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     “You’re often unfairly outnumbered, and enemy lunges either stunlock you or simply cause you to fall over”

     A veritable mess, Risen 3 only succeeds in crafting a fairly decent, if often buggy, game world to explore, with other elements a disappointment.
    Sailing the high seas, enjoying a shanty or two, indiscriminately quaffing rum and outright robbing people should have universal appeal. Sadly, that’s just not the case in  Risen 3 . Piranha Bytes has achieved the near-impossible by taking the appealing premise of being a pirate, awkwardly marrying it to supernatural nonsense and then destroying any notion of said appeal by cramming pirates into a deeply shoddy fantasy-RPG. It may have actually  ruined pirates for us, come to think of it.

    It’s not that this marriage of ideas is inherently wrong, or that the RPG tropes on show are legitimately sub par it’s just a bit of a broken mess. Textures are flat, drab and immensely compressed, leaving you with a dream like presentation complete with blurry borders. While this may sound appealing to some strange folk, it’s wholly distracting and less than we expect on Xbox One these are original Xbox level graphics at times.

    A consistent frame rate is absolutely non-existent with the game grinding to a complete halt at times and bobbing along without a care in the world at others. It feels malnourished and neglected. Frame-rate causes so much drama nowadays that it needs to be looked after by developers, and it hasn’t been at all here. Our biggest gripe, though, is the developer’s complete misunderstanding of how decent real-time combat should work. For us to call it frustrating without prefixing that statement with another, far ruder word shows great restraint on our part. Melee attacks take forever to wind up, allowing enemies more than enough time to interrupt your attacks with their own. You’re often unfairly outnumbered, and enemy lunges either stunlock you or simply cause you to fall over, making combat unnecessarily stuttered and forcing you to spend a huge amount of time rolling arbitrarily and occasionally swinging your weapon when you feel brave enough.

    It’s a shame because, at its core, there are certain things that Risen 3 gets right, in particular the expansive landscapes to explore and the enormous amount of quests to complete that are unlocked organically through talking to people in the world or happening upon random events.

    Still, map size only gets you so far, and with the  horrible combat, shoddy voice acting, shallow characters and unstable presentation, Xbox 360 RPG fans would be better off plundering somewhere else.

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