||November 9th, 2012 19:46
For those who don't know, Realms of Arkania is the english version of the German Game "Das Schwarze Auge" which again is the first PC adaption of the Pen and Paper brand of the same name. While there were three games in the ninties, there were a couple of other games made with this licence recently, for those interested in this game world.
However they are not called "Realms of Arkania" anymore internationally but "The Dark Eye". There is no involvement of Guido Henkel though.
For now there are the following games:
-Drakensang (RPG very similar to Dragon Age), but lots of running and lots of wall of texts, not that awesome
-Drakensang River of Time (follow up to Drakensang, but much better) and it's add on Philleasons Secret (horrible again).
"Drakensang Online" however is by the Dudes making the Drakensang games but is NOT using the "Das Schwarze Auge" license. They basically just kept the name.
-The Dark Eye: Chains of Satinav (adventure game)
There is also a Browser game "Das Schwarze Auge Online" in the making (wasn't really looking that good so far), and a Hack and Slash game called "Demonicon", which also plays in the game but is darker.
There are some differences between D&D and DSA. For once D&D is much more open, while DSA is extremely "fixed", meaning you can basically lookup every city on the world and check out the history of it's majors (well, not exactly, but you get my point). In addition you find a lot of "social drama" in DSA which you hadly see in D&D games. You have somehwat like all cultures in DSA, the Norse (Thorwaler), the Arabs (guys in Khom/ Al'anfa), Chinese (Maraskan), and Native Afrikans (Moha). You can find lots of explicit sexual content in the novels of that game and DSA also makes the sexual orientation to a subject a couple of times. There is also a focus on difficulties between races (remember playing Shadows over Riva and the Holberker problem? They basically were the result of Elves raped by Orcs). DSA doesn't say "Orcs are the evil" like Lords of the Rings does. In DSA there is a huge gray area, though as you play "heroes" your actions are mostly for the good.
And the game and setting seems to be much more aimed to Adults then D&D seems to be.
Of course that has it's limits as 18+ games can hardly be sold in germany. However in the Realms of Arkania games you could visit brothels and you got an "event" when you ran through the city without pants.
And that again fits to what Guido Henkel was doing with Planescape Torment. A game which has a very dark setting, with topics which make you think.
And one of the reasons he mentioned for leaving the game industry back then was that publishers didn't want to make such games tailored to adults anymore with topics not that suited for children.
So in that regard, I am also very interested in "how deep" his new game will be.
Ok, got carried away a bit, but maybe I could put some light on the one or other thing. :)