Blackguards (Review) PC

Blackguards (Review) PC
Review Score:

Blackguards by Daedalic entertainment plunges you into the world of the Dark Eye. Based on pen and paper Dungeons & Dragons, Blackguards’ story is a compelling tale of darkness and deceit that spans across five chapters.

On the surface, Blackguards is a dark, gritty role-playing game that is based on strategy and tactics. Combat occurs on a hexagon-type grid much like pen and paper D&D (i.e. Dungeons & Dragons). What distinguishes Blackguards from other games in the genre is the ability to interact with the environments during combat. Over the course of five chapters, there are hundreds of interactive items inside the environments that can be used to your advantage.

This all blends seamlessly into combat, as it grants you the upper hand while battling your foes. It might not seem like a big deal, but I assure you that it makes for a fascinating experience. You’ll be shocked by how quickly a losing battle can turn in your favor when a simple pile of crates are used as lethal weapons, as they topple on top of your enemy. This is just one example of using environmental objects to your advantage during combat; there are many, any others.

 

Instead of earning experience points for each kill, you gain Adventure Points at the end of each battle. These Adventure Points can be spent the same way as skill points, but with the exception that you do not have to wait until you level to spend them. This is a fantastic concept that is very useful when deciding on which skills to select. You can immediately start saving for the skills you want instead of waiting to level.

There are multiple skill tiers that you can spend your Adventure Points on. These skill tiers are: basic values, weapon talents, talents, spells and special abilities. Having access to all these categories can be overwhelming, but it all boils down to how you want to develop your character. Blackguards offers two solutions to this situation: when you first start a new game, you have the option to choose between Beginner or Expert mode.

If you choose Beginner mode, Blackguards will take care of your character points and skills, making it easier for beginners. This means you don’t have to worry about Adventure Points, Skills or even Talents. However, if you select expert mode, Blackguards will give you complete control over every character that joins your party. Expert mode is perfect for the seasoned role-playing connoisseur that is looking for the full, hands on experience. If you have a basic grasp of D&D (Dungeons & Dragons), then opting for Expert mode won’t be a problem at all.

 

I personally enjoy the character customization process. During this review, I spent hours just fiddling around with the character sheet to find the best results for my characters. The technical aspect of Blackguards may not be enjoyed by everyone, but I am truly elated that there is an Expert option for those who do enjoy the more logistic side of  RPGs.

As mentioned earlier, Blackguards’ gameplay includes five chapters that span multiple hours of gameplay. These chapters basically restrict where you can explore; it almost feels like the story is leading you by the hand. For example: when you’re visiting dungeons and other key locations away from town, everything is sub-divided into 4 to 5 smaller locations, which are displayed similar to a map. Once you have explored the locations inside the dungeon, you are treated to a cutscene before leaving the area and returning to the world map. The game does allow you to revisit previous locations, so it is possible to thoroughly explore a location before moving on.

As a game, Blackguards proves that you don’t need an open sandbox world to be a AAA title. It’s more about the story than exploring the game world. Blackguards will reward you with over 40+ hours of nonstop Dungeons & Dragons goodness. If you are looking for a turn-based role-playing game with an intense story, look no further than Blackguards by Daedalic Entertainment.

James ‘Daripp3r’ Pittaro
Platform: PC (Available on Steam/Also Available for Mac)

PC System Requirements
Minimum:
OS: Windows XP 32 Bit
Processor: 2 GHz Dual Core
Memory: 4 GB RAM
Graphics: nVidia GeForce 8600 GT, ATI Radeon HD 2600 XT
DirectX: Version 9.0c
Hard Drive: 20 GB available space
Sound Card: DirectX 9.0c Compatible Sound Card with Latest Drivers

Developer: Daedalic Entertainment
Publisher: Daedalic Entertainment
ESRB: N/A
Price: $59.99

Daedalic Entertainment’s Website

Review Score
Graphics
Beautiful environments and outstanding character models.
Sound
Fantastic narration and professional voice acting helps Blackguards stand out above the rest.
Gameplay
An authentic Dungeons & Dragons experience that captures the true essence of the genre.
Overall
Fans of turn-based RPGs will definitely want to check out Blackguards.
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