RPGs go west
Jade Empire is a superb RPG from Bioware, makers of Knights of the Old Republic
and if you haven't experienced it before, this Special Edition is the one to go for. The game is set in a fantastically detailed and rich world that is inspired by Asian mythology, with its mix of supernatural elements as well as steampunk. The story is a complex one and finds players embroiled in a fascinating tale of treachery and dark secrets and which will have them hooked to the end. The gameplay is a mix of action-oriented combat and exploration, with many familiar elements such as a party-based system, side quests and conversation-based options but everything is put together so well, that it ends up working supremely well. The Special Edition doesn't make any changes to the story but adds in some new fighting styles, weapons and monsters, while also improving the graphics and interface to make things a little smoother. A new fast travel feature also comes in handy and which makes getting around a whole lot easier. For the most part, Jade Empire is a cracking bit of action RPG fun and games. The visuals are top notch, with a highly believable world to explore that is packed with details and with some very impressive environments to explore. Combat is flexible, deep and satisfying, with plenty to get your teeth into, while the dialogue options are also well implemented. If criticisms are to be made, it's a little short, with a pretty small world to explore, while it is also quite linear and a tad lacking in depth. However, it's still a fine game which is worth your time.