Giving life to 15th-century Bohemia in Kingdom Come: Deliverance

The Pursuit of Realism

In video game design, as in all forms of fiction, realism is a faulty ideal. A game that seeks absolute authenticity in every detail must come undone by both the creator’s need to provide adventure, and the consumer’s own prejudices and expectations.

Kingdom Come opens in a lane above a village. The meadows are filled with butterflies and flowers, the woods are thick with trees and bushes. Romantic music suggests a yearning for a simpler age.

Partly, this is our medieval idyll, a construct of the post-Industrial Age. It’s not entirely wrong, but it’s not wholly right, either. It seems unlikely that the verges of village environs, a prime location for the feeding of livestock, would have been lush with thick grass and flowers.

Also, as Vávra explains, the part of the world where this game takes place was famed for its silver mines, which demanded enormous volumes of wood.

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