The statement in the title gets more weight when you find out that studio that made Grim Dawn consists out of veteran developers, many of them worked on Titan Quest, the best ARPG since Diablo 2. In Grim Dawn, they took all the good stuff from Titan Quest and implemented them along with new game mechanics that work perfectly together.
As with many similar games, the story revolves around some sort of breach between dimensions, your character gets possessed by demons and the only way of saving you is killing you. But you survive somehow (find out how in the game’s opening cinematic) and start a revenge spree during which thousands of monsters will be killed while your character gets stronger in order to face the final battle that should happen after around 45-50 hours of gameplay.
Gameplay is similar to most other ARPGs, with a couple of twists. Similar to Titan Quest you can choose two classes, and there are some wicked combinations. The classes are standard, consisting out of the soldier, couple of mage classes, a combination of previous two, and a couple of surprises. Leveling is fast, the value of loot is much higher than in Diablo 3, making Grim Dawn extremely addicting and rewarding at the same time.
Health is restored pretty fast when out of combat, making potions less significant; every class is different and demand a different approach and while loot drops are frequent you’ll seldom get the pieces you need, driving you forward and giving you a strong reason to continue. Every faction has its own relation meter, being friendly with a particular faction gets you better equipment and side-quests, but stepping on their toes will make stronger enemies to appear, harder to beat but usually tougher enemies mean more experience and better loot.
Graphics will not make you fascinated, but it isn’t bad either; nice lighting, rich textures, and solid performance are countered with poor character animation and lack of details on buildings and character models. Environments can get monotonous after a while, with a constant rotation of forests, farmlands, dark meadows and dungeons that are very similar in design. On the other hand, enemies are varied, coming in many forms and sizes, always giving you something different to kill.
All in all, Grim Dawn is a fantastic game and one of the best ARPG’s ever. The urge to reach “just one more level,” enjoyable character progress, (mostly) nice graphics, excellent gameplay, and a huge world to explore guarantee fun times from the beginning to the final boss. After that, when the elite difficulty unlocks, it’s time to banish ethereal forces again, this time with tougher enemies and better loot. Grim Dawn should be checked out by every person who enjoyed Diablo series, Titan Quest, or both. A premiere APRG that will be played frequently in years to come.