|a game by||Larian Studios NV|
|Editor Rating:||6/10, based on 1 review|
|User Rating:||8.0/10 - 1 vote|
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Let's face it, RPGs over the last few years have been ruled by the same few gaming godfathers, who really need no introduction. In their favour they have turned out consistently good, and consistendy similar titles to a vast fan base they know is salivating for anything they can get their hands on. But we've dined on meat and potatoes for too long. The times they are a-changing, something's blowing in the wind - and it's not Martin in 'just stepped out of a salon' mode... it's Divine Divinity.
We admit that Divine Divinity, or DivDiv as it has affectionately come to be known, took us somewhat by surprise, which is why it wasn't covered in our RPG round-up. DivDiv has appeared almost from nowhere from a relatively unknown - at least until now - developer, the Belgium-based Larian Studios. Like early man examining some strange object, we have poked it, prodded it, stuck it in our ears and given it a good sniff, and we can pronounce that it is looking very palatable indeed. DivDiv is set in a typical RPG fantasy world, filled with the usual array of wizards, demons, ores and suspicious men in big hats, which you explore with one of six characters. Both the Baldur's Gate and Diablo franchises could do with taking a few make-up tips from DivDiv, because graphically it's looking extremely pretty and supports a rare 1024x768 resolution.
The game is obviously trying to forge a new path somewhere between BG and Diablo, incorporating a relatively hardcore RPG storyline, yet with a substantial amount of hack'n' slash and spell-casting action. But what DivDiv seems to be vying for above everything else is a highly immersive and interactive game world, where virtually everything you see on screen can be picked up, manipulated, eaten, or in moments of extreme panic, thrown at people's heads. For example, if you have the right knowledge you can pick herbs and use them to create potions, jump inside the bodies of creatures to do some undercover work and even make poison out of rotten food and use it to up the damage potential of your weapon.
The AI, which is something that has never yet been properly addressed in RPGs, also looks like it will be a step forward if Larian can deliver on their promises. Each monster will have its own plan of attack, and certain creatures will be so advanced they will actually go and round up their mates to set ambushes for you. DivDiv might keep us all sitting in our darkened RPG caves playing with sticks, but it may just hold the secret of fire. We're hoping for the latter, because we're freezing our arses off here.