Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance II - Xbox

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Also for: PS2
Viewed: 3D Third-person, floating camera Genre:
Adventure: Role Playing
Media: DVD Arcade origin:No
Developer: Black Isle Soft. Co.: Black Isle
Publishers: Avalon Interactive (GB)
Released: 13 Feb 2004 (GB)
Ratings: PEGI 12+
Accessories: Memory Unit


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The original Baldur's Gate on the PC is still regarded by many as the epitome of RPG joy, thanks to its deep and involving gameplay mechanic and faithful reliance on traditional role-playing elements, characters and scenarios. 2001 saw the series hit the home console market in the form of Dark Alliance - itself proving extremely popular with fans of the genre, whilst also introducing the game to a much wider audience. So it's only to be expected that the game's sequel should be quite hugely anticipated, and something tells us this is likely to be more so with the Xbox-owning gaming community.

Dark Alliance 2 sees darkness gathering yet again in the sprawling port city of Baldur's Gate. Bloodthirsty bandits stalk the trade roads and a secret society of heartless assassins dominate the criminal underworld. The city's most recent saviours vanished along with the Onyx Tower, and so, in heroic tradition, adventurers throughout the Western Heartlands have made the journey to Baldur's Gate to meet their fate.

Paying homage to the old "If it 'aint broke, don't fix it" adage, the game continues in similar fashion to its predecessor. You select and customise your character of choice, before embarking on a quest to rid the land of chaos. Along the way you traverse an array of fantastical environments and face a multitude of sinister enemies, whilst enjoying the delights of host of RPG gaming elements, such as mastering skills, spells, weapons, and developing your character throughout the adventure.

As you would expect from a sequel, everything has been given the 'bigger, better' treatment, with Dark Alliance 2 offering more levels, characters, enemies, and explosive spell effects. The game also introduces a new item creation system - which allows you to forge your own unique magical weapons and armour along the way - and also offers a wealth of hidden areas, secret characters and items to discover. And if all that's not enough for you, then you'll be pleased to discover that there's also a two-player co-op mode, so you can team up with your buddy and take on the forces of evil together.