Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning is an upcoming single-player RPG, due for release across all current-gen platforms (Xbox 360, PS3, PC) in February 2012. R.A. Salvatore is working on the game's "universe" and lore; Ken Rolston (Morrowind, Oblivion) is the lead designer; Todd MacFarlane (Spawn) is working on the artwork; Jim Sterling is championing Reckoning, as am I. The game is undoubtedly the first "important" western RPG of 2012. Bethesda is in direct competition with 38 Studios and Big Huge Games (both working on Reckoning) for my money between November and February.
Anyone else interested? Does a Reckoning thread exist already? If so, should I hang myself now, or later?
I got the demo on Xbox just to get whatever tat was going for the Mass Effect 3 game. But then I played it and I have to admit I like it. Going back to a non-speaking character is a bit retro right now and the game does feel like it came out the same time as Fable but I dunno - there's something about it makes me think "hmm yeah I'd play that, just not sure if I want to pay full price right now".
I think I might get the full game when it's reduced, I think it's definately worth checking out.
Wow, no chatter about this? I'm surprised. And disappointed in all you nerds.
I wasn't planning on buying this, but I won at the casino on Saturday and promptly blew my winnings on the game.
I haven't played a whole lot yet, but I think I like it. I like the art style so far, but I've only seen the one initial region (small town & forest).
One of the things that bugs me is that the claimed "open world" is really only semi-open. For example, you cannot jump. Which means if there's no ramp, you're not getting up there. Even ankle-high stones are a total barrier. There are certain pre-defined spots where you can jump down, like from a ledge overlooking a path. But not the spot 3 meters away, overlooking the same path. Only where you're allowed to jump down. Likewise, you can't walk off the grass and have a splash about in the river. You just walk into the infamous invisible wall.
The combat is reasonably fun and fast-paced. It feels a bit like the Batman games, with dodges and the occasional finishing move. The RPG skills system is complicated and, honestly, difficult to absorb. There's a linear system of ordinary skills, like Persuade, Lockpicking, and Stealth. And also a separate, tree-like system for combat and magic skills. It's my understanding that the tree section may change if you choose a different fate (a/k/a character class) and reallocate your skill points.
This is also the first game I've seen that comes with NO manual whatsoever. It's a menu option instead.
Oh yeah - the menu system for quests, inventory, etc., is a disaster. I know some people didn't like Skyrim's menus, but this is worse. Pressing Start goes to the top level of the menu, which is about a dozen items long. To equip a weapon, I think the sequence is:
Main Menu > Inventory > Weapons > Primary Weapon > (choose)
You do the same steps for your secondary weapon, like a bow.
There does not appear to be any easier way to swap weapons. It's a pain in the ass. I know a lot of reviews have said the same thing, so perhaps there's a slim, slim, chance that an upcoming patch could reorganize things. I don't know.
I can't say anything about the story yet, because I don't really understand it. It's something about a branch of the Fae (elves or old-style faeries) who've gone to the dark side and want to eradicate or enslave the mortal races - humans and dwarves. I'm working on that part.
I'm having a lot of fun with it, but the camera is really really terrible, and blocking seems completely and utterly useless when compared to dodge, especially since there is no dodge penalty to wearing heavy armor or using heavy weapons.
This morning, before work, I found my first location with traps. They were the old standby - a pressure plate in the floor that shoots spikes up into your feet. It was good to find something that required a little bit more thinking than just hack-n-slash. However, the movement is so loose and fluid (which is good for combat) that navigating around them is more challenging than it should be.
I hope to find something that's got a bit of mental challenge to it. Even if it's a simple puzzle of pulling levers to open doors - just something that takes a bit of brain power.
Speaking of mental challenges, the mini-map does a fine job destroying them. I was sent to a castle; the front gate was blocked by rubble. The quest status popped up and said "Find an alternate entrance". That wasn't hard, because a bright yellow circle immediately appeared on my map. C'mon, guys. Your world already restricts where I can and can't go - can't I please explore a little bit? I could have found that alternate entrance myself (it was only 30ft away) and it would have been a lot more rewarding than just heading for the yellow circle.
I don't mind the minimap as a rule, although this one's not particularly great. It's nice to see the minimap of a town with icons showing which services are available where. It beats the "enter - load - wrong store - exit - load - try again" method.
I finally checked out one of this game's "big ideas" - being able to reset all your skill points. It's a decent way to adjust your character to the style of play you prefer, or the type of weapons you like. I still prefer Skyrim's method, where using a weapon type or a skill improves your stats in that area. It just seems more natural.
I've been at this for almost a week and am enjoying it. I can't stop comparing it to Skyrim, which is completely unfair. They're entirely different styles.
But before picking this up, I spent a solid three weeks or more playing Dead Island. I got to about 80% complete on the main story. I gave up when I thought I was about to begin the final chapter. But first we had to "go back to town for supplies", which meant a few more fucking fetch quests. Yeah. Reckoning is a better game.