Perhaps the worst aspect is the sense of feedback in combat, which is largely non-existent. Melee players will feel this more than bow-users or spellcasters, as none of the weapons feel like they have any real weight or impact.
Certain foes will block endlessly as well, which is rage-inducing. One of the melee skills, Block Breaker, crashes straight through their defences, but it fails to open them up. Follow the strike with another, and their guard is right back up up again. You flail uselessly against them like John Inman pattering ineffectually at a window-pane – hardly conducive to feeling like a war-god.
It's galling, because Reality Pump clearly knows what makes an RPG tick. I sincerely hope these problems are recognised because a patch could fix them all and elevate Two Worlds II above the budget effort it currently resembles. It deserves more. [Editor's note: Indeed, Topware Interactive has been in touch to let us know that a patch is in the works which fixes some combat issues, including blocking, as well as the levelling in multiplayer. It should be ready for the game's UK launch.]
When fighting any enemy in the game you must first enter the menu to select the weapon and then once selected you must commence attacking the enemy. That sounds easy but you’ll find it rather cumbersome escaping the menu with the desired weapon and then once that is accomplished you’ll find yourself grappling with the awkward combat. Rest assured however, you do have options. When playing the game you have a choice between the three basic forms of combat, which are ultimately further delineated down the line; however, for now we will stick with the basics. First we have physical armaments like the swords, axes, and maces that form the melee class. Then there is the ranged class which is composed of a variety of bows for your archery pleasure. And finally there is the mage class which allows the player to cast a variety of magic spells which vary from area affect spells, to creature summons, to boosts to certain attributes. Though it may have seemed overtly erroneous, there is a reason that I strayed onto this tangent. For the most part, you’ll find that the combat for the ranged and magic classes work pretty well on the console. This is mainly because you are able to target enemies at a distance and make a swift escape given insurmountable odds. With the melee/fighter class you are forced to stay there and take the brunt of whatever force you are facing which can be bad when you find that your defenses aren’t exactly up. This stems from the fact that every action in the game can only be undertaken while standing completely still. Not a problem when dealing with keys on a key pad, but when the precision is so finicky and even some of the smallest tilts of the controller can throw off your attempt to defend, you will find yourself getting very frustrated in no time.