Divinity - Original Sin 2 First Impressions

Posted by Campbell Bird on May 19th, 2021
iPad App - Designed for iPad

We all knew Larian Studios was working to bring an "uncomprimised" port of Divinity - Original Sin 2 to iOS, but I'm not sure anyone was prepared for it to surprise release yesterday. After hearing the news, I sat down as soon as I was able to play through the game's prologue, record the entire session, and take down some first impressions. Ultimately, Divinity - Original Sin 2 is everything Larian says it is on iOS, though there are some things that stuck out to me that are worth noting if you're curious about purchasing the game.

For starters, Divinity - Original Sin 2 is a resource-intensive game. In fact, it has the highest device requirements of nearly any game on the App Store I've ever seen. It can only run on iPads with the A12 chip, meaning only the following devices can play it:

    • iPad Pro 11 (2021, 2020, 2018)
    • iPad Pro 12.9 (2021, 2020, 2018)
    • iPad Air (2020)

I happen to own an iPad Pro 11 (2018), so the video above is footage of the oldest hardware capable of running the game. I wouldn't say performance is perfect, but it is mostly stable. I noticed a few frame drops here and there, and the only real interruption to play was auto and quick saving, which darkens the screen and pauses the action for a moment or two before allowing you to resume play.

You only need about 2 GB of space on your device to download Divinity - Original Sin 2 from the App Store, but this initial portion only contains the prologue. After completing it, you're prompted for an almost 8 GB download and the full game is promised to take up 18 GB in total. This means that if you have a smaller storage limit on your device, you might need to consider offloading or deleting some old games to make room.

Another small thing that I noticed from my first hour or so with the game included a hiccup while trying to make a player profile using a Bluetooth keyboard. Although Larian boasts about having full touch, mouse and keyboard, and controller support for Divinity - Original Sin 2, I had to disconnect my keyboard to be able to type in a profile name. I didn't notice any other control issues like this (particularly while actually playing), but it could be a sign that the keyboard support isn't all it's cracked up to be.

Some final notes include a distinct lack of graphics options, meaning that if you're playing on elderly hardware or want to try and push performance, there's not really a way to do that. Divinity - Original Sin 2 is locked into a set profile depending on the devices you're using, it seems. Luckily, none of Divinity - Original Sin 2's graphics really needed tweaking. The only visual display elements I wish were handled a bit differently were the game's pop-up tutorial menus that sometimes appeared shortly before cutscenes, and--even when they didn't--felt poorly worded or perhaps a bit too cursory.

I definitely plan to sink some more time into Divinity - Original Sin 2, and will likely post more footage of my experience. Keep your eyes peeled here if you're curious about the game, but are still wondering whether it's worth dropping $25 for. My initial thought is that it is, though I wouldn't necessarily go out of my way to get a new device for it. Perhaps that will change with time.

Update: We also just discovered that if your progress isn't saved right before being prompted to download a huge game file, you'll be booted back to your last save point. No autosave at the end of the prologue exists :(

Update 2: Since we already lost progress from a lack of auto-saves, we tested out the game's cloud support only to find that it doesn't seem particularly reliable. Our precious save used to make this video is now gone.

Update 3: Where we previously thought that Divinity's cloud save functionality was suspect, we have learned instead that cloud saves simply aren't enabled by default. You have to go into your iOS settings to turn on cloud saves before you can safely remove the game while retaining your progress. More info about this here:https://larian.com/support/faqs/how-to-transfer-saves-to-from-ipad_69

View all of our other Gameplay Journal entries here.

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