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A true RPG classic
A little known gem for fantasy RPG fans, this Gold Edition brings together both Gothic 2 and its expansion pack Night of the Raven in a great package. Set in a dark medieval world populated by orcs, beasts and other assorted evil nasties, players are sent on an epic quest to save an empire from the brink of destruction. After choosing from some typical RPG character classes, including paladin and dragon hunter, the adventure really begins, with a fantastically realised world just waiting to be explored. A vast number of activities can be engaged in, ranging from hunting, rune making, praying, stealth and of course, full-on combat. This array of options and the game's open-ended nature make it a strong draw for Elder Scrolls veterans and fantasy fans alike, and there is great sense of player involvement in a truly epic storyline. Although initially frustrating due to its steep learning curve and high difficulty level, once you get your character's stats up matters improve vastly, so it is worth persevering. One of the game's strongest points is its world, which feels truly alive, thanks to the cast of characters which make you believe that they are more than just a quest-giver. Exploration is as thrilling as it should be, but can equally be unnerving or even terrifying as you find yourself lost in a storm. Although not without its faults, including dated graphics, Gothic 2 is an excellent RPG, with an absorbing plot, varied quests and memorable characters.