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Default Finally. Finished this thing.

May 8th, 2009, 01:03
First, I would never have done it without the Community Patch. Before 1.7, I had started three playthroughs, and never got very far. I had not even made it to Varant or to Xardas. The gameplay, especially the combat, was just too stupid. The patch fixed this.

Indeed, on medium difficulty where combat began to look realistic as two people could attack you at once, the game was mosstly challenging enough, though sometimes too challenging. Some indoor battles with many enemies were pretty much unwinnable for my warrior/ranger character. I had to consciously take advantage of some AI stupidity in those cases.

Of all the areas, the desert was the best. It felt very unique, and had the coolest factions. I liked the Barbarians in the North, but the map was very annoying. Also, Nordmar had by far the most repetitive quests. Boy, were some quests repetitive. If at least you had the feeling that you were advancing the plot by doing them, but most had no consequences at all.

Oh, and let's not forget the hundreds of chests with random loot. Not fun at all. At least on par with Drakensang's barrel smashing.

One thing I didn't like was how the moral ambiguity was dropped in Gothic 3. Your choice between camps in Gothic 1+2 were more about style than about being good or bad. In Gothic 3, if you wanted to play a character even half decent, you had to fight the Orcs and Assassins. Of course there was no need for such black & white. In Gothic 1, it was very obvious that the King was just another crook, trading women for ore and being responsible for a slave colony gone wrong. In Gothic 2, the Paladins acted like occupiers. In Gothic 3 however , the royals are the resistance against evil, freeing people from slavery, etc.

Another missed opportunity were the consequences of the hero's actions in the past. Wasn't he, after all, involved in the disbandment of the mining colony which supposedly was essential for the war effort? Couldn't one say that the hero played a part in the events that made humanity lose the war? The designers should have made better use of Gothic 1 and 2's plot.

Despite all the patching I could not finish Gothic 3 without cheating. At some point, the king decided to fall through all the floors of his palace and become unreachable. I used "goto" and "spawn" cheat codes to continue.

I chose the Xardas-ending after finally being able to figure out what he was up to. I liked this option very much, and after hearing some very negative things about the ending, I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it. The ending obviously is similar in style than the endings of the first Fallouts and NWN2, and it worked well. It also brings a nice closure to a series I might never play again.

By far the worst Gothic, with the community patch however an often decent game.
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