As I play videoagmes games, I am always looking for a challenge, which ultimately makes me focus too much on mechanics. This time, I chose the lowest difficulty level as the description suggested that it would allow me to focus on exploration and story. This is how I created my first character in Divinity: Original Sin 2, actually entering the game’s world to listen what the composer had to say.

A character in Divinity: Original Sin 2, we have an opportunity to decide which instrument will be in the foreground of the game’s score.

Now, I didn’t want to judge, but rather trust the musician (Borislav Slavov), trying to catch his best moments. I chose a character from a few predefined options, although I usually spend hours in the editor. I did so because one of the proposed characters is a musician! Who could I enter this world as if not an artist with a decent story. Her name is Lohse.

One of the most interesting things I’ve ever seen when creating a character is choosing a musical instrument. You will ask: why was such an option there? At first a thought comes to mind that this is a selection for a bard. Nothing less likely – when creating a character in Divinity: Original Sin 2, we have an opportunity to decide which instrument will be in the foreground of the game’s score – both in music for exploration and for combat sequences. Unique, brilliant idea! We can choose between a flute, a tambour, an oud and a cello. The second and third instrument belong to the group of plucked strings. Tambura is a traditional Indian instrument, but it is here most likely because of its strong connotations with Balkan music.

Medieval music for a medieval world?

The composer is Bulgarian, hence the choice. Oud, in turn, is considered to be the ancestor of lute and is still popular in Arab countries. I decided to listen to the cello during the game, but I also had to play a few hours with the flute and both choices add a lot of character to the music we hear. It is absolutely remarkable that we can choose which instrument we identify with the most. This has so many positive, noticeable effects for the gameplay experience.

The main theme has a very nice, characteristic melody, what tied me closer to the nature of Divinity: Original Sin 2. It’s also great to use the same theme in other pieces. For example, during my time with exploration, listening to the delicate sounds of cello or flute really made me feel similar emotions that I had felt in the main menu before starting the story.

I’m talking about curiosity and expecting an undiscovered story. The obvious and well-executed choice was to keep the music in the background during the game. Even during the fight, despite the soundtrack’s intensity, it didn’t tire me, complementing the game. I don’t know why, but at times I had an impression that the pieces are resemblant to those from The Witcher III: Wild Hunt.

The obvious and well-executed choice was to keep the music in the background during the game. 

Borislav Slavov evidently ensured that the music in Divinity: Original Sin 2 is light and pleasant to listen to. It’s interesting, but not overcomplicated. It sounds exactly like I would expect a fantasy score to sound in a game filled with magic. During fights, the instrument that we chose stands out in a great way.

Just knowing that – as a player – I have an influence on how the game sounds is extremely stimulating and encourages paying more attention to the music. Certainly, the implementation took some time, given the level of composing or recording instruments, which is why I am must give the credit where it’s due.

The sound of the game enriches immersion and stimulates the use of the characters’ skills. The sounds quickly become an integral part of the fight and are very  memorable. They became an indispensable element of the character I chose, Lohse. I would also like to pay special attention to the quality of dubbing, because the actors did a great job: the expression and uniqueness of the characters is stunning. This is probably one of the best games I have played for when it comes to voicework. I haven’t finished my adventures with Divinity: Original Sin 2 yet, but I will definitely come back for more.

The present and future of the adaptive music in action, adventure and role playing video games

Exploring the music is stimulating in its own way. I looked at gameplay in a slightly different way during combat without having to focus strongly on the action sequences. The aspect that distinguishes Larian Studio from the competition is the choice of a musical instrument that affects the entire soundtrack in the game.

I am very curious if any of you have played the game, perhaps choosing a different instrument, and now having some insights that you’d like to share on the forum. I don’t know whose idea it was to use such a technique, but surely Borislav Slavov did a great job with providing Divinity: Original Sin 2 with high-quality music led by a strong main theme.

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Ex Executive Editor

Michał Broda

Mean deviation noticed in music. Books all around apartment. Pushes the envelope and watches while it bends.