Kingdoms of Amalur features five distinct regions with four playable races. There are three class trees with 22 abilities per tree. The races of Amalur are the Almain, the civilized humans, the Dokkalfar, the dark elves, the Ljosalfar, the elves of light, and the Varani, who are nomadic humans. You start off as a “blank slate”, but can afterwards choose a class among the three available in the game. These are called Might (fighter), Finesse (Rogue), and Sorcery (Mage). As the player fights enemies and finishes quests, they gain experience and unlock levels as one would expect from an RPG. With each level, the player gains one talent point and three ability points which can be spent in the skill-tree system to unlock or augment the 22 abilities in each of the three disciplines. Completing Faction quests and investing ability points, the player can also unlock various “fates”, which add positive buffs to the player.
Reckoning is set in the Faelands, one of the Kingdoms of Amalur where the immortal Fae of the Summer and Winter Courts reside. The Faelands are divided into several separate regions: the forests of Dalentarth, the Plains of Erathell, the canyon territories of Detyre, the marshes of Klurikon and the crystal kingdom of Alabastra.
Throughout the Faelands are settlements that belong to the mortal races of the Almain, the Varani, the Ljosalfar, the Dokkalfar; and the Alfar. It is these mortal races that the Gadflow’s Tuatha Deohn – corrupted Winter Fae – seek to exterminate in their “Crystal War”, not only in the Faelands but in the neighboring kingdoms as well.
This game is incredible! This world of Amalur is so filled with amazing detail seems alive all around you. I have about 8 hours invested so far and it feels like I’ve only begun to venture forth. I have reached a modest level 26 and have been investing my ability points primarily in the Sorcery category. The game play is smooth and flawless. The battle engine is unique and easy to use. This game sings innovation, uniqueness and has few to none of the glitches that plague so many other RPG’s. It is amazing and disheartening that this game has not sold better than it has. I remember thinking “how odd that these dorks at GameStop have never heard of this game” when reserving my copy several months before its release.
In my opinion EA dropped the ball. This could have been great competition for Bethesda’s Skyrim, which unlike Amalur, is plagued with problems ranging from glitches to games frequently crashing. Sometimes I wonder if the majority of gamers these days just buy what they are told is cool by the publishers and the media paid to write endorsements instead of honest reviews, and of course GameStop. I see the dismal sales of Amalur and am astounded at the number of 12 year old’s who continue to purchase tripe from the Call of Duty franchise that’s plagued with cheaters and rehashed maps that are being sold to them over and over again. I find it amazing that this gem has been passed up by the gaming media and gaming enthusiasts. But please don’t take my word for it – play it! You won’t be disappointed!