“Khet” (released in 2005) is a bit special to me in the sense that it was one of the first board games I purchased while DGA was still in its infancy. I can’t be sure, but I’m fairly certain that it had something to do with the fact that you could reflect lasers off your own pieces to figuratively blow up your opponent’s pieces…after all, you can’t do THAT in “Chess”. “Khet 2.0” (released in 2011), is for all intents and purposes the same game with a few distinct differences. We’re here today to quickly take a look at the video game adaptation of “Khet 2.0”, which released October 2014. Before we do, I’d like to quickly thank the folks at BlueLine Game Studios for providing me with a free press copy. If their name sounds familiar, it’s because they are the same developers who created and released the video game adaptation of the ever-popular, “Hive“.
For those of you who are flying into this game blind, “Khet” is a two player abstract game that utilizes lasers and mirrors. Your objective is to deflect the lasers in such a way so that they strike an enemy piece’s non-mirrored side, effectively destroy it. Destroy the enemy Pharaoh piece (the equivalent of the King in “Chess”) and you win! Of course, some of the pieces have unique movement rules that set them apart from the rest. “Khet 2.0” is most notably different in that the laser firing mechanism is actually built into a piece (called the Sphinx) as opposed to the board itself. This piece has the ability to rotate (though it remains stationary), adding a bit more strategic depth to the gameplay. Since I’ve already reviewed and created tutorial videos for “Khet”, I’ll opt not to repeat myself and will instead defer you to the aforementioned articles/videos should you want to learn more.
The video game adaptation of “Khet 2.0” is indeed true to the original. The game includes five different difficulty levels and thankfully, “easy” will give new players some breathing room as they attempt to learn the game. The AI can be a real jerkface on the harder difficulty levels, giving experienced players quite a challenge. Of course, there’s pass and play (local multiplayer) and online modes should you wish to play against something a bit more flesh and blood. I also have to give a big thumbs up for being able to swivel the camera horizontally and vertically as the default view can sometimes cause pieces to obstruct one another. “Khet” fans will be pleased to know that there are a few different setup configurations, though I really would have liked the ability to customize and save my own custom configurations.
Short and sweet, “Khet 2.0” is the video game adaptation I’ve been waiting for. While video games can’t capture the satisfaction of physically moving pieces around on a board, it’s convenient in the sense that there’s no clean-up involved. While it hasn’t come right out and said so, I’m sure my gaming closet is silently thanking me for not stacking yet another tabletop game onto its already tired and stressed shelves. This game is also ideal for those who love playing “Khet” but don’t often have a live opponent to play against. All in all, ten bucks is a good deal considering that the board game itself goes for triple that price on Amazon (as of 11/25/14). Most certainly worth a buy if you’re a fan of abstract games and blowing things up (in your head) whilst playing with a laser pointer.
Final Verdict: 8/10