There are just some eras in gaming that are tough to return to, and I’d argue this is a game from one such time
When you’re adapting “classic” games from previous eras you have a number of options, ranging from a full remaster on down to simply working to get the game running on newer hardware without fundamentally altering anything critical. It’s always important to be positive which you may be dealing with in order to properly frame your expectations. Gothic II is absolutely an example of the latter category, retaining pretty well all aspects of what it ran like a few generations ago back in 2003. Now, if you originally played it way back when I’m sure at the time its design and implementation would have felt pretty modern and solid. Unfortunately, playing it now, mostly matching the look and control style of the original, is a particular pain if you don’t have the benefit of wearing rose-colored glasses for that era. Movement can be quite cumbersome in the 3D space and this unfortunately extends to the combat which fails to put its best foot forward on a general level. In-game guidance is also almost completely lacking, and without something like a physical manual to reference there’s a learning curve of simply playing with buttons and their combinations to get the hang of multiple tasks that would normally be second nature nowadays. It can be engaging at times, but ignoring the inconsistency and issues is a pretty big ask.
Justin Nation, Score: