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Gothic 3: Forsaken Gods (PC)

Gothic 3: Forsaken Gods (PC)

The original Gothic was released in 2001 and quickly became a favourite with RPG fans. In 2006 the quality suffered with Gothic 3, a game which was riddled with design flaws, bugs and logistical issues. This year Indian developer Trine Games have taken over from Piranha Bytes and are releasing Forsaken Gods, a standalone title. Is it any good?

The story of Forsaken Gods follows the exploits of the Nameless Hero, a warrior whose reputation was forged during the years of conflict between Humans and Orcs. The task in this game is to reunite the land of Myrtana which is being torn apart by the battles of three warlords, Lee, Gorn and Thorus. To achieve this the Nameless Hero has to get stronger and rebuild his magical, combat and trading abilities, then become a mediator between the three warlords.

Just like before, Gothic: Forsaken Gods is a complex RPG game and the system is based on the development of experience points and levelling which in turn get you learning points. These learning points can then be used at shrines or given to a plethora of teachers to buy skill upgrades. There are hundreds of skills available to choose from. Not only this, but there is a wide selection of single handed, dual handed, ranged and heavy weapon skills to learn as well as magic, thieving and hunting categories. So far this all sounds absolutely awesome, but unfortunately this title is overflowing with game ruining bugs.

Unfortunately I am not exaggerating, there are so many bugs it would take a dedicated review to merely list them all and this clearly points to a release rushed out the door without the necessary budget for play-testing and development. Even with the two patches already released there are a plethora of bugs which break the game… yes, unforgivable quest triggers which often don’t actually work. The developers are pimping the game with "marvellous open world construction" and this is very true, you can roam anywhere you like which is impressive to behold. That said, all the quest progression is linear in nature….. and broken. For example, if you find a NPC quest before the game developers thought it was necessary this quest will probably break and you have to revert to a previous saved game or even start the game again from the beginning.

While we are on the subject of NPC’s, these guys are also broken, because on many occasions you could be speaking to one and they vanish, never to appear again. Sometimes they might ignore you and not talk at all and I even had one NPC just walk through a mountain, never to return again. I was jealous I couldn’t just follow him into oblivion after playing this mess for several hours. This is absolutely appalling and utterly destroys any sense of enjoyment from trying to get something from the game.

The quests are also poorly handled with a substandard interface which does little to help as you can only reread the poorly written dialogue rather than create a set of quest objectives important to completing and progressing the game (if the above quest related bugs didn’t further destroy this). Once you commit to a quest you can’t cancel it or change to another which means you need to remember every single nuance otherwise you will not have a clue what you are meant to do. Completing quests is also difficult even if you battle through the bugs, because some finish when you reach the goal and others require you to return to the NPC who gave you the quest in the first place. Furthermore, the map doesn’t update the location of the NPC so you may spend hours wandering around to find him to complete the mission.

To further compound the negative aspects, the engine is absolutely shocking. No matter what PC you use, there are insanely long loading times as well as graphical hitches and stutters galore. The Orc City made me double check that my quad core system wasn’t suddenly replaced by a Nintendo Wii. Certainly you can lower the graphics to the lowest setting to counter balance the slide show, but why should we? The textures and graphic detail are ok on the highest setting but the engine is not in any way indicative of the appalling frame rate. Crysis I could understand, but this?

The audio is only slightly better with a soundtrack which is reminiscent of a decent fantasy film like Lord Of The Rings or Stardust. The voice acting however is terrible with mismatched subtitles and dialogue as well as sections which have no sound at all. It is also not uncommon for NPC’s to change voice mid conversation as clearly the development team either ran out of time or budget to get the cast to complete the audio work. A female NPC during the game even developed a male voice with certain replies utterly shattering any semblance of realism.

Gothic 3: Forsaken Gods is a title which would be better named Gothic 3: Forsaken Code. It is one of the worst games I can remember playing and there are no redeeming qualities at all to justify the cost. In its current state it is unfinished, bug ridden with performance problems which will bring even the most powerful PC’s to their knees. Avoid at all costs even if you are a fan of the series.



A vast array of bugs and issues destroy it totally. Playing this game is a good way to make up new swear words however.

They look decent, but the engine is un-optimised, shoddy and apparently only partially coded.
Soundtrack earns all the score. The voice work is the worst I have yet to experience.
None whatsoever.
(not an average)

Avoid, unless you want to be driven insane.

About Author

Stuart Davidson

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