Friday, October 31, 2008

Divine Divinity (2002)

I finally went back and finished Divine Divinity (I at least played up to the final grind dungeon sequence when most of the quests were completed). One of the last great 2d RPGs. It really reminds me of the Ultima's and a mix of action RPGs with a great sense of it still being just a game. I liked the loading/saving screens saying some farmer wanted his pigs killed (probably to trick me into doing it) and warning about exploding computers if you pirated the game, along with actual useful tips.

So much about the game is excellent. The 2d looks a little off at first but I grew to love it. The GUI worked fine and I liked that it had an automap and the mini map, equipment, inventory, stats and other windows could be dragged and dropped wherever I wanted them on screen. The screens were so nice to look at with all the small details in the handcrafted environment. There is also some nice humor in the game both between the in game characters and metajokes poking fun at rpgs in general.

I liked how many items could be interacted with and moved around. Move cups, bowls, chairs, tables, flower pots, chairs, rocks, etc. around your local area. The inhabitants seemed keen on hiding their keys under nearby rocks or flower pots, except the few that left them on a counter. I also liked how even though a initial class was picked, you could then pick any skill as long as you had reached a certain level.

There were enough interesting side quests to extend gameplay and remove boring no goal grinding in order to be strong enough to continue the main quest. Just run around and solve a few quests then go back and hit the main once you went up a few levels. I spent a lot of time also checking all corners of each map to remove the fog of war, less so on the later maps though as I wanted to finish the game, but lots of exploring for folks that like that.

I do like how most creatures end up as meat after a fight. I gladly rid the countryside of wolfs and other evil beings so I could eat instead of use potions. Somehow I guess I wacked a cat or two to many and they all became my enemy. While it was sad to be on the wrong sad of their culture they were still just meat to this adventurer. I didn't have any issues with the cows, though I don't recall attacking them and actually solved one of their disappearing mysteries so maybe they respected me.

I never heard good things about the sequal Beyond Divinity but I do look forward to Divinity 2: Ego Draconis. Now to figure out of I want to finish up a FPS or RPG I've started but never completed or start something else.