Greedfall is the newly anticipated RPG from Spiders Game Studio. Spiders Studios are best known for their games Bound by Flame and Of Orc and Men. Greedfall received a lot of attention and therefore hopes have been set very high. Did it live up to the hype?
What is Greedfall?
Greedfall has a mixture of elements. Many have made connections to massive RPG heavy hitters such as The Witcher and Skyrim. It resembles The Witcher loosely in graphics and combat.
Skyrim has an open world, strong vision and style to its environment that may share similarities with Greedfall attempts but that is where it ends, unfortunately.
As for the story, it revolves around a disease called the Malichor. You are a noble and recently commissioned to sail across to the mystical Island of Teer Fradee so as to aid your cousin, the Prince, to find a cure for this disease.
Teer Fradee has many native tribes and also some settlers from the mainlands, most of whom are at war or in tensions with one another.
You spend your time acting as a diplomat, easing tensions, reopening trade routes and creating allies to your kingdom. All while searching for a cure.
It is all sounds fun, but does it hold up?
The battle system is simple and to the point. You can cast spells, use a heavy and fast attack and dodge or block your enemies attacks.
Enemies are tough but with some initial upgrading things get easier, and having up to 3 companions that can fight alongside you can add some advantages but nothing that compromises Greedfalls difficulty.
Bosses are challenging and usually need their armour buff depleted first before their large health bar takes a hit. Most of your time is spent doing seamlessly endless side quests that follow the same pattern over and over.
Meet a tribal person, do them a favour, that favour turns into another errand and then you must fulfil the other parties request and finally complete the initial quest. rinse and repeat for a good 10 hours while unveiling some more lore and history behind the Islands mystery and hopeful answer to a cure for Malichor.
NPC character models are recycled a lot! You will meet one guy with a particular face, wearing a hat with an English accent trying to poison you. Then you will meet the same face, without a hat but with a strange Welsh/Irish accent, asking for your help.
It’s amusing and obviously a budget/time chosen by the studio. It does take away slightly from the sense of quality.
When I first started Greedfall I was hyped! The warm nostalgia that flooded my senses as I interacted with the character creation menu took me back to Skyrim and Fallout.
The music and strong victorian style had me drooling. This mythical world of monsters and magic looks awesome in every cutscene and the sense of adventure motivates exploration.
The awesome game mechanic which allows you to “tactical pause” the game while rearranging and accessing spells, weapons, and potions is so handy and a lifesaver in tough situations. I was sure the slow but strong development of the storyline and the sinister monster-filled world would beat me black and blue in a good way.
One great attribute is the multiple-choice dialogues which impact the outcomes of quests, nothing new from other games in the genre such as Fallout, but it always makes for a more immersive experience. After stepping on the ship and setting sail two hours into the game, I was ready to conquer Teer Fradee! What greeted me on the other side you ask? Well, it’s not so simple as you will see.
The iffy bits
Greedfall is presented in such a beautiful package. On paper, it is the next best thing to a new Witcher game mixed with Skyrim. Unfortunately, it is none of these, not by a long shot. Greedfall never claimed to be anything like the Goliath’s of old but it certainly was aiming for the same heights.
It reminds me of the phrase “Shoot for the sun and you can still land on the stars”. Greedfall falls slightly lower than the stars.
Taking such a huge bite at the most intimidating genre of gaming is a bold and courageous challenge for any studio, so hats off to the guys at Spider Studio.
Yet considering they had the templates of two great games having very similar gameplay traits, they still fell short when it came to the enjoyability of the game. It looks the parts, at times feels the part but ultimately it has one big flaw.
It is just so tedious at the best of times. Far-reaching quests that force you into packs of enemies every few moments make the game feel very linear.
The sense of adventure dies as you follow set pathways into more packs of enemies or an NPC only to be sent back a mile away in a new direction just to grind into another pack of enemies.
Learning about the tribes is fun yet they chose a strange Irish/ Welsh accent which sounds like someone with a speech disability and could easily be found as offensive or mocking of a Dubliners/ Welsch accent, especially as these tribal people are being portrayed as the savages of the island compared to the intellectuals of the white settlers.
15 hours in, the game just didn’t evolve enough and started to drag. I felt if I had to do another diplomatic errand boy quest I would cry, I found myself mindlessly running to the destinations not yet unlocked while staring at my phone simultaneously as it just bored me.
This is one game that has unfortunately missed the mark for me.
Creativity is there and the premise is very intriguing yet the execution and enjoyment wears thin after 15 hours of hoping for more exciting developments. For all I know around hour 25 this game could become amazing but it felt strenuous to continue.
Greedfall was marketed with the most amazing trailer and little else up until release.
It looked as though we had a game reaching the heights of Horizon Zero Dawn, The Witcher, and Skyrim. Afterall it allowed itself to cause so much hype with its trailer.
Then with little effort and no more direction for fans to judge it by, disappointment was a huge possibility. It did unfortunately disappoint.
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