In Dungeon Siege III: Treasures of the Sun downloadable content, you are tasked with traveling to the dreaded Aganoi Desert to join the search for a lost Legion hero. The series' first DLC also raises the level limit by five and adds the ability to apply custom enchantments to armor, weapons and gear and gives you the chance to respec your characters.
The story begins ... well, whenever you want. A butler appears in the Grand Chapterhouse in Stonebridge after you reclaim it, with a story from the familiar "golden-haired boy." The butler's old master, a member of the Legion, is publicly believed dead but has actually snuck off to the Aganoi region to find ... something. As soon as you are told of this, you can choose to pursue a new quest, down a new causeway, in hopes of attaining a new ally against Jayne Kassendar.
Quite early into the desert wasteland, you find the first of three shrines, each carrying a distinct Ultimate Ability. You may only have one at a time, but you can switch the ability by visiting a new shrine. A high-speed healing power marks one of the most effective of the lot, though the shield is reasonable and the area-of-effect fireball is great for clearing crowds.
You then reach the isolated Azunite Abbey — as has been made clear when you unlock this content, not all Azunites are the villains — and you reveal the next of the major boons of the DLC: respecs. At 20,000 coins per character, they're pretty costly but are still nice to have. It is also here where the meat of the partially linked group of plots —another brigand gang, a mad scientist, cursed skeletons and an old Legionnaire who disappeared into the locked vault beneath the abbey — come into play.
The actual gameplay is more of the same Dungeon Siege action, with few new twists. There's a new setting, but you'll mostly see the same foes in new garb. A few of the fights are genuinely distinct, but in general, déjà vu quickly sets in, though that's not necessarily a bad thing. The DLC is about as long as the first act of the game and has a comparable variety of areas. Those who paid $50 (PC) or $60 (consoles) are getting about as good a bang for their buck as they did with the game itself, as the DLC costs 800 Microsoft points, or $10.
Treasures of the Sun's presentation is consistent with the main game; if the game didn't highlight this new quest in a unique color and did a little more to integrate the introductory conversation with the butler, it'd be pretty hard to tell the scenario is an add-on as opposed to simply a third path to take after the Grand Chapterhouse opens up. NPCs keep to familiar builds, but with new clothes (many of which look just a hint more realistic), and the environments feel slightly more crafted than before. The voice acting is dependably good, and sound effects include a few new ambient effects to keep the atmosphere present and strong.
The DLC's greatest boon is also its greatest weakness, though. It seems like it could almost fit in with the main plot, but doesn't quite actually do so. It tells its own story, with the only major references to the main plotline being, "We don't care about Jayne Kassendar out here!" and a few Stonebridge Automatons showing up in a painfully difficult non-sequitur. The isolation separates it, even as it tries to fit into the main plot rather than being a post-game expansion.
Overall, Dungeon Siege III: Treasures of the Sun is a good DLC pack. For $10, players get three to five hours of gameplay per character in some neat new environments. You also get new abilities and a solidly written individual plot, so it's a good value for those who enjoyed the base game. Nothing here's going to change the minds of non-fans, though.
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