Saturday, October 2, 2010
Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura
"Arcanum" is a turn-based rpg, published back in 2001 by Sierra and developed by Troika Games (which aren't around anymore, which is a pitty).
the story starts quite simple: you are the only survivor of a zeppelin-crash. at the crash-site you meet a stranger, which starts talking to you about some sort of prophecy, and how you may be the reincarnation of some sort of elven-god and whaddayaknow.
so the both of you start running around in the country, searching for answers, talking to people, looting corpes, killing monsters, solving quests, meeting new partymembers, and, most of all: exploring.
the whole world of "Arcanum" is quite big, there are many cities, many smaller dungeons around the world-map, all in all many places to be explored.
what's best about the whole exploring-thing: the setting is just awesome. as the title may indicate, the game takes place in a steampunk-esque world. on the one hand, there is MAGIC, with all its traditions, and rituals, and spells, and and and ...
but on the other hand there is also TECHNOLOGY. well, sort of. steampunk-technology, that is. you won't see lightsabres in this game, but you can craft an electric tophat. interesting thing: if your character is magically adept, he gets technologically inept, and vice versa. which means if you have learned 200 MAGIC spells, it may happen that your TECHNOLOGY-gun won't fire if you pull the trigger. and vice versa.
so the most important things regarding rpgs are handled nicely in this game. huge world, consistent regarding the setting, and first and foremost an AWESOME setting.
the character-creation can be a bitch if you play the game for the first time, because you just don't know right from the beginning, what is needed and what is not that much needed, but after you started again the fifth time you will make it out of the first town i guess. :F
battles in this game are hard in the beginning and nearly too easy in the later parts of the game. you can switch between turn-based battles (which is the best option) and live-action battles (which is only recommended if you are able to slay enemies without much hassle, since the live-action battles are a fuckton faster than you would expect from the turn-based battles.).
all in all: 9/10 chests.