Risen 3 Review

Pirahnah Bytes’ action role playing game makes a third appearance on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC coming complete with lots of enemies to kill, chests to plunder and characters to mingle with. Is Risen 3 Titan Lords worthy of your time and effort, take a look at our video or text review for the full low-down.


Risen 3 Review:

Today we take a look at Piranha Bytes action role playing adventure game Risen 3 Titan Lords which is available on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC. Starting off as a rudimentary treasure hunt  for your pirate, and warrior hero, things soon turn ugly as Shadow Warriors appear from a mysterious crystal portal deep within a cave and sucks the life out of our adventurer before the game has even begun and its death and sad sending off. However, grim as it may seem, death is only the beginning as our fearless warrior is brought back to life by a character called Bones and the adventure begins.  There’s a greater threat to the world aside from how the main character deals with being quite dead throughout, and what’s neat about the game’s structure is how quests are given and can be tackled at any time. In fact it seems there’s a quest popping up every few moments from the cast of troubled and pensive npcs – each with long stories to tell. Go here , fetch this, kill hell-hounds, deliver ring here. There’s a usual assortment of objectives that whilst entirely unoriginal keep events on a structured path considering the free roaming nature of the game’s environments. Events pick up once a ship is commanded and players can then sail between the islands and gather more quests and companions along the way. Much like any RPG there’s a need to integrate with your fellow crew to gain sentiment on how the main story is progressing and of course any optional quests. It’s a familiar formula here and works well enough although isn’t going to win points for originality aside from the jarring conversation with the ship’s resident parrot.

Once pleasantries are out the way, players can then explore at will across each of the themed islands, but there’s a lot of dialogue to get through when conversing with the NPCs which although detailed, does hamper the overall pacing . From the ship, a team mate can join one’s party and it’s here where exploration and the inevitable combat come in to play. Risen 3 opts to use a singular melee attack button, coupled with a ranged attack, blocking and a dodge roll evasive move. Players can perform light and hard attacks by way of holding down the attack button or tapping which is crucial when taking on the rather defensive enemies who block, counter and perform powerful or swift attacks in retaliation. Each of the varied enemies has its own  pattern and when faced with numerous foes becomes quite challenging especially once more advanced combat moves such as countering are unlocked and the fact that enemies will attack from behind whilst you’re engaged in combos on others. Players can utilize a variety of weapons such as heavier clubs to more nimble swords, alongside ranged weapons like crossbows and pistols. There’s also a hint of magic which allows attack spells to be used alongside the traditional methods, but players have to keep an eye on how they develop their character when spending experience points or glory as it’s called here.  Typically, points can be placed into various categories which relate to how powerful one is in combat to more subtle skills such as lock picking. The choices, whilst quite simple do allow for a focus on specific builds of character if one chooses.  The only issues with the combat aside from a lack of variety in attack moves is the camera placement which remains at a fixed distance and often can mean the foliage can obscure one’s view which is annoying at to say the least. In some instances the enemies can be quite punishing and so being murdered by simply not being able to see what’s going on isn’t ideal or warming.

To spice things up, there’s a little bit of naval combat thrown in for good measure which often  sees players and their crew vying for domination of the seas against massive sea creatures which get progressively harder. It’s here where players control the movement of the ship and fire its cannons which makes for a welcome mini game overall although these moments can block progression until completed.

In terms of looks Risen 3 offers some pleasant looking locales with its day and night cycle and lush tropical islands. Each area has its own theme and certainly feels vibrant  populated with wildlife and wandering adversaries. What’s neat is how the bodies of the fallen remain long after you’ve gone and returned, providing a good indication of  areas already visited and perhaps conqured, although in some places enemies do repopulate. Overall, the game loads fast, has a solid frame rate and a wealth of options to tweak on PC and can’t be faulted when playing with a controller.

Audio is less polished in terms of performance and script. There’s some interesting characters amongst the generic who are voiced with varying degrees of success, with some being far more engaged than others. The script does let things down a little with an abundance of foul language that feels a little forced and overused losing its impact. There’s a well orchestrated score colouring the background, and a varied assortment of ambient sound effects during less hectic moments.

Risen 3 offers a long campaign that will eat up the hours and then some, as there’s simply quest after quest to undertake and a reasonably large sized world to explore.  Aside from the main story players can, and will get sidetracked and with the game’s use of dark and light choices on the soul means that there’s always a different outcome to work towards should you want to dive in again or with a different focus on character progression.

Risen 3 provides an interesting romp  through its fictitious locales with an overflowing amount of things to do , comprehensive character progression, and the chance to do things differently depending on the choices made. Despite a few negatives here and there with things like getting stuck in the scenery, not enough variety with the combat and the view being obscured by foliage when in battle, the game runs smoothly and plays well. Considering its price point, gamers will get their monies worth in terms of hours, and there’s enough intrigue to keep battling on to see what happens next despite some dodgy dialogue and shallow performances.  If you’re a fan of action role playing games, then there’s a lot to like about Risen 3 which offers some pleasant and open ended adventuring.

Score 8/10 – Review by Robert Cram





Written by: Rob Cram

Rob Cram has hundreds of video game reviews, thousands of articles under his belt with years of experience in gaming and tech. He aims to remain fair and free from publisher/developer influence. With his extensive knowledge, feels his gaming opinions are valid and worth sharing. Agreement with his views are entirely optional. He might have a bias towards cyberpunk.

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