preview by Raven
What happens when you combine the storytelling environment of Baldur's Gate, with the replay value of Diablo, and then add to it the intense multi-player support and exciting gameplay of Ultima Online? Well firstly you bound to get a SMASH HIT RPG, and secondly you come up with a highly anticipated RPG title called Dungeon Siege.
Dungeon Siege is an RPG title from Gas Powered Games and is published by Microsoft. The game takes place is a world of warriors, sorcerers, and all manner of strange and deadly creatures, both alive and undead. Within this world, players will battle a multitude of exotic creatures, and explore the most fantastic places imaginable. The story line of DS is centered on stopping hordes of monsters that have suddenly started invading local communities. As the game continues, a mystery begins to unfold and an even larger plot takes shape.
DS combines popular RPG elements with strategy elements, similar to Baldur's Gate. In DS players start with one character and can command a party of up to 10 players. This variation in party size forces gamers to not only work on individual characters and skills but also challenges the player to learn group tactics and how to efficiently set way-points and formations. Each individual character can develop different skills and each character class has specific abilities, adding to the complex variety of playing parties. Players can choose to have a magic intense party with lots of Sorcerers or alternatively that can choose battle intense party with archers and warriors.
The Dungeon Siege world is continuous and dynamic, thus giving it a huge replayability factor. Characters can move from the highest mountaintop to the lowest valley without having to go through a load screen ONCE! Gas Powered Games has worked hard on eliminating load screens making the game more compelling to gamers and allowing it to flow better.
Another promising aspect of DS is the Siege Engine. This graphics engine is what powers Dungeon Siege and creates stunning -COMPLETELY 3D- visual effects. These visual effects are combined with wonderful sound and an exciting gameplay. Another strong point about the DS engine is scalability. The official Dungeon Siege site has this to say about scalability: "The world can be of any size with no set limits and built in any direction… Movement and transitions are seamless as the player moves in and out of buildings and dungeons. "
The monsters in Dungeon Siege can walk, fly and run. Because of this players must use various tactics and strategies for different opponents. Certain monsters will inhabit certain areas of the DS world, some monsters will have different weaknesses depending on what part of the world they inhabit.
Free, Multiplayer support for DS can be found on the MSN™ Gaming Zone. Multiplayer games can have up to 10 players playing at once in a variety of gaming styles. Gamers can play shorter multiplayer experiences such as Capture The Castle and a more traditional, widely played campaign style of play.
All in all, DS looks amazing and it could easily be the next stop forward in the RPG world. Gaming fans now have a new title to add to their birthday lists, GPS's Dungeon Siege. A wonderful game from what looks to be a wonderful gaming company.
Screenshots are from from Microsoft.