Hard to be a God Reader Review
I have nothing against Russia; Infact i always play the Russian campaigns first in the Red Alert franchise. So please don't take it racistly when i say that the Ruskies make games like they do cars, plain and substandard. Developed by the Russian game makers Burut Entertainment and Akella studios; this game reminds me of all those nostalgic things about soviet Russia, it oozes soviet Russia, but not in a good way. Let us consider the humble soviet era car, look how it moves reliably through a snow-filled red square; It looks quite unattractive doesn't it? It will get you to Vladivostok but you wont enjoy the ride and you wont look cool doing it. This game was literally designed by those car manufactures. Fact.
The game is based on a book by the same name about an alien planet that resembles its high-tech, utopian sister planet - earth - but is stuck in the medieval period thanks to a dogmatic church (wikipedia baby). You play as a low-ranking intelligence agent for the emperor. You then progress through a storyline with the occasional twist. Eventually earths technology falls into our heroine's hands, hence to the ignorant peasantry he looks like god. Thou's hacks-&-Slashes take you to the end with an alternative scenarios based on your roleplaying choice.
Me and God get off to a bad start. In the first five minutes im googling for help because i don't know how to unsheathe my sword (it was 'tab'). But i chalk it up to me skipping the 'tutorial tip'. So i progress with the quest: 'Generic bandit slaughter' and return to the 'Don'(All the nobles are Spanish apparently) on my triumphant return i discover the first broken-english example of many. The lore is supposed to be a strong selling point of this title. I think it appeals more to those who read the book, I got the impression during one quest where I have to escort a noble out of a ruined city that I had no idea what he was talking about. There is only so many fantasy names that can be said in one sentence before the player gives up on the whole idea. But im sure the combat is fun...
...Surely the comabat is fun...
No. Your able to dodge enemy attacks soley by running circles around the enemy. The combat plays like Dungeon Siege and Titan quest. You can only fight as long as you have some stamina represented by a blue bar. Health is gained by potions and vegetables. Power attacks are performed with right click and left click performs the standard attack. Uninspiring I know. The most annoying thing is having to sheath and unsheathe your sword manually. Constantly being jumped and having to instruct your avatar the first thing he should do in combat is to whip out the sword becomes repetitively irritating.
Your character is uncustomizable and the leveling system is awful, just awful. Upon leveling you get a primary point to use on weapon skills (light, medium, heavy) and two secondary points you can use on medicine, diplomacy, health, stamina and ranged combat. Don't believe for one second though that the secondary points are going anywhere other than stamina and health, if you want to live that is. As for the primary points, i was left unable to care. One thing that I did like about the game was the ability to disguise yourself. If you wear bandit clothes then the bandits are friendly but law enforcers are hostile, and vice versa.
The story progresses to a city in the throes of a peasant revolt. On the way though you have to the same fetching errand boy quests to open up the world. Though you do get a chance to buy a horse if you have the coin. This is another thing i did enjoy about the game. You can ride and fight on a horse. Its actually quite fun, but then as soon as the moment arrived, it faded again. I realised that im only enjoying this because everything else has been so appalling. Think of it as a cold, half-eaten burger in the gutter - chances are if your stuck in a gutter you'll enjoy that burger.
He is not a merciful god.
Interface design is essentially the same as other RPG's out there, but more minimalistic than most. Models, characters, textures are all recycled constantly. The graphics really do go wanting. When the bloom effects are on it makes the game a little easier on the eye but not by much - not by enough. Imagine playing Dungeon Siege but viewed with eyes' full of tears - you'll never see that money back again.
If you enjoyed Diablo and Dungeon Siege or if you enjoyed the original book, then you may find something here. 5-7 years ago this game may have been quite good, but the whole experience is a relic of a by-gone age - much like that other Russian export, the Lada automobile. Its nostalgic in its own way but its just so woefully inadequate today. When you look at the bar that Neverwinter Nights 2, Titan quest - hell - even Diablo 2 raised; this game falls well short. Its a bad game and im going to call it out. Playing this game WILL give your computer Aids, stick that quote on the box!
Discalimer: The developers of this game were not part of the soviet car-design or production process. No scientific studies have shown that computer Aids is caused by this game....Though none have proven that it doesnt cause computer Aids either
4 / 10