This is the English Wiki of the Gothic RPG series. The series was developed by the German team Piranha Bytes (aka Pluto13), the very first video game, Gothic, being launched in 2001.
Gothic, by contrast, wasn’t especially quite. Its setting wasn’t the particular underground world of Arx Fatalis, nor the varied alien landscape of Morrowind. Instead, Piranha Bytes acknowledged back in 2001 that a location is a location not due to the fact that of its landscape or biome or structures, however since individuals there make it one.
It’s such a simple idea in essence, but underestimating it is woefully common in other video games. Settlements without any ways of sustenance. Individuals loafing awaiting a passing stranger to inexplicably discharge their problems onto while stuffing potions into their kecks. Places that exist for factor but the gamer’s input, and others that should exist but in some way don’t. Even the illusory animations and behaviours put other games to embarassment – NPCs respond if they see you aiming a bow or leaving a private location. The day/night cycle sees miners sleep and work and gather to chatter around campfires with meat and beer. I saw one guy wade into waist-high water, but instead of leaving him stuck there permanently, somebody provided him the sense and animations to climb out.
All this setup shows an ongoing thoughtfulness that’s essential to Gothic’s appeal. After the revolt, the prisoners split into three camps – one honouring the arrangement with the King, the others working on separate escape plans. It ‘d be simple to set these camps up as novelty play areas, extreme poles of Good, Bad, and Foolish Wizard Hat, but Piranha Bytes were smarter. The Old Camp devotes whatever to maintaining ore exports, and securing the resulting imports from the rebellious New Camp, whose theft and raids supplement their rice crops. On the other hand, the 3rd Sect camp pray to a dormant god in hope of liberation, and compromise the excess of their holy drug, together with plants and casts.
Gothic is no simulation, and the typical odd economics of the RPG apply. An axe injury’s seriousness depends on its pricetag, and miners subsist on the breadline when they might become billionaire demigods in a week by selling junk and stabbing wildlife, however these idiosyncrasies are more quickly brushed off when everything else is so persuading. I typically dislike ‘protection’ plans in games however here I wound up paying one guard after I dispatched a jerk he sent out to beat me up. There were no difficult sensations, and by then I felt able to spare a small sum just to keep the peace. It feels worth it. The cost of belonging, not just a here is the random shakedown occasion, choice A or B” moment.