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unt1tled

Divinity: Original Sin Review

by unt1tled

posted July 8, 2014 @ 2:18PM
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filed under ReviewGames

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The age of Kickstarter is upon us. A few years ago, it seemed like everyone and their mother was pitching video game ideas on Kickstarter, with ideas running the gamut from the poorly thought out to the amazing. The best ideas were callbacks to gaming's past, games that would fill gaping genre holes that the current big name publishers were too afraid to touch. One of the most promising Kickstarter projects was for Divinity: Original Sin, a PC role-playing game that promised to bring us back to the golden age of role-playing games, mimicking some of the genre's best titles like Baldur's Gate and the original Fallout. With the release of Divinity: Original Sin, it's safe to say that a new golden age of computer role-playing games is now upon us.

Divinity: Original Sin starts out promising, with a robust character creation tool complete with plenty of talents to choose from. Want a powerful mage at the expense of less health? Then choose Glass Cannon. Want to talk to animals? Then the Pet Pal talent is right up your alley. The talents you select not only affect the abilities you have in combat but also the way you complete quests, offering almost unlimited amounts of replayability. In a twist, you'll design not one character, but two, as the journey is undertaken by a man/woman duo, so choosing traits that complement your better half is ideal. When character creation is this important, you know you're in for a classic role-playing game experience.

Without offering too many spoilers, know that Divinity: Original Sin presents an original tale with a number of twists and turns. The game is packed full of sidequests, with a total running time of upwards of 60 hours. Dialogue plays a huge role in the game, with many quests being solved by words instead of the brandishing of a sword or a magic incantation. There is always multiple options available to complete quests, and at no time does the game ever present itself as linear. The game takes inspiration from Baldur's Gate and Planescape Torment, eclipsing them in nearly every way.
Nowhere is that statement more true than in the combat system. While the turn-based combat is familiar at first glance, you'll soon find an intricacy in it that older role-playing games lack. For example, if an enemy is standing in a puddle, a quick electricity spell will cause extra damage to his damp body. Douse an enemy an oil and light him on fire to char his body beyond all recognition. Paying careful attention to your surroundings is the key to Divinity: Original Sin's combat, as running in headfirst will only lead to death.

Co-operative play is something you don't often see in role-playing games, but it's something that Divinity: Original Sin is able to pull off thanks to its two character team. Decisions are made by background and stat checks, with both players either working together for a common goal or pulling away from each other at every possible moment. Co-op play isn't the most ideal way to play the game, but it's fun and worth checking out on a replay.

There is so much more to Divinity: Original Sin than can be said in this review. The game looks amazing and runs flawlessly, taking full advantage of the fact that it's not only a PC exclusive, but tailored towards a specific audience who relishes turn-based combat and extensive dialogue. If all Kickstarter games end up being as amazing as Divinity: Original Sin, we're not only entering a golden age for role-playing games, but for video games full stop.

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