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Default Drakensang - Review @ Play.tm

March 31st, 2009, 00:44
UK site Play.tm has a review of Drakensang, with a score of 82%. Most of the piece describes the mechanics, so here's the summary:
Drakensang is very nearly brilliant and the perfect game for those who miss party-based RPGs; which are seemingly becoming quite rare compared to the deluge of first-person RPGs a la Fallout 3 and Oblivion. It has its flaws, the controls are far from perfect and it is a little complex at least initially. But I found Drakensang very refreshing in its complexity. It doesn't patronise the gamer, but it still allows for a less experienced RPG player to enjoy the game. If you want to avoid some of the complexity, simply use a pre-made character and avoid the crafting system and you will enjoy the experience. If you want to be very hands-on, you can do that too and start a character from scratch. Drakensang offers around 40-50 hours of gameplay depending on how many side quests you tackle, meaning there's plenty to be getting on with, and with a well written storyline and surprisingly good visuals, it really is a noteworthy all round package.
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March 31st, 2009, 00:44
Interesting, it's getting better and better reviews. First reviews were like ~70% and now they are +80%.
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March 31st, 2009, 01:15
Sometime games just come out of nowhere and players & reviewers scramble to try to relate them to current trends in game design, even though a game like this is bucking a lot of those trends.
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March 31st, 2009, 02:13
Originally Posted by Ergonpandilus View Post
First reviews were like ~70% and now they are +80%.
Well, the real first reviews came out over here in Germany in German language since the game was first released here and the game scored mostly in the mid 80s to almost 90s category so I guess it's safe to say that Drakensang is proof that the YoYo effect does exist .
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March 31st, 2009, 02:55
Yes, but those reviews may have had a home-team bias similar to the free pass that Bethesda receives from a lot of the American gaming press. It's nice to see reviews from a variety of countries to get a feel for how a game is rated in your own area. The fact that Drakensang released a free demo took care of the need though. Unfortunately, the demo was a little weak. The main game is quite a bit better than Avestrue leads one to believe.

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March 31st, 2009, 12:24
Yes, I think you are right. The demo is … well, a demo. Not a full showcase with all of the things to come.
So - this demo might've been kind of "weak" for some gamers, I agree.

But - I'm kind of proud that the overseas press learns that other countries also have good games in the making. PC gaming is imho very much U.S.-dominated, and now they see that this need not to be so.

Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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March 31st, 2009, 13:55
Originally Posted by Alrik Fassbauer View Post
Yes, I think you are right. The demo is … well, a demo. Not a full showcase with all of the things to come.
So - this demo might've been kind of "weak" for some gamers, I agree.
Yes, the demo is boring compared to the next part of the game.
Originally Posted by Alrik Fassbauer View Post
But - I'm kind of proud that the overseas press learns that other countries also have good games in the making. PC gaming is imho very much U.S.-dominated, and now they see that this need not to be so.
Except that PC-only games have a hard time with most people I know here in the US. I'm a regular poster on a different board with people with mostly p&p RPG background, and I posted a thread there that caused nearly zero reaction. There are ongoing Mass Effect, Fallout 3 and even Oblivion threads, but that's all console play (they love The Pitt and Anchorage, btw). Any PC RPG from Europe is completely uninteresting.
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March 31st, 2009, 15:15
Some of the best PC RPGs I've ever played were made in Europe: Realms of Arkania (especially "Star Trail"), Gothic, The Witcher, and I expect to place Drakensang in that "best of" category once I finish my first play-thru. To be honest, I tend to find Euro-made RPGs scratch that "hard-core" itch a lot better than their US counterparts. US RPGs have gotten more and more and more streamlined over the years to the point they are fast starting to mirror FPS games with a few stats thrown in for good measure.

For someone who cut his teeth on pen-and-paper D&D and all of the good PC RPGs to date, my tastes more and more favor the stuff coming out of Europe.
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March 31st, 2009, 15:22
Originally Posted by Alrik Fassbauer View Post
But - I'm kind of proud that the overseas press learns that other countries also have good games in the making. PC gaming is imho very much U.S.-dominated, and now they see that this need not to be so.
Actually I'm the opposite. I'm more interested in foreign games since in the last few years they have released games more to my liking (turn-based RPG or strategy games, party based RPGs, etc.) like Fantasy Wars, Drakensang, King's Bounty, Ascension to the Throne in the PC front, and many console RPGs.
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March 31st, 2009, 17:39
I haven't really thought about it much, but I like games from America and abroad. I enjoyed Two Worlds, The Witcher, Drakensang, and Kult. I also enjoyed Oblivion, Fallout 3 and NWN2. But what other crpgs have been released in the States recently? Bethesda only releases about once every 4 years and they're the only developer that has a recent, proven track record. I sure hope to see more from the US but I'm not holding my breath.

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March 31st, 2009, 18:50
I know it's only anecdotal reference, but that board I was talking about has quite a lot of active members, so it's not a completely isolated observation. Most people there are avid gamers (ttRPGs, boardgames), and I saw the breaking point regarding CRPGs around Oblivion's release. Nearly all people there switched to consoles at that point, because they wanted to stop playing the hardware game (too expensive), plus they enjoyed playing stuff on the couch.

This means that PC only releases will not reach them, which is the case for many European CRPGs. Even in the case of those titles that had been ported to the console, shitty localizations and customizations, like those of Two Worlds, left those few who tried the games with a bad aftertaste and with a general disdain for European RPGs (technical hassles, bad translation, bad voice acting, etc.). This means that they mostly ignore everything that comes from Europe.

As I said, this is only an anecdotal reference. Nevertheless, it somehow fits general market data.
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