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Old 11-03-2009, 11:41 AM   #1
SpiritWarrior
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Join Date: May 31, 2002
Location: Ireland
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Thumbs Up First Impressions

Well I played about an hour, and wow, this game is great. I had some misgivings, which I voiced in a GD thread, but so far, none have come true.

I will quickly say that from what I have already seen, I do think this will be the RPG of the year, and I do think it is worthy of the "spiritual successor" to Baldur's Gate title.

It's *feels* like Oblivion meets Baldurs Gate. I cannot help but feeling like i'm walking around Candlekeep library. It plays very like BG, but updated, streamlined etc.

First of all, this engine is OPTIMIZED. It's sad that we now have to mention whether or not a game-engine can actually run well, but w/e. The game runs like a dream for me. Pay attention, Champions Online and NWN2. This is how you optimize engines. The thing is fluid. Not one hitch or stutter as of yet. Keep in mind I am just in the first act, after coming out from the tutorial, but so far, so good!

The graphics are really cool. It's kinda like that hybrid realism style of art. I don't know what they call it, but it is similiar to Dark Messiah of Might and Magic. When you pause this game, some things look like an actual phtotgraph. You can also swing the camera around in 3d while paused, seeing fights from all angles. This makes for some amazing freeze-frame scenes, where you can actually see spell effects hit your character in a shower of light and and see all the details of the enemies you're engaging. I fought with a fire elemental and just seeing it caught in mid-attack while paused was a game in itself.

Spells are alot from BG and IWD series, but modified in name to not conflict with the D&D license. There's a burning hands equavalent and a magic missle one too. I spied mage armor and frostfire, along with healing spells for mages. I think mages are the healers in this game - not sure yet.

UI is nice and shiny, maybe a little bit clunky - but just a little bit. Within 10 mins I was already used to the controls - intuitive mas.

Anyways, gonna go try another character see what their origin is like!
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Old 11-03-2009, 01:22 PM   #2
Kyrvias
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Default Re: First Impressions

Yes. Mages can follow the "Spirit" path, I believe it was, to become healers. Bioware was trying to stay away form "Cleric Syndrome".

I just picked it up not 5 minutes ago, and put the CD in. It is installing as we speak. Boy, it's like christmas!
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Old 11-03-2009, 01:32 PM   #3
SpiritWarrior
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Default Re: First Impressions

Yeah, they have like talent trees similiar to WoW and The Witcher, where you can dump points into and gain spells. Basically there's only one caster type and he can do all spells potentially.

Just played for another 2 hour or so, went the human noble route as a rogue. Man, rogue is alot of fun. Pickpocketting my family members etc. They can stealth, dual wield and barter. All that Rogue-ish goodness.

The only thing I would say is you may wanna turn gore down a bit. It is almost ridiculous. My characters finish a battle and then immediately go into a cutscene with everyone in my party just DRENCHED in blood. When the NPC's are talking about everyday things like the weather or how many sandwiches they ate, it just seems laughable to have them chatting pleasantly to 3 people who look like Jason the serial killer after every fight. I am fine with gore, but it's a bit too much and imo unnecessary. No big deal, just turn the switch down.

I am looking forward to mods for this game, what with such a great engine and all, I imagine this will be the next big modding affair.
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Old 11-03-2009, 01:34 PM   #4
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Arrow Re: First Impressions

I just got back from the store. Gamestop didn't receive the PC version today, not even my preorder. So instead I went to Best Buy.

The retail copies came with the DLC and the Blood Dragon armor. I thought only the pre-orders got it.

I'll let you guys know my impressions when(if!) I take a break. :p
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Old 11-03-2009, 05:40 PM   #5
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Default Re: First Impressions

Just finished the City Elf prologue.

I too made a rogue but I don't have pickpocket. Instead I took two levels in the persuasion skill and a level in the battle training skill, if I remember right.

The game does feel like Neverwinter Night in the way it plays, but for some reason in this one I prefer the camera in third person mode instead of top down.

I'm having fun so far. Before I started I wanted to have this character turn into a human hating, bitter rogue. But I got attached to the friendly npcs and became more of a rebel hero.

Also it seem they finally managed to fix the login/registration problems they were having with their website so I unlocked all the promo content and while there bought the other DLC. I'll let you guys know if it's worth it.
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Old 11-03-2009, 06:44 PM   #6
SpiritWarrior
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Default Re: First Impressions

Yes, the camera in third-person mode is so good and NON dizzying, that I can play it with no problems.

To this day, I am forced to play NWN2 in top-down for the sole reason that the alternatives were the most annoying things in gaming. In top-down mode, I missed alot of visual candy, and just a general sense of the experience is taken away.

So Bioware got this one right also. I mean, is the standard so low that we have to note optimized engines and working cameras, lol? I guess so. Either way, very impressed with DA:O, and I hope this puts Bioware back on the map in terms of fantasy RPGing.
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Old 11-03-2009, 07:10 PM   #7
Lord of Alcohol
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Default Re: First Impressions

I'm playing a mage and have had zero problems with the engine and no camera complaints. I did manage to get myself stuck between a couple boxes and ended up having to go back to a previous save. Luckilly that wasnt far. Overall great first impression!
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Old 11-03-2009, 11:04 PM   #8
Kyrvias
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Default Re: First Impressions

Ah, this game is wonderful, to be sure. Dalish Elf, pumping my dexterity and dual weilding. I am a force to be reckoned with.

And I must say, I quite enjoy the NPC's you get saddled with.

*Very minor spoiler*

I laughed a good bit when Alistair said the words "Man Feelings". Suffice to say, Carth mentioned those very same ones. All one of them.

*End very minor spoiler*
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Old 11-04-2009, 06:05 AM   #9
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Default Re: First Impressions

Holy Crap! Now THIS is what Neverwinter Nights 2 should have been. Amazing. And yes, the engine is smooth, and responsive without the stuttering of 'other' games we've seen. I am going to run my Rogue first. (Love my Thief games)

The atmosphere is really something. It really does bring back memories of Baldur's Gate. *sigh*... finally.

Bioware, this will be RPG of the year. bank on that!
More soon!! I will mess with the toolset after I beat it, and maybe make another Undermountain mod!

If this had multiplayer, it would be perfect. But hey, maybe in an expansion pack, eh?
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Old 11-04-2009, 12:33 PM   #10
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Default Re: First Impressions

You guys got me all psyched!!!
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