Divinity 2 Impressions

Battle a dragon--or just become one--in this upcoming action role-playing game.

31 Comments

Action role-playing fans might remember the awkwardly titled Divine Divinity as well as its sequel, Beyond Divinity. These Diablo-esque PC games garnered a small but dedicated following, and those same fans will be glad to know that a sequel is on the way: Divinity 2. However, there is a new twist for this entry in the series: The game is coming to the Xbox 360 as well. If you didn't play the first game, you should be able to jump directly into Divinity 2 without any troubles. If you did, you will discover plenty of Easter eggs and other secrets designed just for you. We had a chance to look at a work-in-progress version of the game and are happy to report that it seems to be coming along nicely.

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Divinity 2 takes place in the same world as the original. Dragons used to peacefully coexist with humans. However, when dragons attacked the hero of the first game in the series, Divine Divinity, this peace was shattered. Now, humans are fighting dragons, and in their quest to learn how to best take on the giant beasts, they've founded the Dragon Slayers, a society dedicated to ridding the world of the soaring lizards. You are a slayer trainee. Your first task? Find one of these creatures.

To find out information, you'll speak with non-player characters much as you would in other role-playing games. We took a walk around Broken Valley, Divinity 2's first region. The first thing we did was head to a tavern, where we talked to the patrons seated outside. One of them wanted to enter the tavern but couldn't because it was overrun by drunken soldiers. We entered the tavern and had a talk with the intoxicated sods, where we could resolve the quest in one of several ways. In this case, we resolved it peacefully by speaking with the soldiers' lieutenant, which meant patrons who had been avoiding the tavern would now enter, including other quest-givers. Had we fought the soldiers to drive them out, some of these NPCs would not have entered, locking us out of some potential quests. Such choices will drive the game's morality system, affecting potential quests, as well as the items available for purchase from merchants.

In another similar scenario, we met a local farmer's wife named Dana. Dana asked us to deliver a letter to the blacksmith, but asked us to keep it a secret from her husband. We opened the letter to take a peek and discovered that Dana was having an affair with this blacksmith. From here, there were many options available. We could blackmail Dana and deliver the letter; blackmail the blacksmith instead; or perhaps tell her husband and create all sorts of bad will. Instead, we took the most intriguing option: mind reading. By reading an NPC's mind, you can discover important information: treasure locations, enemy locations, and other secrets that could come in handy. The drawback is that reading minds costs you experience, so if you choose that option, your XP bar will diminish. You have to be careful using this option, because you could spend XP only to find that the subject of your mind reading may offer no information of use.

In any case, mind-reading Dana led us to a key hidden inside the farmhouse. We used the key to enter the couple's basement, where we discovered the farmer's diary. We read it to discover that Dana was a bad girl; she'd already cheated on her husband in the past! But the juiciest part was that her husband murdered that gentleman. And again, we had more choices to make. The blackmailing choices were endless! In another instance, we could mind-read a quest giver, only to discover that he intended to pay too little for the items he requested. By refusing the request, he would then be found later in the goblin caves fighting them himself. If he were killed by these creatures, you would then be able to take his powerful armor for yourself, a choice you wouldn't get to make if you simply took the quest. Mind reading should make the already open-ended questing even more flexible.

Speaking of goblins, these creatures look quite hideous, with their single eyes and horns and red veins snaking up their arms. Other creatures looked similarly detailed, such as the red and green imps that we fought later. However, the art style will change as you progress. Divinity 2 looks attractive, if a bit generic. It has that fantasy countryside feel to it, with lots of nice lighting and pleasant backgrounds. The evil influence behind the dragon attacks causes the world to darken and change, and familiar locations will become more sinister and unwelcoming.

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The best part? You can turn into a dragon yourself. Eventually, you'll become a Dragon Knight, which means you will be able to switch between lizard and human forms at will, provided you aren't in too tight of a location like a cave or under trees. As a dragon, you'll be able to move about the world quickly, as well as take on huge artillery weapons with your fiery breath. However, some forcefields will hinder your movement, meaning you'll have to switch to human form to access those areas before changing back. There are no spell or mana limitations to shape-shifting, so you can spend as much time as you want in either form.

According to Claas Wolter with publisher DTP, it should take at least 40 hours to finish Divinity 2, though it could take you a lot longer depending on how many side quests you tackle. Other features include a class-free skill system and item crafting, so it seems there's a lot here for dragon lovers to bite into. Look for this single-player RPG for the PC and Xbox 360 on store shelves later this year.

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Nyku_Racer_88

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The game is awesome ! I finished it after 70-90 hours of gameplay !

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TheUnknownM

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i cant wait till its out im stuck with it this is going to be EPIC awsome .... btw will there be MP?..

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nosise

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sorry there when is this game coming out? i always wanted a dragon game and this is what i'm looking for :D Don't care if it's boring it's just that on one site it said that the game is coming out in 2010,on another site in 2008 etc....so did it came out or is it coming out?

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Tharizden

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Thankfully....A good-looking RPG-style game that doesn't involve MMORPG. I am looking forward to playimg this! THANK YOU. MMORPG make it un-palettable for shift workers. Liove BG - BG II - IWD + IWD2 - NWN + NWN2 (and their sequels) & Morrowind & Oblivion. Holding my breath for this one now too! : )

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Shibly

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This game will definitely be awesome! Divine Divinity made me fall in love with RPGs genre and I am pretty sure Divinity 2 will be in the same league as Oblivion, if not better! Can't wait to get my hands on this title!

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dippy88

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I have the German version of the game but have managed to get English text and subtitles throughout the game, the voices are still German which is a pain but it is still an awesome game... I'm only about 2 hours in but I really like what I see I would of got further but my computer is a load of crap and needs reformating of the HD, keeps crashing during games!

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Osgorion

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It should get an English version at the end of next month. I find it strange that Gamespot does not keep a closer eye on this title as it is probably going to be one of the better games this year. Regardless, you should be able to either order or buy the game in your local shop at the end of September afaik.

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Sorcerrer

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is it only on germans?if it is,pls make it on english too

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Xx_Hopless_xX

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Looks ok so far, Dragon Age looks amazing and i'll have to look into Risen..

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ironcreed

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Despite a couple of early cheesy trailers, I have found the game itself looks and sounds excellent upon digging into it further. This, Dragon Age and Risen will make me one happy camper this holiday season.

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Wardrift

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Looking forward to this game. Too bad they delayed it till Q4 2009. No firm release date yet.

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bennae66

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ell yeah; had my eye on this close to a year now... shaking in my booties. turn into a dragon! take that lair! as long as my flight isnt a struggle against dodgey controls and is actually fun cant wait. ooooooooooo

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GaRdYbOy

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No Ps3 love :(

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vortex_gw

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Maybe they figured out that it's not wise to release a game during summer time.

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brownba3

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all of you super game hackers get ready to build a xp builder/modifier! - having to save before to mind read will be a pain...(would this be a Divinity keeper?...) Game looks like it will have a lot going for it. However -it seems to already started to disappoint - I thought the original release date was June 20...Q2 2009 ends in 7 days and I haven't seen a hard date for a release - hope I am mistaken. Do they have anything on the system specs? demo out there? come on, give us something... until then, make mine Marvel...

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MrEnormous52

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Loved Divine Divinity, and I'm rightly looking forward to this newest installation in the series. I'm really liking all the possible outcomes of quests that this game is offering; always something I've been wanting to see in games, and my hopes are finally coming to fruition.

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Melty123

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This must be amazing game! Definitely will buy on Xbox 360 and then we'll see about PC version. I'm glad that RPG games are slowly moving to consoles. I know the experience of these kind of games is better on PC, but its more epic to play them on Xbox 360 or PS3. Hope the game will be really great and hope it will come out soon enough.

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JS0123456789

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This looks very promising

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swayne2

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Can't wait :)

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vortex_gw

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I don't care that people will always associate the action RPGs with Diablo and calling them clones or whatever. I love hack 'n slash/dungeon crawlers and I'm looking for my next favourite action RPG which can dethrone Dungeon Siege 2 as the best action RPG of all time. Yes, it's better than Diablo 2. :P Give me a great story, interesting quests, tons of loot and I'll be all over it.

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Humorguy_basic

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I think the Divine series has always been badly done by by the media calling it a Diablo type game.This series is much closer to the Baldur's Gate series. By calling it a hack'n'slash game is an insult as the series has so much more. What concerns me is with the media calling it a Diablo hack'n'slash type game, and therefore most RPG gamers dismissing it, that with this latest game going to console too, it will become a hack'n'slash that the meida have been calling it! If this series had, rightly, been compared with Baldur's Gate,it would have sold many more copies, and maybe would not have needed the cash support of a console release! With games like Mass Effect being called RPG's and game like Divine and Beyond Divinity being called hack'n'slash games, I really don't believe the gaming media knows one genre from another any more!

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Kevin-V

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@Gelugon_baat -- I think what happens is that you meet another Knight who convinces you that dragons are not the source of the evil in the land, but that it is instead a common enemy. She convinces you to become a knight and join the cause in order to uncover the truth.

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Gelugon_baat

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"You are a slayer trainee..." "Eventually, you'll become a Dragon Knight..." There's going to be a mind-boggling plot-twister to justify this contradiction.

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Craig_Moseley

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loved the first two.

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RyuRanVII

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Actually Divine Divinity was a mix between Ultima and Diablo. In Larian Studios I trust, I'll buy this game for PC in the moment it's released. You can expect tons of fun quests with more than one solution, a lot of interactivity with NPCs and the best: an amazing soundtrack like the first one had. Divinity II is a RPG to fight equally with Dragon Age for the crown of the best RPG of the year.

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pakhair

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Interesting.............

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Marder-I

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I like the mind reading aspect of this, that should work out pretty good as a new thing to play with, be it "good' or "bad" as to intent!!! Cheers Tom

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Shadow_Fire41

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shapeshifting between dragon and human? dude, thats just plain epic.

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FreeBander

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I can't wait for this Game to hit the PC.It will be a preorder for me for sure.

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nunoisbigboss

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kool i like the idea of being a dragon/guy shapeshifter

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Kcoshiob

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Very exciting. DD was a really fun Diablo/Baldur's Gate kind of mix. Excellent, lush isometric graphics, and fun missions. You could pick up anything in the game and it had stats, like a rake(polearm), or a pot(blunt). Wow I thought this sequel was by the wayside, so I am glad it's still moving forward.

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