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Later on in the game you’ll have a respectable mastery of swords and/or sorcery, but to begin with special moves seem spawned from common sense and desperation. Kicking dust up, for example, or thrusting your torch towards an opponent’s face. Fans of Oblivion’s horses will be pleased to know you can fight while mounted too, though don’t expect to hit quite so much. Much effort is going towards making the horse handle and act like an animal, and in our playtest that amounted to a lot of struggles for control that were mostly embarrassing and occasionally, if occurring during a daring escape, fatal.
The playtest also reassured us about a couple of less down-to-earth features. When you die in Two Worlds you’re brought straight back to life at the closest Resurrection Shrine, with no penalty and all of your gear. While this strips away the gravity of combat a little, it’s a small price to pay to be able to forget about saving your game.
More bizarre and even more successful is the ability to “double up” equipment. Traditionally in action RPGs, players are walking medieval magnets, stripping rooms of any equipment that isn’t bolted down and ending up with a knapsack full of crap. In Two Worlds, two copies of the same item can be merged for a tiny stat increase, and this can be done dozens of times. It’s as mad as cats but creates a rewarding subgame. Is the boss’s sword going to be more powerful than collecting the matching spears of each of his servants? Believe us when we say Diablo 3 really needs to steal this system. It makes finding the mundane a joy as well as the rare.
Reality Pump is keeping quieter about the actual plot. We can tell you that it begins with your mysterious and prophetic sister getting kidnapped, then at some point a vast red pentagram appears across the sky as cultists go about resurrecting the God of War, Aziraal, who was slain one thousand years ago in a battle that turned a patch of the game world into a gnarled and lethal wasteland. Your decision as to whether Aziraal returns or not will deeply effect the rest of the game, but don’t expect to get cuddly with the orcs who worship him and control most of the southern part of the world.