Listen, KC:D developer Warhorse Studios got a bit of a ribbing over saying the game was really historically accurate and that’s why everyone in the game is white, and then having a save system where you drink magic schnapps (the devs are now patching in a save and exit feature so you don’t have to get tanked every time you want to turn off your console). ‘Surely this seems incompatible!’ cried the naysayers. ‘You claim this game’s accuracy as a reason to include or exclude things you want, and yet there is magic alcohol?’ Well VideoGamer’s galaxy brain is here to tell you that actually, contrary to what you regular brain types think, everything in Kingdom Come: Deliverance is as accurate as a BBC 2 period drama, and this includes things that you might first assume are a bit silly or experience altering bugs. The huge day one patches were, if anything, to add more historical accuracy. Observe:
Pebbles the terrifying horse
Pebbles is the first horse you get for keeps in the game, and although you can buy way better mounts if you want to, I stuck with Pebbles the whole way a) for maximum loyalty and b) because my Henry was very cheap. Pebbles is great because he doesn’t need to be fed and you can leave him standing in the middle of a street and he will stand in exactly the same position forever if you didn’t get him to move. I left him in front of a scribe’s house for two days while I learnt to read. Good ole’ Pebbles.
You can be in the middle of a forest and whistle for him and around 40% of the time he’ll come trotting up to you from nowhere. Around 50% of the time you will not see him, and then you’ll turn around and find that he is standing stock-still immediately behind you, akin to creepy Watson. The remaining 10% of the time Pebbles will not come up to you.
This is all on purpose because there were several kinds of Medieval European horses (now, sadly, lost to time) that were surprisingly stealthy. There are many testimonials from that time, principally recorded as amusing footnotes in historical records, to support that sometimes you would just turn around and see one of their giant fucking faces an inch away from your own. A 14th century monk named Smengleburt described one particular breed as ‘Lyken unto a large catte, yett with toenails for feet, & also starring into spayce from dawn to duske’ which you will note is similar to much of Pebbles’ behaviour in the game.
In addition to being populated by only white people, the Kingdom of Bohemia is also mostly populated by white people from either the West Country or North of England, or, occasionally, Australia. Not Austria. Australia. The exception to this is the nobles, who usually either have received pronunciation if they’re thin or a British regional or central European accent if they’re not. This is in keeping with what we know about Medieval time periods from e.g. Game of Thrones and noted 1991 documentary Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.
Mills were an essential part of a medieval township, and there are several dotted around in Kingdom Come: Deliverance. You may have noticed the millers’ distinctive outfits, marking them out as the mill owner: a white apron, and a white cap, flopped over to one side, as if a chef’s hat had gotten tired and decided it needed a lie down. You may also have noticed that a miller’s hat won’t appear on his head as you approach until you’re approximately two metres from him. Far from being pop-in, this is in fact referencing that millers were also renowned sleight of hand experts. If you pay attention, the miller Peshek is also a clue, as his character is shady and teaches you how to pick pockets. A miller swiftly replacing his hat, his movements undetectable to the human eye, was an advertisement that he was a fence for stolen goods, though this skill sometimes meant that superstitious villagers thought millers were possessed of magic powers. When someone asks ‘which flour do I need for this bread,’ they’re actually saying ‘witch flour’. History is so interesting!
Having a shag makes you really impressive
In Kingdom Come: Deliverance you get buffs and debuffs from doing different things, like if you’re drunk or you’ve overeaten or you invested in a perk which buffs your charisma if you’ve got nice smelling herbs in your inventory. There’s one perk you can get that gives you a buff called Alpha Male, right, which you get if you manage to get your end away, yeah, which you can do either by asking this girl Theresa out on a walk or by going to a bath house and paying a nice lady, and then you get +2 charisma because ‘your needs have been satisfied and it shows. You’re feeling self confident.’ This reflects how in medieval times sex was believed to be a medical need. Many of us today don’t know that there were in fact five humors: blood, yellow bile, black bile, phlegm, and spunk.
Despite this, historical writings tell us that sex was extremely rare in those days (which contributed to the lower population numbers) so when somebody did manage to do any, usually in a barn of some kind, they would strut about, crotch thrust forwards and lo, other villagers would be low key impressed. Wealthier sex-havers depicted in surviving tapestries from England are shown wearing fancy red sexin’ trousers. They would sometimes even pay monks to write epic volumes about the quantity and quality of copulation they had (created in secret as the subject went against the ideals of the church), or peasants to follow them shouting, as written in one of the aforementioned volumes, ‘Halloo! Thys man has donne itte! You knowe, itte! Phwoar! Praise Godde, and maye all peple showe hym favoure therof,’ and merchants would be persuaded to lower their prices. Over time our customs have evolved, but you can still see the tradition reflected in ballads like this.
Sometimes everything just stops
In real life Medieval times, as in Kingdom Come: Deliverance, sometimes everyone would just freeze into place, including all the animals and trees, as if crushed by the weight of suddenly realising that they lived in a terrible period of history. This was often put down to mass hysteria.