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In keeping so close to the Baldur's Gate/Infinity Engine template, Pillars of Eternity can't help but inherit a few old flaws, and it would have been nice to see a bit more personality of its own shine through its carefully traditional design and shell. That said, what most stands out is just how well it manages to modernise the experience of playing those games and stand apart from them as an epic adventure in its own right. It's an RPG with design firmly rooted in nostalgia, but one that absolutely doesn't rely on it to be enjoyable today. Instead, it's both a great reminder of why those games worked so well, and a brand new adventure well worth the hours upon hours (upon hours upon hours) that it takes to pick away at its secrets and its world.
Still, it's in the smallest moments where Pillars is most fascinating. Stories of dead gods resurrected, of divine plagues and magical obelisks jutting from the earth like broken bones, are the easy stories for fantasy games to tell. It's in the simple stories where they often falter. Pillars Of Eternity deserves credit not just for telling those stories but telling them well.
Obsidian had a daunting task before them: to make a spiritual successor to a series of games that are inextricably tangled up in nostalgia, over a decade after the height of those games' popularity. This is not the Baldur's Gate of 2015, it's Baldur's Gate, Planescape: Torment, Icewind Dale, the best parts of the lot of them wrapped up in something new and brilliant. And before you venture forth, don't forget to gather your party.
Pillars of Eternity demonstrates that a great RPG is as much in our own heads and hearts as it is a developer's vision relayed through a monitor. A must-play for fans of the genre, old and new.
The fantasy genre is always one of nostalgia for a world long gone, the vague, wistful ancestral memory of weary travelers and simple taverns, of brooding castles and dark-blooded wars. But also nostalgia for a real-life youth spent whispering about orcs at the back of geography class. Somehow, Pillars of Eternity captures this personal emotion with flair and empathy.
As a spiritual successor to some of my favourite RPGs of all time, Pillars of Eternity does those games justice with its ultra-traditional story, presentation and mechanics. But I recommend other people check it out as well, as it offers a sprawling world to explore, and a fantastic cast of companions to interact with, making it the perfect example of a retro genre done right.
With its well fleshed-out world and clever twist on classic Dungeons & Dragons-style rules, Pillars of Eternity could be the next big RPG series that people have been wanting from the genre for the past decade. As for me, I'm already working on a second trip and still gloating over the success of my dwarven Paladin to anyone who will listen.
Pillars of Eternity is a welcome return to the CRPGs of old, and it's a definite must-play for any CRPG fan or RPG fan, period. It has so many moving parts that work so incredibly well together with an unbelievably rich history and mythology. Pillars of Eternity will gladly eat up several hours of your time, and you will gladly give them.
Add in an extensive amount of lore, as well as great writing and detailed conversation options, and the result is a finely-crafted RPG that will take over 60 hours to complete. Be prepared to say "goodbye" to the sun because with so many classes and side quests, most players will want to replay Pillars of Eternity at least once. I guess that's what spray-tans are made for...
The truth of the matter is that Pillars of Eternity has no significant or crippling faults; it is merely a game so dedicated to its genre and its lore that players who don't know what they're getting themselves into are likely to be blindsided. For players that do know what they're getting themselves into, however, Pillars of Eternity is another triumphant example of the resurgence of no-nonsense, story driven PC RPGs.
In almost every respect Pillars of Eternity is a true successor to the genre - a perfect introduction for RPG newcomers, and for everyone else, the game they've been waiting fifteen years for.
Pillars Of Eternity is a masterpiece and nothing less than essential for anyone who's ever heard of the Infinity Engine. Superbly written, expansive yet rich and detailed, tactical and thought-provoking, it's the sort of roleplaying experience that we've been dreaming about for years.
Pillars of Eternity is more than an appeal to nostalgia; it's a rich RPG in its own right, boasting enjoyable combat, a strong story, and masterfully paced quests. What flaws it has — poor pathfinding A.I. and a Stronghold that feels somewhat derserted — are comparatively minor in the grand scheme of things. Right now, its biggest problem is a surfeit of bugs, which seem endemic to Obsidian's RPGs. Ignoring all that, though, Pillars of Eternity is enormously entertaining, and may end up making a strong claim to being one of the best RPGs of the year.
Obsidian's Pillars of Eternity is a love letter to those gamers who remember RPGs of old – when parties were large, adventures were world-sprawling, and you read a book or two worth of words before the world was saved.
Pillars of Eternity is a wondrous return to form, the latest and greatest from a recent move to revisit RPG classics. It's certainly the best RPG experience I've had for many years, and a massive part of that is how it approaches its story telling. If you enjoyed the Infinity engine games, you will have an absolutely fantastic time with Pillars of Eternity. It's a huge reminder of all the things I never knew I sorely missed from the roleplaying genre.
Obsidian's 'Pillars of Eternity' is a worthy successor to its ancestors and, in some ways, manages to surpass them. In terms of story, this is a worthwhile experience. In terms of content, it is a bargain. It is a strategy RPG for the ages.
Great storytelling and presentation as well as engaging and deep combat mechanics. Crafting and itemization leaves a little to be desired but the overall package is a high quality return on investment.
Pillars of Eternity's port to the Switch is a great port indeed. It brings the modern classic to the handheld scene for on the go awesomeness. The only lacking feature of this entire release is the controls. Had they included touch capabilities, it would have set it far apart from the other console releases. As it stands now, the mediocre controls truly hinder the game itself. Yet at the same time, the core gameplay is still there, and it's still awesome. While the controls are flawed, it's still playable, just don't expect perfection.
Obsidian's Pillars of Eternity revisits the company's Black Isle roots, resulting in a High Fantasy, party-based RPG in the traditional style. Strong thematic hooks, well-written characters and reactive quest design, all resting on an original set of tabletop-inspired mechanics, make this a triumphant return.
Seriously, if you love your role playing games lore heavy, challenging, and fun, you literally can't go wrong with PIllars of Eternity. With the amount of pleasure I've had playing this game, it can easily stand tall and proud as one of the most tactical, thought provoking, and enjoyable RPGs I've ever played.
Pillars of Eternity is a must-buy for anyone who has played classic titles like Baldur's Gate, Neverwinter Nights or Planescape, and it will certainly deliver the story, the conversations, the companions, the combat and the big themes that they are yearning for.
Pillars of Eternity is an epic that either meets or exceeds all of my lofty expectations. Minutes turned to hours, hours turned to evenings and evenings turned to days as I immersed myself in the wonderful world that Obsidian has created. You must gather your party before venturing forth—a dangerous and exciting world awaits you in Pillars of Eternity.
These are small grievances with what is ultimately one of the best games to bear the Obsidian name, which isn't said lightly. Like so many RPGs, Pillars of Eternity is immense with an abundance of things to do. But unlike so many RPGs, it manages to fill its many spaces with craft and care. The towns aren't just towns, the dungeons aren't just dungeons, and the characters aren't just an assembly of stats. Everything takes on a very believable form, transporting players to truly fascinating places.
A game that will know how to reward those players who decide to invest time in immersing themselves in the history and to be carried away by mechanics with which Obsidian has distilled the essence of the classic occidental RPGs.
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Still, let's not take anything away from what Obsidian has achieved all on their own. Pillars of Eternity is indeed great fun for RPG players young and old, and you don't need a $2000 beast to play it on either. I thoroughly recommend it to anyone who's looking for a deep and involving experience, and has the time to give it the respect it deserves.
Like Arcanum and Vampire: The Masquerade—Bloodlines before it, Pillars of Eternity is a feat of world-building. Its supporting cast, led by the haunted Grieving Mother and the blowhard priest Durance, is one of the genre's strongest.
This is the type of game that needs two scores. One for the diehards of the genre and one for the newbies. The development team catered to their core group, and I feel they made the game that they wanted to play. But ultimately I also feel I have to hold them responsible for making a game that feels inaccessible in so many ways. Once you get over the learning cliff, there is a better game out there than this score represents. Pillars of Eternity is like a speakeasy. If you know the dirty, dark alley you need to go down and have the password for the doorman, there is a wonderful, vibrant, and robust world on the other side filled with dancing girls, jazz music, booze, and cigarettes.
Obsidian has crafted a game full of challenge, intrigue, betrayal, and heart. The Eastern Reach is bleak and hopeful at the same time, and the main plot is packed with twists and surprises with staggering ramifications for a world players will feel they have become part of. Its combat is tense and relentless despite the capability to pause at any point, the mechanics offering complex strategic challenges with difficulty settings to accommodate most levels of skill. Pillars of Eternity proudly carries on the legacy of the classic computer RPG, and those who remember them with fondness should find in it a welcome addition to the genre.
Even with the bugs, Pillars of Eternity is an RPG that any fan of the genre must play. It keeps the old-school mentality of the genre alive, while also offering something fresh and original.
While elements such as the writing and level design are on point as always when it comes to the developer, there are a few things that newcomers should be aware of coming into this modern interpretation of a beloved period of time for Western RPG fans.
Pillars of Eternity takes some of the best aspects of the Infinity Engine RPGs of yesteryear and hammers them into an impressive game that feels slick and intuitive even by modern standards.
Fans who contributed money hoping Pillars of Eternity would feel like a return to the era of Baldur's Gate-style RPGs will not be disappointed. Gamers who never played those Black Isle games may be frustrated by some of the "classic" gameplay elements, but Pillars offers a lot to like for those who want tactics and story in their RPGs.
Pillars of Eternity is a rare game that delivers exactly what it promises, all of which are things that gamers frequently ask for: legitimately mature narrative, deep tactical combat, and a genuine challenge free of artificial difficulty. Obsidian claimed the game would relive a classic era, but it didn't stop there. By casting off the restrictions of its inspirations' Dungeons & Dragons-rooted mechanics (and a lot of standard role-playing tropes with them) and building such an intriguing world, Obsidian has made one of the most refined and original RPGs in years.
It's almost entirely backwards-looking, and the characterisation is disappointingly dry, but for fans of Baldur's Gate and its era this will have you partying like it's 1998.
Overall the game is really fun and you can expect to lose yourself in it for hours on end. As I said above the combat may draw some players away because of how tactical it is as opposed to a hack and slash game, but I didn't have a problem with it. This Kickstarter project is one that paid off!
It may seem like I am being too harsh on Pillars of Eternity, but in truth the game is one of the better Kickstarter titles to be released, and gives a lot of independent and even some AAA titles a run for their money.
I enjoyed my time with Pillars of Eternity and think it provides a good example of the type of RPG not seen much in recent years, but it’s not going to convince those who were never attracted by similarly styled titles in the past.