The Dark Eye: Drakensang

Written by Mark Mackay

April 1, 2009 | 08:16

Tags: #drakensang #the-dark-eye

Companies: #eidos

Graphics

As you can see from the screens, the game world is beautifully rendered and looks great with all the sauce turned on. There's enough anti-aliasing to smooth out all the jaggies and the soft lighting and particle techniques look awesome. We played it on a Core i7-920-based rig with a heavily overclocked Nvidia GTX 260 and saw minimum frame rates of 50fps at 1,980 x 1,080.

In the pictures below we've got screenshots to show you how good and bad the game can look, namely by taking pictures of Drakensang with maximum and minimum graphics. Turning all the graphics down doubled the frame rate and the game still looked very pretty, though you wont be enjoying the particle effects floating on the gentle breeze or the luscious foliage brushing around your virtual ankles.

Also missing on the lower settings are the shadows, which leaves things looking a little flat even though the lighting still looks very good on the whole and the bloom effects are still in play.

The Dark Eye: Drakensang Drakensang - Graphics and Final Thoughts The Dark Eye: Drakensang Drakensang - Graphics and Final Thoughts
Drakensang with maximum graphics (left) and minimum graphics (right), click to enlarge

To be honest though, since Drakensang isn't all that demanding when it comes to system requirements, there's no reason you shouldn't be able to push the settings to maximum even on a modest mid-range rig. At the very least you want to make sure that you've got the vegetation pushed up to the max, as stripping all the bushes and trees from the game really hinders the overall feel of the world.

Final Thoughts

Drakensang is a great looking game and a true old-school style RPG which will be a dream combo for many fans of the genre. The deep character development system is made a little daunting by the dodgy tutorial system, so you may have to be patient and RTFM, but once you get your head around how it works, it’s not as bad as it initially seems.

In fact, patience is something that you’ll be needing in abundance because the overall pace of the game is very slow. Character advancement, combat movement and the reams of dialogue will all ensure that you don’t get anywhere fast, which really impacts on how immediately playable the game is and how widely it will appeal to players.The Dark Eye: Drakensang Drakensang - Graphics and Final Thoughts
Another thing that you’ll need to be prepared to deal with if you decide to give the game a shot is the clichés that it’s riddled with. Drakensang adheres to just about every single stereotypical fantasy RPG element you could possibly muster, so if you’re sick of seeing the same regurgitated ideas and fancy something that's just a little bit unusual and different then you should probably try something else. Like The Path, for example.

Value for money is something that Drakensang scores highly on though as, if you can handle the slow pace of the game, the ludicrous amount of side quests should keep you occupied for a sizable chunk of the rest of your natural life. There's dozens of hours of playtime to be had here.

Drakensang will definitely appeal to any RPG fans who see the old-school mechanics and re-run story as a stroll down memory lane, but here at bit-tech, the clichés and painstakingly slow pace of the game prevent it from ever truly winning us over.

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