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Default Original Sin - Early Access Review @ Cliqist

June 17th, 2014, 20:10
Cliqist has another Early Access review of Divinity: Original Sin. I'm sure it doesn't contain any new information that the other hundred haven't talked about.

While the Early Access covered only the (reasonably extensive) issues of one city, the final release promises more zones and many hours of gameplay when itís released later this month. The game started Beta with some major holesóif there are no quest markers, itís extra problematic when those quests are also bugged. As testing progressed, however, the developers have made a huge number of changes, major and minor; to smooth out the game as it nears release. The developers have promised full voice acting upon release, which will give the game a lot more life. Divinity: Original Sin now feels polished and comprehensive, with extremely attractive graphics; if itís not quite AAA quality, itís definitely sitting at the high end of the quality and creativity independent games can offer.
More information.

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June 17th, 2014, 20:10
Graphically, D:OS looks like Dragon Knight Saga. Some of the graphics are ripped staight from the contents of that game. You can just move the camera now to different zoom levels above the default zoomed in view; which is important in the turn-based battles.

Archetypes have progressed from Warrior, Wizard, Ranger to a whole host of options. You can still mix and match everything to match your playstyle. If you want to be a bow-wielding ranger with water (healing) magic and dabble in picking pockets, go right ahead. You're only limited by the number of skill points you get in the game. You start out with 5 at character creation and then 1/level to 5, 2/to 10 and then 3/level to the cap of 20, IIRC.

Loot will sometimes contain skill raising modifiers, so you might find bracers that give +1 to your bow skill or boots that raise your barter skill, etc. Loot is randomly generated on opening a chest or clicking a corpse. There are common, rare, legendary, etc. types of ranges for loot descriptions. Basically white loot has no modifiers, just a character or attribute level to equip. Say a magic staff requires 8 Intelligence, for example. Blue has one modifier, green two or three, orange four or five and there is also some unique gear that is always the same from game to game.

Crafting is in and you can craft hundreds of items. Much of it is unecessary, but several recipes are vital to your success. If you want to craft metal items, you'll need some blacksmithing too. You can craft scrolls, spellbooks, armor, weapons, rings, food, and weapons and that's not all. If you have an archer, you might make him your crafter as special arrows are rare and expensive, so crafting your own will limit your out of pocket.
Crafting ingredients are common loot.

The economy is broken as in most loot-focused crpgs. You'll have 100,000 gold by the end of the demo area. You'll be able to buy anything you want before leaving the first town and merchants have cheap stuff that isn't worth buying, with skillbooks being the exception.

There is no resting but there is also no mana so spells to restore health are free outside of combat and potions are extremely common. There are potions that raise stats temporarily, but they're useless and can be sold. You might keep potions that give resistance to fire, poison, etc because of terrain.

Combat is turn-based and is very much about controlling the battlefield. Nearly every combat will have environmental hazards that you can use to your advantage and so can the enemy. If you're standing next to a barrel of oil when a fireball goes off, you're going to burn for several rounds. Lightning that hits blood or water will electify the whole area where it is located causing little damage after the initial hit but potentially stunning everyone for multiple rounds. If you have two mages, having one cast rain and the next throw lightning or a freeze spell; this can eliminate the toughest creature(s) in a fight. They're stunned or frozen and won't be able to do anything on their turn.
This isn't blackguards level of planning, but you don't just go in willy-nilly.

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June 17th, 2014, 20:22
Originally Posted by crpgnut View Post
Graphically, D:OS looks like Dragon Knight Saga. Some of the graphics are ripped staight from the contents of that game. You can just move the camera now to different zoom levels above the default zoomed in view; which is important in the turn-based battles.

Archetypes have progressed from Warrior, Wizard, Ranger to a whole host of options. You can still mix and match everything to match your playstyle. If you want to be a bow-wielding ranger with water (healing) magic and dabble in picking pockets, go right ahead. You're only limited by the number of skill points you get in the game. You start out with 5 at character creation and then 1/level to 5, 2/to 10 and then 3/level to the cap of 20, IIRC.

Loot will sometimes contain skill raising modifiers, so you might find bracers that give +1 to your bow skill or boots that raise your barter skill, etc. Loot is randomly generated on opening a chest or clicking a corpse. There are common, rare, legendary, etc. types of ranges for loot descriptions. Basically white loot has no modifiers, just a character or attribute level to equip. Say a magic staff requires 8 Intelligence, for example. Blue has one modifier, green two or three, orange four or five and there is also some unique gear that is always the same from game to game.

Crafting is in and you can craft hundreds of items. Much of it is unecessary, but several recipes are vital to your success. If you want to craft metal items, you'll need some blacksmithing too. You can craft scrolls, spellbooks, armor, weapons, rings, food, and weapons and that's not all. If you have an archer, you might make him your crafter as special arrows are rare and expensive, so crafting your own will limit your out of pocket.
Crafting ingredients are common loot.

The economy is broken as in most loot-focused crpgs. You'll have 100,000 gold by the end of the demo area. You'll be able to buy anything you want before leaving the first town and merchants have cheap stuff that isn't worth buying, with skillbooks being the exception.

There is no resting but there is also no mana so spells to restore health are free outside of combat and potions are extremely common. There are potions that raise stats temporarily, but they're useless and can be sold. You might keep potions that give resistance to fire, poison, etc because of terrain.

Combat is turn-based and is very much about controlling the battlefield. Nearly every combat will have environmental hazards that you can use to your advantage and so can the enemy. If you're standing next to a barrel of oil when a fireball goes off, you're going to burn for several rounds. Lightning that hits blood or water will electify the whole area where it is located causing little damage after the initial hit but potentially stunning everyone for multiple rounds. If you have two mages, having one cast rain and the next throw lightning or a freeze spell; this can eliminate the toughest creature(s) in a fight. They're stunned or frozen and won't be able to do anything on their turn.
This isn't blackguards level of planning, but you don't just go in willy-nilly.
Thanks for the impressions.

I'm a little sad to hear about the broken economy. I always like a tight economy in RPGs that makes loot and money a bit tougher to come by. I'm partial to games like the beginning parts of Gothic 1, or even Vampire: Bloodlines, where they give you juuuuust enough money to be supplied, but things stay pretty tight. Ah well, I'm sure the game is still great. I'll grab it in a sale, for sure.
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June 17th, 2014, 22:12
I'm not too happy about the randomly generated loot, but everything else sounds pretty good.
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June 17th, 2014, 23:35
Originally Posted by Couchpotato View Post
I'm sure it doesn't contain any new information that the other hundred haven't talked about
Begrudging OS of its share of attention are we? Well, it's not DA

You're right about the information content though.


edit: I can't share crpgnut's enthusiasm concerning character builds though. Of course you can build a mage/ tank hybrid; it's just that the game doesn't reward it. A straight tank (possibly with the Lone Wolf trait) and a caster in the back will be more efficient in some cases, and definitely at least as efficient in all cases, as a bunch of hybrids. After all, you can have four party members in this game. Completely nuts I say. The Divinity series was never about parties, and I'd still accept two summons or two henchmen with a very limited skill set, but this game was never intended to feature a full blown 4 person party and it shows. Hate to say I saw it coming - I was very skeptical when they put up fully customizable companions as a stretch goal.

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June 17th, 2014, 23:55
Originally Posted by Sacred_Path View Post
Begrudging OS of its share of attention are we? Well, it's not DA

You're right about the information content though.
No I'm not Begrudging anything as everything has been said, or spoiled already.

And yes I do enjoy DA so thank you for mentioning the game. I also look forward to playing Dragon Age: Inquisition in October.

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June 18th, 2014, 00:34
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I'm not too happy about the randomly generated loot
Me neither. Reminds me too much on Diablo.

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June 18th, 2014, 15:43
There are a few instances of handplaced loot, but they're very few. Guys, I'd really suggest waiting to purchase this. The last two patches have broken hundreds of things in the game and it is just not ready for prime time. The game was rock stable about two months ago, but that isn't the case today. They released a patch last night that has caused most treasure to not generate at all. You'll fight a hoard of creatures and then find nothing for your troubles. It's broke.

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June 18th, 2014, 15:56
Random loot is a mistake in a game like this - much like it was in DKS.

Bad move.
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June 18th, 2014, 15:57
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
Random loot is a mistake in a game like this - much like it was in DKS.

Bad move.
Totally agree. I would much prefer hand-placed loot in a game like this.
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June 18th, 2014, 16:06
Hmmm, Divinity has never had hand-placed loot. It would be new to the series to add it. Divine Divinity had hand placed items, but the stats on said items were totally random.

That is the same in this game too. There are several areas that have certain items every time. The stats on those items will be different though, unless it is one of the two or three uniques.

My guess is that they'll have to release on the 30th to honor commitments, but this game isn't going to be ready. Not Legends of Dawn or the ROA remake bad, but it'll still need a month or two of patches to be in final form. They'll have to cut the price in that time so save yourself some money if you're not a backer.

Me, I dropped $500 on the RPGWatch campaign, so I'm pretty screwed by Larian at this point. Hopefully, Myrthos is on top of his game and has the physical goods ready to go and has them ready to get to us on release day or very close to it. I'll keep reporting on the status of the game and will let everyone know when I think they've got a stable build. There are several folks here that will have the game and so you'll get lots of opinions.

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June 18th, 2014, 16:57
So perhaps I'll start and finish Witcher 2 before D:OS.
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June 18th, 2014, 16:59
I've been thinking of either Witcher 2, which I couldn't get into the first time or perhaps Risen and Risen 2. I'm not a big PB fan and the farthest I ever got in any of the games was in Gothic 3.

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