OLD SITE

You're currently viewing the old version of the GameGrin site as this article hasn't yet been moved to our new site.

Visit the new site at www.gamegrin.com

Dungeon Siege III Gamescom 2010 Preview

Fans can rest safe in the knowledge that Obsidian Entertainment have plenty of experience in the RPG genre, having developed Knights of the Old Republic 2 and Neverwinter Nights 2, albeit with a less successful Alpha Protocol under their belt more recently. As an added perk, though, Chris Taylor, who developed Dungeon Siege I & II with Gas Powered Games, has an advisory role with this, the third incarnation of the monster slaying, loot grabbing experience.

Dungeon Siege III

The first and most obvious upgrade to notice about Dungeon Siege III is the new Onyx engine. The demo we were shown displayed a lush environment with huge out-of-focus backdrops that you should eventually be able to explore. The dynamic lighting and physics keep the franchise modern and the new free camera system looked to add immersion. You will also be able to fix it to 3rd person behind the character to make the most of the new action RPG gameplay, but the same top-down view as per the original Dungeon Siege titles will be available should you feel the urge. There will also be 'vanity' and 'vista' views - the former used to admire yourself, the latter to enjoy any panoramic surroundings.

Dungeon Siege III

In the mission GameOn were shown, we were presented with a special Gamescom 2010 level through a crypt to eventually destroy the evil within and grab plenty of loot along the way. A basic quest, but a good way to show us some of the new features. First of all there is the new optional breadcrumb trail that will guide players to quests should they get lost. Some spider minions were then the target for the new stance system available with the Guardian class which was the focus of attention for this playthrough.

Dungeon Siege III

Bringing Dungeon Siege III to the consoles threatens to make the control system more simplistic, but in actual fact it would seem like the controls and combat are more effective. The player can easily switch between quick agile attacks with a single hand, or a more powerful sweeping strike with both hands. Each stance and class has a different set of special abilities, such as shield bash or 360 degree slash. The inventory will be grid based and the menus streamlined, with the controls said to include the depth and complexity of PC, but refined for each of the platforms.

Dungeon Siege III

Each class is promised to be diverse with different abilities, but so far only two classes have been announced: the aforementioned sword swinging Guardian and the spear-throwing, spellcasting Archon. These different classes will compliment each other through the use of companions, who will become more than just henchmen. Strong relationships can be formed through the dialogue tree and there will even be story implications for each character, though no examples could be explained at this time.

Dungeon Siege III

One of the biggest new features for Dungeon Siege III is the ability for a second person to jump in or out of the action on a single system at the press of the start button. We were shown this with another person instantaneously taking control of a companion, but it is evident that later on you will be able to have up to four people playing co-operative at one time and I would imagine online options will be announced later on as well. Companions can form attacks together, whilst fallen friends can be revived simply by standing next to them and holding down a defined button. This co-op system is promised to be a lot more than a simple quick bit of fun, but we will have to wait and see how exactly this turns out.

Dungeon Siege III

Slaying enemies will give the player experience points and also add to the character's focus bar, allowing the use of said abilities. As the player uses these abilities they will gain power orbs to unlock a second, more powerful tier of abilities. Another new feature will be the use of 'causeways', a method of adding a degree of effort to instant fast travel which has been taken for granted in recent years. While many of these features are new to this series, it would seem like having loads of battles and receiving a ton of loot are still at the forefront of the gameplay experience, with the quests and the story driving the player forwards further.

Dungeon Siege III

The first two Dungeon Siege titles had strong stories, and Obsidian Entertainment hope to continue with their premise of having a deep story and conversation tree, with consequences to the actions you make. Little is known of the story of Dungeon Siege III, though what has been released, about the player trying to restore the balance of power and stopping the kingdom of Ehb from falling into darkness, doesn't strike a particularly original tone with me at this moment in time.

Dungeon Siege III

After battling through a number of enemies our quest came to the crescendo of a boss fight against a sizable skeleton king. Each boss will have different phases of attack and often you will have a choice on how exactly to take them down, with team-play and a combination of attacks perhaps the most satisfying approach. Once the boss was defeated the rewards could be reaped but it was time for the demo to end. Down for a 2011 release and still in a pre-alpha state, Dungeon Siege III is visually looking great but could struggle scoring originality points and will have to dig deep to achieve its promises of involving multiplayer and PC-console action-RPG gameplay. A new direction is clearly being sought for the series, and with veteran developers at the helm and Chris Taylor as an advisor, one would hope that the series is in safe hands.

POBmaestro | 24th August, 2010
Rasher's picture
Fab preview Pob, all 3 of us here loved Dungeon Siege 1 and 2 and from the sounds of it we are going to love number 3 as well.
Betty_Swallocks's picture
I'm always a little bit wary when a game changes developers. Gas Powered did such a good job with 1 and 2 so why did 3 go to Obsidian?

So many brilliant games turn to pooh when the publishers decide for whatever reason to switch developers. I really hope this will be different.

Other items from around the web