Not Convinced: Risen

Risen

Last week, I spen't one sitting of 5 hours playing Risen, a new RPG that looked very cool from the screenshots and that was just released.

Risen looks very beautiful, yes, and in fact the game world is pretty: weather effects, day-night cycle (you will get used to carrying torches), well chosen color palettes, good overall world design and lots of vegetation visible (a-la Oblivion).

But playing it feels a bit clumsy. Jumping is... strange, trees at close aren't that beautiful, combat is very basic (and there are bugs, sometimes just attacking will keep enemies from doing anything until they die)... After playing Fable II Risen looks unpolished in comparison.

Screenshot

I haven't gone too far in the game (I didn't finish the first chapter), but simply I didn't want to spend more time playing this.

The quests are too similar to World of Warcraft ones (kill X enemies, collect Y items), you have freedom to go to two or three places at once but this is not Oblivion, you have ranged and close combat weapons but you will have to rely on close combat ones for any non trivial enemy...

Sometimes those quests are not too clearly stated, and as the NPCs will just stop talking with you until you finish them, looks too unreal.

Heck, even the "professions" look like World of Warcraft ones (prospecting minerals, lockpicking, skinning dead animals), except here that means "see but don't use yet" along your path, not "stop killing monsters and act like a real miner searching the world for minerals".

Screenshot

Leveling is very basic too: Each level you get 10 "learning points, then you search for trainers to spend them on stats (strength, agility, etc.) or skills (swords, lockpicking,...). Apart from some extra life and mana points, nothing else.

Risen looks like an unfinished ambitious project. It has tons of elements but so rough, so simply implemented and displaced away by the more important lacks or problems, that you forget them and notice more the terrible combat system, or the almost useless world map.

Too bad because it has potential, it might get better later but at least with me its too late, it failed to engage me in the first hours.


Categories: Videogames

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Posted by Kartones on 2009-10-12