Okay, so I had been waiting for this game for what feels like forever, after reading some, not so pleasant, articles relating to this game, I caved and decided to try it out for myself. Here are my thoughts, kinda sorta broken down into a few categories.
VERY happy with my purchase
You are NOT a combat god, you’re a regular dude with no combat experience. The game makes sure you know that.
You get better at things as you do them, so talk smack, pick flowers, ride horses, and OH YES, DRINK!
Soundtrack is okay, but ambient audio is, imo, fantastic.
Basic needs are easily managed and dont feel intrusive
Most of the backlash I’ve heard about performance and bugs, I’ve not encountered. Just turn shaders and shadows down.
Character looks like a foot.
GTX 1060 6GB, 16GB DDR4 @ 3000Mhz, an i5-6600k @ Stock, with this game running on a SSD.
MY current in game settings are a mix of very high, high, and medium (Shadows & Shaders) and I’m managing to keep roughly 50-60 fps at most times in the game. I haven’t noticed many mugs, besides a bit of clipping, repeat dialogue, and one reappearing guy who wants to duel me, over and over and over…
Oh my gosh, this game is frickin gorgeous. Maybe not 4k hdr, blah blah blah, but I have found myself stopping at the tops of hills to admire the view. I have put my horse on “auto-pilot” just so I could turn Henry’s head to watch as the areas changed with the lighting, or to admire the way the godrays and trees interplay with each other. Your gear gets visibly worn after combat which just feels right. And again, other than gear clipping and maybe a few visual oddities, I think the overall visual quality of the game is fantastic.
Okay, so I like the soundtrack but it’s not super impressive, but the atmospheric sounds add a lot of immersion, and hearing distinctly which direction voices are coming from make navigating to a sound very simple. Horses trudging through water makes a believable splash/squish sound, and listening to a stream flowing is oddly peaceful. I’ve been playing with a headset, and it definitely improves the audio presentation.
So here’s the thing, your character is the son of a blacksmith. He has never had any sword training and this is reflected in the early hours of the game. NPCs you encounter will whoop you, because they are more “experience” ie have much higher stats. The directional combat, matched with the block/timed block/parry system is a lot to take in and figure out. Pair that with the different weapon classes designed for particularly armored enemies, and you’ll likely get annoyed before getting the hang of it. It’s not until about 2.5-3 ish hours that you get a proper tutorial and even then, it’s really hard to master. Combat against one opponent grows into a lot of fun, but any more than that and it becomes frustrating and tedious. Oh yeah, btw I hate this games archery, I’m no good at it and it’s going to wait until a future play through.
It’s fun, I like the perks, I like that bathing, dressing nice, maintaining your gear, eating, and sleeping, all interplay to dictate how people react to you. Gathering plants levels the appropriate skill and every so many levels (per that skill) you get a perk. This perk can be anything from increasing your strength each time you harvest something because you’re constantly squatting, to increasing herb’s sell value by 15% Want to be better with your horse, ride him. Want to become a sword master, use your sword.
Besides a few oddities this game is very fun and immersive. Remembering to eat, bathe, and sleep feel less like a chore than in other games. The ambient audio does a good job at engaging you and when you’re wandering to your next destination, it can be downright captivating. I actually really enjoy the forced first person mode in this game and found it funny when I put on a helmet with a face guard that closed upon entering combat and it actually changed how I saw the surrounding areas. The only thing that really brings me out of it is the odd third person conversations that seem to be there, simply to remind you of how fugly Henry is in the first place.