In addition to mostly poor puzzles, Traitors Gate 2 is graphically rather bland. Most of the game is spent in a third-person, 3D view looking at the back of Raven’s stiffly animated body. The tunnels and corridors tend to look quite a bit alike, making things a bit repetitious. Everything just looks and feels a bit dated. Sound is likewise uninteresting, with a few clicks and whirs as the various temple mechanisms activate. There’s very little dialogue, which is probably a good thing, as Raven’s remarks are unhelpful at best, laughably poor at worst. Because of this, there’s very little emotional attachment to the main character, and consequently not a lot of attachment to the game itself.
The game’s controls are weak, as well. There are only a few directional keys, an inventory key, and an action key, none of which can be remapped. Raven at times gets himself hung up on the tiniest bit of corner or obstacle, while at other times he finds himself clipping through walls and falling into some nether world. Some of this clipping is actually helpful, however. At one point, I found the solution to a puzzle by swinging the camera around so that it was looking at a correct dial configuration from the inside of a stone pillar. I’m not sure if that was by design, or if I accidentally skipped an important step in the puzzle. Clipping can also be used to walk through walls and avoid some of the more annoying puzzles, but I don’t think that’s how the game was supposed to work.
And if poor puzzles, clunky control, and uninspiring graphics weren’t enough, Traitors Gate 2 is rife with bugs, some of them game-stopping. There are game-crashing bugs, the aforementioned clipping problems, and even one bug that halts all forward progress. I thought I had missed something somewhere, spent about an hour wandering around, until I finally got frustrated and visited the company’s forums. Sure enough, I had encountered the Big One, and fallen prey. A note to The Adventure Company’s tech support got a quick response (and a save-game file just beyond the puzzle), so I was able to continue on.
Overall, I just cannot recommend this game to anyone. Poor puzzles, dated graphics and controls, and a hefty amount of bugs make Traitors Gate 2 a game to avoid. Perhaps if there was a hint of promise under it all, or if the game had a spark of fun-factor, things would be different, but it’s just not so. My hope is that The Adventure Company will release a patch to fix the glaring bugs, then just put this one behind them and move forward to continue to bring us the quality of game that I know they’re capable of delivering.
This is just not a good game. Frustrating puzzles, clunky controls, and a mess of very big bugs make for a very disappointing adventure title.
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