I only heard about this game shortly before it was released, and though the demo was pretty nice, I wondered about it. Watched the OXM intro videos and was hooked. Already I've clocked about 40 hours into the game, mostly by running around and leveling up my skills and enjoying the expansive land. The story is interesting :)
I simply cannot put it down – this game is definitely in my top 5 games I've ever played in my life. If you have any interest in RPG's, you owe it to yourself to play this game.
I must admit this game is rather hard at times. The game does not give you a level guide, so you might be fighting off several packs of wolves doing well, and then your pawn companions will warn you that there are armed rogues around and to ‘be careful’. Next minute your in the middle of fight with more guys than you can handle and you die.
Save often, and take care when wandering around, this game is truly epic in scale, sense of adventure, combat and lighting. Spells dazzle and sizzle, enemies re-act when struck by fire, lighting, or when attacked at the knees. The day/night system is amazing as well – time passes quickly in the world of Gransys, and what set off as a morning expedition over that hill to help an NPC, soon becomes a desperate struggle in the night with zombies rising from the ground, and your lantern giving off feeble light.
Even after 40 hours of gameplay, getting back to town and resting and saving gives me a sigh of relief. I once played this game for about 6 hours straight, hooked entirely to leveling my character, aquiring loot from around the place -looking in dark tunnels, mining and gathering, ensuring my companions are healthy and help me carry heavy loot from monsters, and finding and upgrading my weapons and armour.
This game is passively online. You custom make your own character and your permanent companion, who you can level up, customize, and tweak to your liking. Then you can share your companion online with anyone. A copy of this companion goes into someone elses world and learns about enemies and quests they finish. They will eventually choose a different companion (as they don't level up in the other person's world, only yours) and the knowledge they have gained and items they receive will be updated to your companion when you rest at an inn. It's complex, but massively awesome.
You want to be a small wizard girl and have a big hulking warrior elf as your sidekick- (like me :P) Sure! Want to be a wizened old hermit who is an assassin, with your sidekick healing the party- Go for it.
This game is about freedom. It's about making choices and decisions tactically in battle, with a deep and rewarding system for leveling up a class (ranger or mystic knight for eg) and getting nice perks, then changing your class and transfer some of these perks over.
I simply cannot stress this enough. Some people who want to play online shooters or heavy action games may not have the patience for this, but anyone with a liking for tolkien-style artwork, fast and strategic combat, a deep and interesting companion/skill/job system and graphical effects which make the world seem very tangible, THIS GAME IS FOR YOU!!
Also for anyone who has this game on PS3, search for Fenberry :)