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GameSpy: Go play Arcanum
Game News - posted by Vault Dweller on Thu 24 June 2004, 02:51:46Tags: Arcanum: of Steamworks and Magick Obscura; Troika Games
GameSpy has taken a look at drastically overlooked games that you should play this summer while you are waiting for some drastically overhyped games. The current picks are Wheel of Time and everybody's favourite classic: Arcanum.
What It's About: What would Victorian-era England be like if magic existed in the world, and didn't get along real well with technology? Arcanum uses this premise to build one of the most interesting settings in recent RPG history.Go play it already.
What They Did Right: Arcanum features arguably the best (and certainly most in-depth) character-creation system ever. This combines with an original setting and a ridiculous amount of quests, from small "Fedex" item-retrieval quests, to a huge and all-encompassing story. The wide variety of character skills means that you can approach these quests in vastly different ways. The game also allows you to pick between nearly a dozen potential party members as you work your way through it.
What They Screwed Up: Arcanum suffers from "Quake Syndrome"... which is to say that while it's not really accurate, the overwhelming impression people have of the game is that it's grey and brown. The settings, while complex and well-designed, don't have the distinctive look of Fallout or the colors of Baldur's Gate. The all-violin soundtrack, while musically impressive, grates on the nerves after a relatively short period of time.
Why You Should Grab It: This game will give you hours and hours of entertainment (just turn off the music). If you're into character creation and picking different sets of skills in order to alter your gameplay, it's hard to do better than Arcanum. The game is prettier than people remember it being, and there's nothing cooler than crafting a badass battle-axe that lights things on fire when you hit them with it.