Drakensang Online Taking Beta Applications

The chaps over at Bigpoint send word that their latest online RPG, the rather beautiful-looking Drakensang Online (based on the German single-player RPG series’ “Anderworld” setting – is that right? Not The Dark Eye stuff, anyway…) is now taking beta applications. Go and hit the “Play Now For Free” button on their site to bring up the registration form. Word is that you’ll hear back any time from today if your application is successful. For firm evidence of the game’s pretties, go and take a look at the trailer, which I’ve embedded below. It’s got a splendid Diablo-y look to it, so I hope the game lives up to these initial glances. We’ll have some more on it soon!


  1. ulix says:

    “based on the German singple-player RPG series”

    Yes, like Arcania was based on Gothic: not really (or in this case even less).

    They only have the name, apart from that it has nothing in common with the original single-player games. Its not party based, its not based on the Dark Eye ruleset, its doen’t have the same setting, its not a tactical roleplaying game, in fact I wonder how much “roleplaying” is still in there.

    • Okami says:

      Well, at least it’s developed by the same team.

    • Jim Rossignol says:

      A free-to-play action RPG doesn’t exactly scream “role-playing” in any classical sense. It’s “based on” in the sense that it is set in the same world and features the same monsters/characters/lore, although not the same original RPG.

    • Malawi Frontier Guard says:

      Yeah, I don’t think it shares the setting with the recent game series at all. For all the lore page tells us it’s set in the magical world of Generica.

    • ulix says:

      In fact they don’t have any The Dark Eye license anymore at all. They only own the name to the series, Drakensang. Thats it.
      The two teams working with the license right now are “Noumena” (part of Kalypso, working on the single player action RPG “Demonicon” – well, at least it has the setting going for it) and “Daedalic” (working on a point & click adventure called “Satinav’s Chains”).
      As I’ve understood it the license holder gives out licenses for different genres, and the single-player action rpg is a different license from the party-rpg, so in theory some other studio could snatch it and make a “true” Drakensang 3, although they’d have to give it another name.

    • adonf says:

      Interesting fact: googling “generica online” will give you a lot of links for erectile dysfunction drugs.

    • TillEulenspiegel says:

      I do hope somebody else will get a crack at the DSA license. I’m not a fan of combat/damage, but it’s extremely deep in a lot of other ways, well-suited for a crazy huge MMO. Or just some single-player games that are quite different from Drakensang, which only uses a small fraction of the basic rulebook.

    • Navagon says:

      Generica? Isn’t that where Oblivion was set? :P

    • ulix says:

      I actually quite like the The Dark Eye/Das Schwarze Auge (DSA) combat-system. The basics are there and work just fine. The problem is that all the special combat abilities and maneuvers are a mess in the (4.0 / 4.1) P&P game, not because they’re unbalanced, but because you have to learn the rules for like 20 different combat moves, each with their own set of sub-rules, if you play a combat-oriented character. Wouldn’t be a problem in a PC RPG though, where the computer would calculate all that shit automatically.
      Many find the game to simulationastic in its P&P form, and the combat is probably the beast that is the hardest to master (partly because it occurs more often then say “Enchanting an artifact”). A fight that lasts 20 seconds ingame can easily last 45 minutes or an hour in real time…
      In a PC game that would all the calculations would be done on the fly, you wouldn’t have to remember the rules for (and I’m not making this up, this is from an NPC I made for a little Scenario I want to host, and these are all abilities you ONLY ever need in combat and each really has its own little set of rules – the ones with “X” arround them are for hand to hand combat, but some can also be used in normal combat):
      Awareness, Balance out, Dodge I, Liberating Blow, “Legwork”, Knock Out, “Block”, “Doubleblow”, Ironarm, Feint, Formation, “Jab”, Hammerblow, “Handedge”, “Crossblock”, Lefthand, Master Parry, Downthrow, Shield Combat I, Shieldcombat II, Shieldsplitter, Dashing Blow, “Haymaker”, Assault, “Kick”, Sweep, Weighted Blow…
      Sadly, they did only include a fracture of these into the first two Drakensang games.
      What I liked about the combat implementation was how they included wounds that wouldn’t just heal by themselves (like Health & Mana did in a very short persiod of time).

  2. pakoito says:

    Not a chance it’ll work on my crappy Intel laptop.

  3. Vinraith says:

    And another single player RPG franchise bites the dust. Dammit.

  4. Olero says:

    Applied when I saw the name Drakensang, then read the rest of the words. Now I feel stupid :( (I expected a RPG with tons of stats, not an aRPG that isn’t really based on The Dark Eye…)

    • Ergonomic Cat says:

      I also signed up immediately after seeing the name, and then realized what it was. So sad. :(

  5. J-Han says:


    It’s a third-person action game, plain and simple. Might even be a good one… though I’m pretty sure I heard it wasn’t the same team who made Drakensang: The River of Time. In fact I heard that that game’s development team was at least partially sacked because their (possibly excellent) game didn’t do so well – although in reality their game wasn’t marketed at all, so that would explain its non-success. That could just be a rumor though, I don’t know for sure if they were sacked.

    • The Army of None says:

      See also, this article by Mr. Walker.

      link to rockpapershotgun.com

    • Gothnak says:

      It is an RPG, an Action RPG that is. Much like there are strategic RPGs or tactical RPGs. As far as i’m concerned, an RPG is where you play the role of a character and customise that character as they level up.

    • adonf says:

      @Gothnak: You mean like Mario where you can turn into Big Mario or Bee Mario or Fireball-Throwing-Mario?

    • J-Han says:

      A role-playing game is defined as an improvisational storytelling game. Calling non-RPGs “RPGs” means stifling the actual RPG genre.

    • bwion says:

      Because there’s more than one kind of RPG.

    • ulix says:

      “@Gothnak: You mean like Mario where you can turn into Big Mario or Bee Mario or Fireball-Throwing-Mario?”

      No, he means like in an RPG, where you have stats you can actually see (in numbers), where they gradually improve through levelling until the end of the game (or until you hit a level cap). You may even have to choose some of these improvements yourself, if your playing a western RPG (if its action- tactical- or for the purists doesn’t matter) it might even be most of them.

    • Kdansky says:

      Role Playing Game
      A game where you play a role, like in a theater play or movie, except you do the talking.

      I fail to see where anything of that connects to Diablo & Friends.

      The poor RPG-genre is mangled enough as it is by Bioware trying to make a movie instead of a game.

  6. Navagon says:

    Well it looks pretty. But in all honesty all it’s really done is perked my interest in the games that went before it.

    • J Arcane says:

      Good. The original was fantastic, and from what I have heard abouts on the interwebs, the second one is even better.

    • Navagon says:

      The Dark Eye is the second one, yes?

    • ulix says:

      The Dark Eye is the English name for the Pen & paper RPG system it is based on.

      The first game was just called “Drakensang”.

      The second game (which is actually a prequel) was called “Drakensang – The River of Time”.

      Should have called it “Flow of Time” to retain the double-entrende of the German title, but who am I to judge…

    • Navagon says:

      Okay thanks. But it seems like the prequel hasn’t been released in the UK yet.

  7. DigitalSignalX says:

    I’m curious about it; signing up to help with the beta seems harmless enough a way to see what it’s like and hopefully make it better.

  8. ScubaMonster says:

    Laaaame. The “Play for Free” button didn’t do anything in Firefox 4. I had to load up IE. Not a big deal, but I hate websites that have code that only works in IE.

    • Hoaxfish says:

      in my Firefox4 it came up with a registration thing (not a new window, a sort of in-page popup/tooltip form)