Divinity: Original Sin is the latest entry in the Divinity RPG series by Larian Studios. Taking place hundreds of years beforeDivine Divinity, it revisits the idea of dual protagonists from Beyond Divinity: a pair of Source Hunters, members of an order dedicated to stamping out a dangerous magic called Source, investigate a murder in disaster ridden Cyseal. The Star Stone left at the scene of the crime blasts the Source Hunters to a shelter dimension called the End of Time, where an imp and the Weaver of Time recruit them into saving existence from the Void Maelstrom, and maybe finding out why the place seems so familiar.Originally funded internally, Larian ran out of money in early 2013 leading to a Kickstarter campaign that brought in over one million dollars. The game was released on June 30, 2014, to critical and commercial success.Watch the teaser trailer here.
The game contains examples of following tropes:
Always Check Behind the Chair: If you're having trouble lockpicking some doors/chests, you'll be pleased to know the relevant key (if not hanging on the wall somewhere or nestled in someone's pocket) might be hidden under an object such as a chair, a tub, a pork roast, or even under the chest itself. Useful information if you're playing a Kleptomaniac Hero who breaks into people's houses.
Amnesiac God: The Source Hunters. Well, they are not actual gods, but in their past life as the Guardians of the Source, they were as close to divinity as mortals can get. As penance for failing to protect the Gold Box, they erased themselves from the fabric of time, destroying everyone's memories (including their own) of their past selves.
An Axe to Grind: One and two-handed versions. They deal the most damage of all melee weapons.
Artificial Brilliance: As noted below (see Geo Effects), enemies can and will use the environment to their advantage as well as use certain attacks in tandem. An example would be when two archers fire a poison arrow and then a fire arrow at your character, causing significant damage.
Enemies will go around your own the pools of hazards. They also heal and buff themselves and make good use of their action points.
Bare Your Midriff: Subverted: The female character in the official artwork was originally wearing stripperiffic armor, but after listening to backers, the artists added extra armor to cover her midriff.
Back Stab: It does massive damage, but you must take the back-stabber talent, use a puny dagger and be precisely behind your target.
BFS: Madora's default weapon and you too can make use of them.
Boring, but Practical: The humble Rain spell can put out fires, burning teammates, or bomb fuses, and the puddles it creates can wash away oil or poisonous gunk. It also applies the "Wet" condition to all combatants, increasing their fire resistance and decreasing their water and electricity resistance; thus, starting up a rainstorm is a great idea when faced with fire-flinging enemies. And then you can charge the puddle you just made with an electricity-based spell to stun everyone in that puddle.
Canon Name: The default names for the PC Source Hunters are Roderick and Scarlet.
Character Class System: Subverted: You can select a "class" at character creation, but these are really just predefined templates for attribute, skill point, and talent distribution than actual rigid class definitions. The only definite thing that the "classes" do is give you a specific weapon and set of armor to start with.
Chest Monster: You can come across what seems to be one of these. It's a suicide bomber hiding in the chest itself.
City Guards: A lot, including the expected patrols as well as quest givers. Cyseal is crawling with them.
Co-Op Multiplayer/Drop-In-Drop-Out Multiplayer: When playing online, a friend can join your game at any time and take over the controls of the other protagonist for a while (though, since the game is saved on the server host's computer, the host can impose limitations on what the guest player can do). The devs were so fond of this feature, they included two copies of the game in one of the lowest Kickstarter reward tiers and the Collector's Edition.
Dem Bones: The skeletons are resistant and immune to many attacks, such as bleeding, poison, piercing and so forth. The skeleton archers are nasty as they can shoot Trick Arrows. you can also summon them.
Two new characters were released as part of a patch on September 15, 2014: Bairdotr, a female ranger from the Homeforest searching for a missing druid, and Wolgraff, a male rogue who lost his voice due to a Sourcerer at a young age and turned to less savory work after being rejected from the Order.
Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors: Played with. Earth/Poison, Fire, Air/Electricity, Water/Ice. Elemental counters aren't simple, though, and using certain sets of elements can create powerful lingering status effects or incredible blasts of damage.
Escort Mission: If you choose to help the missing archaeologist Wulfram get back to Cyseal, you will have to complete one of these, as he blindly charges towards the nearest city gate, running into three mandatory undead ambushes, all of which target him by default. At least he doesn't play hero in combat. There's another escort mission in Luculla Forest where you have to protect a man, his wife and their pack beast on their way to Silverglen.
Everything's Deader with Zombies: You not only get the standard human zombie, but get ready for zombie versions of trolls, dogs, boars and much worse. They all leak poison when hit, which actually heals them....
Failed a Spot Check: Didn't invest any points in the Perception attribute? Your field of vision is reduced, you might not hear nearby enemies, and you won't find traps, hidden treasure, or some switches.
Flavor Equipment: Tons of it. The devs' favorite example of the game world's interactivity is that you can wear a bucket for a helm and fight enemies with a broomstick.
Fragile Speedster: You can spend all your points in the Speed attribute and max your actions points while neglecting all the other aspects of your character.
Geo Effects: Player and NPC alike can use the environment to good effect (or to their own detriment) in and out of combat. For example, puddles of water conduct electricity and smoke obscures vision. Players can also create their own Geo Effects, such as using the Rain spell to generate water puddles or put out fires. There are also perks which can benefit you via Geo Effects.
Giant Spider: Big large poisonous spiders that love to sneak on you. You can also summon one with the geomancer skill.
The Spider Queen is an even larger example, being several times the size of your characters.
Glass Cannon: One of the available talents carries this name, and if chosen will turn your character into this.note It doubles your action points but halves your health.
Hell Is That Noise: Death Knights, powerful enemies that are completely invulnerable without a certain plot coupon, are announced by the earth-shaking stomping of their armored boots, from up to one or two screens away. Several NPCs who survived encounters with Death Knights find the sound terrifying.
Helmets Are Hardly Heroic: You can equip each party member with some headgear and it always provides the armor/stat boost when worn, but you can individually set their helmets to be always shown, always hidden, or to only be shown in combat.
Impossible Item Drop: Played with. Lowly mooks will drop items they were using to fight while creatures/animals drop body parts or nothing. However, named unique opponents will drop random magic items.
Intertwined Fingers: The default protagonists do it on the promotional images. How intimate they grow in the actual game, however, depends on the player's decisions, but the Word of God hints that hand-holding has a deeper in-story meaning than just personal closeness.
Item Crafting: The game encourages experimentation. Sometimes the results are logical: using a whetstone on a sword increases damage. Sometimes the results are outlandish: Combining Swirling Mud and a Fiery Heart yields an Infinity–1 Sword. Then there's the logical but-why-would-you-think-to-try-that, like carving a pumpkin into a jack-o-lantern helmet.
Tenebrium weapons are nearly required for the endgame. You can use what tenebrium weapons you find, or turn your weapon of choice into one with Crafting 5.
Level Editor: The game shipped with one, with the express purpose to start up a modding community from day one.
Level-Locked Loot: Toyed with. Using weapons while you're below the required level will cost more action point to yield. You still need to fill the minimum requirement in strength/dexterity/intelligence however.
Noob Cave: The cave at the beach. Of course, with open nature of the game you can always skip it.
NPC Scheduling: The game was supposed to have it, along with a day-night cycle, thanks to beating the final, $1M Kickstarter stretch goal, but despite delaying the release to get it done, the devs ultimately gave up on the idea due to time and budgetary constraints.
Optional Sexual Encounter: Subverted and Played for Laughs with a vengeance: near Silverglen's inn, you'll find a man and a woman spouting sultry pickup lines and each offering to fulfill your wildest fantasies for a moderate fee (and bemoaning the lack of customers ever since the prudish cult of the Conduit moved in). Upon payment, they'll lead you to a private upstairs room with a huge bed and lots of candles, lock the door, ask for your preferences (e.g. Ruby, the woman, asks whether you prefer nymphs or witches), and ultimately dramatically read you a passage from a fairy tale book of corresponding (perfectly PG) content. Somewhere, Fall-from-Grace is smiling.
Organ Drops: Various animals parts: claws, teeth, tusks, hides, etc. All these can be crafted into other objects.
Our Orcs Are Different: In Original Sin, they are the green-skinned, proud barbaric warrior race variety. And they're out for blood.
Personality Powers: Kinda. As your protagonists develop personality traits, they get special bonuses to their abilities. For example: on the Righteous-Renegade axis, someone who is Righteous gets a +1 bonus to their Leadership ability, whereas a Renegade gets a +1 bonus to their Pickpocket ability. Another example: on the Spiritual-Materialistic axis, a Materialist gets a +1 bonus to their Loremaster ability, but someone who is Spiritual becomes immune to the Fear status effect.
Persuasion Minigame: Whenever the player characters get into an argument among themselves or with an NPC, they must pick a mode of persuasion (intimidation, charm, or reasoning) and play a game of Rock-Paper-Scissors, where every win awards a number of points determined by the character's Charisma score and, in dialogue with NPCs, by the expediency of the chosen persuasion mode in the given situation. Whichever side gains the target total points first wins the argument.
Rainbow Pimp Gear: Like all modern RPG. You have dyes and the option to not show your helm to lessen the impact.
Red Herring: In relation to Councillor Jake's murder, Esmeralda. Literally everything about her just screams that she's responsible. She's not.
Relationship Values: Not only do the NPCs like or dislike you depending on what your say and your reputation, but there is also a complex relationship dynamic between the protagonists, wherein they acquire different personality traits based on their interactions, some of which improve their compatibility with each other, while other disrupt it.
Robbing the Dead: Go ahead. Take a shovel to the graveyard in Cyseal, or any grave for that matter.
Save Scumming: Loot finds are randomly generated, making it perfectly possible to save just before opening a chest and keep re-loading until you get something you can use.
Sequence Breaking: It's possible, with good tactics, a balanced party, and the right combination of missed details, to complete the second half of the main quest in Luculla Forest ( the Immaculate trials) without finishing the first half ( freeing the White Witch). The first time you're likely to notice this is when the chapter boss Mangoth wipes the floor with you because of all the experience you missed.
Side Quest: The bread and butter of all adventurers. There are many ways to resolve them depending on your skills and the interactions you have.
Skill Scores and Perks: At character creation and upon leveling up, you get points to spend on the Abilities (skill scores) and Talents (perks), with the latter ranging from simple stat boosts to abilities that unlock whole new gameplay venues.
Speaks Fluent Animal: There is a perk that lets a character speak with any animal in the game. They often provide useful background information and you can even get quests from some of them. Rats in particular pretty much always give you a useful tidbit of information about upcoming challenges or secrets.
Suicide Attack: One particular kind of enemy (a giggling skeleton with a giant bomb on its back) will perform this and only this, and will explode upon death regardless of how it died. Savvy players can stop this from happening by extinguishing the bomb fuse with water—which is actually required to complete a minor sidequest in the Silverglen inn, where one such enemy threatens to blow up an innocent and you have only a few seconds to react.
Take Your Time: Dying NPCs with critical information will not-so-gladly wait while you explore every nook and cranny, then die just after talking to you, regardless of how long you take. Subverted with the burning ship hidden quest at the beginning; if you don't take care of it right away the ship sinks.
Trick Arrow: There is an almost obscene number of these, and they can be found or crafted. Examples include (but are not limited to) various stat-related effects as well as smokescreen, stun, knockdown, slowdown, charming, grenade, poison, freezing arrows and more.
Turn-Based Combat: Original Sin features tactical turn-based combat with initiative, action points, and free movement. One interesting quirk is that ending the turn early preserves the character's action points for the next turn, letting them carry out more actions then.
Universal Poison: Played straight unless you take the zombie talent which makes poison heal you instead.
Vendor Trash: Practically all the items in the game, no matter how mundane or useless, can be traded for cash or other items.
We Buy Anything: Not only merchants will accept anything from you, everybody can barter anything with you. From ordinary citizens to ghosts and even some enemies. The only exception are animals and NPCs who need to be persuaded to trade with you first.
You Have Researched Breathing: You'd think the Helping Hand skill, which helps knocked-down allies back on their feet and pats out the flames if they're on fire, would be this trope, but considering how it seems to work at a distance, it must involve some form of telekinesis.