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Games Convention: Arx Fatalis Impressions (XBox)
Jaz, 2003-08-26

The Games Convention 2003 in Leipzig was significantly bigger than the first GC in 2002 - and what's more, this time a significantly larger amount of CRPGs (or games with RPG elements) were shown. Unfortunately, the two days I spent at the GC weren't enough to cover all of the RPG/like games - in fact, I was really glad I glimpsed as many games as I did, because sprinting from booth to booth, from award ceremony to press center and back while elbowing my way through hordes of gamers took a considerable amount of time.

Here is a short overview of Arx Fatalis (XBox version).

Arx Fatalis (DreamCatcher, Xbox)
This was one of the very few instances where I actually could hear what was going on. The DreamCatcher booth was far off the hubbub of the game halls, and thus the whole experience had a relaxing feel to it.

To make it short - Arx Fatalis for XBox is a one-on-one port of the PC version. The graphics are the same (minus the additional eye-candy of a high resolution), German voice acting is the same, you might say the game is the same - with a few minor exceptions, the most notable of which being the menus and controls.

The XBox version menus are optimised for space. If you want to access the journal, for example, you need to press a button to have one narrow strip with icons appear at the bottom of the screen. From here on, you access the menu you want (either stats, journal, grimoire… etc.) which looks effectively the same way it does in the PC version. There's also a function to scroll through the items in your inventory.

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Controls are - oh wonder -the standard XBox shooter controls ?, using one ministick for movement and one for viewing. The general control scheme (combat, using items etc.) is rather similar to the PC original's. Unfortunately, my character didn't come far enough to collect a rune before I managed to make the box crash (it's just a beta, mind you), so I couldn't try to use magic. A definite plus is the ability to save whenever and wherever you want (not always implemented in console games, though there's a tendency toward this nowadays). Another big plus is the publisher's affirmation that they got rid of the PC version's set of bugs (we'll see for sure when we get a preview copy).

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First Impression
Very favorable. A one-on-one PC-to-console port which manages to keep the atmosphere of the original without retaining the naughty bugs of the PC version.

Average Reader Ratings: 7.63 (8 votes)
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