The Dark Eye: Demonicon Preview

Kalypso Media recently did some live streaming of The Dark Eye: Demonicon on, and that's prompted two of IncGamers' editors to sit down and pen this back-and-forth preview regarding their hands-off demonstration of the RPG. A considerable helping:
Peter: From what I gleaned from the livestream, this is the first one to be based in the Shadowlands (which may be exciting if you're familiar with the universe,) and the first to take a more action-based direction with combat. More on that later, because the second segment we were shown was pretty stab-n-magic heavy.

After a cut-scene that looked quite a bit like the main battle from Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King and some exposition about a nasty demon who may or may not be named Barbara, we were shown a couple of seconds of the tutorial and then whisked quickly away to the city of Waruck. According to a Q&A session after the stream, this city will be pretty sizeable with five different areas. Aside from a decent looking central cathedral, the area seemed rather run-down with wooden shacks and walkways all over the place. 

Peter: In fact it looked a bit like the poorer areas of Vizima from The Witcher, which may not be a coincidence given how often the references to a (dark fantasy,) (mature themes) and (moral decisions) were flowing forth. Not that this is a problem; those are good things to put in your upcoming fantasy RPG game!

And then there were the horrifying staring eyes.

Tim: Which led to us typing in all caps (THE EYES) in the chat window we had open, every time a conversation happened. Say what you will about the rest of the production values (and what I'll say is that they're mostly okay, barring one thing which we'll get to in a moment) but. the characters don't blink. It's a little thing. A very minor thing. But when they're lip-synced reasonably well, and conversation inevitably focuses on their faces, there's something very weird about having two people staring at each other for the duration of an entire conversation. This one thing makes the characters trip and fall headfirst into the uncanny valley.

As for that one thing. well, the voice acting of the main character is very bland. He sounds entirely bored by what's going. He makes JC Denton sound like a hyperactive child. At one point he mentions that he's going to kill somebody with all the boundless enthusiasm of someone describing paint samples. Everyone else we heard were at worst fine, and at best genuinely entertaining, so right now I'm mostly just hoping the main character doesn't talk very much.