Ok. So full discretion. I am a big nerd when it comes to RPG’s, both virtual and tabletop so when I started up Larian Games new CRPG game Divinity: Original Sin 2 I was already going in liking the game. So going forward take my opinions with that bias entrenched deeper in your mind than the Germans in Belgium.
Divinity: Original Sin 2 is another in the resurgent CRPG catalog that goes to show that while the genre is older than your dad’s drinking habit it is just as solid as his disappointment in you never having lived up to your potential. The game is entirely voice acted which is impressive considering that almost everyone has at least a few lines to say at some point or another. The game’s main campaign can either be played solo or with up to three friends online to let you fill out the four character limit that the games party system has in place. When playing solo you can fill out your party with prebuilt “Origin” characters that come with their own questlines that you can complete as you go through the game.
Like any good RPG you spend the first 30 minutes (Your time may vary) building a character. Selecting talents, abilities, and stats to build a character that suits your play style or theme. If this sounds a little daunting, and it can be for someone coming in fresh into the CRPG genre you can select from one of six Origin characters that come prebuilt for your convenience. When selecting these Origin characters for your party you can change their default class in game as well so if you find one who you like you aren’t stuck with doubling up on a certain class.
The game’s combat is very traditional in the CRPG sense. Initiative sorts out the order of who goes when and in what order. The only thing that is slightly different is that generally everyone starts with four action points that dictate how much you can do per turn. If you don’t use all your action points you can bank them but only to a maximum total of six and some abilities can replenish action points to give you more to do per turn. In context a basic attack costs two action points so unless you have some banked or you used an ability you can only attack twice per turn.
The combat system has, in my opinion, a mild flaw that has been slightly bothering me. The armor system while working well within the limitations of the system seems to discourage the use of different attack types. To damage an enemy you must first beat down their armor, either physical or magical to get to their HP. However if your party consists of a split of magic users and physical attackers you lose half of your pure damage potential because instead of just burning down one type you have to tear through two. The game would have been better off in my opinion with using armor as damage mitigation instead of a blocker. Instead of armor blocking everything until it’s gone let it be used to block a percentage of the damage coming through. So if my armor is at 100% the first attack does no damage but that drops my armor to 80% so the next attack does 20% of its damage to my HP or something similar.
This seems like a better system to me but I am not a game dev so what do I know.
The game’s quest system is something that I really enjoy. The entire thing seems to be catered around giving players as many options as possible to complete each quest. The main zone itself can be escaped in at least three ways and there are, I am sure, more than that. The game’s quests designs seem well thought out and fully realized so no matter which way you are playing you will get an enjoyable experience out of the game.
*Side note: Take the Pet Pal talent to hear the voice actors give the best performances of their careers.
Would I recommend Divinity: Original Sin 2? Well yes and no. If you are a fan of the genre and want another stellar entry into its hallowed halls then I would highly recommend it. If you are new to this type of game but you and your friends want to try I would also say that yes this is a good time sink. However if you want a game to convince you to like CRGP’s and you are only playing by yourself then this not the game that will do that for you.
Divinity: Original Sin 2 can be purchased on Steam