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    Many months after being released on PC Format Ascaron Entertainment bring Sacred 2: Fallen Angel to both the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 platforms. But rather than leaving anyone with the feeling that we were to simply get a ported title, the developers took strides tweaking and refining the game to ensure it would work with the console gamer in mind. That is not to say the game is perfect in any way shape or form and it certainly does have what I will call “a few niggles” going on with it. But all in all this is a RPG game to seriously consider having a bash at… no pun intended!

    Sacred 2 is set in the fantasy World of Ancaria where T-Energy is the source of all life and magic. Originally the T-Energy was under the control and protection of the Seraphim but with the Seraphim losing interest in the World control was passed over to the High Elves making them the most powerful race in Ancaria. Time moves on and a power struggle between rival factions within the High Elves occurs with the T-Energy becoming out of control and destructive, mutating creatures across the land, levelling towns and leaving areas of Ancaria barren and dying. Rival races see the internal struggle within the High Elves occuring, and seize the oppurtunity to take control of the T-Energy themselves.

    Game brief aside, in Sacred 2 Fallen Angel you can choose between six character types before starting your adventure… Choices including the High Elf (Magician class), Shadow Warrior (meathead – think Conan the Barbarian). Seraphim (Battlemage) through to a Temple Guardian (Anubis clone, come robot. Yes I also had the “huh” effect with this one) to name four of the choices. You will also choose to take the path of the ‘Light’ or ‘Shadow’ campaign as a further choice. A slight point to note here is that not all character races allow for the either or choice, and using the Seraphim race as an example, will only allow for the Light campaign choice to be chosen.

    Sacred 2: Fallen Angel - Review Screen - Xbox 360

    Character race chosen and having watched the rather amazing… sexy looking opening movie, you arrive in the World of Ancaria with a huge amount of free choice/play as you want options open to you. The choices you can make will be to follow the story quests to the letter, forever following the path of the golden circle, or when you feel like it, choose to take your pick n mix any side quest, you desire. Ancaria is a huge World – jam packed with people all wanting your help and assistance.

    Mechanics wise Sacred 2: Fallen Angel is like any RPG… Kills = experience and experience can be spent in a number of ways to improve your characters overall statistics. You will also obtain many new items from kills including armour, weapons and potions. These in turn can be equipped to your character as long as your item type matches your character race… so as such and as an example meaning Seraphims cannot wear Shadow Warriors armour. However the nice point here is that while you can carry a huge amount of kit around with you with no penalty for doing so, there are hero chests scattered around Ancaria that allow you to store your unwanted equipment. If you then have a second, third, fourth, etc… character created, the hero chest becomes a means of sharing your kit across all the characters you own and is therefore a wise idea to not simply sell/scrap any kit your “in play” character cannot use.

    Sticking with equipment but to just expand a little, you do not have to rely on item drops from kills to obtain any new pieces of equipment. Scattered throughout Ancaria are a whole host of vendors more than willing to take your gold and sell you stuff. You can also visit a Blacksmith and upgrade your weapons… or visit a Rune Seller where you can purchase, well yes you guessed it… runes.

    Sacred 2: Fallen Angel - Review Screen - Xbox 360

    Control wise the system work really well and your character is viewed in third person with the allowance that you can control the zoom control of the camera letting you to get tight on your character or take a distanced view. The Face buttons then become the method of assigning equipment and spells using the Left and Right triggers as shift keys giving your a total of 12 slot choices. Add to this the ability to assign potions on the D-Pad positions gives you more than enough room with setting up your custom look and feel.

    Before moving onto my personal experience with the game it is worth noting that Sacred 2 has a number of difficulties to chew your way through with some locked out until your have completed the game on the highest available setting. Gamemodes exist in that Sacred 2 can be played as a single player experience, or with up to three additional players – coop style. You also have free play mode where you can choose to repeat boss battles and such like and also have the ability to take your party of hereos into a versus mode where you will face off against other Xbox LIVE parties mooching through the World of Ancaria.

    The experience you get when playing Sacred 2 in a general sense is that of a good and very deep game. The amount of content is amazingly vast with another quest but a heartbeat away and as such creates a slighly addictive sense in that you just want to squeeze another quest in and another, and… another, before shutting down. That said the quests do start to follow a set pattern and while they involve different enemies/different characters the formula remains the same and as such can becomes ever so slighly been here, done that, after a while.

    Sacred 2: Fallen Angel - Review Screen - Xbox 360

    Another lesson your learn quickly in Sacred 2 is that the amount of enemies you have to face throughout your time playing is immense. In simple terms you will have moved up a road having killed a group of enemies to move no further than 10 feet to find the next group of enemies wanting to take your head off. This repeats itself pretty much all the way through the game with the chance for a breather only appearing when you make it into a town. I personally would not really call it an issue as such, as RPG’s are all about kills to = experience. But within an RPG game you do want that time to spend going through upgrading bits and bobs and as the game has no true pause system, you continually find yourself busy upgrading to suddenly realise you are being attacked again.

    The combat system with the use of magic works really well. You have a large number of combat arts you can learn and while engaged in battles the use of spells and what not never becomes a bore. However hand to hand combat can be slightly mind numbing as it only relies on you holding down the respective weapon button. The game in my view could have accomodated some combo attacks, just to have mixed up the hand to hand stuff a little more.

    The game also screams for coop play and while it has been totally possible to play through as a single player, battles do take a little more thought when you are on your own seriously outnumbered all the time. Having players back you up is the way to go and adds to the fun with the banter you can have as you trek, trek, trek through Ancaria.

    Looks wise – Sacred 2 is very much a pretty affair. Character designs are neatly done with you even being able to spot rank hierarchy in groups of enemies with the subtle but very noticeable differences. Backdrops are also neatly done and as just one example seeing seperate blades of grass blowing in the breeze getting a big thumbs up from me. Audio also ticks all the right boxes from music to sound effects albeit I do wish the characters were given a few more lines… as a few hours in you, will have heard them all and have no desire to hear them again.

    Overall my feelings with Sacred 2 tilt towards the positive even with the endless stream of enemies never giving you a moments peace. Every time I have picked up the my joypad to play Sacred 2 I have had fun and enjoyed myself. RPG games in the past had never been my bag, but lately I have enjoyed playing a steady stream of them and going back to how I opened this review and while I did state Sacred 2 is not perfect… in my view is certainly a game to consider and one you can have a lot of fun playing.

    Score: 7/10

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