boss. However, I did find I had to grind a little bit to defeat the final boss, which is no easy task. I wish the game included some more challenging bosses throughout the game instead of piling them on at the end.
An RPG for everyone
Knights of Pen and Paper is a role playing game that anyone can enjoy. It's a perfect bite-sized RPG that's designed for mobile and it works well. Although the story isn't great, its battle system and humor more than make up for it.
While other RPGs are intimidating, Knights of Pen and Paper 2 is friendly to all gamers. I've never played any table-top games but felt completely comfortable. It's the depth of strategy and customization that makes Knights of Pen and Paper 2 a game worth coming back to day after day.