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29.05.2011 15:07 [Risen 2] GameStar: Risen 2 Preview (Page: 1)
This article appeared in the GameStar magazine. You can find the original text here. It contains footnotes (added by the English editor), which are marked by the following signs: [*number*]. References are listed at the bottom of the pages.

Built like a ship in a bottle.

The instructions for Risen 2: inch gently through the straits, then unfurl the sails of role-playing decisions. We've taken a gander at the latest model. In our visit to Piranha Bytes, we were only able to get a feel for the camera control and steering system, but the story is still out of bounds. "We've got so much to say that we can't possibly hope to cover everything at once," was Roman Grow's response to our zeal to discover more about Risen 2. "The fundamental features have been implemented, but we're in the middle of fine-tuning the game, and there are certain aspects we don't want to discuss right now. Simply put, things won't look tomorrow the same as they do today. We'll take all the time we need to really make Risen 2 perfect," he adds.

That could mean that either the game is not as developed technology-wise as we'd suspected, or that the basic framework is there, with the creative process still in full swing. Or both. Everything's possible, especially when faced with well-rounded animations, smooth world transitioning, and technical experience gained from the bug-free predecessor Risen 1 used towards polishing this creative work-in-progress. We'll see these things now, as we plunge into the world of Risen 2.


This particular equipment sets the character apart from the rest. Passive skills such as footwork make close range battles easier.


Liver training with rum.


We inspect the playable character: everything is in sight. His hair is different now, a good deal longer than in any other Piranha Bytes games. And an eye is missing, too, presumably from Risen 1's dreary ending. A decorative eyepatch covers this absence.

Risen 2 continues fairly seamlessly from where its predecessor ended, towards the displeasure of our hero. He tosses and turns in his hammock, his head full to bursting with titanic monsters, doom, worries over not having enough money for Schnapps, and so on. All is truly bleak: parts of the world are ravaged, many lie slain. Following the Titan's downfall came its lackeys, chewing with disinterest on the world and then spitting it out again.

That's about it. We take control over the booze-sodden failure of a hero, treasure his depression, and mind our own business. Naturally, this upsets the local authorities. Local authorities? Where are we, anyway? Is this Faranga, the not-so-vast island from Risen 1? Not really, no. We're stuck in the picturesque harbour city of Caldera, where the Inquisition holds sway and in which vermin and riffraff are not looked upon with kind eyes by the paragons of virtue. As we writhe about in our hammocks, a familiar face makes its appearance: Carlos, erstwhile commander of the harbour city, now reigns over Caldera as Overinquisitor.

He's got something for us to do. It's not obligatory, but he can make the hero's life even more miserable, should we choose not to obey him. Navigating around the world (or what's left of it, at least) is hintered by monstrous creatures. Not a boat can escape the slimy reach of the kraken-things' tentacles. In the shoes of our tattered hero, we are to poke around and find out everything we can. But Carlos is no fool: he seems to know full well that this task might mean biting off more than we can chew, but even if we don't get to the bottom of it, at least there's one less tramp prowling about his town.


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