“Divinity Original Sin:Enhanced Edition” – Interview with Larian Studios

Last updated on July 30th, 2015

 

For those of you who may not know Divinity: Original Sin is coming to Next Gen consoles this fall. It has won over 150 awards, and Gamespot named it the PC Game of the Year in 2014. If you’re looking for a Classic RPG to play while you are waiting for Fallout 4 or Dark Souls III, I would highly recommend this game. It has been given a complete makeover from top to bottom and will be an even better version of an already amazing game. Having put well over 100 hundred hours into it on Steam, I can honestly say that I’m really excited to play this on console. Not only for the new content, but also for the couch co op!!! Seriously though, more games need this feature.

I was fortunate enough to get to play with Swen Vincke, founder of Larian Studios (while having a beer), and get to interview David Walgrave, Executive Producer of Divinity: Original Sin, at E3. I put the interview I did with him over some console gameplay footage so you guys could see a bit of the game while listening to the interview. I also transcribed the questions and answers below if you’d rather read them.

David was such a great interview! He is really what you envision developers to be. His responses are candid and real and you can really tell he loves gaming. A big thanks to him for taking the time to speak with me. Also, a big big THANK YOU to both of them for hooking me up with a Collectors Edition of the game on my way out. These are all but sold out on the internet! It was way too generous of them!

Divinity Original Sin was a Kickstarter program. How did it start? How were you able to spin it to so much success?

“As we were finishing up the game, we thought [what] if we had a couple of months more…to make it even better? There were a couple of things planned that we couldn’t do anymore and the “action” was also becoming more flexible than we thought. With just that little injection of bit more money, we felt we could make this so much better and so much more!”“There are now things in the game that we didn’t have before. We planned only 4 schools of skills and we now have 7-8.”“Thanks to Kickstarter, more people knew this and we also learnt that we have a huge audience backing us up that we didn’t even realize…..I think we wanted $200,000 but we got a $1,000,000 out of it!… We were all like ‘OH MY GOD!’”

Did you guys ever think the game would come to console?

“No. Even thinking of it while we were making the game [we were like] ‘Oh my god this is so difficult!’ “, “How can you get all this control and interaction out of something like a controller? Also we didn’t think there would be an audience for this on console…. But once we got the controls working on a controller we were very  confident that especially with the newer hardware on the consoles…we can pull this off!”

When does the game launch on PS4 and Xbox One?

“We’re saying Fall 2015, most probably October”

Will PC Owners get a discount?

“PC gamers who own the current edition right now, will get the enhanced edition for free. If you have it on Steam or GOG, the game will automatically be added to your library.”

“We’re just rewarding the people who gave us all the feedback. It’s not about generosity, this is what they deserve.”

Will players on PC be able to transfer saved games?

“Unfortunately not since the story has changed so much…so they are not compatible with the enhanced edition.”

What has changed in the game?

“We removed all the copy of skills (e.g. small,medium, large fireballs à fireball, meteor strike, etc.)….We made the statuses unique (e.g. bleeding and blinding should be unique to the role)…..We improved progression of skills…All the buffing and debuffing of skills cost a lot less Action Points than they used to…this has all completely changed the tactic of the combat!”

“For quests we removed the choices that nobody ever thought of and added those people on the forums requested. We also clarified and shortened dialogues to make them better. Design is not always right. We don’t live in some ivory towers going ‘this is how it should be’.”

Do you have any plans for an expansion or a sequel?

“At the moment no. We’re still thinking about it together with Microsoft and Sony.”

What are your inspirations for the game and how do they influence it?

Everyone has different inspiration…for instance from the design team…some are inspired from the Ultima series of games…for all the interactions, different possibilities and freedoms….But as for me its more of turn based games from the Gold Box series such as Champions of Krynn, Death Knights of Krynn, The Dark Queen of Krynn etc….. Our lead designer gets inspiration from whatever he has played on all the different consoles while others learn from other major AAA titles.”

How Divinity: Original Sin is different from your previous games? What did you try to do differently or to improve?

“We actually went back to where we started. We always wanted to make a party-based RPG with turn-based combat but the publishers always wanted action RPGs since games like Diablo were popular.  So the first Divinities were action games. But for this game we just gave it our all. It was a big gamble….And this is the big difference from the old divinity games….we have nothing holding us back.”

Why did you decide to have a multiplayer on this? Was it difficult to achieve?

“Multiplayer stuff is fun. The team at Larian Studios are all old Table-Top RPG players…. So an RPG to us is like something [to which] you crack open a beer and do with friends. The more people you have, the more fun you get.”

Will there be local and/or online co-op? How many players can play at once?

“Yes and Yes.[There will be both modes]. Up to 2 players at once.”

Will players require ‘PS Plus’ or ‘Xbox Live Gold’ to play online?

“We’re still working on this. Although for Local Co-op obviously not.”

I hope you guys enjoyed the interview and learned some things about the Enhanced Edition of the game. One of the things that really blew me away was that they completely revamped the camera to be completely 360 degrees! Imagine Diablo III doing that and you get some idea of how much effort that must have been. I fully intend to Platinum this game on PS4 and I hope you guys are as excited about it as I am.

 

Official Website

Divinity: Original Sin Wiki

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Senior Editor at Fextralife. I enjoy gaming, playing and watching sports, cooking yummy food, watching a good movie and hanging out with Fex.

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