Savages are on the loose and wreaking havoc outside the castle walls and it’s up to the King’s solders to quite literally risk life and limb to capture these hairy beasts and protect the kingdom, while the King takes his sweet time getting a proper cage. This is the premise behind King’s Orders: Savages – Chapter One, the debut title from developer Yorkville Games.

King’s Orders is an endurance style game played in a series of timed rounds (or levels). Using your device’s accelerometer you must tilt to keep the circle of fifteen soldiers around the attacking Savage. While attempting to contain the beast you must be careful not to let any of the men get too close. For if the Savage gets his blood thirsty hands on a soldier, he will be eaten and the remaining soldiers will tighten their ranks, shrinking their protective ring, making it that much more difficult to avoid becoming its next snack. The Savage will be constantly changing directions randomly, so you’ll have to stay on your toes if you want to make it through all of the game’s 20 rounds.

There are three difficulty settings, easy, normal and hard, with each varying the number of soldiers replaced per round. The first round lasts 15 seconds, with the timer going up by 5 seconds each time. In-between rounds there are some humorous short animated scenes between the King and his Soldiers.

Unfortunately, that’s pretty much it and there in lies the rub. The game just doesn’t have enough content or variety to entice you to play for more than a session or two. With the App Store’s price race to the bottom resulting in loads of 99¢ titles with so much content and high replay value, it would be difficult for me recommend King’s Orders over many of the other great titles in this genre.

The game’s name is subtitled “Chapter One” so perhaps there is more content on the way. Either way, King’s Orders really needs more variation in gameplay other than just increasing the time with each round, It needs something like different kinds of Savages, different containment methods, power ups, really anything to keep the game play from getting stale too quickly, heck, even the scenery doesn’t change from round to round. That being said, the humorous cut scenes did help keep my interest to some degree, but honestly it just wasn’t enough to hold my attention past a handful of play-throughs.

Instead of using one of the more popular services like Game Center or Open Feint, King’s Orders uses Yorkville Game’s own proprietary global leaderboard built into the game. I would have perhaps played a bit more if one of these other services were used instead, that way I could have seen my friends’ scores and tried to best them, or earn some sort of achievements.

The game does feature some nicely drawn artwork, and I liked King’s Orders’ gallows style humor. I could help but smile at the somewhat cheesy cries of agony coming from the soldiers as they were devoured by the ruthless Savage. It’s easy to tell that the development team had fun making the game and didn’t take themselves too seriously, injecting humor wherever possible.

In Conclusion

Chapter One of King’s Orders: Savages is a nice start, but it needs something more to keep players engaged for the long haul. A bit too much of a one-trick steed for my tatstes, the game is good for a few laughs, but like the ill-fated soldiers in the game, its life expectancy on your device is likely to be fairly short.