Dungeon Siege II: Broken Worlds - First Impressions

It's been a while since I've played DSII. The past year has pretty much been only Oblivion. Needless to say, after recent acquisition of the Broken Worlds expansion pack, I am rediscovering DSII all over again.

So far I have only completed the first task. In "theory" you are supposed to be able to import your characters (party members) from DSII. However, neither Andy nor I have figured out how to do so. It kinda irritates me because while the "canned" characters are all mighty and powerful, I think my group was still better. You are also given the option to create your own character. I was impatient and lazy and just wanted to start playing, so I used Alanna as my character.

The game starts out with a short movie and then your are thrown into a dryad town. The first main task is handed to you right away. There are also a bunch of companions to choose from to join your party. Most of them I remember from DSII. There are also a bunch of side tasks waiting for you in town.

There are a few new things. You can have your main character be a dwarf, and there are two new classes (Blood Assassin: ranged w/combat magic, and Fist of Stone: melee w/ nature magic).

It took me a little while to get my DSII legs back (so to speak), but then I was off and away. The first thing I noticed was that the difficulty of the creatures was crazy hard. I'm sure it wouldn't be so bad if you can figure out how to import your DSII party, but with the canned team, I was doomed to die... over and over and over.... (unless you use the cheat codes, that is ;) Oh, by the way, do NOT go north east, unless you want to die a most painful death via humongous bortusk swarm.

At the first level up, your are given a hefty 10 points to beef your guys up a bit. This does help a lot. Needless to say, this game is quite a bit more challenging than the first. The graphics are still good. However, it's been a while and a system upgrade since I played DSII last, so the graphics weren't nearly as nice as I seem to remember them being. Oh well. We came to slay monsters not look at the flowers ;)

All in all, I would say so far so good. The story is intriguing, the game play is good, the new stuff is nice. On to the next quest!