A few years ago, Reality Pump and Southpeak games released “Two Worlds,” a massive role-playing experience that in spite of some bugs, mainly due to RP’s inexperience developing console games, amassed a somewhat cult-like following that praised the game’s huge scale and amount of customization options. Similar in scope to games such as “Fallout 3” and “Oblivion,” “Two Worlds,” regardless of its problems, was engulfed in promise and provided hours of solid gameplay.
The sequel, “Two Worlds II,” scheduled for release on Oct. 5, feels almost like a different game entirely, with nearly every concept and idea improved upon and polished, resulting in what looks to be a more than acceptable addition to the series and one that will be able to bring more fans to the table than ever.
With so many customization options, as far as weapons and spells go and a bigger map as well, this may become the game that many “Oblivion” fans turn to while they anxiously wait for a new addition to that series. Nevertheless, with so many improvements to the graphical engine and AI, it’s fair to say that TopWare Interactive and Southpeak may have their own words in mind for Bethesda:
Eat your heart out Oblivion.
If you dug the first game, you’ll feel right at home knowing that nearly every element of the game that you loved has been polish or fixed. Learning from the problems that hampered the first game, TopWare Interactive has brought out the big guns and it’s obvious right from the get go. No longer will horses walk away from you and gone forever are the shoddy voice acting scenes that bounced back and forth like a pinball, making it tiresome to watch the story advance. Taking a page out of “Oblivion,” gamers can now watch these conversations and still walk around the screen, making all the dialogue and story much more easy to digest.
This may seem like a small change, but for a game that depends on its story, this small nuance makes this title much easier to play through.
With all the polishing the developers have done on this game, it’s easy to forget about the graphical engine, which has been beefed up as well. With better animations and backgrounds, “Two Worlds II” has more than just a new coat of paint. Walking and running around the towns and environments and watching people look at you and animals interact with you, it’s easy to completely be sucked into this beautiful world. In some of the levels shown, the lighting and water effects were simply astounding and go a long way in showing how much work has gone into this title thus far. Because of this, it’s easy to say that this is one of the better looking games on the Xbox 360.
After so much polish to the graphics and core gameplay alone, the developers could have easily called it a day and got the game ready for distribution, as that would have been more than enough work for a decent sequel. Knowing that, it’s nice to see that the weapon and spell design element of the game has also been rounded out and fleshed out further, giving gamers even more control over the weapons they make and spells they conjure, “Two Worlds II” may end up being the new standard bearer for RPGs on the 360.
No longer does the game have a generic feel to it, making fanboys cry that it’s an Elder Scrolls clone. Make no mistake about it, this game has its own sense of style and even though the look is comparable to “Oblivion,” it plays much differently.
If that wasn’t enough, a hearty, mission-based multi-player campaign is also available, adding even more hours to the gameplay. Using different characters entirely, the multi-player aspects of this game is different from an add-on and serves to bring players together, rather than keep them locked in the single-player campaign all by their lonesome. If that indeed works remains to be seen, but it looks to be a nice touch to the complete package.
Overall, with so many improvements made to a game that many felt was solid before, “Two Worlds II” should be more than a quick distraction before “Fallout New Vegas” comes out later in the month.
Patrick Hickey Jr.
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