Pathfinder: Wrath Of The Righteous
As an old-school tabletop Dungeons & Dragons geek, I’ve admittedly never delved much into its cousin, the Pathfinder series. Unfortunately, I’m a little too busy these days to organize a Pathfinder tabletop group to play with, so Owlcat’s digital representation of the game makes it much easier to explore what I’ve been missing out on—and now I realize how much I’ve been missing out on.
With their latest entry into the series, Pathfinder: Wrath Of The Righteous, Owlcat is following up on the success of their initial effort, Pathfinder: Kingmaker. According to these RPG developers, they’ve learned a lot from their experiences with Kingmaker and improved this sequel (although the two don’t share a common storyline) in many ways.
I must say, my initial impression of Wrath Of The Righteous is a very good one. It has a slick interface, beautiful hand-drawn character portraits, and tons of options for customizing your particular character. For those who don’t feel like going through the character creation process, they’ve also provided the easier option of picking one of many pre-made characters.
One element that is a make-or-break thing for me with regards to top-down RPGs is the isometric camera control—or lack thereof. If the camera is not moveable, I’m out. Apparently, Kingmaker only had one of these fixed types of cameras. However, in Wrath Of The Righteous, the camera is no longer stuck in a fixed position, allowing players to rotate around it various isometric 3D environments.
Being able to have animal companions in an isometric RPG is also a big plus. Wrath Of The Righteous not only allows you to have pets, but they can also be mounted for a quicker traversal of the world.
Thankfully, combat has the option to switch between pause-able real-time or turn-based at any moment—since I’m a strategist, being able to slow things down and plan out my tactics using the turn-based mode is a real plus in my book. Even for those who don’t like TBS, it’s nice for them to have the option to play around with either mode.
One of the things that I noticed that sets Pathfinder apart from D&D is the sheer amount of classes you can choose from. There are over twenty basic classes and then multiple specialties within each of those—it’s pretty mindboggling.
Not only that, but you can ascend to new heights with incredibly powerful uber paths that synergize with your chosen classes. Each of these nine Mythic Paths will improve your character development in unique ways.
For instance, you can become an all-powerful Angel or Demon, rule the undead realm as an evil Lich, or go overboard as the all-devouring monstrosity that is Swarm That Walks. Whatever path you choose adds to the pool of options for each character class and any character can choose any path they desire, although some Mythics work better with certain classes than others.
Another new addition to Pathfinder in Wrath of the Righteous is the Crusade mode. This turns the game into an overhead strategy battle mode where you can command troops throughout a grid-based battle system. This will take place during specific battles in the campaign and allow you to use military leaders that can bolster troops and apply unique buffs to them on the battlefields. These leaders will also level up after battles which can further empower them for future battles.
One thing is for certain, it’s clear that Owlcat is passionate about making their Pathfinder series bigger and better with each new game. The integrated tutorial allows newcomers of the series to ease into the game a little easier and the updated features are a welcome addition to anyone who already played Kingmaker.
Simply put, Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous is a fun and strategic RPG title that will appeal to newbies like me, as well as give veterans of the series a good amount of challenge. I’ll be back for a full review in the coming months.
Pathfinder: Wrath of the Righteous has some great graphics so you’ll need a pretty beefy gaming PC or gaming laptop in order to play it at a decent framerate. Therefore, you may just want to invest in a superior gaming rig:
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