Divinity: Original Sin was a surprise success when it released last year, combining old-school PC role-playing game roots with a brilliant co-op-centric turn-based system. Soon console owners will be able to try it for themselves.
Developer Larian Studios has announced Divinity: Original Sin Enhanced Edition, a new version of the RPG that will be released for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Windows PC, Mac, Linux and SteamOS. The computer versions of Enhanced Edition will be a separate product, which means saved games from the original release won't transfer. However, anyone who has purchased Divinity: Original Sin will get Enhanced Edition free of charge.
Enhanced Edition's many changes include a new controller-friendly user interface, a split-screen local co-op mode, hours of new quests and combat encounters and reworked dialogue that is now all fully voiced.
"It has a truckload of changes versus the original game," Larian Studios founder and creative director Swen Vincke told Polygon. "Literally thousands of little improvements here and there."
Vincke said that split-screen co-op was planned as a part of Original Sin from the beginning, but it wasn't until after the game was released that Larian was able to begin experimenting with it. This led to the developer wanting to tweak other parts of the game.
"The biggest point of criticism was always that the story was not the strongest, so we thought we'd fix that too," Vincke said. "And well, if we're re-doing the dialogue, we might as well voice it. So we started recording at the end of December, and we're still recording new voices. We've been doing that non-stop. It's been quite a gargantuan task on that front."
One of the biggest parts of that huge undertaking? A totally new ending. "We changed that completely," Vincke said. "It's really much cooler and feels more complete in a way. We want there to be a strong sense of satisfaction when you finish the game, even if only a small percentage of players will actually get there given how long the game is."
As for why Larian decided to bring the PC-centric game to console, Vincke said that numerous publishers were "knocking on our door for it." While the first version of Divinity: Original Sin was self-published, Larian decided to team up with Focus Home Interactive for the console version.
"Focus isn't the most obvious choice, because they're not the biggest publisher in the world," Vincke said. "The biggest publishers were pitching for it also, but Focus happens to be someone we've known for a long time. They complement us well and give us complete freedom. They're only taking care of the console portion of things. We continue to do the rest ourselves. They basically offered us everything that we needed to have, so I was very happy to be able to work with them rather than somebody I didn't know."
Vincke promised that the new controller layout for Divinity: Original Sin feels great. "We figured out something that feels very natural," he said. "I can only convince people by getting them to play it."
Larian has not yet announced a release date for Divinity: Original Sin Enhanced Edition, but a representative from Focus Home Interactive told Polygon it hopes to release the game "very soon."
You can watch us playing the first PC release of Divinity: Original Sin in the video below.