OXCGN’s Risen 2 Review
Pirates, monsters…and wenches!
by Sam Warhurst
©2012 Sam Warhurst
While I normally wouldn’t sit down to play a single player Role Playing Game (RPG), being more of a social gamer and playing online multiplayer games, Risen 2 certainly attracted me at first sight.
What gamer wouldn’t be interested in plentiful pirates, mythical monsters, attractive saucy wenches and adventure on the high seas?
The swashbuckling sequel to the 2009 release of the medieval original Risen, which was not classified and so not released in Australia, Risen 2 has been released on PC and will be released on August 3rd for Xbox 360 and Playstation 3.
Plunged into a Pirate World!
Risen 2, by developer Piranha Bytes, initially thrusts us into a world shrouded by a dark and stormy night, where we witness a ship being torn to shreds by the dreaded Kraken, terror of the seas.
It’s then up to our “Nameless Hero” to go undercover and find the pirate Captain Steelbeard and learn about a mysterious weapon which holds the power to rid the world of the Kraken, bringing a greater peace to travelling ships.
At the beginning of the game, armed with a sword, a pair of pants and our pirate-chick companion Patty following us around, we are able to explore the surroundings freely, talking to locals and acquiring quests, running into wild animals, collecting plants and finding the usual but oddly unattended, unlocked chests to pillage.
Unfortunately, straying too far from the paths of the island proved unwise without building skills and acquiring some form of equipment, and we quickly learned the value of saving the game more often… [Ed.: Build up your paranoia and save often... trust me, it comes in handy!]
The combat in Risen 2 is certainly to my taste, being more free-for-all run in and attack as you will, instead of a more strategic style play such as the Final Fantasy games, which I never showed the patience for.
At the start you are armed with your sword and have the simple ability of slashing, but persist with earning ‘glory’ as you kill more monsters and complete quests and you’ll be able to develop your character and earn more skills and abilities.
Eventually you are sent off on your adventure to find the Titan Harpoon as well as other necessary artifacts in order to kill the Titan Lord.
While I found the quests interesting, compared to other RPG’s, I found that they weren’t as easy to track, being able to only set one quest marker on your map at a time. I personally prefer to be able to see all the quests on my map and complete them as I run around an area instead of running back and forth a dozen times.
Where I found the environmental graphics stunning with waving grass and crystal waters, I have to say I was disappointed in the facial expressions of the NPCs.
I have to say I was quite taken with the voice-acting in game. The characters were given that complete pirate persona with accents and even language, and were not afraid to tell you what they think of you or pick a fight.
Add to that the over dramatic hand gesturing and waving which could be linked back to the popular pirate, Captain Jack Sparrow.
Patience or full throttle…
Where the story line is certainly captivating I must admit that I’m not dedicated to the intense RPG’s where one must spend endless hours working in detail to gear up and build a character into an ultimate fighting machine.
Risen 2 is a game which is definitely aimed towards, and more rewarding for, the more hard-core and driven of RPG players who don’t mind sitting in front of their computer or console and focusing solely on the game for large blocks of time.
Myself being more of a simple RPG player, I also admit that I found the inventory and quest logs slightly too complex for my liking, preferring instead one simple list where everything is itemized for my convenience.
I also found myself slightly annoyed at the movement of our hero, having to use my mouse to turn and look around instead of the usual cursor on the screen leaving me free to click and mouse over items.
Instead I have to run the character close up, angling the camera down until the item is highlighted then click to interact.
Treasure to keep, or throw to the sharks?
In the end, what more do you need to fill your spare time other than in a fantasy world filled with pirates, voodoo, monsters and wenches!
©2012 Sam Warhurst
Filed under: PC Reviews, PS3 Reviews, Xbox 360 Tagged: | Kraken, piracy, Piranha Bytes, Playstation 3, Risen 2, risen 2 dark waters pc review, risen 2 dark waters review, risen 2 pc, risen 2 pc review, risen 2 review, risen-2-dark-waters, Role Playing Game, RPG, Xbox, Xbox 360