Review by Fin_Obelius

Reviewed: 01/28/08

The sequel to one of the best games ever fails to

Introduction
I would like to mention that NWN1 was one of my most favorite games. So when, several years later, I heard there was going to be a sequel, I was ecstatic at the news and this game was definitely going in my mandatory games to get list. When it did finally come out, I eagerly used up quite a bit of time trying to install it. After I had succeeded, I, of course, started to play.

Story
You discover an item that the mysterious dark powers that be wants to procure. So after some filler, a horde of fell dwarves ransack your little village searching for this mysterious object. After that you leave your little village on a grand adventure chock-full of sidequests to play for various rewards. The sidequests are what I most enjoy in the NWN games, they add depth to how events in the actual storyline can influence others than yourself as well as simple tasks such as retrieving lost objects from dungeons. They are also somewhat imperative for levelling up as well, as in the NWN games, you don't simply enter and exit an area to make enemies respawn, when you kill one, they stay dead (unless you load a previous save from before you destroyed them).

Gameplay
NWN2 employs a tried and true formula- the classic board game, D&D with a few adjustments to suit gameplay on the PC. You start off being able to customize your character akin to D&D, obviously. The number of classes,races,abilities, and the such make for almost limitless possibilities. It's all good at that point, but the problems with this game really start to reveal itself when you start playing. First off, the camera was redone but it didn't really improve all that much. Often I would stumble upon an annoying glitch that messes up the artificial intelligence(more often my comrades in my party than the opponents, I am sorry to say). And at top of all that, NWN2 takes a huge amount of hardware to function normally. This leads to long loading times. The auto-save function doesn't respond 25% of the time. So, basically, even though the developers had this much time to create a solid sequel, they create a game with the gameplay that I've loved for so long along with a glitchy mess.

Graphics
Although the first NWN was one of the crappiest games I have ever played visuals-wise, NWN2 tries too hard to improve from the first that their improvement isn't a significant one. I admit that the fact that they removed the list of character portraits in favor of the actual faces of the characters was a good move. I just don't like how the graphics looks so rubbery. Their design of the exterior and interior of the world of Faerun has improved noticeably. The graphics is yet another victim of the glitches. Sometimes I don't even see color. Perhaps it's just my computer, but that doesn't change the fact that the glitches piss me off.

Summary
My honest opinion is that they did do a great job with the story and customization, but the glitches really ruins the experience. So, really, you would be better off with NWN1 or its other expansion packs. If you are seriously considering getting this game, you'll be better off with its expansion packs as they remedy some of the glitches and clean up the graphics considerably as well as offer new areas to explore. The replayability value is sky-high what with the customization and impressive number of sidequests. All in all, Neverwinter Nights is its superior in almost every way.

Fin_Obelius


Rating:   2.0 - Poor

Product Release: Neverwinter Nights 2 (US, 10/31/06)

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