The true gamer at heart is one who lives, breaths and eats all things gaming…. or maybe that’s just me.
Lately I have found myself wrapped up in a game that I find to be less entertaining than the title suggests, but can’t seem to put it down. For fans of Dragon Age Origins, comes a game called The First Templar has been running on my pc for the last week now.

I was immediately reminded of the overall impending doom of the worlds events like the first Dragon Age, but I was left disappointed by a few things.

But first, the stuff I liked. The game’s story is fairly engaging and the voice acting runs smooth and silky while the cut scenes are short and too the point. The visuals are crisp and bright making it easy to see the gorgeous scenery during the outdoor parts of the game. The glow of the sun beaming off your sword as it slices through enemies with a satisfying ‘thwak’ has a feeling of calm because the birds and cheerful display just make it all warm and cozy. Swapping between usable characters is just a tap of a button and orders can be given with little to no effort (since there are only 3 orders at any one time you can use) while the mini map shows your where to go and where to get to your side quests. It’s all laid out in such a way that I feel the I could really have a great time playing this all the way through.

So here is the catch, while I play this game, i start to feel like there is always a guy from the development team standing right beside me going “oh oh, go here… yes perfect…. no no i didn’t allow you to walk that way, you have to go around….. noooo it’s just up there, see?”

The game play itself is simple and mindless, not much thinking required to learn how to fight and be good at it, which at times is a welcome gift, but when it provides little challenge even in the harder settings it becomes dull after a while. Your stuck doing a 1-2 method of shield and sword while little to no extra abilities to swoop in and rain down your person wrath on the opponents. Even still I can deal with that for a while but what troubles me further is the sheer lack of exploration. The game leads you down a fairly straight forward path, and while is can be easy to miss a chest every now and then, there isn’t much more than that one chest to find since the rest just seem to be on your path anyway. Your character is supposed to be super good so finding traps and tracking people is something your given at full potential with no learning or upgrading. You start out and BAM your amazing at all type of traps and following people. Loot is sparse in the game and it’s not focused on at all making the player engage more in the fighting and leveling the characters. While this can be good, the leveling is about the same for all characters with out much specialization.

Still, I enjoy this game because it’s the sort of story that is compelling enough to keep me interested in where it’s going. It’s bright, it’s easy, it’s clean… sadly it’s just not as deeply routed in rpg routes enough to really hit me hard, and with little to no incentive to replay the game it’s really just a once over. A staggering 5.2 out of 10 for The First Templar, a easily playable, yet unsatisfying result.

Story – 7, Awesome, just awesome who doesn’t love Templar’s and the holy Grail?

Graphics – 7, they were clean and crisp but not hitting the levels of Crysis 2, still they made me feel warm n fuzzy

Sounds – 8, voices were excellent, the sounds were crisp and well placed, the music is epic and you never get tired of it.

Gameplay and mechanics – 4 character usage was simple but it was hard to walk through the levels because of invisible walls, and little to fight with aside from the 1,2,1,2 fighting command

Replay value – 2, it’s slightly possible to back and find those one or two chests you missed but it wouldn’t be much fun

Over All – 5.2, fun to listen to, nice to look at, but repetative gameplay and no incentive to return to it later.