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Lo and behold, choices and consequences in Divinity 2
Preview - posted by Monolith on Mon 8 June 2009, 16:21:51Tags: Divinity II; Larian Studios
Gentlemen, ladies and trannies, we might have something to look forward to, and that is Divinity 2: Ego Draconis. I stumbled upon this preview on Gamespot, and, expecting something along the lines of this magnificent piece of journalistic excellence, I was quite shocked at choices and consequences being mentioned in a positive light.
I'll just quote the three paragraphs (which are significantly longer than IGN's preview/"summary of what can be gathered in 2 minutes using google").
To find out information, you'll speak with non-player characters much as you would in other role-playing games. We took a walk around Broken Valley, Divinity 2's first region. The first thing we did was head to a tavern, where we talked to the patrons seated outside. One of them wanted to enter the tavern but couldn't because it was overrun by drunken soldiers. We entered the tavern and had a talk with the intoxicated sods, where we could resolve the quest in one of several ways. In this case, we resolved it peacefully by speaking with the soldiers' lieutenant, which meant patrons who had been avoiding the tavern would now enter, including other quest-givers. Had we fought the soldiers to drive them out, some of these NPCs would not have entered, locking us out of some potential quests. Such choices will drive the game's morality system, affecting potential quests, as well as the items available for purchase from merchants.
In another similar scenario, we met a local farmer's wife named Dana. Dana asked us to deliver a letter to the blacksmith, but asked us to keep it a secret from her husband. We opened the letter to take a peek and discovered that Dana was having an affair with this blacksmith. From here, there were many options available. We could blackmail Dana and deliver the letter; blackmail the blacksmith instead; or perhaps tell her husband and create all sorts of bad will. Instead, we took the most intriguing option: mind reading. By reading an NPC's mind, you can discover important information: treasure locations, enemy locations, and other secrets that could come in handy. The drawback is that reading minds costs you experience, so if you choose that option, your XP bar will diminish. You have to be careful using this option, because you could spend XP only to find that the subject of your mind reading may offer no information of use.
In any case, mind-reading Dana led us to a key hidden inside the farmhouse. We used the key to enter the couple's basement, where we discovered the farmer's diary. We read it to discover that Dana was a bad girl; she'd already cheated on her husband in the past! But the juiciest part was that her husband murdered that gentleman. And again, we had more choices to make. The blackmailing choices were endless! In another instance, we could mind-read a quest giver, only to discover that he intended to pay too little for the items he requested. By refusing the request, he would then be found later in the goblin caves fighting them himself. If he were killed by these creatures, you would then be able to take his powerful armor for yourself, a choice you wouldn't get to make if you simply took the quest. Mind reading should make the already open-ended questing even more flexible.
Ah, and they also introduced an interesting ability, using the magice system for more than just combat.
If you want to see how the game looks in motion, GameTrailers scored a video interview with dtp's Senior PR manager at the E3 and meshed that with some in game footage. Apparently, you'll start off "hunting down evil, mean, huge dragons", only to get the ability to shapeshift into a dragon later on and equipped with that new power, you keep on hunting down evil, mean, huge dragons until you get to the real baddie and we all know what happens then.