Divinity: Original Sin II Update #43 - Undead Revealed

Larian Studios' Divinity: Original Sin II will let you play as an Undead character and, according to the latest Kickstarter update, this won't be just a selection of minor racial traits. Instead, being Undead fundamentally changes some of the game's mechanics: healing magic and potions hurt you, poison, on the other hand, heals you; you can withstand death fog, something that instantly kills any living character; you can play dead to disengage from combat, and use your bony fingers instead of lockpicks.

Furthermore, being Undead in Original Sin II makes talking to people quite tricky, since most NPCs run away screaming upon laying their eyes on your shiny skull. To prevent this from happening you'll either have to hide your Undead features underneath loose clothes, or perform a macabre shapeshifting ritual and rip faces off of people in order to become them.

Such a list of racial traits calls for an appropriate origin story, and who's better to provide one other than Chris Avellone himself? With his help, the folks at Larian have come up with Fane – an ancient loremaster from a time immemorial who, prior to the game's start, was entombed for millennia, and now struggles to adjust to the oddness of the modern Rivellon life.

The update video expands on all these topics, and also shows off the Undead character creation process. And afterwards, we're treated to a Collector's Edition unboxing by Swen Vincke. Have a look:

And here's an excerpt from the update:

The dead are finally here! You can customize your Undead in the character selection screen. You can give yours a beard, some cool jewels or even change the color of their bones. Which is cool, but also kind of weird. Just the way we like things! You can play an Undead of any race or gender your heart desires. Will you be an Undead Lizard? Undead Dwarf? Dare we say, an Undead Elf? It’s all up to you!

In addition to their good looks, the Undead have some very unique game mechanics in the world of DOS2. For example, they have the skill “Play Dead” in which they can pretend to be a corpse - a great way to get out of combat or avoid attention from patrolling guards. We can’t take all the credit for that one: the skill was inspired by community suggestions! Another racial ability they have is that they don’t need lockpicks to pick locks. They just use ye olde bones!

The Undead also heal via poison and are poisoned by healing potions. So, while your Undead can stroll through poison fog, they’re going to have a devil of a time fighting an AI smart enough to throw healing at it. (Sorry again about unleashing AI 2.0 on you guys because it is TOTALLY smart enough to do this.) You can also use the Zaikk’s Talon, a unique item found in the Hollow Marshes, to turn health potions into poison. Which is rude but hey, do what you like!

A very important thing to remember while playing an Undead is that you cannot just traipse about with your bony face free to the world. You’re a monster. A hideous, frightening monster! So cover your face. Or, consider ripping the face off of a nearby corpse to disguise yourself as someone of that race! The Mask of the Shapeshifter will allow you to take on the appearance of any mortal race you would like.

For example, you can shift to a Dwarf for better prices from a Dwarven merchant, or shift to an Elf to dine on a corpse and learn their memories with the Elven racial ability Corpse Eater. Multiple masks can be made, and they can even be used by other living characters to disguise themselves as other races, allowing them to approach situations in new ways.

Fane! I’m Gonna Live Forever!

But just who is Fane, the sixth and final Divinity: Original Sin 2 Origin character? We’ll tell you! But skip this section and scroll down to the Collector’s Edition header if you don’t want any spoilers!

As some of you may remember, famed RPG dev Chris Avellone worked with us to create this origin story as part of our Kickstarter stretch goals. Fane is a part of an ancient race that predates all of the currently living race: The Eternals. He was an eager and ambitious scholar, entombed by his elders for pursuing forbidden knowledge. Centuries passed, until one day an explorer opened Fane’s tomb… and, for his troubles, had his Source promptly devoured. Much less hungry and free to roam the land of Rivellon again, Fane has a lot to adjust to, as nothing is the way it was during his time.