Gothic 3: First Few Minutes

Gothic 3

I don’t really hold out much hope for Gothic 3, that said however, I paid a whopping six dollars for it so I figured I should give it a fair shake.  I’ve also got some morbid curiousity with it as well, given the crazy number of outright terrible reviews it received.  Here now are my thoughts after just a few minutes with the game.

I first checked for any updated patches and discovered that there’s a community pack done by former developers of the game that is apparently the “patch to install”, so I started to download it.  While it was downloading, I launched the game as it was to check it out.

The opening cinematic is terrible, featuring no semblance of story at all along with fairly crummy animation.  It’s no big deal though, it’s just a cinematic.  Immediately upon entering the game I was thrust into combat.  I was inside a small village that had been over-taken by Orcs and my best guess is that I, along with my companions were now liberating the village.

It didn’t take long for me to remember why I hated the demo.  The combat is nothing more than left-clicking like mad, and the sound effects, at least the various grunts and groans from the Orcs, are not so great, to say the least.  I persevered however and clicked my way to victory, the town now free of any Orc presence.  I saved the game and quit.

After the community patch had finished downloading, I isntalled it and re-launched the game.  Given that my saved game was no longer compatible I started over, replaying the same few opening minutes again.  This time, once the last Orc in the village was killed, the game crashed on me.  Thinking it just a fluke, I rebooted, re-launched, and re-played, only to have the game crash again at the same spot, as soon as the last Orc was killed.  The one thing I noticed was that a tutorial tip window was popping up when that last Orc was killed, so I re-launched the game, disabled the tips and lo and behold, after killing the final Orc, the game stayed up.  Cool.

I ended up talking to some guy in town who gave me a quest in some other town, so my next steps are to head out into the wilderness to find this town.  So far, the game seems like it could potentially, maybe, squeek out some promise.  The graphics are okay, but the perforance is kind of sluggish.  I do have an older PC however, although Oblivion looks great and runs great as well on my PC.  At this point, I’m actually looking forward to checking the game out some more, after all, I’ve got to get my six dollars worth.

Bargain Bin Trash

I’m sure I’ve said it here before, but it bears repeating: I’m a crazy sucker for a gaming deal.  It doesn’t take much convincing for me to buy a game that I consider “super cheap”.  Given that I’m constantly browsing gaming related web sites, news sites, and forums, I’m also fairly knowledgeable about which games are good, and which are bad, so I’m usually a very good judge of what is or is not a gaming deal.

I was browsing through a store today looking for Christmas gifts when I stumbled upon a bin of assorted PC games.  Flipping through I came across Gothic 3: Collector’s Edition, which includes the fully updated version of Gothic 3, the Forsaken Gods add-on, a making of DVD, a soundtrack CD, and a full world map, all for $5.99.  Oh, and the whole thing comes packaged in a case made of freakin’ tin.  TIN!!!

I held the luscious case of tin in my hands and contemplated the potential purchase.  I remembered trying the demo of the game way back when and, quite frankly, hating it.  I remembered the graphics being great but the combat horrible, and the voices and sound effects being unbelievably annoying.  I didn’t pay too much attention to the game after that, but I was aware that while some people quite enjoyed it, it was universally panned in reviews mostly on account of bugs.  I almost put the tin back in the bin, but I just couldn’t do it.  For some reason I just knew that if I didn’t pick it up, the decision would haunt me for the rest of the day, so I did what any sucker would do and bought it.

Back at a computer, Gothic 3 tin now firmly in hand,  I checked the game out on metacritic.  Ouch.  There are some really terrible reviews for this thing.  Granted, there are some that are relatively okay, but mostly they’re horrible.  I quite like 1up’s review of the expansion:

The only reason that this didn’t get an “F” is the original music, which is very nice.  Not excellent mind you, but very nice – and the lone thing I latched on to for sanity while trying to review the otherwise completely putrescent Gothic 3: Forsaken Gods.

My friends, let me take you on a journey through a magical land where everything sucks.  On our jaunt, the sights are ugly and outdated, the indigenous fauna’s incredibly annoying, the locals have the communication skills of Chewbacca’s illiterate, deaf-mute cousin, and the controls on our vehicle are archaic and unintuitive.  Sounds great so far, right?

That certainly doesn’t sound too promising.  But you know what?  I’m even more eager to check it out now.  If anything it’ll give me something to talk about here.  That’s worth six bucks, isn’t it?