Robin Hood Sherwood Builders Review – Fight for the People

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Robin Hood Sherwood Builders Review – Fight for the People

There's a lot of talk of late in gaming about Fighting for democracy and freedom. Which made me made me think we should be fighting the real fight, the one for the people.

Robin Hood Sherwood Builders is a survival, base-building, crafting game. If you're already not interested, then it might be best you leave, and head back to the comfort of your walled in royal protected city under the watchful eye of the Sheriff of Nottingham. For anyone who wants to actually fight back, read on.

If you're willing to give Robin Hood Sherwood Builders a go, you might find yourself rewarded for your dedication. You're going to have to see past a fair bit of “jank”, but this game has been made by a small team, and that's an important thing to remember. Though unlike most titles of late, this game is being fully released, without an early access period.

Below is our in-progress impressions of our Robin Hood Sherwood Builders Review. We've had the game a few days before release, so wanted to get our initial thoughts out there. Our aim is to update the review as the game updates.

The game was reviewed on PC

For Nottingham

Look, I'm a UK lad, I'm happy to admit it. I grew up on stories of Robin Hood and his band of merry men. It's a cool story, it's some fun folk lore about my nation, and it's one that I wish was explored more. We've seen Robin and his gang pop up in games of late, but with Sherwood Builders you get a real sense of what being Robin Hood could be like.

Robin Hood Sherwood Builders Review

The game starts you off with a simple task; liberate the four areas of the map. That's it, do your Robin Hood thing. The game gets you going with some brief tutorials via our good friend Friar Tuck, a happy lad who just wants us to get a move on. You'll learn to gather, and use the building options. It's all very standard stuff. Once that 30 minutes is over, the game opens up, simply tasking you with getting the first reputation to 40%. From here, you just sort of, do your own thing.

Now, it is fairly easy to miss what you need to do, I mean, do quests. But, there's not much guidance on WHAT to do. For me, I just ran off to the closest town and started killing folks and stealing stuff. I later handed said stolen stuff back to those it was stolen from (before I stole it). It's a fairly simple idea, and it works given the context of the game.

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Do This Task for Me

You are going to do a lot of quests, for a lot of people. These are not going to revolutionise video game quests, but, you're doing the sort of busy work you expect. Clear this camp for a group of disgruntled bandits. Return the stolen items to their owner, or find a mother's son who's gone off for a walkabout. You'll also get a nice sprinkling of random encounters while you adventure through the forests. My first was to shoot a noose around the neck of a young lady about to be hung.

Robin Hood Sherwood Builders Review

Sadly, I'm an idiot and as my aim started to shake (due to holding the bow too long) I fired anyway, missing the noose and killing the woman. As she just dangled there, as I contemplated the fact I'd already helped the Sheriff of Nottingham more than I had the people, I realized my goal was clear. I must save these people, well, apart from that one lady.

Building and Crafting

While every survival game has crafting and building, Robin Hood does it a little differently. Rather than just building up your own little house with a few workstations, in Robin Hood, you will build an entire village. As you can see below, the base building part of the game is more like a micro-city builder. The camera controls can be a little unwieldy at first, but once you get used to it, and clear out some of the trees it's a really interesting and well-made system.

Robin Hood Base

Crafting and gathering are a fairly standard affair. Gathering is about going out into the world and picking up your needed supplies. While something like wood is fairly standard, you will need specific wood for certain buildings. But that's all fairly normal stuff, just place all the construction items in your base storage and you can build what you like. To gather, you'll just need the required tools, this is just about having the correct level of axe, pickaxe, fishing rod, etc.

It's also worth noting that your base can farm these materials for you as you expand. It's a lot slower but a passive way of gathering resources. The one major negative about the building part of the game is, that while it's nicely implemented it's not required to progress. Once you have a handle on the combat, you can mostly kick on and liberate the map. The game doesn't seem to force you to go back, now that might be a good thing, but it does make the feature a little redundant.

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Robin Hood Sherwood Builders Review – Fight for the People

ESTNN Score 7.5/10

We've sunk a fair bit of time into the game in the short time we've had it, but we felt it was good to get something out ahead of the game's release. Right now, Robin Hood Sherwood Builders is a solid single-player survival game. It's not perfect, and you can tell the game is made by a small team. However, there's a charm to it, and the systems in the game do work.

The major issues I have are with the voice acting, though, it's worth noting having it at all in a game of this scale is unusual. The real issue is the voice acting and general dialogue (for English) are not great, and while none of it is offensive (well, unless you're from Nottingham), it needed more time to cook. Robin does a good job, but some of the other actors feel very out of place. While we understand this isn't a UK-based team, and it's a very small team at that. The dialogue just feels a little stunted. The game's gameplay loop is engaging, and while nothing to sing about, if you like the setting, it will do a lot of heavy lifting.

Robin Hood Sherwood Builders is an ok, to good game in the genre that it resides. The major issues are with the voice acting, to the point where you wonder if it'd be a better game without it. Having played it more, it really breaks the flow of the plot. I get that not every studio can hire Oscar-worthy voice talent, but it's such an important part of selling the world of your game. Especially so when it's one with such a set location for the game, and the rest of the game does a good job of setting it up.

The game's prologue/Demo is still on steam, so give that a try first before you spend your hard-earned cash on the game.

Robin Hood Sherwood Builders Review – Fight for the People
David Hollingsworth
David has written for games media outlets for the last ten years. With his first major esports role being with Esports News UK covering mostly UK League of Legends. David is also a member of the British Esports Association and is an advisor to them on World of Warcraft Esports. More recently David has worked for Esports Insider and Red Bull as an esports journalist. David later became Editor at ESTNN and now leads the current team.