If you are reading these lines, I am doing the acclimatization in the nursery with the offspring. Alternatively, I hide behind the armchair while Fabi practices the art of self-sufficiency with spinach and katopü, bury highly explosive diaper mines in the garden or take part in secret pram races in the park with other fathers (just don’t tell Mom!). In short: I have two months of parental leave.
Since you shouldn’t break traditions you’ve grown fond of, I want to present you with a (hopefully) humorous book article every Friday in October and November, which you can use to end the evening or start the weekend. So I thought for a little while what I would like to write about for the next ten Fridays. wait, ten? Top 10? That fits! But what kind of ranking should it be?
Then it occurred to me how excited I was about Elden Ring this year. So excited that I made a mental note: The game definitely belongs in my personal top 10 best games of all time. But what exactly does my top 10 look like? After all, I’ve been playing for…oh my…about 35 years?! Oo The subsequent discussion process with myself was, as you can imagine, quite lengthy. But successful! Over the next few weeks you will find out which ten games made it into my top 10 and for what reasons – this week I’ll tell you my place with number 8. Tell me and the other readers in the comments which game it’s from which reasons you ranked 8th.
Karsten’s 8th place: Divinity: Original Sin 2
When a certain Jörg Langer asked me during my freelance phase in 2014 if I would like to watch Divinity: Original Sin, I swallowed briefly. An Early Access RPG pushed via Kickstarter? From Larian? Wasn’t that the studio, that all the Divinity games made that I could never do anything with? I feared bad things.
My joy was correspondingly great when Original Sin turned out to be an RPG gem. Sure, there was a lack of fine-tuning, the operation was unnecessarily fiddly, the AI had room for improvement, the camera occasionally caused problems and the sledgehammer humor was a matter of taste. However, the strengths of the game could easily absorb these small things. Rarely had I experienced so many memorable and story-worthy moments and so many unforeseen things in one game. And seldom before have I been able to solve my assignment goals in such different ways. In addition, the humorous round battles, the co-op mode … such positive surprises are rare when testing games.
Appearance: Original Sin 2
When the release of the successor was on the agenda, the omens had turned completely. Of course I wanted to test Original Sin 2, give it to me! My expectations were high and yet Larian was able to exceed them. The developers had actually succeeded in expanding the strengths of the predecessor and eradicating its worst construction sites.
The fun starts with the character creation: Every time I click through the pre-made characters like the Red Prince or the Undead Fane, I can’t decide: Almost all of them are exciting! The luxury problem then accompanies me throughout the game. Who do I take with me, who do I leave behind? Or to put it another way: Although Original Sin 2 is an enormously extensive RPG, in which you can easily put a three-digit number of hours, I would have liked to start a second round immediately after the credits. That almost never happens to me otherwise.
My game of the year 2017
But that was initially prevented by the fantastic gaming year 2017, which with Nier: Automata, Persona 5, Breath of the Wild, Horizon: Zero Dawn and Super Mario Odyssey so many other hits with “Game of the Year” potential at the start would have. Plus Prey, The Evil Within 2, Dishonored: The Death of the Outsiders, Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus, Nioh, Resident Evil 7 and of course WoW: Legion… Still, looking back, D:OS 2 is my Game of the Year 2017.
By the way, the second run actually happened later, and again I had so much fun with the round fights, the pointed dialogues, the playful freedom, the winking moments and the bizarre characters. Out of the countless turn-based (or real-time with pause mode) combat iso-RPGs I’ve played, Divinity: Original Sin 2 is definitely the best for me. Yes, even before classics like Baldur’s Gate 2 and Planescape: Torment. My hopes for Baldur’s Gate 3 are correspondingly high at the moment. The small trial rounds with the Early Access version make me feel positive. But I don’t really want to dive in until the final version.