Indsendt: 19. januar
Baldur's Gate with a splash of XCOM. Linear and not particularly repeatable, but a good co-op diversion with a dedicated partner.
No cover drawn from its XCOM heritage, but tactical combat control and lockdowns are the order of the day. Scoundrels, Men at Arms, and Expert Marksmen are effectively 'mages in armor', with broad spell variety saved for dedicated INT casters, who will have a few skill trees due to less attribute dependence. Spend some time studying the character generation and level up systems, as understanding how tightly you will need to specialize is vital - the game is parsimonious with stat improvements. The tactical combat will pull no punches though the AI can sometimes be baited into foolish mistakes of positioning. Get friendly with your quicksave key, and put a grin on - the combat can be brutal, and a winning contest can go south quickly when new enemy abilities make their first appearance. D:OS won't warn you about what's coming.
For mages doing damage, elemental combinations are the order of the day, and being able to apply all of the earth(poison)/fire and water/air(electricity) pairings is useful, but specialize in one pairing. Countering these works as you might imagine - water dries up when heated, fire goes out when rained upon. Be able to counter them all, amongst your group. Poison can be washed away or burned off. Ice will melt, faster with help. Witchcraft is the INT caster version of Man-at-Arms, with fewer controls, but more ranged debuffs and pet summons - an armored decapitator is nothing to sneer at. (Nor are the various elementals and animals from the elemental skills, for that matter, but one summon per caster at a time.)
The writing is adequate, but not stellar. The first who-dun-it wasn't particularly inspiring, and oftentimes progression has been a matter of "what level are those
enemies?" rather than a cohesive sense of direction and progress. The quest journal is next-to-useless for many quests, providing little or no information to follow up. Use markers liberally, and don't be ashamed to augment the game's lacking journalling with some of your own.
The rock-paper-scissors mechanic is by turns novel and tiresome. It's cute the first couple of times you see it, and it's a new way to 'randomize' a mechanic that no one seems to get right (persuasion) but it misses the mark in not having an "autoplay". Frankly, I don't want to play RPS against the computer, or my partner, and if the point is to provide some uncertainty to 'speech checks', that's fine - but I don't care for the minigame much. Fortunately, it's been relatively rare thus far...
Character control is relatively straightforward - two players control four characters between them, in any combination. The host controls who gets to run which, allowing one player to AFK while the other plays a combat or to allow a tactical novice to mind only a single character in combat, etc. Wife and I split our characters into two teams of two, and it works out well - I run the NPC warrior (man-at-arms) and shadow cleric (witchcraft/some water/man-at-arms), she handles the mage duties (one in all colleges for access, specializing earth/fire for stronger effects) and the sneaky rogue Wolgraff we recruited.
Combat is turn based and is the real meat of the game, with players asked to deploy skills and weapons to defeat foes in a number of varied battlefield conditions. Often, a different approach or tactical plan is the difference between victory and reloading, and fights have been challenging often.
All around, an enjoyable game, but remember those roots - the game doesn't pretend to be a more modern RPG, no matter the pretty graphics, so study up on how the level system works. It doesn't pretend to have autopilot combat, either. Bring your tactical thinking to the table.
...and get ready to read, because this is a long, slow march, not a sprint.