Alright, look. This was a game that I wasn't excited for in the least. The writer's a fairly untalented stock fantasy writer, the artist is apparently Todd McFarlane, two people for whom I have little love. The lead designer is the guy who apparently also designed Morrowind and Oblivion, and the worst edition of Paranoia (2nd, sorry guys). And since they marketed it so heavily promoting those guys, I just said, "I'll pass."
Well today I'm giving it a shot, and holy crap does it want me to dislike it.
Look, I'm not an easy guy to impress, I get that. But look at this shit.
The combat is floaty and it feels like I'm swinging around cardboard. No sense of impact or weight or damage, but if it cranks up later in the game that's fine. I'm willing to give this one a sec.
Destructable crates are passe but make their presence here. Bows and ranged attacks auto-aim and seem to be massively superior to actually hitting things with fists, which is also fine, if a little strange. There's rudimentary stealth, wherein you enter stealth mode and creep around for a while. If you get close to somebody you get to do a very unintentionally silly auto-kill stab thing, which is whatever.
The motion blur is driving me crazy, and my character wants to leap and bound about when I so much as tap A or D, which is really, really annoying. He won't just walk, it's like everything has to be bigger and bolder because LOOK how pretty I am, the game's saying.
I don't think this'll be one that I keep playing on and on, but we'll see. It feels like somebody looked at Fable 1, went "Yes, that's perfect" and then content themselves with just making it prettier instead of actually adding anything cool to the game. But Fable's a rather light-hearted jaunt through a big and pretty world, and I don't know if Amalur has the same spark that Fable had. I guess I'll find out.
Also: Your shield appears on your arm when you use it, and you put your weapon on your back while blocking for some reason. Did I mention that the camera angles are shit? Sometimes it runs away from me, and I find myself obscured underneath the minimap while the camera helpfully displays a completely inert patch of ground.
And please, why are there roaring spiders? This spider just popped out of the ground, stood there and sorta squeak-roared at me. Spiders don't have vocal chords, and I'm reasonably sure animals aren't interested in trying to intimidate me. It's like the worst monster cliche. Why does every monster stand and roar while I get to watch the cinematic camera pan around it for a sec? IT'S A FUCKING SPIDER, WHO CARES?
This just happened: I killed a troll, and did a quick time event where I SPEARED IT IN THE EYE WITH A LIGHTNING SPEAR THING that apparently I can summon now? But obviously only after I've killed a troll, because otherwise I just have to shoot regular magic or else summon fire out of this staff I got from a chest. Who keeps putting their unlocked chests out where people can see them? Who knows, no time to ask questions, adventurer, you've got to finish the tutorial level!
So far this game is a 5/10, but we'll have to see where it's going. I can only hope it gets better.