Classic RPGs still have their fans today. 2015 turned out to be “rich” for such games, for example, remember at least Pillars of Eternity – an RPG that seemed to come from the year 2000. Hand-drawn locations, an isometric view, a high level of difficulty, a large amount of text and, of course, the absence of any voice acting – this has not been seen for a long time! Naturally, the classics were appreciated as needed. That is to say, the “new old” game was to the taste of many players. Moreover, even the press appreciated the game at its true worth. And just recently, another classic role-playing game came out, which not only to some extent corresponds to the classic trends, but also brings something new. Yes, friends, we are now talking about the game Sword Coast Legends, in the creation of which people from such games as Neverwinter Nights, Dragon Age: Origins and even Baldur’s Gate took part! And having played more than 20 hours, I want to say that the toy came out not very elegant, but considering that the fans of “oldsukala” have nothing to choose from at the moment, it’s a sin to complain about this game.
Old world, new attack
It’s probably no secret that any deviation from the canons of the classic RPG of the 90s is like a knife in the heart of fans of such games. So, if someone still hopes to see a continuation of the legendary Neverwinter Nights series, then it is better not to buy the game or even look in its direction. The authors used all known techniques, cliches and clichés. So the toy begins incredibly trite: the main character with his friends suffers at night in their nightmares. Soon they learn that these are not harmless dreams, after another massacre with robbers. So the heroes come to the conclusion that a powerful evil has “laid eyes” on them, which once again wants to conquer Faerнn.
As you already understood, the originality in the game is simply off scale. A captivating scenario is not null, but not high either. There are no unexpected turns, since everything is quite predictable. But what can you do if these are the laws of classic RPGs. In short: you are a powerful and strong hero who must go through a hundred locations to get to the last Boss in the game and defeat him! In general, the storyline is quite typical. Nothing new.
But you shouldn’t think that everything is so bad in the game. For example, the game has very well worked out the variability in the dialogues. Quite often you have to think about exactly how to answer and what the chosen answer will lead to. As usual, the success of some lines depends on your skill level. For example, an option involving strength, wisdom, or even charm may not work. The same goes for tricks, deceptions and solving riddles (and there are a lot of them). Naturally, everything can be solved for a couple of gold pieces. Gold really does wonders in the game: everything and everything is for sale. By the way, you will not find universal answers either, so get ready for the fact that some of your companions may like your answer, but some may not.
As for the very essence of the replicas, there is no originality here either. Although, a couple of sarcasms and jokes in some dialogues really made me smile. For example, going through one additional task in which I had to fight against sectarians, the main character had one very interesting remark: “I know. The world needs to be saved again. ” As a couple, it seems that the authors deliberately tried to play a trick on their script and monotony. By the way, the dialogues are fully voiced, but only most of the characters look somehow stereotyped and characterless.
The difference between the conversation of a poor man and a cheeky thug – you just do not feel. No uniqueness. But at least I was pleased with the opportunity to end conversations with a variety of options, because when you start chatting with strangers, you really don’t know what exactly the conversations will lead to: to a mutually beneficial exchange, a compromise, a task, or even to the fact that a new hero will join you! At the same time, the dialogues still remain boring, and you don’t always want to understand what is happening.
Bring it, give it, kill it
With additional tasks, the same problem – no originality. While, for example, the authors of the third “Witcher” are trying with all their might to diversify the tasks so that they are not boring and monotonous, the authors of Sword Coast Legends literally stuff the game with the same type and a couple of stupid tasks. Of course, I was glad that in some task there is a conspiracy, somewhere you have to think in order to solve the puzzle, but in general, you are constantly instructed to do the same thing: go there, kill that one, bring me that. I still do not understand why such a storyline and tasks in general turned out. Was it the authors’ creative powerlessness, or did they just not want to rack their brains over something really good?
Still, if you took up the classics, then you need to follow the rules of the classics. Of course, as you progress through, the tasks become a little more interesting, but they still boil down to the same thing.
Faerнn is beautiful
The world that was created in the game is really good. The territories into which it is divided are really huge. As befits a classic – the world is divided into locations. Each location has an equal number of hostile and friendly characters. In almost every location there is an interesting cave, once in which it turns out that this is generally a huge network of tunnels, where you have to destroy a bunch of critters, collect nasty slime for a task and find a bunch of cool items. I didn’t like the fact that there were just copied places in the location as a couple, for example, you were walking along some sewer and you realize that you’ve already been in such a corridor, and in that hall you killed a huge Ogre. In locations, except for all kinds of puzzles and hidden places with little things, there is nothing more to wait for.
Wandering around the locations, sometimes there is a feeling of some kind of emptiness. I would like to see more all sorts of interesting characters, exciting tasks with a plot and just interesting places. With such huge locations, there is a sharp shortage of NPCs. It does not even save the fact that you can always find some corpse of an unfortunate guard who was killed by wild animals, and find a note from him that gives a new task. After all, any task, in the end, comes down to the same thing. The presentation can be different, but in the end it all comes down to one thing.
In addition to a single company, a joint company is also envisaged. Sword Coast Legends has a great level editor that allows you to create your own fun and unique dungeons that can be played alone or with friends, so many more hours of exciting adventure await. But it is too early to say how popular they will become, as it is unknown if players will want to do all of this.
Tactics and pumping
The success of your battle will directly depend on which group you have. Each player will find his own best option, so there is no single winning “bunch” of heroes. It will not be possible to assemble a suitable squad at once, since you need to conduct several battles first. And only after that, perhaps, someone will want to take two magicians or a “pack” of warriors into the group.
The combat system is typical for the classics, but still, it has a difference, since now this is a mixture of the combat system in Dragon Age: Origins and Neverwinter Nights, so in this regard, many people may not like the game, but the authors warned about this in advance. For example, if you saw the enemy, you paused, gave orders, paused, and into battle! Moreover, in Sword Coast Legends you have to pause quite often, since the difficulty is really high. It is for this reason that you begin to prepare for each skirmish with special zeal: walk around the territory in search mode, take all sorts of potions, increase saving throws, and much more. The loss of even one hero in battle means that your tactics have come to an end and soon the enemy will literally crush you.
The pumping system in the game is quite varied and well thought out. Each class will have many different skills, but it will not be possible to develop everything, besides, pumping takes a long time. Experience is gained very slowly. Three skill points are given for each new level. And pumping skills with a pair requires more than one point.
As for the classes, there are only six of them: rogue, paladin, warrior, ranger, priest and wizard. Well, plus a couple more races that have their own unique characteristics. For example, increased strength, or endurance, or in general, resistance to something.
And since almost every task is a hike somewhere and a fight with some scum, you have to prepare for battles every time with special zeal. Traps, powerful wizards and much more are constantly encountered. Therefore, you have to reboot quite often.
Sword Coast Legends would have come out about seven years ago – it would have become a real hit. Now the game is just a kind of nostalgia for the old days, which were beautiful. Sword Coast Legends is not as difficult as, for example, Pillars of Eternity, but still, hardcore is present. In addition, here you are greeted with the most pleasant graphics, which you literally fall in love with. In general, the game has acceptable difficulty and a simpler role-playing system. Fans of the “old school” game will have enough for one full playthrough, although reviews on Steam say otherwise. But if you have passed Baldur’s Gate, Neverwinter Nights and Icewind Dale a dozen times a long time ago, then Sword Coast Legends will definitely please you because you can plunge into a long-forgotten atmosphere.