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Default Jade Empire - SE Review @ RPG Codex

April 18th, 2007, 06:48
RPG Codex has posted a wordy review of BioWare's Jade Empire SE. There's no score (as usual) but the overall tone suggests the author found some enjoyment while being disappointing in the missed potential. Here's an excerpt:
Regretfully, Jade Empire still carries over the Biowarian tradition of devising a story that focuses more on party member interactions than the playerís decisions. Most of the time, the PC canít influence anything worthwhile in the story and to make matters worse players are subjected to cutscenes and movies that remove player agency in many plot-critical situations. One event is particularly vexing: somewhere down the line the PC will need to infiltrate a fortress to learn more about the eeevil scheminí of the Empire. At the end of the segment, a party member makes a sacrifice so that the PC does not die at the hands of an assassin of the Empire, regardless if the PC is friendly or an insulting bastard to that character throughout the game. Moments like these are what ruins an otherwise cliched but solid story, and many times you get the feeling itís really not built around the PC but around his or her companions, with long drawn out conversations and character exposition happening all the time to further the narrative. Actually, aside the main characterís special heritage – also revelead to you during the gameís humble beginnings – nothing would really prevent all the other party members from banding together and save the Empire. At a certain point the PC will be cut off from the mortal world and will not have access to his regular party members; this happens at a time when the main villain is exposed. But the party members left behind take absolutely no action against the villain – why? Worse even, is that the villain apparently doesnít do anything to capture the rest of the group when the PC is spirited away but launches a massive assault against the group later on. Without being earth shattering, a few of these continuity problems occur across the board, unfortunately.
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