Friday, May 13, 2016

Two Worlds: Epic Edition - 2/20 hours

I don't want to be mean, so don't take the following sentence too seriously - Two Worlds is kind of dumb. There's just something about it. The way people talk is really stilted and they use old-timey words like "verily" and "forsooth." (But inconsistently, so you never know when the random NPC is going to sound like they came from the Renaissance Fair).

Also combat is balanced oddly. There are shrines around that restore your health or mana, and if you can kite the enemies to the areas near these shrines, they are nearly trivial, but if you can't, then they are nearly impossible unless you down a ton of potions. From the perspective of a heroic-fantasy narrative, it looks ridiculous. You run around in circles, leading a huge trail of creatures behind you, picking them off one by one. I'll probably level out of this nonsense, much as I did with similar mechanics in Oblivion, but for now it's incredibly silly.

The other weird thing I've noticed about this game is that, two hours in, I've yet to see a single female character. And I've been to a village already. Yet everyone, even the random background people who exist only to spout exposition, has been male. If this goes on much longer, it will probably stop being offensive and start being hilarious. Maybe I'm in some post-apocalyptic disaster area, where the human race is dying off due to lack of women and nobody wants to acknowledge that fact. It also makes the inadvertent homoeroticism (I was warned away from a village because there were mercenaries out to get me, and they looked like "hard men," which cracked me up to no end) more tragic than funny, so I guess it would be a tradeoff.

With those caveats in mind, I don't hate Two Worlds. I suspect that it had greater ambition than it had the budget to realize, but that gives it a kind of low-key charm. It really feels like the video-game version of one of those cheesy B-movies, where nothing is quite right, but gosh-darn it, everyone is trying so hard that it feels cruel to be too hard on it.

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