Gothic 3 - First impressions
March 18, 2018

My computer is dying. Well, it's more like it's being left in the dust. More and more, indie devs are releasing titles that this bag of bones my friend and I built circa 2012 can't run properly. You know it's bad when you can't even run non-AAA titles. I now plan to save up a whopping $1200 to either build a new PC or hire someone to do so, mostly so I can play modern titles.

Before that happens, I have four RPGs I'd like to scrub off my list. I hope to have these finished so I don't get halfway through them, then have to transfer my save files to the new computer (it's mostly a laziness thing). Those titles are Gothic 3, Arcania: Gothic IV, Planescape: Torment Enhanced Edition and Avencast.

So tonight, having finished Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs (review coming soon), I decided to install and fire up Gothic 3. To my surprise, I didn't need to patch it to get it running. It bubbled right to life and thrust me into a battle against a bunch of orcs. Unlike the previous installments, the game didn't begin with blather and confusing mechanics. You enter a battle from the get-go and tutorial windows tell you what to do. The game functions more like the original Risen title, which is great since that's my favorite Piranha Bytes title to date. With a swarm of clicks, I offed all of the orcs, looted the village and accidentally sat down in a stool.

My character wouldn't get out of the damn stool. He sat there for an eternity, staring into space. I had to reload and fight and loot all over again.

As expected, the game's visuals are more modern. Character models no longer look like jagged mannequins, and the environments are much more awe-inspiring. My only gripe is that the game's animation isn't exactly top notch. It doesn't lag, per se, but there's an occasional hiccup that bothers me.

Although Gothic 3's voice acting is still pretty blah, it's a step up from before. Diego actually sounds like a hardened warrior, and the nameless hero doens't sound like Ned Flanders trying to be tough.

Most of all, they brought back the standard "start from nothing, become a legend" kind of gameplay, though it doesn't ignore the fact that your hero can fight. You can kill early game enemies with ease, and the status screen acknowledges that you're a capable fighter. It seems to me that the status screen suggests that the hero isn't starting from nothing and becoming a badass, but that he's already awesome and about to transcend said awesomeness.

Gothic 3 shows a lot of promise. This campaign had better not disappoint.

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Feedback
EmP EmP - March 18, 2018 (01:51 PM)
I was quite fond of Gothic 3. Might have been patched out by now, but you'll probably be stunlocked to death by boars a lot.

I found that every tough fight I got stuck at was resolved by a weapon switch. It's almost quite tactical that way.
dirtsheep dirtsheep - May 16, 2018 (06:28 PM)
I played Gothic 2 back in the day, and really loved it (though your mannequin comment is well received). We were all really looking forward to Gothic 3. There was even talk about it being an "Oblivion killer," but at release, after all that hype, it was a mess. "Mess" as in "barely playable." I understand that it got a lot of love not from the developer, but from the community...sounds like it's maybe better than it was back in...2007, was it? Glad to read this, and look forward to hearing more.

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