First, I should introduce myself. This is the first time I'm posting on this board (found it the other day). My screen name is Faralas (after a character I created), my real name is Sue. I'm a full-time writer and am currently designing an interactive fiction RPG/Adventure series for a publisher. I've been a huge fan of RPGs long before computers came on the scene. So, I guess you could say I'm one of those 'old timers' who remembers the "choose your own adventure" books and the grand-daddy of all (computer) Adventure games, "Colossal Cave" (parser driven) when there were no graphics or fancy 'bells and whistles'. *g*
I've played a ton of games over the years including every one of the Final Fantasy games, all of the Wizardry series, The Elder Scrolls (including Daggerfall, Redguard and Morrowind), Might & Magic, Dungeon & Dragons (a ton of them) and Baldur's Gate (and the list could go on and on). However, I have yet to play Diablo. (I know, I should be shot! LOL) But, basically, I'm a huge fan of replayable, open-ended RPGs where the player can customize their character, choose to do quests, (or simply stick to the main storyline) and games that have a strong storyline. I found all of these qualities in Divine Divinity (to one degree or another).
At first glance, I thought I'd feel limited by Divine Divinity's character choices, but that was not the case. I was frustrated with the slowness of my character's ability to level up until I realized that the strengths of my character depended on how I selected my attributes each time I leveled up. (The designers were right - those skill points are precious!) Which actually made the game more of a challenge and that's what I like most about RPGs.
There are many qualities I liked about Divine Divinity and some I think could be improved. But I know how hard it is to tailor a game to a specific audience. Seems like Larian cast a wide net to capture the largest audience it could. Which is good, but again, even that has its drawbacks because it's impossible to please everyone. However, I am quite pleased with the game because it filled the three things I look for: strong storyline, plenty of choices in terms of character development and most important, a game that's challenging. (Oh, and it's definitely replayable! Did I mention that already? *g*)
So, I just wanted to thank all of the people at Larian Studios who worked hard to make Divine Divinity such an enjoyable game. You've all done a terrific job and I look forward to Beyond Divinity's release.