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"[Game] Divinity 2: the Dragon Knight Saga (pc)"

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Tue 18/11/14 at 17:16
Regular
"eat toast!"
Posts: 1,466
Released back in 2010 on pc and xbox360, Divinity 2 received mixed reviews. The developers, Larian studios, have worked hard to improve the game for its re-release Divinity 2: the dragon knight saga that bundles both the original game and expansion pack flames of vengeance into one neat package. With Larian's recent release Divinity Original sin getting positive reviews, it peaked my interest to look into their earlier efforts in the Divinity series. So is divinity 2: the dragon knight saga an under appreciated gem or are there legitimate reasons why it wasn't more popular?

First impressions are good. The Graphics are pleasing, the voice casting is competent and the orchestral music is especially excellent. The world of Rivellon is brimming with lore and secrets all waiting to be discovered. Environments are aesthetically pleasing with plenty of variety. Despite the serious tone of the game, it isn't afraid of a bit of lighted fun with quests and events. On the journey you'll meet funny memorable characters like the powerful psychotic rhyming mage Bellagar and even stranger events like the 3 talking vegetables needing help - or be eaten by the protagonist. A minor concern are limited facial character creation options and voices, but its moot point since the hero's face will be covered anyway.

Divinity 2 is very much a standard third person action RPG. Players have a main quest to complete to save the land from a great evil with a smattering of optional side quests to do along the way. Not all people in Rivellion are honest and first appearances can be deceiving to force players in completing a quest for their own nefarious means. Players can opt to mind read during conversations to reveal the truth and information on obtaining useful items, skills and even store discounts. It's an interesting, but flawed, mechanic as its open to quicksave/quickload abuse not to mention because experience points are very finite in the main game. As players gain experience points they level up and can invest in a classless skill system with the freedom to develop characters however they see fit as oppose to rigidly adhere to fantasy archetypal classes. To keep players on their toes, the enemy themselves do not adhere to standard class conventions. Every skill and spell is the player can get is accessible to them as well. It's not uncommon to find melee fighters welding magic as well as swords with brutal efficiency and magic users having warrior abilities. Needlessly to say, on harder difficulties players will need to have a clear idea of the kind of character they wish to create. A jack of all trades is a master of none, yet at the same time players will be deficient in various important stats and resistances if they invest exclusively in one stat.

Combat leaves a lot to be desired, although workable, it's a flawed messy hybrid of mmorpg and third person action that makes things needlessly difficult. Combat lacks any complexity beyond frantically pressing left mouse button to attack and number keys to deploy skills. Combat feels more like a war of attrition with stats and luck rather than skill being the deciding factor. Connecting normal attacks don't stun targets when hit, players can't BLOCK attacks (even when equipped with a shield), yet can DODGE them. Skill based attacks are virtually unavoidable as they home onto players, sometimes curving round cover or just instantly hitting players. In one rage inducing encounter a boss repeatedly used a stun arrow before firing and a single (homing) explosive arrow resulting in instant death. Players can take up dragon form later on in the game, but whilst fun and useful to travel the world of Rivellon, it's not without its problems. The same combat problems persists during combat in dragon form. Thankfully more forgiving because of the increased amounts of health and enemy attacks are avoidable. Combat as human or dragon form is strictly a separate affair as soon as players take up dragon form, all the enemies on the ground disappear and turrets and flying enemies become active.

Players can also summon a creature of their own creation for some invaluable aid when things get rough. With the help of a necromancer, different t body parts can be used to piece the creature together determining the creature's effectiveness and roll in combat . The most prized parts allow the creature to receive the biggest stats and even the use special abilities. Players can complete quests to slay special monsters or fork out serious gold for the best parts. It's a nice feature, but just a shame that it's a bit limited. The creature falls into the melee, ranged or magic categories and you can't control or order them around. So at best they act more like distractions for enemies to spread the damage as opposed to an indispensable minion.

But dubious combat and half baked ideas are the least of Divinity's issues when confronted with its game breaking bugs. Besides falling through the game world several times, the most infamous bug involves bosses being capable of killing players with a single hit when battle commenced. Although this has been patched out, the problem still persists and to have any chance of survival, there's little choice but to temporarily reduce the difficulty to casual and power through it. The inventory interface lacks polish, items can't be dropped, only destroyed or sent to the dragon tower for processing later. Used keysquest items remain in the inventory after use. Then there are the plot holes in the story. The ultimate evil, Damien will constantly turns up taunting players and generally being hyped up for an ultimate showdown. But when that time comes, it's a complete cop out. He's nowhere to be seen and instead a stand in character takes his place for the final showdown. Damien doesn't even get an appearance during the story concluding flames of vengeance expansion pack. It's a bit of a shame as the story isn't a bad one; having a dragon knight slayer becoming a dragon knight themselves and betraying everything he once stood for to save the world.

Overall Divinity 2: the dragon knight saga falls short of being recommendable to all but bored die-hard RPG fans. The game offers a lot of content, is well presented and has some good ideas. But poor implementation on the all important action, serious design/ technical issues tarnish what could have been something truly enjoyable title. If players are able to overlook the games large faults, it can be entertaining, but for many it just isn't worth the hassle with better RPGS available. If you're interested in getting the game, make sure to get the director's cut edition and/or be prepared to make multiple save games, change difficulty or even cheat to get around the games problems. A better alternative is Kingdom of Amalur which has a similar ideas as divinity 2 but is a more complete and entertaining game. Otherwise, just save your money for something else.

6/10
There have been no replies to this thread yet.
Tue 18/11/14 at 17:16
Regular
"eat toast!"
Posts: 1,466
Released back in 2010 on pc and xbox360, Divinity 2 received mixed reviews. The developers, Larian studios, have worked hard to improve the game for its re-release Divinity 2: the dragon knight saga that bundles both the original game and expansion pack flames of vengeance into one neat package. With Larian's recent release Divinity Original sin getting positive reviews, it peaked my interest to look into their earlier efforts in the Divinity series. So is divinity 2: the dragon knight saga an under appreciated gem or are there legitimate reasons why it wasn't more popular?

First impressions are good. The Graphics are pleasing, the voice casting is competent and the orchestral music is especially excellent. The world of Rivellon is brimming with lore and secrets all waiting to be discovered. Environments are aesthetically pleasing with plenty of variety. Despite the serious tone of the game, it isn't afraid of a bit of lighted fun with quests and events. On the journey you'll meet funny memorable characters like the powerful psychotic rhyming mage Bellagar and even stranger events like the 3 talking vegetables needing help - or be eaten by the protagonist. A minor concern are limited facial character creation options and voices, but its moot point since the hero's face will be covered anyway.

Divinity 2 is very much a standard third person action RPG. Players have a main quest to complete to save the land from a great evil with a smattering of optional side quests to do along the way. Not all people in Rivellion are honest and first appearances can be deceiving to force players in completing a quest for their own nefarious means. Players can opt to mind read during conversations to reveal the truth and information on obtaining useful items, skills and even store discounts. It's an interesting, but flawed, mechanic as its open to quicksave/quickload abuse not to mention because experience points are very finite in the main game. As players gain experience points they level up and can invest in a classless skill system with the freedom to develop characters however they see fit as oppose to rigidly adhere to fantasy archetypal classes. To keep players on their toes, the enemy themselves do not adhere to standard class conventions. Every skill and spell is the player can get is accessible to them as well. It's not uncommon to find melee fighters welding magic as well as swords with brutal efficiency and magic users having warrior abilities. Needlessly to say, on harder difficulties players will need to have a clear idea of the kind of character they wish to create. A jack of all trades is a master of none, yet at the same time players will be deficient in various important stats and resistances if they invest exclusively in one stat.

Combat leaves a lot to be desired, although workable, it's a flawed messy hybrid of mmorpg and third person action that makes things needlessly difficult. Combat lacks any complexity beyond frantically pressing left mouse button to attack and number keys to deploy skills. Combat feels more like a war of attrition with stats and luck rather than skill being the deciding factor. Connecting normal attacks don't stun targets when hit, players can't BLOCK attacks (even when equipped with a shield), yet can DODGE them. Skill based attacks are virtually unavoidable as they home onto players, sometimes curving round cover or just instantly hitting players. In one rage inducing encounter a boss repeatedly used a stun arrow before firing and a single (homing) explosive arrow resulting in instant death. Players can take up dragon form later on in the game, but whilst fun and useful to travel the world of Rivellon, it's not without its problems. The same combat problems persists during combat in dragon form. Thankfully more forgiving because of the increased amounts of health and enemy attacks are avoidable. Combat as human or dragon form is strictly a separate affair as soon as players take up dragon form, all the enemies on the ground disappear and turrets and flying enemies become active.

Players can also summon a creature of their own creation for some invaluable aid when things get rough. With the help of a necromancer, different t body parts can be used to piece the creature together determining the creature's effectiveness and roll in combat . The most prized parts allow the creature to receive the biggest stats and even the use special abilities. Players can complete quests to slay special monsters or fork out serious gold for the best parts. It's a nice feature, but just a shame that it's a bit limited. The creature falls into the melee, ranged or magic categories and you can't control or order them around. So at best they act more like distractions for enemies to spread the damage as opposed to an indispensable minion.

But dubious combat and half baked ideas are the least of Divinity's issues when confronted with its game breaking bugs. Besides falling through the game world several times, the most infamous bug involves bosses being capable of killing players with a single hit when battle commenced. Although this has been patched out, the problem still persists and to have any chance of survival, there's little choice but to temporarily reduce the difficulty to casual and power through it. The inventory interface lacks polish, items can't be dropped, only destroyed or sent to the dragon tower for processing later. Used keysquest items remain in the inventory after use. Then there are the plot holes in the story. The ultimate evil, Damien will constantly turns up taunting players and generally being hyped up for an ultimate showdown. But when that time comes, it's a complete cop out. He's nowhere to be seen and instead a stand in character takes his place for the final showdown. Damien doesn't even get an appearance during the story concluding flames of vengeance expansion pack. It's a bit of a shame as the story isn't a bad one; having a dragon knight slayer becoming a dragon knight themselves and betraying everything he once stood for to save the world.

Overall Divinity 2: the dragon knight saga falls short of being recommendable to all but bored die-hard RPG fans. The game offers a lot of content, is well presented and has some good ideas. But poor implementation on the all important action, serious design/ technical issues tarnish what could have been something truly enjoyable title. If players are able to overlook the games large faults, it can be entertaining, but for many it just isn't worth the hassle with better RPGS available. If you're interested in getting the game, make sure to get the director's cut edition and/or be prepared to make multiple save games, change difficulty or even cheat to get around the games problems. A better alternative is Kingdom of Amalur which has a similar ideas as divinity 2 but is a more complete and entertaining game. Otherwise, just save your money for something else.

6/10

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