Sunday, July 03, 2011

Dungeon Siege 3

This may sound funny, but my Mom, who is 71, is an FRPG freak.  As am I.  (I got her addicted to Diablo slightly before the turn of the millennium.)  She pre-paid Obsidian and Square-Enix $50 for DS3 months before it actually arrived.  As did I.  That’s Dungeon Siege 3 for the PC.
 What’s she doing right now in all her copious free time?  Playing a third-party remake of Diablo II.   Why?  Because she has to take out her frustrations with DS3 on something!  
                Here’s the deal, Square-Enix:  You folks have made some pretty good games in the past with Dungeon Siege 2 topping that list.  But on Number 3, you blew it.  You guys clearly set out to reinvent the wheel and instead ended up with…the wheel.  Same old snot, with chrome.
                DS3 is a pretty game and has a great story line.  Maybe a little too much story line, but I always like the idea that my character is starring in a movie. 
                What I was expecting, and I don’t think I’m alone in this expectation, was a continuance of the awesomeness of Dungeon Siege 2.  I expected Square-Enix and Obsidian, two of the best game-makers out there today, to take what was clearly a superb game and make it better, faster, more powerful than before.  The fact that they did not do that disturbs me greatly. 
                DS2 was one of the most re-playable games ever.  I’ve been PC gaming since 1980, when I bought my first TRS-80 Model I, and in those years, I have enjoyed few games more than DS2.  Doom, of course, along with the original Wizardry games for the Apple //e.  However, for single play or multi-play, DS2 was the bomb.  The combat and stats system was easy to understand and the skill tree easily negotiated.   Square-Enix completely failed in this area.  DS3’s skills and stats are one click and done deals.  That may be okay for newbies, or console players, but for we who like a good RPG, we want to see numbers and to have more detail as we evaluate stats and weaponry.    (It’s one of the ideals of role playing games:  My character stands by a looted chest or in a magic shop holding two swords side by side, testing weight, balance, quality of the steel and asking the mage behind the desk for details of the enchantments and enchantments of both…and then making a decision.) 
             Finally, as a PC Gamer, I feel completely disrespected.
I know Square-Enix, Eidos, Taito, et al, primarily make console games, but come on people!  You didn’t even bother to give us the basic ability to remap our controls?  Seriously? 
                I am depressed.  And so is Mom.

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