Amalur’s Next DLC “Magically Floats In The Sky”

By Jim Rossignol on April 4th, 2012 at 2:30 pm.


Well, in the game, at least. The latest add-on for Kingdoms Of Amalur: Reckoning will invite you to “Explore the city of Idylla, which magically floats in the sky above the Teeth of Naros.” What are those things? Well, one is a city that magically floats in the sky, and has twenty new quests in it, and the teeth are “a forgotten land” which apparently constitutes “a harsh environment named after an ancient troll god”. Mmm! It is also home to the Kollossae, “a devout race of giants”. Bless. This $10 expansion will be available on April 17th.

Anyone still reckon they will get that? Anyone still playing Amalur? I was meaning to go back, but you know how it is…

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55 Comments »

  1. caddyB says:

    I always mean to go back to Amalur, but I can’t find it in me to get past the starting zones. I’ve been stuck at the Court of Ballads since the first few hours I had with the game.

    • Stormbane says:

      Don’t bother, it only gets worse. In theory Amalur should have been great but it just lacks soul.

      • Wreckdum says:

        I still don’t understand why this game got such great reviews… It was like everyone who reviewed it was a fanboy and it was a new IP… My first few hours playing I could tell it was a bad game and was confused why everyone gave the combat such great reviews. I had so many complaints about the game including everyone who reviewed its favorite part… The combat. Everyone kept jumping on that bandwagon that it was the most innovative RPG combat EVARRR…. as a melee character I think it was pretty F’ing terrible. I’ve been playing button mashes since the 80′s and my first NES… Something about the fact that I can play a massive warrior and get hit by a little attack and it interrupts my attack made me furious. Where is the feeling of power and momentum? I wind up a massive swing from a mace and you poke me with a fork and I have to get interrupted and start my attack all over again? GTFO Which pretty much meant I had to adapt my play style to being a massive plate wearing 2h mace wielding assassin? Taking shots from as far out as possible so the enemy could poke me and interrupt me. I think they had a good idea, terrible execution.

        That and the camera control was F’ing HORRENDOUS. I even got out my wireless xbox controller thinking maybe it was a console port and only worked well with a controller… Even worse. Bad controls are bad.

        • lphsaud says:

          Well,i still have a lot of shit to do in the game,so i’m not buying any dlc,i can’t spend 150 hours to do everything dammit! http://usu.cc/sfsd

          • Shadram says:

            Wait, spammers read the posts now? A slight improvement, at least.

        • wu wei says:

          Something about the fact that I can play a massive warrior and get hit by a little attack and it interrupts my attack made me furious. Where is the feeling of power and momentum? I wind up a massive swing from a mace and you poke me with a fork and I have to get interrupted and start my attack all over again? GTFO

          Yeah, it really sucks when you have to learn the constraints of a game’s rules and operate within them.

        • Azradesh says:

          Try dodging and maybe stunning. It’s really not hard.

        • anduin1 says:

          I found the combat to be the weakest in an RPG in a long time. The story wasn’t compelling either but I could accept it if it wasn’t for the terrible combat. I still don’t know if this is a glitch or what but when fighting groups of enemies, they literally circle around you and never attack. It happens more often than not so it becomes this insanely boring experience that you could get from a flash game on the internet.

    • markside says:

      The Court Of Ballads quest-line does get somewhere kind of interesting by the end. I didn’t expect it to let me do what I wanted to, but then it did.

      As a whole, the game does suffer from repetition, but it’s fun enough that I may complete it one day. Perhaps.

      • Blackcompany says:

        The House of Ballads, to be fair…it bored the crap out of me. Just so…samey…the whole way through. But the rewards are good for a Finesse character. And the lore is boring for a reason, to be fair.

        The house of ballads serves to highlight the manner in which eternal Fey resist change. To the point where they re-enact the same battles, and the same fates and results of those battles, time and again, without change, even when Death is the final result of a re-enactment. They fear change so powerfully they will throw away their own lives in a re-enactment of a past epic battle, based on a written or oral fable, before trying to change the outcome and survive.

        Or some such tripe, anyway. The end result was a boring series of ‘go kill’ quests that were, for the most part, supposed to bore a person, I do believe. As a matter of Lore. Fascinating approach, really, if a little silly.

        But even in this series of quests you encounter at least one key choice that changes things depending on your decision. Which is nice, in an RPG.

    • LuNatic says:

      I feel that Amalur tried to do too much. They had so many great ideas, they couldn’t focus on any of them and give them the attention they deserved, and the whole game suffered as a result. Additionally, they weren’t willing to force any consequences onto the player for his/her actions, and so it really didn’t feel like your actions had any effect on the world around you. Perhaps the real killer was how they went to great lengths to explain how you have no fate, and thus you you could write your own destiny then proceeded to shoehorn you into an incredibly linear central story quest.

      • Blackcompany says:

        I agree with the whole no-fate-main-story dichotomy. One of these days, developers will realize: we’re just looking for the open world, the shops, the crafting, the weapons, armor, combat and magic. We don’t need your contrived (and often poorly written) excuse of a plot as a reason to be present in that world.

        All we need is the world, and the trappings that come with it. Some dungeons and a map maker (or tool set, even better) are nice, as well. Some enemies, with believable AI and faction alignments. Some focal points on the map.

        just give us the sandbox and save your money by not even hiring a writer at all. (Since it appears you already refrain from doing so anyway.) Just give us the world, its all we are looking for anyway. Your “plot” you can keep.

        • Kyrius says:

          Not that I would defend Amalur’s story, I didn’t even played it, but having no plot at all? I would have to disagree with you, sir. A game with a good plot is one of the most appealing (games) to me. It’s hard com come by with one, but hell, when they do it, like Bastion, it’s awesome. Not saying that sandboxes are bad: Terraria and minecraft are here to slap anyone in the face that says that, but generally throwing away plot? I think that is a little bit extreme…
          And you still would have skyrim for that matter, go play it instead :D

          • Kdansky says:

            No plot or a very thin plot is bad?

            Tetris, Super Mario, Zelda, Metroid, Dark Souls, Doom, Diablo, Starcraft, Minecraft and Team Fortress would like a word with you. Those are all 10/10 games of their time, spanning two decades and about 10 genres, and none of them have a real plot. Some of them have later versions that add a plot, and those are by far their worst instalments: Metroid Other M, Doom 3, Super Mario Sunshine, …
            Now name me 10 games which rely on their plot to be 10/10 games. I could only name Planescape, and Witcher 2, which rely on their plot to be good despite their sometimes clunky game mechanics.

            Plot can be nice. It’s not required.

          • Mordsung says:

            A bad game with a good plot is still a bad game.

            A good game with a bad plot is still a good game.

            Plot, ultimately, not that important.

          • Kyrius says:

            So there is a limit to reply chains, heh…
            Anyway, i disagree again that bad game + good plot = bad game… But i agree with good game + bad plot = good game. Actually, I think that plot should be in your definition of “game”.
            Something to think about: what is your definition of plot? I mean, isn’t the journey part of the plot? Or is it plot just the text bits that the game throws at you?
            And I do like thin plot. But hey, they all have plots! (except Tetris and that is no sandbox either :D )

          • Blackcompany says:

            I would posit that Sandbox games do not necessarily need a plot. Not that games in general need no plot. I love a good story/plot in games. Bastion, Witcher 2, even Hunted: The Demon’s Forge (not the one with robots) had a decent if contrived story. A good narrative in a game is a good thing. But in a sandbox game, its neither the point nor the purpose and as such simply is not needed. In fact, plot in most sandbox games serves as little more than a contrived – and often poorly written – excuse for being there.

            Examples of this include Skyrim’s terrible narrative (and Oblivion; Bethesda is consistent in that their writing is consistently bad.) Desmond in the AC games is another contrived excuse for a sandbox. Saints Row 3 is another fine example of “we don’t need a plot do be doing this.” All of these games would likely be better served if they just featured enemies or opposing factions challenging you as you try and survive in this sandbox environment. Or, in the case of Creed, if they had a real historical plot without the overarching contrivance that is Desmond.

            More linear titles such as Hunted (demons, not robots) and Witcher 2 benefit from a plot. So does Bastion. But Skyrim, or Amalur….given that their “narrative” is little more than an ill-conceived contrivance to let you play in the sandbox, it isn’t needed.

  2. Premium User Badge Bluerps says:

    I think I might enjoy this game. But there is so much other stuff to play! I don’t think I will have time to play Amalur in the near future… :/

  3. Snesso says:

    I enjoyed the game, it had some dull moments but it was okay overall, I probably won’t bother with the DLCs though, the story wasn’t all that great.

  4. Premium User Badge Anaphiel says:

    A city called “Idylla”? A race of giants called “Kollossae”? Is George Lucas signed on a lore consultant?

    • Blackcompany says:

      Think of the names as given by those outside. Other people call the giants Kollosae, I’d wager, because it fits. They probably have a sixteen syllable name for themselves in some other language humans cannot pronounce (except perhaps for the Giant-Born, who has to scream the words really loud at people in order to say them at all.)

      And again, as for the city…people use a variation of “Ideal” because it floats in the air and seems like a heavenly place.

      With a little imagination, even the tired tropes of George Lucas can make sense.

    • Premium User Badge LTK says:

      At least it’s better than making up unpronouncable, punctuation-infested names from a Franken-language. I still think Bastion used the best approach by simply using descriptives as names, i.e. common English words. You know what to expect when asked to fight either a Squirt or a Scumbag.

      The middle ground, bastardizing common words a bit, isn’t all that bad. But it insults the player’s intelligence if they feel the need to point out that Kollosae are a race of giants. The name speaks for itself, so let it.

      • Blackcompany says:

        Agree completely with this. Also, was there anything Bastion didn’t do well? I still love that game, and that price point, its a steal to boot.

  5. Premium User Badge freaky_dug says:

    I enjoyed the game and the Dead Kel DLC, so I will get this one too. It doesn’t do anything particularly exciting but it’s a solidly fun game.

    • Blackcompany says:

      How was Dead Kel? Don’t have it, yet, and was wondering whether it adds anything of substance or whether its just, well, more button pressing, different background, as someone else said.

      Any light you could shed on the DLC would be appreciated. Thanks.

      • Sillywhiteguy32 says:

        I have Dead Kel, and IMO its a great addition and worth the asking price. The main quest was practically another faction, and the fort that you upgrade on the island is an improvement on TES player housing, and unlike the other houses available, actually adds something and is worth visiting (pets, store, trainers etcetera). Plus has generally interesting lore.

  6. Blackcompany says:

    Still playing it, now and then. Took some time off for Witcher 2 (among the best games I have ever played) and am actually returning to Amalur this week.

    It is, Frankly…oh boy, here it comes…a better game than Skyrim, in many ways. For starters the combat is actually fun and entertaining. For another you get to make real choices which affect the narrative. Perhaps they affect your story only in small ways, but its more than Bethesda can accomplish. Third, this game is finished, unlike any effort Bethesda has put forth in the past few years.

    Still, though…if only Amalur had tried. They lined up an all-star team and gave them pretty much carte blanche in spending limitations to make this game. It should have revolutionized the genre. It should not have looked like a cartoon. What we should have received was a game that changed the way we looked at, thought about and played RPG games.

    What we got was…something less than this. While the game is a solid and enjoyable experience, it changes nothing. Instead they focused on cramming every tired RPG fantasy trope into a single game, right down to the yellow, hey-I’m-over-here exclamation points over the heads of quest givers.

    Amalur is a good, solid game that could have been a spectacular, revolutionary game. And as good as it is, it still manages to disappoint me based on this.

    • Tacroy says:

      But that’s the problem! Your choices don’t really affect the game at all, and you’re supposed to be this dude who can unweave fate and change what will happen in the future.

      I mean, just look at the Ballads questline – it’s full of characters who’ve been enchanted, and you can just break the enchantment instead of fighting them if you have a high enough Dispel skill. Does breaking the enchantments affect the game at all? Nope. You get a bit of text, but everyone else acts as if they’d died; I remember at least one character explicitly told me I’d killed someone I hadn’t. Sure, some of them will show up in the main Ballads place later, but that’s about it.

      Hell, the first guy whose enchantment you break even explicitly says that instead of leaving the pit he’s in, he’s going to wait around to die. What the heck? Why did I even try to save you? I could have just stabbed you with my knives, it would have been less effort!

      Even worse though is that one early Warsworn quest where you have to figure out what’s been killing the merchants. The NPC you’re with gets gibbed, no matter what. How the hell am I supposed to be the unwoven one who can change fate, if I can’t keep this dude from getting killed? Not even using the fancy fate rage thingie can save him. And that was the only NPC I’ve actually even kinda liked so far!

      • Blackcompany says:

        Didn’t know about the dispelling of enchantments on individual actors, since I avoided the awful dispelling skill and mini game completely. Does sound…contrived…and linear. But then, that’s the house of ballads. They simply refuse to accept changes in their fate or the path of their ballads.

        As for saving people…remember, you do actually save one NPC who was fated to die. Guess you cannot save them all, maybe…but at least you do alter the fate of one. Sure it isn’t consistent, but then, if we want to play a game with a plot and story we have to make some allowances for the sake of moving the story along.

        And at least here, some companions fall while in combat, and in a somewhat meaningful manner. What I didn’t like, was how you came back alone and everyone just took your word that nothing…questionable…took place. Seemed a little off, but then, no game is perfect, and at least this one has a story to follow.

  7. jealouspirate says:

    I bought the game but only put a few hours into it. I don’t really have any specific complaints either, I just found the whole thing rather forgettable.

  8. Advanced Assault Hippo says:

    Decent game. Turned out better than I thought it would.

  9. gschmidl says:

    I just finished it yesterday. Liked it way more than Skyrim. Honestly, with all the bitching over ME3′s ending, at least it has one.

  10. Nevard says:

    Not interested in DLC unless it adds more skills, I’m not even near the level cap but I can’t see me changing the build I have already much now, and continuing to fight monsters with the same buttons isn’t going to be much more interesting against a different background

    • Kdansky says:

      The console-version only has four buttons. You can’t add more skills without that becoming an issue.

      • Nevard says:

        They could at least tack on some extra passive effects then ):

  11. mmalove says:

    I seriously considered buying this after a few weeks and seeing some interesting play videos, when the first DLC already started creeping out. EA’s business model has clearly become sell an incomplete game, then sell monthly DLC. To be fair, the DLC is more content than the average MMO player sees each month. But it confirms my decision to wait for a complete, GOTY edition, and enjoy that from the beginning. Has worked great for fallout new vegas :)

    • noname says:

      I don’t think that’s a fair assessment here. I’ve played through the whole game, and the Dead Kel dlc, and at no point does it feel like the game is missing something. Dead Kel is a seperate island, with separate quests, enemies, etc, not part of the game that got left out.

  12. Kdansky says:

    Amalur is my new prime example of wasted potential. The combat is really fun, the mechanics work really well, with blocking, counterattacking, diverse offensive moves. It is technically fine: Little loading, few glitches, good art direction, and so on. It suffers from three issues which make it totally mediocre:

    1. Horrible writing to the point where no writing would have been an improvement. NPCs manage to contradict themselves within seconds (“Nobody has been here in hundreds of years, most people believe it doesn’t exist!” – “Just behind this door is the main room!” How the fuck do you know that then?). Everyone has bland or stupid motivations, and the writers think they are being subtle and mysterious when their GMPC (that elf chick) doesn’t tell you anything, and you don’t have any option to shut her up, or ask a question. When you ask Octienne “Why should I care for your problems?” he gives you a lengthy (and highly redundant) explanation of why it is important to HIM. That wasn’t the question!

    2. Bland everything. Fire, Ice, Lighting spells. Backstabs. Dodge-Roll. Blocking with a shield. Socketing gems. Lockpicking minigame from Skyrim (but done way worse). Pointless super-power-mode. I think Chakrams are the biggest innovation it has. I look at the game and think: Why haven’t they used Exalted by White-Wolf as the source material? It would fit perfectly, and be utterly awesome.

    3. I’m the guy who is supposed to change fate. I must follow a linear path like in Final Fantasy. wat?

  13. magnus says:

    Buy it ? Indeed I will.

  14. Ham Solo says:

    I’m still playing it and having fun, but I mostly ignore the story.

  15. Teronfel says:

    Well,i still have a lot of shit to do in the game,so i’m not buying any dlc,i can’t spend 150 hours to do everything dammit!

  16. Eskatos says:

    I’m still waiting on a patch before I continue playing. The game is too damn easy.

  17. CaspianRoach says:

    I’ve lost all interest in it after I’ve unlocked all the mage skills and I wasn’t nearly finished. I don’t even think I’ve completed 30% of the game. And all of my skills were oneshotting everything anyway so there was no real reason to use different ones. I didn’t really like the game because it never made me think. It never made me think what ability should I use. It never made me think about loot (just get anything with +3 all skills and you honestly don’t need anything else). All the professions were far too simple. Quests gave you a lot of text but were amounting to kill and fetch.

    But really the only thing that made me drop this game is the fact that player character isn’t voiced. I’m sick to death playing a mute character. It’s infuriatingly boring to watch NPCs talk to a brick wall that has no emotions and no personality. Honestly it would be better if they sacked the choice to play as different races (which affect fuck all anyway) and gave your PC a voice. Dialogues >>> monologues.

    • Blackcompany says:

      “Honestly it would be better if they sacked the choice to play as different races (which affect fuck all anyway) and gave your PC a voice. Dialogues >>> monologues.”

      Completely agree.

    • Azradesh says:

      It is a VERY easy game and must be played on the hardest difficulty if you want any challenge at all.

  18. Premium User Badge Morph says:

    I saw it cheap and picked it up the other day, not started it yet though. Does anyone who has played recommend using the mouse + keyboard, or is it really built for a joypad? I have both, but I’m a mouse gamer at heart.

    • KilgoreTrout_XL says:

      I thought that the 360 pad worked really well, especially for the combat. I forget exactly how, but it was really easy to fast travel with it too. Inventory was just ok, but inventory isn’t amalur’s strong suit anyway.

      People will say that you can’t map all of your spells to it, and that’s true. But by the time you get enough abilities to fill the button maps, you’ll probably get tired of the screen-wide nuke spells anyway.

  19. Xan says:

    Amalur is the ultimate Single Player Emulation of an MMO, because it has timesinks one would expect in an MMO, I’m actually surprised you can’t buy a mount in the game considering how much you have to waste time running around.

    Most of the quests are boring filler quests and only the main storyline and an ocasional sidequest will give you something interesting.

    Though you’ll be groaning “Not another fae!” when a buildup to a boss turns out to be this, like the player character does, sooner or later.

  20. Khalan says:

    Looks like that troll monster thing is holding a parasol :)

  21. dawnmane says:

    Definitely still playing. I bought it in Origins (sorry!) spring sale, and I’ve been enjoying it ever since. As weird as it sounds, the strange “one-man MMO” feel of the game sits really well with me, and since i work with fiction and folklore in my studies I spend a lot of time getting a hold of how the whole Amalur universe is constructed. I think Salvatore did a great job of avoiding the worst cliches without being afraid to use the ones that aren’t broken. The combat is a ton of fun, and the high fantasy/comic book feel of the art design is extremely consistent and well executed. I bought the game mainly to review it for my blog and see what it was like, but it’s on my top 10 of RPGs now.

  22. Phinor says:

    I’m still interested in more Amalur but waiting for the DLC to go on sale. $10 is the price of a new interesting and well made indie game, $5 is the price of content-rich DLC.

  23. Moraven says:

    Sorry PC, Xenoblade Chronicles gets my time over the long weekend.

  24. KilgoreTrout_XL says:

    I really enjoyed the first quarter of this one, and I generally liked the next half. At the 3/4 mark you become completely invincible, no matter what class you’re playing (you can change from mage/rogue/warrior on the fly- which i thought was pretty cool- but all three are basically in godmode at a certain point).

    It’s a shame, because I really loved the first part of this game. But by the last area I couldn’t wait for the damn thing to be over.

  25. megazver says:

    Second DLC, still no camera patch. Jesus.