Little King's Story offers 3 modes of gameplay: Easy, Normal, and Hard, with the additional Tyrant Mode being added after beating the story in the NTSC version. The Steam release also added several achievements. Due to Little King's Story's versatile gameplay, self-imposed Challenges have been invented to make playthroughs or sections of Little King's Story more difficult, in tandem with the various difficulty settings.
As with most games, Little King's Story has a speedrunning scene. The main category is the "Any%" run, where the game must be beaten is as fast a time as possible and no other conditions, with the world record for this category currently held by Chie495, while the "Complete Key Items" and "Any% - Glitchless" categories are currently held by speedrunner tcbtrio. A miscellaneous category for reaching the third Castle expansion, called the "Gold Castle" category, is also held by Chie495.
The game is run as follows:
- Easy mode and Message Skip on
- Usually on the North American version, due to it being slightly faster.
- Wii version, due to its consistency and stability when compared to the PC version.
A record of achievements in the Little King's Story speedrunning scene can be found on Speedrun.com.
"Solobo", also know as "Corobo only", is a condition in which a player must beat a section of the game on Easy Mode without anybody in the Royal Guard, relying solely on Corobo's sceptre. The main target for this Challenge is King Duvroc, although the Onii King and Omelet are also possible, the only king battles that can feasibly be done with only Corobo, although most Guardians are also possible. The following bosses are theoretically unable to be beaten in this way:
- Shishkebaboo: While Corobo's sceptre can hit Shishkebaboo, it is too precise to be feasible without the use of Tool-Assisted Speedrun software
- TV Dinnah: Corobo cannot dig.
- Long Sauvage: Corobo cannot build. Citizens are also required to become taller than Long Sauvage and complete this fight.
- Jumbo Champloon: The Worker Onii will heal Jumbo Champloon faster than Corobo can do damage to him.
- Final Boss: Corobo's low attack output means that the fourth phase cannot be completed in time.
In a similar vain to Solobo, the player must take on a boss on Easy Mode with only one citizen. Almost all boss battles are feasible in this challenge, with the exceptions of Shishkebaboo and Long Sauvage.
In this Challenge, the player cannot purchase any upgrades from the Power Up category under the Kingdom Plan, or buy any other buildings that are not required for completion (such as the Farmhouse). This means the player is stuck with 5 Guard Badges and no Defense or Evade Formations for the entire run of the game. Speedrunner Chie495 attempted this run in conjunction with Tyrant Mode, and managed to progress as far as defeating King Duvroc, but concluded that the Challenge was impossible to beat with King Shishkebaboo. While Low% has a category on Speedrun.com, it is yet to be completed on any difficulty.
Sometimes called a Limited Job Run. In this Challenge, a player is only allowed to have one of each Job Class in their village, with the exception being Carefree Adults. This means that the player must play the game through with only one Grunt Soldier, one Hardened Soldier, one Hardworking Farmer etc. This is typically done on Hard Mode to force the player to be more protective of their people. If a citizen with a Job Class permanently dies, then they may be replaced. This has the side effect of making some Job Classes more useful than in the base game, such as the Eggan and various Carpenters, as they allow an additional party member who can do damage to UMA and obstacles.
In a similar vain to the Limited Job Run, a player may venture through the game without ever using Grunt Soldiers, Hardened Soldiers or Steel Knight. However, a player may use as many of the other citizens as they want. This forces the player to instead find other ways of dealing damage, such as Animal Hunters, the Rainbow Wizard, or equipping weaker Jobs with Weapons or Armor.