I was a huge fan of the original Sacred Gold and the wonderfully right world of Ancaria. So I thrilled when I was finally able to pick up a copy of Sacred 2 Fallen Angel. It took me three years to get tired of the game, so it definitely has replay value. The game is not perfect, but for those who can put up with a few flaws, the game is worth the price of admission.
THE GOOD -------- The game has a huge open world. I am pretty sure that, in 2008, Sacred 2 sported the largest world of any game on the market. The environs are stunningly detailed and varied. The world has deserts, forests, beaches, mountains, wastelands, swamps, and prairies. Shadows are realistic, as is the day/night cycle. The architecture of various towns are unique to the culture and yet look like structures that would be logical to build.
The combat mechanics are pretty tight. The user can map four attack and four spell combinations to keys on the keyboard for quick access (the user can click screen icons as well.) Spell effects are pretty innovative. Ascaron Entertainment went out of its way to avoid the tired old "air, earth, water, fire" metaphors. For example, the Shadow Warrior can summon a totem pole adorned with skulls that shoot bone arrows at foes, while the Temple Guardian can electrify the ground and thus shock opponents to death.
The game offers dozens of side quests (it might have over a hundred side quests). Likewise, there are certain side quests that are specific to the character class. For example, the Seraphim gets tasked with tracking down a kidnapper. The High Elf has to settle an college debt.
Another plus is that the music for the game was performed by the German heavy metal band "Blind Guardian".
THE BAD ------- Some of the characters' powers are useless. Each character can choose from an impressive array of 15 spell (or spell-like) abilities. Unfortunately, only 11 or 12 are particularly useful in each class.
The game requires exceedingly robust specs to fun at full speed. In 2008, when the game was first released, only a handful available computers could run this game on maximum resolution and maximum detail. Even in 2011, most computers that cost less than $1,000 would run this game on "medium" detail.
The game takes an agonizingly long time to load. While the game doesn't crash very often, when it does it crashes when loading.
THE UGLY -------- I won't give away the ending, since that wouldn't be fair. Suffice it to say that the plot is the weakest element of the game.
The other Ugly is that the game requires online activation and can only be activated twice without having to call technical support for manual activation (and considering that Ascaron Entertainment went belly-up in 2010, I wouldn't count on any tech support).
Finally, there is an online multi-player option. But I haven't ever encountered another living soul online.
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