Yesterday at E3 2010 I found myself wandering by SouthPeak's booth. I settled in for a demo of their new RPG, Two Worlds II. I first saw this game in video-demo form at PAX East, and it has come a long way in the intervening months.
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Graphics: This is a very pretty RPG. Armor is layered and extremely detailed, weapons glint realistically under the light, cities look great (whether they actually feel alive and active remains to be seen) and the game world itself is a sprawling feast for the eyes. Weapons have been given a special dose of love; my wizard's staff looked like it was made entirely out of burning embers.
Gameplay: Two Worlds is a classless game, which means you'll never get stuck leveled up as a character you can't stand. I was not a fan of archery (aiming is not very intuitive), mainly due to the fact that shooting people in this game looks pretty boring. Melee was much more fun; there are tons of cool moves with some beautiful combat graphics. If you want to fight dirty, you can even throw dust in your opponent's eyes.
Expect 25-30 hours of gameplay (if you avoid all side-quests), plus a robust crafting system that gives you armor customization options. Die your gear or break it down into raw components in order to buff your other equipment.
Multi-player: They didn't have much to say about the multiplayer aspect. Two to eight players will be able to play co-operatively, or murder the hell out of each other. Special 1v1 duel modes will also be available, and there will be multi-player side games like gem collecting.
Magic: This is what sets TWII apart from the pack. The spellcasting in this game is as deep as it gets without being an old pen and paper RPG.
Every spellcaster gets a deck that they can use to “build” custom spells with. If you want to make your magic bolt an AOE, activate that card. You could also make it ricochet, extend the duration, make the blast larger and even seek enemies. You can add buff components to spells, creating a fireball that flambes your enemies while it boosts your party health.
The neatest spell I saw was a gigantic AOE that launched a flurry of explosive fireballs at a crowd of shambling undead. When the dust cleared, a half-dozen magical crab-monsters appeared in the blast zone and started tearing into the remaining foes. All in all, I've been told that something like 10^30 spells will be possible in Two Worlds II.
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Two Worlds II will launch in October 2010.