Fans of epic open-world RPGs like The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and Fallout 3 will want to keep their eyes peeled for Two Worlds II, an upcoming fantasy RPG that’s headed to the PS3 this fall from developer Reality Pump. I sat in on a demonstration at E3 to learn more about the game, but before I start yammering away, check out the trailer below to get a sense of the universe and visual style.
Set in a massive open world teeming with animal life, Two Worlds II is an RPG that’s intensely focused on player freedom. You won’t find rigid character classes like “Barbarian” or “Thief.” Instead, you’ll build a custom class by assigning skill points across a wide range of talents: assassination, melee combat, trade, lockpicking, and magic to name just a few. Want to combine the spell-casting acumen of a Wizard with the brute melee force of a Warrior? No problem: just assign your skill and stat points accordingly. You use the directional pad to swap quickly between your gear loadouts, so you could soften up an enemy with magic while wearing your spell-boosting equipment, then instantly swap to your heavy armor and axe to dash in and finish the job.
Magic spells are similarly dynamic and customizable (are you sensing a theme here?). Rather than find and assign a typical “Fireball” spell, for example, you can mix and match various magic traits (in the form of cards) to achieve a witches’ brew of effects. In my demonstration, I saw the player combine a fire card, a multi-shot card, a heat-seeking card, a summon card, and a reflection card to create a wicked spell that flung bouncing, splitting, heat-seeking, flaming projectiles that spawned demonic enemies on impact. Not bad, eh? Two Worlds II will contain a vast number of spell combinations – I overheard “10 to the 16th power” – and might draw comparisons to Borderlands’ similarly monstrous weapon arsenal.
The online mode is expansive, with eight-player PvP duels (ranging from 4v4 to free for all bloodbaths), a separate co-op campaign that supports eight players as well as a unique quest and environments, and a “Village” mode where you can grow and evolve your own fantasy-RPG city. In the Village mode, you’ll be able to invite your PSN friends to visit your town and share their specific talents with your townspeople, be it leather crafting or weaponsmithing. Guild support for online play is also a go.
Two Worlds II runs on the Grace engine, and is highly optimized for the PS3 hardware and DualShock 3 controls – a major departure from its predecessor’s PC focus. If you have questions about Two Worlds II, let me know in the comments and I’ll try to shed more light on my experiences with the game.