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Germany's popular pen-and-paper role-playing game surfaces again, letting gamers visit a virtual version of Aventuria for the first time since the Realms of Arkania series graced PC screens in the mid-'90s. A single-player, squad-based action RPG in the vein of Neverwinter Nights, The Dark Eye: Drakensang begins by letting gamers select their main character from ten different archetypes, more than 40 special abilities, and over 30 different talents. The archetypes provide a broad set of pre-defined character abilities, but gamers familiar with the fourth edition of The Dark Eye rule set can also make use of an "Expert Mode" that lets them alter and adjust each individual character attribute.
Players begin in the medieval city of Ferdok, where a storyline centered on a series of gruesome murders begins to take shape. Gameplay resembles the latter-day Elder Scrolls titles Morrowind and Oblivion, in that players are presented with an open world in which they can collect plants for potions, scavenge animals and buildings for useful items, visit teachers to increase attributes, use speech skills to unlock more dialogue, and battle mythical creatures such as linnorms, ogres, and giant amoeba. The main differences are that Drakensang find gamers traveling in a group of four uniquely skilled adventurers, and battles take place in a turn-based manner rather than in real-time. ~ Christopher Brown, All Game Guide