Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire – Review

Release Date
January 28, 2020
Versus Evil
Obsidian Entertainment
PC, PS4, Xbox One
Reviewed on
Review copy provided by
Versus Evil

Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire is the much-awaited sequel to Pillars of Eternity. The game first came out to PC back in 2018 and then it was ported to consoles this year. If you are into roleplaying and tabletop games, this game is something you might want to look into. But first, let’s find out what this game is all about.

POE II: Deadfire is a direct sequel to the previous game. The game takes us 5 years after the first game. Your character has lived and prospered as a Watcher in a mighty kingdom. But not all stories end in a happy ending and it is definitely not the case in this story. The god, Eothas has awoken from his slumber and wreaked some havoc throughout the land. His wrath laid waste to the kingdom and killed many people as he ate their souls. Your character even lost part of his soul but he was then contacted by another God who brought him back to life.

If you had a save game of the first game, you can actually port the story and the decisions you made there into this game. The actions and decisions you did in the first game will also affect all the decisions in this one. I really like games where there’s continuity involved, especially when it’s a role-playing game. I like that you are able to continue the story that you built up from the ground and see the effect that it does on this game. Telltale games come to mind that has similarities to what they have done there but obviously this one is on much more of a bigger scale. You can even use the same character that you created in the first game as this is essentially the continuation of that character’s story.

I really love the level of detail they have placed into this game. Although I wish there was a way you could zoom in to appreciate all the finer details. You can even see your characters make splashes on the puddles of water. The controls can get a little confusing as it takes a while to get used to it, especially if you’ve never played these types of games on a console. But once you’ve learned how to navigate this game, it will come naturally like being able to breathe,

The combat seems to have been simplified this time around as you can choose varying levels of difficulty while playing the game. You can also explore the open seas with your ship once you get further in the game. Special Events in the game sometimes occur which involves your character to make decisions that can succeed or fail depending on stats that your party currently has. It’s really like playing a tabletop D&D game.

The game can also be a bit overwhelming especially when you have to level up your characters. There are just so many spells, skills and passive abilities to choose from. You’d probably take so much time just having to decide which skill or which ability to unlock. Add to that the many attributes that you also have to level up. I feel like the game is giving you way too much customization just to make it feel more authentic but of course, what would an RPG game be if it doesn’t do just that?

The menus are a bit sluggish as there seems to be a delay that occurs when you equip an item. And the one thing I really didn’t like about this game is the many loading screens that you have to watch and endure. Go inside a house, it’s a loading screen. Get outside of town, it’s a loading screen. Go up a second floor of the house, yet another loading screen. Oh, an event occurs! I’m ready to – oh wait it’s another loading screen. I feel like the game is 70% loading screen and 30% exploration. I wish the devs would somehow fix that part of the game but it could be that it is that way because of the level of detail they have placed on everything. In my opinion, though, it definitely deserves some optimization.

Overall, POE II: Deadfire is a welcome addition to the tabletop RPGs for the console. I really love the great attention to detail. The ever branching story based on your decisions. And the crew of ragtag heroes that you can always replace and recruit from your old tavern. If you are into tabletop RPG, then this game is definitely worth getting into.

Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire – Review
Score Definition
When the issues of a game are rolled and stomped by its greatness, then it’s something to invest on if you have some spare.
Fully immersive world
Tabletop RPG elements goodness
Great attention to detail
Too many loading screens to fully enjoy the game
Takes awhile to get used to game's controls
Game delays especially when equipping