Summary: A great introduction is not always a portent of things to come. Venetica begins in the middle of chaos: Murderous bandits have taken their swords to a small mountain village. They move with deadly precision, laying waste to the meager buildings while slaying any red-blooded protector who tries to stem their violence. And just when this vile rampage draws to a close, you find out that the heroine, Scarlett, is the daughter of Death.
Pros: Dialogue choices help shape your character, Good artistic design
Cons: Shallow and mindless combat, Poorly developed antagonists, Frame rate troubles and other technical issues, Seriously flawed map, Repetitive quests
Even the daughter of Death can't bring this game back to life
25 January 2011
Conclusion: It's impossible to recommend Venetica to anyone when there are so many other better action-RPGs out there. You might be tempted to pick it up because it's only forty dollars, but don't do it... unless you've already played every other RPG on the market.
Pros: Reduced price, OK narrative, A few interesting boss fights
Excerpt: The role playing genre is a crowded one on the Xbox 360, probably not too far behind first person shooters and sports games in regards to popular releases. To compete in this marketplace, you really have to create something original to the space as well as launch with a high production value and involving gameplay. Deck 13 tried to do that with their release of Venetica, a RPG set in 17th century Italy that follows a depressing narrative around an orphan named Scarlett.
Excerpt: Like unique settings and imaginative plots? Then you’ll appreciate the backbone of this light RPG. Venetica casts you as Death’s daughter, who, after being orphaned and having her simpering boyfriend die, finds that she has the power to take on a bunch of undead goons who are stinking up Venice.
Pros: + Occasionally pretty; unique setting with an initially interesting plot.
Cons: - Chuggy game engine that makes gorgeous vistas a chore to navigate., - Overly simplistic combat that doesn’t evolve much; awful voice-acting., ? Is the game name a plus or a minus? We can’t decide.
Excerpt: On the rare occasions that I sit down and play an RPG, I usually don’t expect that much. I’m an outsider in the RPG scene, and as such tend to view them through a less sophisticated lens. So long as I can understand the basics of the story and muddle my way through the combat, I’ll say my time was well spent. Yet when I play Venetica—a basic action RPG with a vaguely interesting premise—I can’t help but feel so…bad.
Pros: I'm sure there's one around here somewhere...
Conclusion: As briefly noted before, a second playthrough is required due to evil/good tendencies, but breezes past once you know how to quickly get through the main quest line. So overall - as a game, Venetica offers more than enough to those wanting a solid action rpg in the vein of Fable - but as a complete package, the unpatched glitches and game-breaking design flaws means that any purchase should be very carefully considered.