by

Today on “People Unclear On The Concept”…

…1UP (by way of “Games for Windows”, formerly “Computer Gaming World”, and I’m all out of parentheticals) posted a review of Neverwinter Nights 2. The reviewer disliked it – not because of weak dialogue or heavy system requirements or a clunky user interface. No. The reviewer disliked it because in his opinion, D&D is obsolete.

A revelatory, polarizing experience that — in the wake of newer, better alternatives — makes you question the very notion of “RPG by numbers.” It foists Wizards of the Coast’s latest v3.5 D&D system (a molehill that’s become a mountain at this point) onto your hard drive with stunning fidelity, then tacks on dozens of artificial-looking areas vaguely linked by forget-table plot points you check off like grocery to-do’s.

These may well be valid points, but I’m not sure that in this case the reviewer is the target audience for this game. And frankly, considering Obsidian’s reputation for quality dialogue and storytelling, I’d expect considerably more than a few snarky asides in the midst of how superior you feel you are to the D&D ruleset addressing what appears to be a weak effort by them in this regard. That’s what I would want to see in a relevant review, not cracks about “OMG, not hit points and armor class AGAIN!” in, um, a licensed D&D product.

Perhaps the next review can be a negative review of “Company of Heroes” because, really, haven’t we seen ENOUGH Germans in World War 2? Wait, I know, how about a review of Civilization 4, which complains about how you can’t zoom in like in Dynasty Warriors and fight the battles yourself. That would be AWESOME.

As seen in a Quarter to Three thread, where the reviewer responds and his editor lets us all know how handsome a devil he is.

Update: The review’s been pulled from 1Up’s web site. To quote GfW’s editor, Jeff Green:

It’s not the score that got this thing pulled. ( For all I know that score is still valid. ) It’s also not the opinion of angry fanbois that got it pulled.

It’s the issue of tone/fairness brought up in this thread. And that was the fault of the Ziff Davis editors—meaning, among other people, me. I stand by Peckham. You can throw your rocks at me.