Sunday, January 24, 2010

More on them RPGs

I've covered tabletop RPGs to a limited degree and since I'm too lazy to cover VH and COT:COS I'm gonna just do a rundown on a few single player RPGs.
Dragon Age, KotOR II, Bioshock, and Oblivion are on my list for today.

Oblivion:

When it was released it had the best graphics available and right now- they're still pretty good. The game has hundreds, perhaps thousands of quests and you have to hunt them down, there aren't ! over npc's head telling you where to go. The story line is pretty long, and while I haven't been able to affect the storyline much or change the course of the world to fit my image, I still play a major role in many parts of the society.

Combat is simple but effective and fun. The leveling system is unique and there are ways to really spam your level up quickly and ways to become very, very strong without leveling at all.

Dragon Age and KotOR II:

I have chosen to include the two of these in the same place, because, although they are radically different in many ways, the basis of both is very simple. They are both made by the same company and they are both based on a d20 system.

The games are loads of fun and the graphics are really nice (although in Dragon Age, there are no water physics). Knights of the Old Republic is set in a timeline off from the main universe but the legends created by your character and the history affected by it are included in the EU. You can choose several different paths and you do become a major player, but you are not universally recognized.

In Dragon Age, you also can make a few key decisions, but none of them really affect the game all that much. Some encounters may be slightly different but in the end, the events in the game remain the same- it is what the history books will write is what is different.

Both games have a similar combat system where you can pause easily in between actions if you want or can play in real time. The weapons are all pretty basic, but you can upgrade them to make them very strong. The leveling system is very similar to D&D. You gain exp and every level you gain skills, some ability points, some feats etc.... Both also have epic end games, which I will not go into for the sake of spoilers.

Bioshock:

Bioshock is a creepy, creepy game. Like, I mean, creepy. I play with at least one light on (preferably two) and generally at least one other person in the room (preferably two). And I'm still freaked out. The developers succeeded in making a creepy game. The story line is solid, the graphics nice and the game play smooth. It is not exactly a RPG because your character is the same every time you play through and there is really only one decision you can make that affects the plot at all. Nonetheless it is a wonderful, highly recommended game.

Additionally, it does not have a leveling system, per se. It does give you access to more weapons, more plasmids (for lack of a better descriptor- 'magic abilities'), more ammunition and better upgrades.

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