Risen 2 - Review Roundup
I didn't have time to post these Risen 2 reviews yesterday, so here's a bit of a catch-up. By far the most informative is Brother None's six-page review at GameBanshee, so I'll focus on that and line-list the others.
GameBanshee finds the setting well implemented but, being unable to join a faction for the first time in a Piranha Bytes game, lacks consequences. Overall, it's a positive article - "two steps forward and one step back" is still one ste forward:
But it's all pretty minor. The main focus seems to be on having each island be an isolated classic Gothic/Risen-style map in itself, where each time you explore with fresh eyes and have to uncover secrets and solve quests to progress. Piranha Bytes did this part fairly well. While the game has a number of main quests you have to do, the way you can approach them does vary somewhat based on your specialization as a voodoo magician or a gunslinger or swordmaster, and while there are some "fetch" and "kill" quests, a large portion of the quests have more depth and often offer multiple paths. One example would be in the Inquisition city of Caldera, where you need some information from the archives that are inside the Council's Buildings, which you can't just barge in to. There is also a discussion in the Council whether to sign a treaty with Mara (your main antagonist) or not, which you can get involved in or choose to ignore. The gain access to the building, you either accept a nobleman's help to dress up as a messenger and steal a signet ring from one councilman to forge a letter, or you use your voodoo skills to take over the mind of that same councilman, in which case you have a much easier time finding the info you're looking for, breaking into his own office for incriminating info, and you can even decide to call a council meeting and vote against the treaty with Mara.
Neoseeker - 9/10, one of the highest scores, they obviously enjoyed the gameplay. Curiously, they note difficulty with the lock-picking mini-game, which Brother None says can't be failed. Like GameBanshee, they note performance problems.
Hooked Gamers - "I’m excited for a new RPG and personally think that Risen 2 can bring piracy back in a fun (and legal) way".
Inside Daily Gaming - 6/10, "If you love exploring, walking shouldn’t be a big chore, as you’ll come across many beautiful environments — but after you’ve seen the same waterfall, beach, or forest twenty times, you might find yourself pretty bored or annoyed."
RPG Fan - 58% (25% for Gameplay!), "Risen 2 isn't any fun to play, and what could be more unlike the life of a pirate? The deluge of chores, the tedious combat, the lack of progression – these things should not exist in the pirate's world, a place of high adventure and constant action."
Strategy Informer - 6.5/10, "The acting is generally above-par and the writing can be both snappy and amusing, so I was eagerly anticipating every new conversation. Animation on characters, on the other hand, is laughable, with ridiculously over-exaggerated hand moments."
Information aboutRisen 2
Platform: PC, Xbox 360, PS3