Generally favorable reviews - based on 29 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 29
  2. Negative: 0 out of 29
  1. With it's beautiful graphics, easy to use interface, replayability and 2 player cooperative mode it should be the definitive hack and slash type RPG on the Playstation 2 for a long time to come.
  2. 94
    The gameplay is easy to pick up, yet has lots of depth due to the feat system. The graphics and sound are excellent. And there's plenty of replay value, especially for Forgotten Realms fan boys.
  3. 100
    Shave off the beard, throw away the sandals, the RPG has grown up.
  4. Now here comes the main niggle I have with this otherwise incredible co-op game. It’s short. I mean Danny De Vito short. My friend and I did it in less than 10 hours, and we explored everywhere and killed everything.
  5. A fine RPG, very loosely based upon a simplified Dungeons & Dragons motif. The game mechanics are easy, leaving you to focus on the puzzles, the high-adrenaline battles, and the lustful visuals.
  6. 94
    The three character classes add substantial replay value, and the multiplayer mode is a must if you've got a friend who can stick with you for the long haul.
  7. Featuring awe-inspiring graphics, ultra-realistic sound, seamless frame-rates, a masterful rendition of D&D 3rd Edition rules, and insanely addictive game play - there just doesn't seem to be enough words to describe the way this title upped the standards for it's genre in the console world.
  8. One of the best PS2 games on the market. It combines well-paced action, a strong story, and AD&D rules into an exciting romp through the most famous city on the Sword Coast.
  9. It spanks the crap out of "Gauntlet Legends" in depth while still having the hack ‘n slash a non RPG fan will be drawn to.
  10. While Dark Alliance provides a capable story, it succeeds most on an instinctive level--as a pure gameplay experience. Every button and feature of the PS2 controller is used in a manner that is both intuitive and functional.
  11. With the stunning graphics, super-fun co-op mode, and intelligent and seamless interface, you won’t be worrying about the storyline until well after you’ve finished shooting fireballs at the last of the frost giants.
  12. A very creative game; baked with remarkable graphics, a nicely furnished plot and sprinkled with dazzling effects, Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance is definitely worth buying.
  13. And there's Dark Alliance's core problem in a nutshell – it plonks you in one of the most painstakingly created gaming universes to ever emerge, and yet you're more than happy to be kept within this episode's central, linear plot-path.
  14. 60
    It can be improved upon, by making the story less ambiguous and more involving without making it feel like an afterthought. The gameplay aspect could definitely be less tedious and provide more side quests or alternative options.
  15. 90
    The visuals are flat out gorgeous with environments that are both intricately detailed and quite enormous...[though] it’s short for an RPG (about 11 Hours) even if its main focus is action.
  16. Set in a rich and charming world with a host of great characters, it's beautifully paced and challenging enough to make you want more, yet simple in both its control interface and concept.
  17. It's refreshing to see a quasi-RPG game that doesn't go for the high-brow, rules-specific combat of RPG's - but if you're looking for an RPG with more clout, stick to "Final Fantasy X."
  18. 80
    A great game for those in the market for a solid dungeon crawl. What the game lacks in plot, it makes up for in good old-fashioned hack-n-slash fun.
  19. The combination of action, treasure seeking, and character development is highly reminiscent of that other hit PC role-playing game, "Diablo II," with 3D graphics that go far beyond Blizzard's 2D beauty.
  20. 60
    At normal difficulty (which is actually quite easy) the game should take about eight to 10 hours to complete. There is replay value in the different characters, although the dungeons and quests remain identical.
  21. Not only fun to play but also quite breathtaking in its level of graphic detail.
  22. Baldur's Gate is all of the best things about "Dungeons & Dragons" without the annoying people you used to have to play with and the bother of keeping up with stats and dice rolls.
  23. Serves up enough tasty D&D stew to satisfy your role-playing urges. It oozes with quality and is genuinely fun.
  24. A beautiful-looking "Dungeons & Dragons"-based hack-and-slash. [Feb 2003, p.92]
  25. Shorter than the average RPG, this game should take you about 18 hours to complete but the two player co-op and the two other class characters will add to the replay value. Truly an instant classic that will be enjoyed by gamers of all persuasion.
  26. Just a button-mashing beat-em-up in fantasy clothing, but what a fabulous controller cruncher it is. [Dec 2001, p.89]
  27. [It will] suck you in faster than an arrow into a gelatinous cube. [Jan 2002, p.202]
  28. A superb game. [Feb 2002, p.59]
  29. The best Diablo-style action/RPG ever produced. [Jan 2002, p.130]
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 70 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 32
  2. Negative: 3 out of 32
  1. Nov 10, 2011
    This is the game that sets the standards for RPG's on the Plyastation 2, why? It is the first RPG on the PS2, every PS2 RPG to come after it has some resemblance, though minimal at some point, they do bear resemblance. While it may bear more resemblance to an action-adventure game, it is still a RPG at its core, being played out in chapters, a very D&D level up system and an incredible graphics engine. What is not to love about this RPG?

    Its not about the hack and slash, but its rather the intriguing story that goes behind this Call of Duty for Storytellers. It has incredible graphics, D&D monsters, D&D setting, D&D spells, D&D level up system and lots of blood and gore in great graphics. I say again: Whats not to love?
    Full Review »
  2. Apr 23, 2011
    This is a prime example of a dungeon crawler. Its addictive, has great characters, and a good range of environments. From the moment I finished the first dungeon I was sucked in, and for the short 10 hours it lasts its worth every penny. What I simply dont get is why there is such rave reviews - its good at what it does but its lacking in so many respects. In short; you go through dungeons, try and find the best weapons, and level up your skills. Thats it.
    The game could have been greatly enhanced if there were side quests or other things to find. As it stands its fun and addictive but is not on my top list of great RPG games. Even still, its definitely worth a pop.
    Full Review »
  3. QuestorJ
    Mar 18, 2009
    This is a great game!!... Just wanted to make sure that people know the sequels to Dark Alliance 1 and 2 is called Champions of Norrath (3rd game) and Champions of Norrath:Return to Arms (4th and as of March 2009, the last installment). Hopefully Snowblind or whomever now owns this great RPG engine will continue the series. I have played all 4 games now at least three times each and can't wait for some new adventures. Full Review »