Two Worlds is an open world third person medieval fantasy role playing game that borders on a single player MMORPG. Its not just single player, there is a multi player function via network. Even if you want to just play single player, you need to setup a user name and password. I’d say that the game was designed for multi player. Its not just fighting one enemy, but packs of them and they were far too overpowered until I was 4 hours into the game. That’s one of a number of bad first impressions I was given.
I was forced to run away and let two packs of enemies kill one another and then I’d loot the corpses. It became part of the game for me. If you’re not into combat, you can run by any enemy no matter how large or overpowering they are. Even if a dozen enemies are following you, they’ll get bored eventually. You’ll always be faster even if there’s no run button. You can chose your level of difficulty at the start, but never in the game. I made the mistake of going medium.
The game has a lot of dialog. In fact some banter between my character and a quest giver bordered on a novella’s length. I’d watch the sun rise in the background only to have night fall during the conversation it was so long. The voice acting is stiff, slow and spoken in the old tongue. I can’t call it bad voice acting, the voices are memorable, its just the speed, delivery and the “mayhap,” “whenst” and archaic words that are no longer used. It was almost a point of comedy until I got used to it. With that being said, I’d rather listen to the dialog than read it. You can hit the space bar to skip each line.
Another bad first impression was the fact that a lot of the time you’re told to do something. Sometimes its marked on your map, other times its stuff like “find these two deserters and kill them.” Well where did they go? If I knew that, I wouldn’t need you. Even things that are marked on your map can have locked doors preventing you from entering or lock picking. Well where’s the key? Oh you won’t find that until you stumble upon some quest giver half way across the land. Then he’ll give you the key after completing three quests with no sort of hint that he has the key.
A lot of quests, you’re given a choice to accept them and it boils down to well do I want to have something to do in the game or not? Yes of course I’ll take the quest. In a game with such a giant land, it became a struggle to even find quests. The first town was brimming with quests. Each town does have a few quests, but sometimes they’re relegated to one person giving all the quests. Other times you’re in giant cities that you really need to go digging to find quests. The game makes it easy though to find who has a quest when you walk by them an icon appears that indicates if they’re a typical background character, a quest giver, a merchant or a trainer.
Gold felt worthless in the game. I never really bought anything. Everything that I had was from killing one of the hundreds of bandits or thousands of orcs. There was an occassional find at a merchant, but after a while I just stopped browsing their wares and just sold everything to them. A beautiful part about the game is they’ll buy everything, because they have unlimited funds and they’re not picky. Its pretty streamlined. Even your inventory can carry a lot of stuff, and not that many things have a weight to them. I just wish there was a search function. You won’t be over encumbered. You just can’t pick up something when your inventory is full. It keeps the game moving. Another beautiful thing is you can merge the same weapons or armors to become stronger! It clears space and its interesting, even if it wouldn’t happen in real life.
Two Worlds is big on exploration. one of the biggest joys that I felt was exploring new areas either on foot or on horseback. There are lush forests, bright deserts with rolling dunes, bamboo forests inhabited by horrific arachnids, eerie graveyards and foggy wastelands with twisted trees. The only problem is that 99.9% of it is outdoors. There are still dungeons, but they’re few and far between. Not only that, but they feel very sterile and empty. Too perfect and unnatural. Towns have interiors, but its relegated to single rooms and those too are rare. An entire village might have one room for you to enter.
The land is so vast and large, with dozens of settlements. Everything from humble villages to grand cities you’ll get lost in. There are two military camps, dozens of bandit camps, grom camps, mines, a dwarven quarry and gang hideouts. Oh but that’s just the north half of the land. The south half is just as big, but instead of humans, every settlement, village and castle is full of orcs. The deserts have their own unique settlements, inhabitants and humanoid monster villages. Its just all so diverse. There’s always something new and fresh. Necromancer towers, new enemies, new locales. It kept the game fresh and kept me exploring.
Since the game is so massive, there are teleporters after you complete one of the first few quests. You’ll need to find a teleporter to unlock it. Otherwise there are horses to travel faster, but a real problem is that you can’t bring a horse into a teleporter. That might make a centaur. I’m very thankful to have the teleporters.
The orc war is really the backdrop to the game. Its a pressing issue for the people of Two Worlds, but for you, your main goal is to rescue a woman who has been kidnapped. No no not a princess. Your sister. In fact she’s one of the few women in the game. I’d say 99% of the game’s population is male. More than half of the female populous dies by the end of the game if you fulfill the quests.
Every dead enemy stays dead. Nothing will respawn. You can go through the entire game and become the only living thing. To shorten some silly long quests, I merely killed two entire villages full of people. They wouldn’t let me into their settlement, so I killed the man with the key and everyone attacked me. Even though the game told me that the guards were notified, no one did anything. I was never arrested, nor fined. I could walk through an entire military camp and no one cared.
Another way that it feels like a MMORPG is when you die, you simply respawn. You’ll find several healing ankhs and mana replenishes. If you get low, just stand on them. There is no punishment for death. The only real punishment is wasting time traveling back to where you were. I managed to exploit dozens of big, tough enemies by dying, respawning, striking them twice then dying with one hit. Keep chipping away!
Combat itself is easy and resorts to mouse clicking madness to attack. You’ve got a quick use toolbar that lets you use keys 0 – 9 to use things like spells and items. Even a quick mana or health recharge. Your three active spells are also in the toolbar. The right mouse button also uses whatever skill you’ve highlighted in the toolbar. Spells and arrows have lock on aim, which is nice, but you can turn it off if you’d like to miss 99% of the time. There are spell modifiers in the spell menu, things that reduce the cost of mana to doubling their effectiveness. Each spell is basically a card. The more of the same card you have equipped, the more damage it does. Spells felt very ineffective compared to physical melee.
Leveling up gives you five attribute points to sink into health, attack, intelligence and dexterity. The dexterity felt useful, because it raises your attack and defense percentages, but it goes down over time making it feel wasted. You’ll also get skill points to sink into several skills, most of which I never used. Skill points even seemed granted at odd times, making me think you get a point for every X amount of minutes played.
While I got entertainment out of it for the exploration, I’m not sure that I can really recommend it to anyone else. I was surprised that I endured the first 4 hours. By the last 4 hours I was getting bored again.