Dungeon Siege III Previews

The preview flood of Obsidian's upcoming Dungeon Siege III continues as many sites had a hands-on session with the game. 1UP feels this might finally be a caveat-free release from Obsidian.
Dungeon Siege is certainly the prettiest game to come out of Obsidian to date -- probably due to how it's something fresh and new rather than a technical hand-me-down. It's actually a bit odd to be playing an Obsidian game that feels current as opposed to slightly dated or expansion-like. And because these are Obsidian's own tools and technology, rather than occasionally feeling kludgy or makeshift, the actual game mechanics feel much more refined and responsive already.
NowGamer feels it is a promising console title.
That's what Dungeon Siege and Dungeon Siege II were like and there are no major departures in Dungeon Siege III.
The biggest difference is that this is Dungeon Siege's first time on a console and the formula has been adapted, although hardly revolutionised, to cater for this. Blinkered PC die-hards might try and argue that Dungeon Siege will have to dumb down to compensate for the fact that a joypad doesn't have 16 function keys, but that's obviously not true. It's fundamentally an action game, so the bulk of it actually plays better with a pad, and while tinkering with your equipment and skills isn't quite as intuitive without a mouse, Obsidian has created a pretty slick interface that keeps awkward fiddling around to a minimum.
PALGN uses the term old school.
Dungeon Siege III is an action RPG that features a hack n' slash style of gameplay as opposed to a highly strategic and menu driven style of gameplay found in most RPGs today. It gives the game quite the old school Gauntlet feel where the battle system is far more hands on than your typical modern Western RPG. We were able to dish out melee combos using two different combat stances, block and dodge attacks and basically have full control over our character during battle. It's a nice change from the usual '˜dice roll' mechanic of games like Baldur's Gate and Dragon Age, which is largely driven by random luck. We quite enjoyed the combat system of the game as it has quite the old school feel, where pure gaming skill matters more than cycling through menus and taking your time with stratergising. At the end of the build we encountered a witch who served as a boss, and to defeat her we had to study the pattern of her main fireball attack and dodge it properly, showcasing the kind of hands-on action driven combat experience that isn't common in RPGs anymore.
Game Informer sees promise if there's a good plot.
It may seem like I'm skipping the story, but you can fill in the blanks of this fantasy adventure Mad Lib yourself. You've got your evil sorceresses, corrupt chancellors, wise sages, and conniving mercenaries. Lucas' childhood home is shockingly burnt to the ground in the opening cutscene. The simple townsfolk cry out for a savior to deliver them from evil that threatens to engulf the very world itself. Obsidian has told interesting tales in the past (Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II, Fallout: New Vegas), though, and the Mass Effect-like conversation wheel could enable interesting dialogues. The storytelling I saw during this preview left little impression on me, good or bad.
Inc Gamers feels they did not have enough time to say much on the title definitively.
One area in which it shows more ambition than Fable is in the '˜stance' mechanic and the way it attempts to pump some tactical variety into proceedings. Switching between our two available stances with Lucas, a Guardian (essentially a Warrior class type), toggles his weaponry between the classic sword and shield combo and a two-handed broadsword our favourite of which is colourfully named the '˜Bloodletting Bastard Blade'. Altering stance also changes your skills in combat as well as the special abilties available to you.
G4TV feels it is much of the same.
Leveling up works much the same as anywhere else, according to the sum total of your accumulated XP, but players are awarded with abilities that also offer customizable proficiencies. For example, the Shield Pummel ability can be leveled up along two paths, one which increases its damage and another which increases its likelihood to stun an opponent for an all-out assault. Skill trees and talents also play a part, although any low-level RPG fan will find these instantly familiar.

Experience, as in all RPG's, is best gathered by sub-questing and there's no shortage of additional missions to be found along the way. We spent some time in a small village on the edge of a perilous forest go figure and picked up a few quests from beautiful, busty villagers that required us to backtrack in order to defending missing husbands or murder marauding brigands. Either way, the mechanic for gathering quests is tried-and-true and will hardly surprise anybody.
Electric Pig is looking forward to it.
Another, more exciting mission required us to head to some caves, take on a witch and her enemy cohorts, and set free a caged busty beauty. Obsidian obviously has a thing for the ladies none we came across seemed dressed for a cold snap. Having integrated joypad controls into the Dungeon Experience it was interesting to see how they would hold up. They do so very well. We played as one of the already announced characters classes, as a Guardian class character, named Lucas, who uses a sword and shield as his primary weapon.
Spong notes Obsidian has to work hard to appease fans working on existing franchises.
Fortunately, the Californian studio seems to understand the franchises it takes on rather well - so it's the kind of fanbase-slut I approve of. For Dungeon Siege III Obsidian is taking some advice from series creator Chris Taylor to ensure that the fantasy action RPG retains the same magic as the original did in 2002. And from what I played, it's quite addictive stuff.
OXM UK is glad to see the franchise make its way to consoles.
While there will be other multiplayer modes available, Obsidian isn't talking about those yet - and it's deliberately edging away from the near-infinite character refinement and competitive multiplayer of PC games like Diablo 2. This isn't about the perpetual hunt for better loot - it's about playing through a world-saving fantasy epic storyline, maybe with a friend. So if you're expecting randomly generated dungeons and endless gem collection to lend a minimal stat boost to a pair of gloves, you've come to the wrong place.