REVIEW: GreedFall - A Declaration of Love to BioWare Fans

September 13, 2019
REVIEW: GreedFall - A Declaration of Love to BioWare Fans

After a generation without big "BioWare games", Spiders grope their way to a new RPG and try to win lost BioWare fans. GreedFall is a BioWare game in AA format and develops something neat.

The game starts with simple character creation, pretty simple, but still pretty good. You can shape your character in a few steps and then define the attributes and talents. Here you can already start to establish your playstyle; if you want to be a magician and specialize in ranged combat, or you want to be a tank or a damage dealer? Spiders grant you a lot of freedom early on and want to leave your playstyle to you.

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The creation is followed by a rather lengthy prologue. Here you get to know your role in the game, the game world, the combat system - the gameplay. You are a diplomat and you cannot change your background or your name. You will be sent to the island of Tar Fradee to build political relationships. There are various factions in GreedFall and you can decide which you want to harmonize with or start a war against.

Many elements from previous BioWare games are included here. Dialogues, companions and the story play a big role. You can even solve some quests non-violently if you want to be more diplomatic. Depending on how you've defined your attributes in the beginning, and developed through the game, you can act differently. By completing quests, you get XP so you can advance in talent trees and set your playstyle. Be it strength to carry more items or do more melee damage, or if you prefer to invest more points in dialogues, sneaking, or ranged combat.

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I really liked that Spiders grant you a lot of freedom right from the start and don't force a specific playstyle on you. The combat system, in my opinion, has been kept relatively simple, although this is one of the key points. There are light and heavy attacks, and you can pause the game while attacking, but you don't need to. Some potions can give you buffs that last for a while; you can revive your pets or get more info about your opponents. I found the combat animations to be rather below average. I would have preferred much more depth here; I had more hopes.

The story is pretty interesting, during the game you will meet many people, some of them can be recruited and up to two people can join you. The companions also have their opinions on your actions. They do not welcome everything and may even see you as an enemy, or on the contrary, you can start a romance.

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There are also several endings, and I think that GreedFall has high replay value. There are interesting storyline ranks. The game will become more mysterious as you get to deal with secret powers and interesting monsters. The world is not entirely open. GreedFall offers you several cities and areas you can explore, and some of those areas can be extensive. It seemed that the world-building is linear, although most of the elements made me feel it was more nonlinear since they offer you more options. The world is unusual, and that brings a breath of fresh air into the setting. There is a lot to learn about the world and characters; obviously, the developers have invested time in this aspect of the game.

GreedFall remains an RPG and therefore offers you many quests, side quests, and much more. The side quests fit in well with the story and give you more details. GreedFall can entertain you for about 20-40h, depending on whether you want to pursue only the main story or you want to spend some time doing the side quests. Some optional bosses are a bit challenging, and I really enjoyed the monsters' design.

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Some of the cutscenes are pretty impressive for an AA game, but sometimes, a whole action is not shown in the dialogue, like when someone runs away or steals something. These scenes are not visible, so the dialogues end abruptly. Animations are somewhat mediocre, but the world looks incredibly coherent, the cities are detailed and beautifully designed. On the other hand, the developers have not put much effort into the interior design, and a lot of "copy + paste" was involved.

Nonetheless, the game offers good textures, yet some are incredibly inappropriate and do not seem completely edited. The whole package looks good overall, with some beautiful lighting effects. The performance on the PS4 Pro is pretty good and runs smoothly. In addition, the final product is pretty much bug-free, and that deserves praise - not everyone delivers the final product like that.

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GreedFall is a pretty good game considering its price. It is a kind of declaration of love to BioWare fans, it tries to meet the requirements, but it unnecessarily lengthens. The degree of freedom is a highlight and fits really well. The story is neat, in some places still annoying and monotonous, but it will entertain you. The characters fit well and vary among each other. The RPG elements (XP system, progression, etc.) are quite profound and keep your motivation high.

Nevertheless, I do not like the semi open-world system. The exploration in GreedFall hasn't been that great, and there are not too many exciting points of interest. The technique is neat, and the world is very consistent, the combat system is simplified, although it can vary. There should have been more depth and more quality involved, but I'm sure BioWare fans will have as much fun as will RPG fans. In my honest opinion, GreedFall deserves 8/10.