The Risen 3 Report, Day 1: Boobpirate vs Hulk Chicken

By Alec Meer on August 12th, 2014 at 4:00 pm.

Editor’s wibble – I’d hoped to have a full Wot I Think of Risen 3: Titan Lords, Piranha Bytes’ latest openish world RPG by now, but sadly code has been incompatible with my PC. I have been able to play it in short bursts on a laptop with lousy integrated graphics, but there was only so much low-detail 20FPS play I could stand before needing a lie down. However, I am ready to tell of my earliest adventures in its world of pirates, monsters and magic, as The Risen Report returns.

I’m a pirate. I’m on a boat. There’s a fight. I’m on the shore. A beach. An island. A quest for lost treasure. A sister.

A sister dressed like this:

Sigh.

A sister who shouts “FUCKING BASTARDS!” at anything from zombie pirates to lizardmen to small, flightless dragons to angry crabs to fearful monkeys. She seems so full of misplaced anger towards the world and everything in it, though out of combat her attitude is more that of obnoxious know-it-all with a superiority complex. She constantly brags about herself and constantly mocks and belittles me, her brother, even though I do the lion’s share of monster-killing and monkey-scaring, and frankly her entirely impractical and physically impossible Erotic Pirate Fancy Dress outfit makes me embarrassed to be seen with her. There’s an overtone of Lannister to her too, and I don’t mean in the impressive ‘we will rule everything through sheer force of will’ sense, but rather in the ‘I’m a wee bit incesty’ sense. She’s negging me, and we all know why people neg each other, don’t we?

Mostly though, I just straight up hate her. She’s spoiling all my fun. In fairness, whenever I speak I do sound like I’m on methadone and have no idea what words are coming out of my mouth, so maybe her insults are somewhat warranted.

At least I’m allowed to ignore her instructions that we follow the marked path on our hunt for whatever this lost treasure is. She mocks and belittles, but I head West along the coastline and merrily forage for oysters or sporadically get into brief fights with assorted FUCKING BASTARDS, or ‘relatively harmless sea-beetle things and the occasional giant green chicken’ as I prefer to call them.

The scenery is beautiful, picking up oysters and checking them for pearls is vaguely therapeutic, and I even find a few pouches of gold amongst the driftwood. This would all be rather tranquil, if not for the insane person barking “BASTARD!” every two minutes or suddenly plunging two anti-gravity grapefruits into my field of vision while I’m trying to stab a crab.

I hate her.

Determined that I will not, no matter the cost, head down the path she wants me to, I swim out to sea. While Mystical Forces prevent me from returning to the ship we came from, I am able to reach a smaller island, with a small hill atop it. It has a winding path to its summit, along which assorted FUCKING BASTARDS and a few plain old BASTARDS lurk. These must be dispatched with my sword and my pistol, which I realise too late does not in fact have infinite bullets. I have to slow my assault, take a few swigs of rum and eat a few provisions, and so long as I’m more careful I shouldn’t perish before I even reach the first town.

At the top of the island hill, I find a crabshell. I am informed that it is valuable and that I have completed a quest. It is unclear for whom, and with what effect. Still, hey, I’ve got a crabshell. Rather than retrace my steps back down to shore, I take a leap of faith off the edge and into the water, risking my own life purely to save a few seconds. I survive unscathed, but there’s a wonderful side effect.

My sister hasn’t followed me. I’m alone. Alone! By God, it’s blissful.

I swim to shore, expecting the air to turn blue any second, but no grapefruity silhouette appears. No-one says anything scornful as I leisurely gather oysters. I fight a few sea-beetles, and no-one gets called any names. This is more like it! I even find a treasure chest – not the treasure chest we’re looking for, but it’s got gold and a rubbish sword inside – and it feels like a reward for escaping my nightmarish sibling. This is bliss.

Less blissful is the fight I get into at the top of a narrow clifftop trail. Three of those FU… big green chickens encircle me, taking it in turns to kick me to the ground as I scramble to stab any one of them. It’s a brutal scrap, proving that I have a great deal to learn about chicken-fighting, and if it weren’t for prodigious mid-battle rum consumption, I’d be pecked to death.

A well-timed roll takes me out of reach of those deadly beaks though, and Bruce Lee-style I handily dispatch the Hulk Chickens they stupidly charge me one-by-one. I’m alive, but only just. I’m proud, but only just – a chicken-based death would not have been a noble one. As I stoop to gather meat from the bird’s corpses (hopefully I’ll find some way of cooking them later, because if I do end up stinking of rotten meat maybe it’ll turn out my damned sister was right about me all along), I hear a noise from behind me. I freeze. More Hulk Chickens?

Worse. Infinitely worse. I hear a voice. A voice that speaks false words, dripping with patronising scorn.

“Well done!”

My blood chills.

I turn around, in case I’m somehow mistaken.

Oh no.

More to follow. Risen 3: Titan Lords will be released on August 15th.

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44 Comments »

  1. Tusque D'Ivoire says:

    Oh Yes!

    I’m in the final bend of my thesis and this is exactly what I like to come home to. Also, the first Risen report was what got me to read RPS on a regular, obsessive basis for the first time. Weee!

  2. whexican says:

    If this boat is a rocking….

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    Philopoemen says:

    This is i exactly the reason I read RPS. Moooaar!

  4. Cooper says:

    I actually enjoyed Risen 2. Sure, it was clunky in some ways, and hardly one of the netter written RPGs out there, but the combat was fairly good, and the locations worth exploring. The supporting characters were at least passable in Risen 2. Although it too had a problem with everything anyone ever says being said sarcastically, and the main character had as much charisma as a sack of potatoes.

  5. Ross Angus says:

    Yessssssssssssssssss.

  6. InternetBatman says:

    The original Risen report was much like the game itself. It started out enjoyable and compelling, but then trailed off before an unsatisfying ending that took way too long.

    (I really did enjoy it, and I don’t blame Alec for skipping over a few incredibly boring hours.)

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    Anthile says:

    Deep Silver strikes again.

  8. Keyrock says:

    So they haven’t completely abandoned the pirate theme from Risen 2? Excellent, now I’m excited for the game again.

  9. abrokenchinadoll says:

    I bought it I have a feeling i’m going to enjoy it.

  10. RARARA says:

    Are we getting a new series where Alec continuously tries to escape from being molested by his sister? Yea, I say to that!

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      RedViv says:

      Clearly this is an attempt to finally get into the Japanese market.

      On that note, I think the first time I actively realised how much of a general problem with female characters gaming has (way worse at that time, granted) was when I read the Making Of booklet of the Gothic 3 Deluxe Edition (which I got for about quid, unopened) and they excused the lack of female characters with what amounts to “Well we can’t because it is so hard for guys to agree on what a pretty woman should look like.”

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      phuzz says:

      And in the game?

  11. Horg says:

    First play through a PB game and you didn’t get one shot by a Ravenous Deathbeast within the first 10 minutes? They better not be going soft in their old age : \

    • Keyrock says:

      If they put out a DLC with an even skimpier corset for sis, I’ll buy it.

      Edit: This wasn’t supposed to be a reply to Horg. I fail at posting.

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    Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

    Contender for headline of the year, right here.

  13. biggergun says:

    >Sigh.

    Normally I laugh at the whole videogaming feminism crusade thing, but this. Sigh indeed.

  14. Metalfish says:

    You know what? I’m going to complain about feminism on this website, a website with feminist writers and a history of highlighting trashy design decisions regarding women usually as an aside or for comic effect. I’m going to do it with a scowl too. I’m also going to act like this is an apocalypticly wearisome state of events and has ruined my day. Just try and stop me. Go on, I dare you. Go on. Please. Doesn’t anybody care?

    • steviebops says:

      Pretty smug dude. Sarcasm in a nice safe place with an majority behind you. What’s wrong with questioning the status quo, even if it’s RPS’ status quo?

      • thebigJ_A says:

        Um, sorry mate. You, and those like you upset about addressing feminism, *are* the status quo. RPS are the ones questioning it.

  15. Jimbot says:

    I think that comment is prudish, to be honest. There’s nothing really wrong with the outfit and is on par with what I see women wear at the yearly renaissance fair I go to. Lots of corsets and lots of cleavage pushed up. I’d probably say the jacket she is wearing would be better off as a long coat but whatever. She’s wearing pants, regular boots and the like. Now if the pants had the thighs cut out and she was wearing thigh-high boots with stiletto heels then I’d say you have a point but the outfit looks on par with what a woman with a very high opinion of herself would wear.

    • dE says:

      … into battle.

      • Jimbot says:

        I don’t think what the protagonist is wearing will be of any protection against those beasts either. But I’m not really arguing over “tactical realism”, more that what she is wearing isn’t as reprehensible as the author makes it out to be.

        • Wednesday says:

          …she’s dressed like a Pirate Porn Star.

          The Grey Super-Man is here to take you back to Bizzaro world now.

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          neofit says:

          You may want to read up a bit on the history of armor. Just because in games cloth armor is a mage’s robe and is typically given something like a +1 in AC compared to like +10 for metal doesn’t mean it has anything to do with reality. Cloth armor doesn’t mean a negligé with lace and other frou-frous. Thick wool, not to mention thick leather was already pretty good protection. Certainly better than a lacy tank top that lets half your skin exposed to hits and the elements too.

          And just because you saw some girls in slutty costumes with lots of lace and cleavage at a Renaissance Fair only means one thing, that some girls in the XXI century dress sexy with no regard to history. Like in the deeply christian times back in the day anyone would let any skin exposed? Can you imagine a woman going to church in such a whorish cleavage and lace outfit? They used to dress that conservatively everywhere back in the day. Heck, even harlots “in the line of duty” used to wear more than what I am seeing in these screenshots. That’s just some pathetic little designer’s attempt at attracting the brainless, ignorant teen “who can’t circumvent his parents’ porn lock on his PC” demographic.

          I blame manga for ruining our youth :).

          • MellowKrogoth says:

            I think you got lost somewhere along the way of your argument, ha ha. Deeply Christian? Going to Church? Those are pirates man, burning, raping and pillaging, and spending their leisure in company of harlots. Same for the argument about pirates wearing armor, uh… traditionally you see male pirates depicted with sailors’ gear and tunics that show the chest. Looking badass being seemingly more important than being armored.

            Not taking sides in the argument mind you, just laughing at the nonsensical argumentation.

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      phuzz says:

      Nothing wrong with the costume? How about the horrible clashing colours?
      Also, some effort to at least pretend that she’s wearing clothes and not just a texture map would be nice, although that might be a side effect of Alec’s integrated graphics.
      And what the hell is that collar attached to? Is she wearing the world’s smallest jacket, that consists of a collar and some short sleeves?
      That hat is cool though, digging the hat.

  16. nrvsNRG says:

    Did you really have to use those low res, low poly screenies?

    • Monteef says:

      I have been able to play it in short bursts on a laptop with lousy integrated graphics

      I imagine this has something to do with it.

      Any idea why it didn’t work on your desktop? I’d like to know whether I’d be able to run the damn thing, I’ve an unhealthy love for Risen and Gothic-related guff.

      • MykulJaxin says:

        I logged in to write a raging comment about how atrocious this game looks. I’m glad I read the comments beforehand. Yeesh, I need to go to bed.

      • Alec Meer says:

        Seems to have been an issue related to hyperthreading, or anything that causes Windows to detect more than four cores. Disabled ht manually and it’s working now.

  17. WhatAShamefulDisplay says:

    Sorry to actually bring up Assassin’s Creed as a positive example, but I really thought that AC4′s woman pirate (which is to say, a woman pretending to be a man, for those who haven’t played it) was both tastefully and immersively done.

    • steviebops says:

      AC IS a positive example. The recent furore was ill-informed people getting in a tizzy over some bad PR.

  18. Lord Zeon says:

    I realized after reading this that what I liked most about the first Risen was the same thing that people like Dark Souls. That is lateral freedom mixed with a liberal amount of difficulty with no hand-holding. Risen 2 missed a lot of the freedom that made the first great. Risen stranded you on an island with no direction beyond a road from the beach up to the hills with a fork in the road – and your decision about which direction you went could massively change how you experienced the game.

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    jezcentral says:

    Hulk chickens….or Greasels? Eh? EH?

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    neofit says:

    I’m a bit surprised by the pirate theme. They seem to make you think that they went back to their medieval fantasy roots, looking at the main Risen 3 “box picture” as well as all the screenshots on Steam. One of them has someone who may slightly look like a pirate, but with knights and mages everywhere else I chalked it down to a rogueish type in leather armor. And since they said that magic was back, I didn’t think they’d mix a melee knight in plate, a mage and a pirate in the same world. And no mention of pirates in the About nor the Features section on Steam either. So I guess we’ll be subjected to another avalanche of kiddy pirate cliches as in R2.

    Also they are promising a “revamped combat system”. But since it is coming from the guys who are notorious for having the worst combat system in all of RPG-land, I’m not buying it. Maybe I’m reading too much into the short blurb about combat here, but to me it sounded like it didn’t change much: randomly stun-lock the player, not the enemy, and certainly not the animals. Let’s hope dodging is working out of the box so people don’t need to wait for a patch.

  21. frightlever says:

    “I hate her.”

    That’s families.

  22. Heliocentric says:

    “suddenly plunging two anti-gravity
    grapefruits into my field of vision
    while I’m trying to stab a crab.”
    Freudian!

  23. Maou says:

    Maybe I´m just weird, but I´m having so much fun with this game!
    And I love my Tsundere sister!