The island Faranga needs a new hero, you! Delve into a gritty, raw and atmospheric fantasy world in which every action has a consequence. In the epic world of Risen, filled with mysterious earthquakes, fearsome monsters and unimaginable treasures, forge your path with the sword, learn the art of staff fighting or become a powerful mage.
User reviews:
Recent:
Very Positive (104 reviews) - 82% of the 104 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Overall:
Very Positive (2,336 reviews) - 86% of the 2,336 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: 30 Oct, 2009

Sign in to add this item to your wishlist, follow it, or mark it as not interested

Buy Risen

Packages that include this game

Buy Risen Franchise Pack

Includes 9 items: Risen, Risen 2: Dark Waters, Risen 2: Dark Waters - A Pirate's Clothes DLC, Risen 2: Dark Waters - Air Temple DLC, Risen 2: Dark Waters - Treasure Isle DLC, Risen 3 - Adventure Garb, Risen 3 - Fog Island, Risen 3 - Titan Lords, Risen 3 - Uprising of the Little Guys

 

Reviews

“A compelling RPG experience...”
84% – PCGZine
“Risen is a solid, engrossing and beautifully presented RPG that's well worth your time and money.”
85% – PC Zone

About This Game

The island Faranga needs a new hero, you!
Delve into a gritty, raw and atmospheric fantasy world in which every action has a consequence. In the epic world of Risen, filled with mysterious earthquakes, fearsome monsters and unimaginable treasures, forge your path with the sword, learn the art of staff fighting or become a powerful mage.
  • Countless side quests and creatures to discover.
  • Over 60 hours of Immersive open world gameplay.
  • Alter the destiny of the island by the actions you take.

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows XP™ (with Service Pack 3)
    • Processor: 2 GHz Intel® Pentium™ 4 Single-core Processor
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 256 MB DirectX™ 9.0c compatible graphics card (nVidia® GeForce® 7900/ATI Radeon™ X1800 or better)
    • DirectX®: DirectX™ 9.0c compatible graphic card driver
    • Hard Drive: 2.5 GB free Hard Drive space
    • Sound: 100% DirectX™ 9.0c compatible sound card
    • Controller Support: Keyboard, Mouse
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated! Learn more
Recent:
Very Positive (104 reviews)
Overall:
Very Positive (2,336 reviews)
Recently Posted
Alex The Warrior-ATW
( 15.4 hrs on record )
Posted: 26 May
Amazing game! :) I love rpg games and Risen is one of my favourites,i recommend it to all gamers who love rpgs.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Otomo
( 17.8 hrs on record )
Posted: 26 May
A worthy successor of the Gothic series, sadly the sequels were a letdown.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Awesomo 2000
( 28.2 hrs on record )
Posted: 25 May
Basically Gothic not called Gothic, but Risen. Game mechanics are really similar, the gameplay, characters and even some monsters resemble Gothic a lot, which can be taken as positive since especially Gothic 2 was one of the best RPGs I have ever played. But back to Risen, it has nicely crafted story and the world, quests tend to be very repetitive and simple with some exceptions, but overall, progressing through story, getting better equipment and skills is satisfactory.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
ramel.power
( 83.8 hrs on record )
Posted: 25 May
risen is saying an error found but why please help in want to play the game again helpppp
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Captain Obvious
( 37.1 hrs on record )
Posted: 25 May
I can call this game gothic 5. :D
The game has a very nice story and it requires some skill to play. It can be buggy but you can fix that.
The map is small, like the gothic 1 map.
If you are a fan of the gothic series, try this game, it seems bad in the first 2-3 hours of gameplay, but you'll be captivated by the story.

PS: save often ;)
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Isis (◕‿◕)
( 28.9 hrs on record )
Posted: 25 May
Eliminated all npcs in harbour town that werent essential to get the next level and save island 8/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
HomeBoy
( 0.4 hrs on record )
Posted: 25 May
Sweet :)
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Rico
( 18.3 hrs on record )
Posted: 24 May
Really good production with lots of ♥♥♥♥♥how going on.

Act 1, played 5,5 hours straight, never got bored :) Ill add more things later.

Story is pretty good, feels like gothic 1-2 twist. Go there, help this guy, buy this to not get rekt in every fight and ofcourse save everyone. Game is very hard at the beginning but later its getting easier.
Quests ... do this do that, sometimes bad scripting ( guy wants 50 gold, you want to give him 50 gold but you cant because you have to do interactions with all npcs )
Combat sucks, sometimes unplayable ( enemy has 99.9999% chance to block your attack) but i found some glitches that help alot.
Traps are pretty bad, nothing special.
Not enough money to buy any armor ... 500 gold for worthless one?
AI of enemies feels like potato, sometimes it works fine ....
AI when you steal something have six sense or dont care at all.
Game is playable on my wooden pc with best graphics.
Animations are weird, when i first tried to jump it was so bad ... guy was like a balloon.
Clones everywhere! I cant remember any character because of that.
Cant mine any ore without skill, bad option.
Weird map style, i feel like it was created in 5 minutes.
Free maps, i was prepared for gothic style maps ( buy, find maps to have idea where are you going) but you have everything here ....

7/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Skeleton (Weaboo)
( 9.4 hrs on record )
Posted: 24 May
whats wrong with the difficulty this aint no frikin dark soul
Helpful? Yes No Funny
zotheender
( 40.4 hrs on record )
Posted: 24 May
Gothic 1 reboot

1) Instead being inprisoned in a giant forcefield, you are inprisoned in a cursed island.

2) Old camp is a Harbour town, new camp is a Bandit camp, sect camp is a monastery.

3) Sadly characters like Diego, Xardas, Lester... do not exist but some new cool characters take they place.

New Combat

The new combat looks intersting but it is imperfect, for example parry is way to slow to be useful, dodging sidesteps do not give you any invincibility frame so i end up using only backstep, sword swing not always hit that it touch, lock target is non existant, and many other elements make the combat kinda messy but i still prefer it from the old combat system.

Complains

1) most characters have the same face

2) repetitive go to each dungeon get item quests.

3) cheap death traps.

4) gothic 1-2 had better armor design

Stuff i loved

1) detailed openworld, every single corner hides a tresure, no barren areas

2) no loading to enter a house

3) every npc has voice acting

4) some Platforming

5) cooking, smithing, alchemy, magic scroll making, lockpicking, pickpocket

6) spells like telekinesis, levitation, morph.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Traxadel
( 28.3 hrs on record )
Posted: 23 May
Great RPG of it's time and still well-playable by today. Challenging, difficult enemies with decent athmosphere of the medium size island. Especially I liked the story and it also has sequels.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
alexander
( 3.0 hrs on record )
Posted: 23 May
Started very promising, but how can you play a game in which you find at least 2 creatures in the first 2 hours that can kill you with only 2 hits ?
Characters are uninteresting. Quests are hard to track.
Try Witcher 2 or something else...
Helpful? Yes No Funny
oatmealmoustache
( 39.1 hrs on record )
Posted: 23 May
I enjoyed this game a lot. The background lore is just ok but the game world itself is very alive. It is a small to medium open world but it is dense and all of the npcs feel like real characters in a story. There is no filler or wasted space.

Combat in Risen is relatively challenging, but IMO some people hype the difficulty too much... don't let that turn you off if you're not a super hardcore gamer or whatever. On the normal setting it really isn't that hard; it is just tough enough to require some strategy and timing, and to make it feel well-earned when you eventually become very powerful later on.

The game has an immersive atmosphere. It's not always super polished but the graphics are definitely nice (very different than the xbox 360 version) and the way it handles the world's lush vegetation is especially impressive. I have an older laptop and this game ran well- it seems to have the best graphics/performance ratio of any I've played on here.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
kyro90
( 2.7 hrs on record )
Posted: 23 May
I cant even go 5 minutes without this game crashing. Probably the worst game I have played.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
BozokiB
( 1.4 hrs on record )
Posted: 22 May
Really good story line!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
geabuw
( 0.2 hrs on record )
Posted: 22 May
Didn't have a head. Litterally. I have just risen on the beach and no head. This clearly doesn't happen to everyone but I was just disappointed to find 20fps and no head. Getting an actual computer soon, might by this game if it goes on sale again, hope I have a head this time.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Tamaster
( 13.0 hrs on record )
Posted: 22 May
OVERALL: 4/10

===

Pros & Cons

+ Pros +

+ Good level of interaction with NPCs
+ Choices you make in the Storyline will drastically change where you end up and what quests you do
+ Good stealth mechanics


- Cons -

- Combat system is completely broken (there will be a special section down in the review where i will explain this in detail)
- Miserable variety of equipment and loot
- Character leveling system and development are aswell completely broken (details later)
- The class you develop is bond to certain questlines you may or may not follow (details down aswell)
- Miserable graphics even for the year it came out
- Interaction with the game world is non-existent
- Characters are anonymous, uninteresting and inexpressive. It looks like talking to (badly) animated tree stumps.

===

Special Section - About Gameplay, Combat System and Character Progression

This is an extraordinaire section i made just for THIS review, in which i will explain to you, esteemed reader, the abyssal flaws i have described up above.

1. Combat System: Risen's combat system, regarding melee mostly, is such a mess i have rarely witnessed in my whole gaming career. First of all, attack patterns, movement animations, speed, parry system are wholly flawed beyond repair. Enemies can dodge your attacks which is fine, but they can aswell attack just after they dodged, in the span of a tenth of a second, which you cannot do at all, and then repeat their attack animation a random number of times consecutively, this can very certainly end up with your character being 1-shotted by an unstoppable series of attacks you cannot parry, for there is a little delay between when you are wounded and when you can again parry; this delay is larger than the delay between the enemy attacks, so you cannot do any action while under a barrage of attacks.

Secondly, facing multiple enemies is totally unfeasible: you can focus your attention on just one direction while attacking, your attacks are bond to follow that direction as long as the animation goes on. This means, you cannot, say, hit one enemy with a slash then hit another one near him and then a third one. Attacking one enemy leaves you totally exposed from all other directions, from which enemy can attack you like i described before. Player cannot even lure single enemies, as triggering combat with one will very likely trigger the whole enemy field and drag you to a multiple combat you have zero chances to win, unless said enemies are very far below your level.

Third, animations are clunky, unresponsive and generally really messy. Players will have trouble timing attacks and also to spot when an enemy is going to attack, since there is no pre-attack animations, nothing, enemies just stand there then attack instantly without any little notice, and then return to their idle animation.

2. Character Development: Oh boy here we go. first of all your class is bond to the storyline you might want to follow: for example if you choose to be a bandit, you will not be able to be a mage. This because when you level up, this game has no normal RPG style level up system, but instead gives you Learning Points, and nothing else. These points can be used at specific trainers around the world to improve your Statistics or Abilities. Fact is, certain branches of the Main Quest will allow you only to learn certain classes' skills as i said before. This limits the experience a player may want to pursue heavily. Also, trainers cost Gold, each ability you learn costs gold, and also Statistics cost gold, other than Learning Points.

This system is totally failed and limits the developmetn of your character by a lot.

===

Final Thoughts

Risen could be a nice game with its setting and storyline, but many gameplay-breaking issues and bad art direction flaw this game beyond salvation.

I do not recommend this game at all, unless you just want a world of pain and suffering.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
lu.dohnal
( 34.6 hrs on record )
Posted: 21 May
Risen
+atmosphere
+graphic
+world
+belivable story
+exploration is fun

+-combat in general is nice,but somtimes is not clear when enemy will hit you or not
+-there is not too much dialogues

-last chapter is boring sometimes
-small variety of enemies
-main badguy is not that bad
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Fake
( 0.1 hrs on record )
Posted: 20 May
Product received for free
Froze my computer and whenever I tried to break to task manager it pulled me back to the title screen.
(the game is a background process, aparently and takes up way too much CPU than it really needs to)

Couldn't play the game, Atleast I got it for free.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Tin Foil Hat (Music)
( 1.0 hrs on record )
Posted: 18 May
Played an hour an explored, find a boar.

Think to myself "Oh im about to ♥♥♥♥ on this boar", boar pushes my angus in and i have to use 4 healing pots to kill it.

Nice game/10

Hardcore.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
20 of 21 people (95%) found this review helpful
Recommended
2.7 hrs on record
Posted: 18 May
Risen is the spiritual successor to the Gothic series and it proivdes an excellent RPG experience combined with plenty of exploration in a somewhat open fantasy world setting. Indeed Gothic players will find the combat and inventory system familiar while newer players will have to get used to it. It's not that hard and the game provides just the right amount of challenge. You have lots of quests to choose from and three classes to develop your character around.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
13 of 14 people (93%) found this review helpful
Recommended
41.9 hrs on record
Posted: 9 May
I haven't played Gothic, but I've heard Risen is more or less a reboot/rehash of Gothic I and II.

This being said, if you've never played Gothic, here's what to expect from Risen :
The game starts just as I like them : Thrown in an unknown island after the ship you sailed with got wrecked in what appeared to be a storm, you're given a weapon, a couple of items and here you roll.
The game's an action-rpg, so the combat is both important and reflex-based.
There are three factions you can side with in order to get their exclusive stuff (usually, the armor) and each faction puts the emphazis on some specific skills (The rebels are about hunting and thievery since they're cast out of the city and living in the swamp, The inquisitor's followers put the emphazis on staff-wielding, the mages are ♥♥♥♥ing mages) while most skills are available everywhere (weapons, crafting etc).
Most npcs from the three hubs (The rebel camp, the Monastery and the city) will react to events regarding the island or yourself (been promoted captain of the Don ? Here go the salutes from the troops) which is great.
The combat system gets good as you unlock skill levels in a type of fighting.

Now for the problems :
Risen tends to copy/paste encounters in the last part of the game. To the point of being absolutely awfully boring. You'll fight reptilian undead again and again and again.
Itemization is pretty straight-forward. Better weapons usually mean more damage and require more stats. Don't expect anything fancy. Even the massive legendary end-game weapon is actually a regular axe with a regular moveset.
In addition to copy/pasted encounters, have some copy/pasted quests ! Not only will you have to reckon the island to recover the necessary artifacts for the main quest to keep on at chapter II, you'll have to do it again at chapter IV !

Overall though, it's mostly good. The end-game is very tedious though as I said but the experience you'll have is very satisfactory, mostly due to the different possiblities of progression (working for the don, being captured by the inquisitor's men, asking the mages to take you in) and the different quests you'll have in the different factions.
Concerning the story, which I haven't really talked about, it got two axises : the first one is the struggle for the control of the island. This one is cool. The other one is the actual main story and, let's just say it's both cliché and boring.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
8 of 9 people (89%) found this review helpful
Recommended
76.3 hrs on record
Posted: 6 May
Risen is a third person open world action roleplaying game made by the team that gave us the Gothic games, and it shows. It is very much like Gothic 1 & 2. Characteristic features of these games are:

- Exciting melee combat: just spam-clicking the mouse will get you nowhere, you need to actually think and time your moves (blocking, parrying, hitting). This is a challenging game, maybe even difficult for some.

- Learning curve for your character: there isn't just a learning curve for the player but for the character, too. He needs to learn to fight better. As the game progresses and you level up, you actually feel your character get better. At first, his fighting style is pretty clumsy and you can barely kill a wolf. But later on, you'll fight with more style and finesse, and you can start killing stronger monsters that you had to avoid before.

- Factions: there are three factions you can join. Each faction has their own set of preferred skills, weapons and armor. This adds to replayability. Playing a mage type character will be a completely different experience from playing a sword-and-shield type character.

- Trainers: when you level up somewhere in the middle of the forest, you don't just 'learn' new skills or get stronger or more dexterous right there out of the blue. Instead, you'll need to visit a trainer who can teach you to get better or who can teach you new skills.

- Great atmosphere: the settings, the NPCs, the music, the different 'hubs' for the factions, ... everything adds to a distinct atmosphere that only Piranha Bytes can create. Although I must admit I think Gothic 1 & 2 had even more 'heart' than Risen, it's there at its core. Risen has what Gothic 3 lacked and what made Gothic 1 & 2 the timeless classics they are today.

Note about achievements: this game has achievements but they aren't visible in Steam, only in the game itself. From the game menu, click 'Game' and then 'Achievements' for an overview of the achievements. Risen does have classic Steam Trading Cards.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
4 of 6 people (67%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
128.6 hrs on record
Posted: 30 April
The Risen series is perhaps one of the most uderated RPG series to date. It's also one of the few that clearly earns its M rating. Risen combines the difficulty of Dark Souls with a witty adult storyline. The graphics arent great but they aren't bad either.

Pirate smoking weed in a brothel 10/10
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
21 of 40 people (53%) found this review helpful
42 people found this review funny
Recommended
1.6 hrs on record
Posted: 3 May
-arrived on an island
-beat some birds to death with a stick
-got chased by dinosaurs until I came across a city and the guards took care of them
-i attacked the guards because they had low hp but they terminated me
-i barely escaped and came across a farm
-got kidnapped and sent to a monastery
-started attacking everyone there to escape
-got killed

10/10 people are following me and want to kidnap me
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
40.4 hrs on record
Posted: 24 May
Gothic 1 reboot

1) Instead being inprisoned in a giant forcefield, you are inprisoned in a cursed island.

2) Old camp is a Harbour town, new camp is a Bandit camp, sect camp is a monastery.

3) Sadly characters like Diego, Xardas, Lester... do not exist but some new cool characters take they place.

New Combat

The new combat looks intersting but it is imperfect, for example parry is way to slow to be useful, dodging sidesteps do not give you any invincibility frame so i end up using only backstep, sword swing not always hit that it touch, lock target is non existant, and many other elements make the combat kinda messy but i still prefer it from the old combat system.

Complains

1) most characters have the same face

2) repetitive go to each dungeon get item quests.

3) cheap death traps.

4) gothic 1-2 had better armor design

Stuff i loved

1) detailed openworld, every single corner hides a tresure, no barren areas

2) no loading to enter a house

3) every npc has voice acting

4) some Platforming

5) cooking, smithing, alchemy, magic scroll making, lockpicking, pickpocket

6) spells like telekinesis, levitation, morph.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Recommended
36.2 hrs on record
Posted: 15 May
The better half of the gothic continuation although i think risen 2 and 3 arent as good anymore risen (1) is one of the best single player rpgs i played so far. i bought it as a cd when it wasnt even on steam and got it on steam again just because i love the game. the only thing they could still do about this game is addin in steam acm's so theres a reason for me to play it again :D
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
2 of 4 people (50%) found this review helpful
Recommended
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: 18 May
Played an hour an explored, find a boar.

Think to myself "Oh im about to ♥♥♥♥ on this boar", boar pushes my angus in and i have to use 4 healing pots to kill it.

Nice game/10

Hardcore.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Recommended
28.3 hrs on record
Posted: 6 May
Risen is one of the best games I've played as of late. The combat system, while simplistic as a whole, is very much unique in it's execution. The story is more complex than I imagined and the freedom of any action in the game having a consequence was horrifying and hilarious. The world is beatuiful, except for the ash beasts, they were not beautiful until I got a legendary weapon and made them a smear on the ground. It is a very linear story at the heart of it, but the different factions are interesting and diverse enough that I would honestly play the game just to experience each one.

It was a gamble buying this game that I 100% do not regret. I highly reccomend it to anyone who favors anything I listed above.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
Recommended
39.1 hrs on record
Posted: 23 May
I enjoyed this game a lot. The background lore is just ok but the game world itself is very alive. It is a small to medium open world but it is dense and all of the npcs feel like real characters in a story. There is no filler or wasted space.

Combat in Risen is relatively challenging, but IMO some people hype the difficulty too much... don't let that turn you off if you're not a super hardcore gamer or whatever. On the normal setting it really isn't that hard; it is just tough enough to require some strategy and timing, and to make it feel well-earned when you eventually become very powerful later on.

The game has an immersive atmosphere. It's not always super polished but the graphics are definitely nice (very different than the xbox 360 version) and the way it handles the world's lush vegetation is especially impressive. I have an older laptop and this game ran well- it seems to have the best graphics/performance ratio of any I've played on here.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
3 of 6 people (50%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
Recommended
32.2 hrs on record
Posted: 16 May
Save often is a good idea.
BEST ♥♥♥♥ING ADVICE EVER!!!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 90 days
24 of 35 people (69%) found this review helpful
7 people found this review funny
Recommended
59.7 hrs on record
Posted: 16 March
The Worst RPG on Xbox 360
-Angry Joe

Top tier RPG PC
-Me
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
38.1 hrs on record
Posted: 15 April
Must have for a fan of Gothic 2 Night of the Raven.
Although it's bugged like ♥♥♥♥.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 180 days
64 of 70 people (91%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
Recommended
39.5 hrs on record
Posted: 9 January
Risen is tailored for a niche audience, the hardcore RPG crowd. If you've never played a Gothic game before, then Risen might be a great place to start--if you know what to expect.

Without some explaination, you might find the game a deeply flawed, boring experience or you may grow fond of the game despite its faults. The worst flaw that would otherwise make this a classic is its replayabilty, specifically past Chapter 1.

A Beginner's Guide

I'm going to save you hours of trouble with some useful tips.

One, turn the difficulty down to Easy--trust me, you'll thank me for Chapter 3. (See Padding.)

Two, there is always another option. Magic can be just as practical to non-mages to beat the game.

Here are some helpful reminders on how to win:

  • Be flexible. (Weapons, magic, talents.)
  • Stay focused. (Find your specialization fast and treat every encounter as a threat.)
  • Explore. (There are many paths--some rewarding, some punishing.)

Three, exploit the game's looting mechanic. Whenever you knock down a human NPC, you can steal their stuff and they'll come right back with little to no punishment. (See a good weapon/shield? Take it.)

Four, abuse the brewer for gold. In the Swamp, there is someone who will buy weed from you (10 for 70 pieces of gold). You can then beat him down, steal it back and sell him the same stuff. This is a great way to earn gold if you are lacking funds, and because the game is difficult already I don't feel bad using the exploit.

Five, get trained ASAP. The game won't let you max your character out with gold alone. You have to gain XP to earn Learning Points--I don't think there's a max level--which you can then use to earn talents (swords, sneak, etc.) as well as stat increases.

Six, focus on talents and stats. Talents are to improve your character itself via better combat skills/animations; stats are to get you better gear. The game expects you to manage both as you'll need counter-parry for Chapter 3 enemies (+7 for Swords) as well as decent gear to deal out enough damage.

If you know this information before starting, then you'll have a much better time than most players. The game is intentionally brutal at the start, but it is the good kind of challenge where it relies as much on skill as awareness on your character. Get past that hurdle and you'll find a worthwhile experience in the first chapter of the game.

(You're still going to die a lot.)

Simple One Button Combat? No.

Risen's combat is... complex. That's as nice and as nuanced as I can describe it, and in some ways I think the combat makes Dark Souls feel streamlined in comparison.

You can read the attacks of enemies--but the animations are somewhat sporadic and poor. You can use a wide array of attacks--when you unlock them. The game requires you to use your positioning, sometimes, but also mastering the parry system, other times.

But that's not what makes this game brutal to something like Dark Souls.

Your character's animations are hampered at the start. You will notice a change in combat gameplay from the beginning of the game towards the end, so leveling up your talents and stats is mandatory to win. (Or you can be a bigger masochist.)

For example, in the early part of the game, you'll rely on dodging/faking-out enemy attacks than the late-game parrying system. Your animations improve and the enemies require different tactics.

This never felt aggrivating because the game felt designed that way.

Enemies are not scaled to the player, discouraging players from areas they shouldn't be exploring, and the ones in my way were were reasonable compared to the hordes later on. And compared to the initial enemies, they do become more complicated towards the end--except for the Titan boss fight--that I was required to master my specilizations to win.

However, what I don't understand is why the game locks your camera. It works for 1-1 engagements, but clunky when you have to fight multiple enemies at once. If they had enabled it as a lock-on button, then I wouldn't compliain.

The other main issue with combat is the lacking variety of enemies. You'll quickly notice color-palatte/text swaps and grow tedious of engagements. (Thankfully, enemies will taunt you before actually attacking you.)

These two problems don't detract from the thrill of every engagement, but they are areas of improvement and the monotony of the game is something that becomes a problem once the game falls short of its introduction.

It Begins...

Whenever people praise Risen for its open-ended routes to play and the wonderful sense of world building, they are usually referring to the first chapter of the game. And there's a good reason why that is the case.

In the game's first hours, you find yourself in the conflict between the "freedom fighters" of the Don as well as the Inquisition's hold on the island with the mages' Monastary of the Order.

Simple enough, right? You may be surprised to know that you actually have three initial paths to choose--all of which have multiple ways of accessing them. And in order to advance to Chapter 2, you have to visit three main areas of the game. Some are based on your choice; others on your failures.

For example, you could start by going to Harbour Town (a neutral area). To enter the town, you can bribe the guards to let you in or you can do some farmwork to sneak in. (Or you can be taken away by the guards to the Monastary for being outside the walls.) Once inside, you can do quests for either faction--be sure to choose one side for the best rewards--that will have multiple ways of success.

From there, you can either enlist with the Inquisition to get some training (especially for magic) or you can meet with the thieves' leader to find the hidden exit that the Don's men use to carry out ther operations. You'll either find yourself in the Swamp (the Don's headquarters) or the Monastary.

Or you can start out in the Swamp to train your skills and rise up within the ranks doing laborous tasks that can be challenging early in the game. Then you'll recieve orders to find out the situation in Harbour Town and then set up a peace agreement at the Monastary. (This is the route I took for my playthrough.)

Or you can be caught by the Order--at any point in the chapter--and forced to enlist.

As you can probably tell, there are many alternatives to choose. That's not even talking about the island itself. The island is actually a very contained, expansive environment that has multiple entrances and paths from one side of the island to the other. From Chapter 2 onwards you recieve teleportation stones to save time.

While most games would portray one as the noble underdog and the other as the tyrrant, Risen doesn't portray either side as the good side. In fact, no one is the "good guy" other than how you portray your character.

Unfortunately, the end of the first chapter is where the game begins to fall short of itself.

More Padding Than Necessary

Chapter 2 -4 suffer from serious padding. I wouldn't have a problem had the game not spammed enemies or deviated me to put me on fetch quests. It doesn't ruin the game, but I have little desire to replay past Chapter 1.

I enjoyed the temple quests, but I wished the two factions were relevant. And because the three areas and the factions become forgotten, the game feels more linear than it is.

If the game simply condenced these chapters into one, I think it would be a masterpiece.

"Rising Up, Back On the Street..."

Funny enough, the Eye of the Tiger is an apt way to describe the "thrill" of Risen. For every failure, you learn something new--and that's the essential thing Risen does right.

I wonder how many people will be forgiving of this game in a post-Steam refund world. It's a slow-burner RPG that warms the heart with enough time.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
18 of 20 people (90%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
Recommended
76.7 hrs on record
Posted: 10 January
German developer team
Previous games : gothic 1, 2 and 3 (not gothic 4)
Recent games : risen 2 and 3

Story line : standard one, the nameless one will save humankind....on an island
Dialogues : humorisitc (dry humor) and fun to read
Party or not to party : nope, you master only your avatar sometimes followed by
an NPC lending a hand during a quest.
No fantasy : do not expect dragons, ents, trolls, orks, elves but animals (not Animal from the Muppet show), gnomes and humans (undead, dead or living)

Combat system (6/10) : difficult and feels like some trial and error exercise
Atmosphere (9/10): charming, cosy, nice to be there and linger around on the island
Graphics (8/10) : ok, game is 6 yrs old but the looks don't disturb, warm colors and colorfull environment
Music (7/10) : repertoire list is too short, music fits well depending on situation / region
Difficulty : on standard level, it is difficult but rewarding
Bugs : no quest bugs encountered, rarely my avatar got stuck but that is a matter of reloading

Recommendations : save a lot, immediately invest in lock-picking and pick-pocketing,
start your adventure first in the Dons camp and finish all possible quest, then move on to harbour city and make your decision on which side to choose for.

Must have : yep, if you are an RPG lover and -gamer definitely worth playing.
Besided, the gnomes are fun to watch, dumb dumber dumbst

Have fun

PC gamer, started gaming in the 80's with arcade hall games (galaxy, pac-man, gum shoe),
Atari console (River Raid,...), Commodore 64 (Decathlon, Commando,...), Amiga 500 and finally PC (Myst, 7th Guest, Wolfenstein 3D, Doom, C&C....) and clock is still ticking :=P
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
15 of 18 people (83%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
Recommended
39.5 hrs on record
Posted: 20 December, 2015
Risen is basically upgraded version of Gothic 2 so if you are a fan this is a no brainer.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
Recommended
40.2 hrs on record
Posted: 26 February
I couldn't stop playing from beginning to end, and my other games didn't get any attention meanwhile. The story is really good and entertaining. The dialog is witty, and often amusing. Graphics and visual appeal is fantastic even at 720 resolution. I loved every moment of this game, and have already started playing Risen 2. I highly recommend this series.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
8 of 11 people (73%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
15.0 hrs on record
Posted: 1 December, 2015
"The Real Gothic 4", because why not?

This game can be talked for hours, yet I will keep it precise. I have spent more hours than recorded on steam, as I played the game on its release date and bought it on physical copy.

This game is worth every cent and even more. I recommend it highly to anyone looking for a free world adventure with quest lines and with amazing combat engine. I am in love with this game and you will be too. The best thing is that if you played Gothic before, and specifically Gothic 3 Forsaken Gods, you will find a totally different story here, but same health and mana bars, similar items, gathering and fighting, because it's identical engine and this is the true Gothic 4.

Buy it! It's worth it - you won't regret!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
89.7 hrs on record
Posted: 27 December, 2015
What can I say about Risen? If you enjoy games like Morrowind, Gothic, or anything similar to them then you'll enjoy this game. Even though it came out 6 years ago at the time of this review, it is still a fantastic game. You get to explore an island as a castaway and level up from fighting some rather difficult, but awesome creatures. You have to talk to teachers in order to level up, it's a nice change from what we're so used to nowadays. The graphics are alright but where this game nails it, is in the dialogue. The voice acting is fantastic and I wish more games were voiced like this one. I'd definitely recommend it. Wait for a sale though just because it's a little bit of an older game.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
41.1 hrs on record
Posted: 8 December, 2015
This game was the secound RPG i`ve played , after the Fable.
I don`t even know how i got this game but it was in the library and oh well ...
At first this game is kinda hard.

Pros:
The storyline is good .
A lot of sidequests.
You can make a action in multiple ways ( ex: you have to take a item from an npc: 1.steal it 2.Buy it 3.Intimidate the npc so it gives the item by itself)

Cons:
You have to pay attention to the dialogues , if you miss the glu , you are kinda damned
The combat is hard to deal with in first 2 hours , you will chosee to run from the enemies
Can`t do some actions because oh well , you can`t.
I had to use the RisenWikia for some missions , but maybe i`m dumb.

Overall : A good game i would buy it for maybe 3.74-4.99 e
i`ve enjoyed it for about 40 hours.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny