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117 of 122 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gothic 3- what went wrong ( and then finally went right in 2011/12)
Gothic 3. A retrospective review by Graham Schofield

READ THE NOTES ADDED AT THE VERY BOTTOM OF THE REVIEW, 4/1/2012.

I truly wanted to love this game...I really did.
I also wanted to give this game 5 stars all the way, but problems got in the way.....Read on ( long review warning !!!! )

On paper it sounded perfect, a vast free...
Published on 20 Oct 2006 by Mr. G. P. Schofield

versus
23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Fun, but requires lot of resources, crashes like mad
Fun to play, good improvements over Gothic2 in graphics, resources management (e.g. don't have to wait 50 times to cook 50 pieces of meat, items increase health in percents instead of points, etc)

But...

Uses only one CPU, 100% (so having a dual or quad core machine is no help)

Requires lot of resources (I'm playing on Vista, 2GB memory,...
Published on 25 Mar 2007 by Alin Constantin


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117 of 122 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gothic 3- what went wrong ( and then finally went right in 2011/12), 20 Oct 2006
By 
Mr. G. P. Schofield "fortysixter" (UK, South London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
= Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Gothic 3 (PC DVD) (Computer Game)
Gothic 3. A retrospective review by Graham Schofield

READ THE NOTES ADDED AT THE VERY BOTTOM OF THE REVIEW, 4/1/2012.

I truly wanted to love this game...I really did.
I also wanted to give this game 5 stars all the way, but problems got in the way.....Read on ( long review warning !!!! )

On paper it sounded perfect, a vast free roaming RPG that can be played in first or third person perspective, a limitless level ceiling, hundreds of quests that , whilst I was playing certainly did not feel generic OR dull.

No indeed from the first moment this game booted up and ran I new I was in for one hell of a ride. I love RPGs. Especially PC based RPGs.
All the Might & Magics done ? Check. All the Fallouts done? Check. Every PC AD&D game done ? Check. Did I lose my life to Everquest? Check. Am I now losing my life to WOW?...well, you get the picture....that's me...uber-RPG- geek.

So when I first saw how beautiful this game looked, and how potentially complex, yet also, conversely ,how easy the combat could be...I was lost. I became the wayward warrior forging his way home after years of hardship, only to arrive at the local dock, head straight for my home town and finding it infested with invading Orcs, dispatched them as best I saw fit. Once that introduction to the combat was complete, I ventured round my home town, picked up a quest, which just so happens to be THE MAIN STORY QUEST. And what was that quest? To find a blind human necromancer called Xardas who had helped the Orcs conquer your homeland. Why had he done this? It was up to you to find out. If you, like me, read into that simple quest description " find the badguy and kill him" then join the club, as inevitably, that is what the game is about.

I sprang out from my town, cocksure and confident I could take down those odd looking insects and weedy looking wolves. I bound forward with sword swinging enthusiasm into my first pack of wolves. " This " I told myself " is what an RPG is all about, hunt the weak mobs, grind some XP and get those levels". I wailed into the fray supreme in my combat abilities.....

....After I reloaded my save, I decided perhaps that wasn't the best way, and obviously a much higher level of badguy had accidentally wandered near my home town. I decided to specialise in bows, and started offing my prey from afar. This worked, albeit slowly, and I eventually prevailed.

A vast number of hours later ,( I had clocked up just over 80 hours at time of writing, ) I was hard and level 56. But every now and then I would get a sober reminder of how much combat was all about timing as a single wild boar gored me all the way back to my last save.

I had spoken to tens of dozens of NPCs, made alliances with rebels, lied to Orcs about my allegiances, double crossed the Nomads and stolen aplenty from the desert race of stoners, the Hashishin. My quest log has an easy 50 outstanding quests, I had easily completed more than that. I had fought every creature known in the game world, from the aforementioned surly boar, to Dragons and Ogres baying for my blood. I could shapeshift into almost any four legged beast in the game thanks to my magic skills and magic druid stones, and could transport myself across the continent at the click of a magic portal stone ( one found in every city)....And most importantly, I had some of the best weapons and armour available in game and was rich beyond the dreams of avarice.

The orcs, in my mind had almost been conquered, I had freed numerous Orc held villagers from their oppressors, and found allies at nearly every turn...life was good, I had become the eponymous nameless hero , loved by my friends, and the bane of my foes.

I stood atop a snowy clifftop, surveying all I could see on this bright, clear morning, the sun dazzingly bright should I turn to look at it, the sky a stunning azure blue. A few hundred foot below me, creatures broiled about, hunting their prey and going about their business, a distant conversation reaches me, warning me of a patrol...maybe friend...maybe foe. Across the ravine I am standing on the edge of, I see an Ice Golem lumbering his way back and forth, guarding no doubt, a chest with rich loot, planted where he now patrolled, maybe a 100 years ago , and he has been protecting it from all who steal its precious contents ever since. I turn to my left to see a large herd of Buffalo running to and fro, stopping only to feed. A noise somewhere in the forest beyond spooks them, and they break into a run across the fields they had just crossed, and a distant sound of their thundering hooves reaches my ears. To my right I hear a single Wolf howl, as out of the thick under brush five...no make that six, Ice Wolves prowl from the cover they had sought the night before. I am next drawn to the sound of a distant growl, and look to the vast cliff side towering behind me, at its top, a family of Sabre Tooth tigers patrol, dangerously close to the edge...had they caught my scent? I look slightly down and to my left and spy a crudely made sign, little more than a thick twig for a post, and a crudely written word on a piece of rotting wood, readable only if I get close enough..."Wolf Clan"...surely, that can be my next destination?

How wonderful does this sound? This is simply one region, and one moment in this game, which you truly live...if, like me, you are able to allow yourself to be immersed in this false but oh so intriguing reality.

A game with massive potential, that it almost lives up to...but brace yourself, because I am about to tear down your walls of hope and optimism with the brutality of simple facts.

The game has a few problems:-

Once installed the first thing the game insists you do is download and install a 60 Gb patch. Oh well.

Once this is done and you are playing, if you are using AMD processors, after a few in game days of gameplay, you will notice that your day / night cycle appears to be happening approximately every ten seconds...save once and its day three on your save game, save a few minutes later and it's day 171 !
A quick perusal of the README and some forums reveals the fact that you need to install some special driver software for your AMD processor that is, fortunately , included on the game DVD. Of course, installing these drivers makes all your previous save games incompatible. Restart time.

Those two Items are frankly minor annoyances to what comes next.

Random game crashes, often when using the portal stone, or when an enemy casts one of the, admittedly, spectacular spells at you. Maybe you'll get an exception message, maybe the PC will just lock up. Either way, it's a reboot or if you are lucky, it's CTRL-ALT-DEL time. So save regularly.

Some quests cannot always be completed due to you maybe killing a vital NPC for said quest, or maybe for the simple fact that the quest is bugged. Of course, and this is the real slap in the face, you don't really expect this to be the case with the aforementioned ( at start of review) MAIN GAME QUEST.

Yes you read that right, the game world is so wide open, that you can do what you want, but the game will actually let you do things that break THE MAIN GAME QUEST thus rendering the game un-completeable !

You are tasked with finding the big badguy of the game, Xardas. Later on, you are further tasked, by your King no less, to find out Xardas' plans. To do this you must speak with him before you do anything else to him. But seeing as Xardas is in one of the toughest regions in the game with many, many strong foes on the only path to him, this of course , has to be left until later in the game. By default you will need to have good weapons, good armour and the skill to fight you way to him. By then of course, maybe you have freed a few villages from the conquering Orcs? Well put it this way, if you have freed four or more villages, the moment Xardas claps eyes on you, he attacks you...and unless you kill him, he kills you and that's it.

There is no warning about this anywhere in the game, there is no friendly NPC who mentions to you that actually freeing said NPC from his Orc oppressors ( the POINT of the game) will mean that you can't actually complete the game. This is an unforgiveable schoolboy error by the company who made this game, and a genuine showstopper. There is no way I am going back to an earlier save in the hope that I have only wiped out three Orc villages instead of four, or indeed, restarting from scratch and repeating the last 80 hours.

This is also a prime example of the games woeful lack of direction. You should be able to do as you wish in game, but not at the cost of bring said game "to it's knees" rendering it a game that cannot be completed.

There are a few other issues like this in game, for instance the fire chalice quest. You are expected to find the twelve fire chalices, take them to the Monastery and endow them with magic. This done, at no point are you told you then need to take all 12 chalices to 12 Paladins placed throughout the gameworld. No, that you need to work out for yourself. At least NOT doing that does not make the game unfinishable, but it does highlight a crucial fact in this game. It's not finished.

I loved this game, bugs and all, up until the last 10 minutes of MY gameplay , where it became apparent that the game was broken due to action I had taken 40 hours earlier. A lengthy scan of a few forums confirmed this gutting fact to me. Forewarned is forearmed, now you , dear reader, know what can happen, do your homework before embarking in the beautiful but heavily flawed game, and you may reach the end.

To close this review, my final comment :-

This game needed another 6 months of development, beta testing and system stabilisation before release. As it is, this unfinished product will bring ill repute upon the games developers, and exasperation to the seasoned RPGers out there hoping for the next big thing. A sad day indeed for the RPG fan.......

...and now an update in OCTOBER 2010.

With the new Gothic nearly upon us, a few things need to be updated. The new Gothic 4 - Arcania is by a different company to the above Gothic 3, my review of that will come in due course.
The company that did Gothic 3 made a game called Risen. An excellent game that you should seek out, although do note that on PC it is becoming something of a rarity.

A brief re-review of Gothic 3. Now the community has patched the game, a number of issues have been fixed. I can suggest you go back and try this game again, a few issues still occur with the final boss bug, as mentioned in my review, but overall, the game is enjoyable. You may not have got that from the original review, but despite that review I played this game to completion 3 times since its release, after a number of false starts/restarts on my first play through.

Gothic 3 ( and Risen ) are very challenging and different RPGs to a some of the western RPGS out there like Oblvion, Fallout 3, Fallout Vegas ( which came a day before release and I'm already 6 hours in !) and as such, should really not be compared, but taken on their own merits, of which they have plenty.

If you like Gothic 3, may I suggest you play Risen and Two Worlds as well. I liked them all.

...FURTHER UPDATE 4/1/2012.
Not only has the community patch made this game a virtual joy to behold & play compared to what it was like in my original and lengthy review ( above), but now GOG ( [...], just search "GOG" in Google) has got it on their website for $9.99, yes, that's 9 dollars and 99 cents ( around 6.70 in real money ). And it's patched to pefection AND it has no DRM. This means you can buy, install it and play it with no need for registration or a disc in the drive.

Also since my last update in october 2010 ( also above) I can now happily say that Gothic 4, whilst quite different is certainly a worthwhile endeavour, as is Two Worlds 2. Both are available on Console or PC from Amazon.
Coming up this year is Risen 2 which looks amazing. Thanks for reading. Now go buy Gothic 3. Probably from GOG though !

Review by Graham Schofield
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good game if you persevere..., 16 July 2009
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Gothic 3 (PC DVD) (Computer Game)
First off - the overall game is not at good as Oblivion IV, so buy that if you have not done so. However in its own right it has some potential and if you endure with it (and reload often) it can bridge the gap until the next Elder Scrolls comes out next year! :)

Some good points:
- Great world to wonder around in - lots (sometimes too many) monsters/animals to slay
- Life-like in that you are not just shepherded through the main storyline (i.e. at the moment (half way through the game) I only have an inkling of what I have to do and where)
- For its age the graphics are good and the music is not annoying
- Many skills to develop to take the character into different directions (though you will be hard pushed to get around becoming good with the sword first)

Some bad points:
- Character very weak at the beginning - bl***y hard to survive at first
- You do not get armor from foes only weapons (not very life-like)
- You need to install all the updates first (inc 1.72!) otherwise game is quite bugged
- Although there is a more complex fighting system (with blocking etc) I find slashing works best
- At first animals (especially wolves) will mull you - so save often

Enjoy!
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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Fun, but requires lot of resources, crashes like mad, 25 Mar 2007
By 
Alin Constantin (Seattle, WA, USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Gothic 3 (PC DVD) (Computer Game)
Fun to play, good improvements over Gothic2 in graphics, resources management (e.g. don't have to wait 50 times to cook 50 pieces of meat, items increase health in percents instead of points, etc)

But...

Uses only one CPU, 100% (so having a dual or quad core machine is no help)

Requires lot of resources (I'm playing on Vista, 2GB memory, NVidia 7600), the game gobbles up the whole memory, up to 1.5MB of memory when it crashes with "Smart heap: Out of memory" errors.

This happens during Load or Save (regular and Quick); after restart the saved game is corrupted, and trying to load it will deadlock. Annoying!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great but quite buggy., 11 Aug 2009
By 
Mr. P. Powell (Liverpool) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Gothic 3 (PC DVD) (Computer Game)
This is a great game. Graphics, story and gameplay all great. But, and it's a big but. The game is riddled with bugs for example, it takes its time to stop jittering once you've loaded a save game and on the second day of playing it the picture wouldn't load and after closing and reloading the game I couldn't close the inventory screen (and that thing is laughable, takes up the whole screen and doesn't pause the game.) There are patch's to correct them but every time I tried to download them using the updater that comes with the game, all it does is start the game and forgets about the download. I tried doing it seperately and I couldn't be bothered with the super slow download of 880mb and then what it called 'screening' which would have taken at least twelve hours by my estimates. Probably my internet! But if you can download everything, then this game is fantastic. Definately the best game I have played on the PC.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Could had been a contender, 24 Jun 2009
By 
Jules (England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Gothic 3 (PC DVD) (Computer Game)
Played on windows vista 64bit.

I never used to play RPG's like this, until i took a chance a few years ago, by pure luck, on a game called Oblivion TES4: Oblivion - GOTY. Since then, i have been using Amazon to buy all the old RPG classic games, like Neverwinter Nights 2 , SWTOR 1 & SWTOR 2 , TES3: Morrowind - GOTY , Fable & The Witcher etc..you get the point. So i decided to give this game called G3 a try, as i always saw it and never bought it....until now.

I have played the patched version of G3, and I hate to imagine what people went through with the origional out of the box copy(so many problems). But the patched version is great(1.7 & 1.71 hotfix) and IMO, if this game didn't have so many bugs in it early on, i am sure this could had been a rival to Oblivion, yet i had never heard of G3.

Bottom line, There are enough reviews here, so i don't need to explain the game to you. I just bought G2(more difficult i think) Gothic 2 , and if you like your RPG's, then this has to be in your collection IMO. What have you go to lose at this price?!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant (If you install all the patches), 31 Mar 2010
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Gothic 3 (PC DVD) (Computer Game)
Gothic 3 is something of a gaming tragedy. It's a vast and extremely ambitious role playing game that should have been a worthy rival to Oblivion and a shining example of how to make a huge rpg for the pc. Instead, because of a rushed release and some silly squabbling between the developer and the publisher it is a relatively obscure title that people are now picking up for less than five pounds. Here's what attracted me to the game:

- Huge and beautiful game world that was all designed by hand and thus has more character than Oblivion's occasionally bland computer generated landscapes. There is a lot to discover that is not part of any quest making wandering around the world rewarding not just because of the impressive visuals but also because you get a sense of discovery (e.g. a cave somewhere in the game world that is not part of any quest leads you into a large underground area of tunnels and caverns at the bottom of which awaits a dragon guarding a treasure). Three different climates (snowy nordic, temperate western, desert arabic) are all beautifully realised and offer a convincing range of fantasy locales filled with characters that are slightly clishe but exellently realised.

- High difficulty and steep learning curve. This is a game that will tax your reflexes and your intelligence (not this only applies if you install the latest community patches as without them combat is a joke). The quests you get do not provide you with arrows pointing all the way to the destination or clear entries on your map. It's up to you to figure out how to do stuff and where to go. This is not a game that holds you by the hand to make adventuring as streamlined and polished as possible but to me that adds to the immersion and satisfaction of succeeding. If you ever get seriously stuck there are plenty of guides online to help out.

- Almost no generic characters and lots of voice acted dialogue. Almost every npc you meet is a character who has at least a few lines of unique, voice acted things to say. This really added to the immersion for me.

If you are a fan of RPGs you owe it to yourself to give this game a try (but be sure to download all the patches including the community ones). Otherwise you might miss a fantastic rpg experience that is easily the equal of other classics such as Morrowind, Oblivion and Baldur's Gate.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars really great rpg, just thrown too early on the market, 6 Nov 2006
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Gothic 3 (PC DVD) (Computer Game)
Now after two patches, the game really makes a lot of fun. Most bugs and glitches have been fixed, and some unnerving game balance issues were solved, for example Nordmaar: It was an adventure just to run through the area in the first versions, and quests were more or less impossible to do without heavy armor, because of the lots of predators there. Now Nordmaar is less crawling with dangerous animals and generally all animals in the game are far weaker now. In the release version, a lone boar could easily kill a high level hero if close enough.

System crashes are very rare , at least on my system, it runs stable.

Graphics are really good, but Oblivion still looks better, and that on weaker systems.

This leads to the real problem of the game: It was just released a month to early!

Despite the now solved bug issues, the whole balancing is shoddy and the story gets pretty thin towards the ending. The whole thing feels hasted. System requirements are far to high considering Oblivion.

This reminds me of Kotor 2, which was also released too early, but the Piranha Bytes Team at least managed to repair the game with 2 big patches after only 3 weeks. Shame on the publisher to release an unfinished product!

Still, it's a really epic rpg, a lot of fun to play and certainly no wasted money.
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20 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Clear mix of opinions here isn't there?, 6 Nov 2006
By 
Clever Spud (Birmingham) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Gothic 3 (PC DVD) (Computer Game)
From the ever dubious glowing first review to the people who've given up too easily. I've played with an out of the box install on a 3400XP 2gig ram, 7800GS system without any problems at all but other people have definitely had issues. More ram seems to help the most. There's been a patch released since launch and another one due.

The Gothics never handed you anything on a plate and have always been a little rough around the edges but offer the meatiest roleplay experience in my opinion.

I had to liberate an orc held city. Well actually I didn't have to but it was an option. I was having difficulty doing it by convential means so I lead a troop of monster from a nearby cave into the city and let the orcs deal with them first. By the time the battle was over the city was ripe for conquering. Just one example of how you could solve a quest in G3. There were probably other unorthodox means I could have used but I'll reserve that for my second play through.

I can understand how frustration with gameplay issues and crashes would lead anyone to dismiss this game and if that's going to be an issue then you should wait perhaps a month or two for a definitive patch before deciding to buy it. But do buy it.
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25 of 33 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Great expectations.... but, 14 Jan 2007
By 
H. Walton (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
= Fun:1.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Gothic 3 (PC DVD) (Computer Game)
Gothic 3 has probably been the most eagerly awaited follow-up (at least by afficianados of Gothic 2) for many a long year. It took no time at all for its promise as a graphically stunning, massive RPG to be fulfilled... but a little longer for the flaws to start showing themselves.

In the first place, it requires a top-notch system (faster than 3GB with a high-end graphics card and at least 2GB of memory) to run with any show of eagerness. In the second: this game is bugged. No, it's not bugged: it's infested. It was clearly published in a hurry by a company far too eager to get its hands on its customers' money. If it was play-tested at all, then the developers ignored what must have been a huge catalogue of errors, omissions and crashes.

Two patches have been released, neither of which does more than scratch the surface of the problems with which this game is beset; massive improvements are called for if the game's potential is to become even close to being realised and it's doubtful if that will ever happen.

My own feelings on playing Gothic 3 are of being enormously impressed by the graphics and atmosphere... and then utterly and completely frustrated by the interminable bugs and crashes. I left it incomplete and will take a lot of reassuring and convincing before I buy Gothic 4... Piranha Bytes please note!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Gothic 3 - Major RPG, 3 May 2014
By 
Andy (London, UK) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Gothic 3 (PC DVD) (Computer Game)
Finally got around to playing this game (in 2014) and what a pleasure this epic RPG is proving to be. I thought I'd played all the best/major 'swords and magic' RPGs but this game is right up there with the best of them.

Gothic 3 is quite a few years old now but still looks and plays a treat. The game has many of the key elements that are familiar to fans of the genre - massive open world, lot's of quests, spells and weapons aplenty, varied bestiary, alchemy, crafting etc.

The game itself has a buggy history but this has been rectified with the community patch which is freely downloadable or available bundled with the Gold edition. The patch also allows optional modification (toughening up?) of the gameplay balancing and combat mechanism.

The game has a few drawbacks - a) Due to the unbounded open world design, it can be jerky when loading data as you move around the game world. b) The savegames are a bit slow to load (20 secs on my PC, although apparently this is a vast improvement on the pre-patched versions). c) The ironically? advertised 'Specially designed easy combat system' can at times just be an exercise in mouse mashing (although the community patch does provide an option to address this issue).

Above niggles aside, Gothic 3 is an essential must-play for RPG fans. It'll keep you occupied for weeks and weeks.
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