Mixed or average reviews - based on 31 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 31
  2. Negative: 2 out of 31
Buy Now
Buy on
  1. Computer Games Magazine
    The experience is so immersive one can build a fishing rod, catch a fish, and bake it in an open fire. [Apr 2004, p.7]
  2. Cheat Code Central
    Not a perfect game but considering how much entertainment is jam- packed onto this disk, it's nothing short of remarkable. RPG lovers will be rewarded for their intellectual style of gaming with this title.
  3. 85
    Doesn't do much of anything RPG fans haven't seen countless times before-but it does everything we've seen time and again well.
  4. Arkane Studios has done a wonderful job in transferring this PC game onto the Xbox where hopefully even more people can enjoy it.
  5. Arx should take you around 30 hours to complete, possibly more depending on how fast you are at figuring out a few of the puzzles or how often you have to reload some of the more difficult combats.
  6. As you're playing through the game, you'll clearly see that the developers have created one of those memorable virtual worlds where you can spend many hours exploring each and every crevice as you try to solve all the riddles Arx has to offer.
  7. If you don't have any hang-ups with wandering around in dark places, and you're looking for a deep and involving role-playing game, then you'd be doing yourself a favor by checking out Arx Fatalis. This is a game you can really lose yourself in.
  8. This title ported very well to the Xbox. Though mostly a quest-driven RPG, Arx Fatalis still manages to offer enough variety and discovery to keep players enthralled.
  9. Yeah, it's filled with clichés. Sure it's not as huge as Morrowind. It looks quite good, sounds alright as well, and plays okay. Sure it won't change the genre of RPG's much, but it's a game with a fairly interesting premise, some cool quests, a good assortment of items.
  10. I loved the gruesome environments, humor of the goblins, and the vast array of adventures that I encountered along the way. Sadly if they had spent more time on updating the dated graphics I feel this game would be much more eye catching and well-rounded.
  11. The perfect balance of non-linear gameplay and plot development, the game offers a unique experience that successfully evolves the gameplay of the original.
  12. 80
    It's long, complex, and difficult. There's so much freedom of control and so many passages to discover, that it's hard not to find yourself completely immersed in this dark and dangerous world.
  13. 78
    A solid RPG with an innovative magic system. With some deep object interaction, challenging puzzles, and a nice progression, the game is a fun experience.
  14. Less reverb and echo! Sure the game is underground and all, but lay off a bit!
  15. Those desiring a fast-paced FPS should search elsewhere, but Arx will certainly be up some people's alleys. [Jan 2004, p.150]
  16. 75
    Fans of "Morrowind" will be interested immediately, since the essential style of the game is very similar, but the game offers up less depth than "Morrowind" in many ways and is far less open ended.
  17. A solid dungeon crawler with dated graphics and audio.
  18. The inventory control is needlessly fiddly, casting spells is more trouble than it's worth, and it's very easy to miss a hint and completely lose track of the plotline. Just like Morrowind, though, Arx's core quality stands above all the glaring issues, and it's hard to stop playing once you take up the quest.
  19. With its open-ended structure and unusual story line, Arx Fatalis is the polar opposite of traditional console RPGs, and that's why I like it so much.
  20. If "Morrowind," fantasy and claustrophobia are not your favourite things, then there really isn't a point.
  21. The voice-acting meanwhile features a variety of accents and the sound effects adequately portray the stark reality of a strange world.
  22. The graphics are somewhat weak in this game.
  23. The nonlinear gameplay, extreme environment interaction and first person perspective create a world different from the standard role-playing game, and that's like a breath of fresh air for those tired of straightforward and clichéd titles.
  24. For those who grew up on dungeon crawls, this is a title that can't miss.
  25. Official Xbox Magazine
    A poor framerate, bland textures, awful character models, clipping bugs, and a messy interface all suck the fun out of what should be a solid RPG. [Jan 2004, p.76]
  26. 60
    Has a unique visual style, an involving storyline, and several dozen hours of intensely immersive gameplay.
  27. 60
    The game drags under the weight of too much walking and item gathering - mostly while looking down at the ground - and not enough engaging action.
  28. You really, really have to like old-school dungeon crawler RPGs to derive any enjoyment out of playing Arx Fatalis. Ugly graphics, poor controls due to unwisely incorporated first-person perspective gameplay, and long stretches of boring dungeon exploration create a mediocre game that is at least five years too late to merit consideration.
    AF does a better job with collision detection, though unfortunately damage balance is regularly far from perfect. Taking out an enemy as insignificant as a rat may only take a single punch, for example, though strangely it takes many more attacks with a metal bar.
  30. Edge Magazine
    This is a perfectly awful conversion with poor controls, cumbersome combat, an antiquarian save system, inadequate maps and clumsy menu design. [Jan 2004, p.111]
  31. games(TM)
    It's the faintest of pulses on a cadaver we've seen many times before - identikit dungeons, faceless monsters and convoluted menu systems should be a thing of the past by now. [Christmas 2003, p.126]
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 10 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 10
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 10
  3. Negative: 2 out of 10
  1. Mar 25, 2012
    Excellent game, a worthy successor to ultima underworld by Looking Glass Studios. Intelligent and deep gameplay, fantastic level design, richExcellent game, a worthy successor to ultima underworld by Looking Glass Studios. Intelligent and deep gameplay, fantastic level design, rich audio/music, the game doesnt hold your hand like modern games. Arkane have made an Immersive experience here, like few other games can.
    However just like any other game it has its flaws, but the Xbox version has less than the PC.
    10/10 for Xbox, 9/10 for PC. Better than Morrowind in some ways, and I feel very fortunate to have experienced it, thank you Arkane Studios and Looking Glass Studios.
    Full Review »
  2. RobbieR
    Jan 2, 2010
    This is an awesome title; been gaming since 12 now 42 in 2010. I bought this game for xbox and pc without ever seeing them running on screen This is an awesome title; been gaming since 12 now 42 in 2010. I bought this game for xbox and pc without ever seeing them running on screen just by reviews alone and I am not dissappointed. I actually prefer the xbox version to the pc one...If you want something Morrowind(ish) this is your game. Don't delay get a copy soon, even if you hate it, it will hold it's price as rare and collectible and you could easily sell it on. Full Review »
  3. MarkP.
    Jun 8, 2005
    Despite promising aspects like cooking, this came out to be an extremely boring morrowind wannabe.