Risen series are single-player, fantasy-themed action role-playing games by the German company Piranha Bytes, and published by Deep Silver. Piranha Bytes itself developed the Windows version, which was released on October 2, 2009, along with the European version of the Xbox 360 port. The Xbox 360 port was outsourced to an experienced external console team under the close supervision of Piranha Bytes.
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Risen takes place in Faranga, a fictitious volcanic, mediterranean island with different sub-climates and vegetation zones. The island is inhabited by humans, as well as many fantasy creatures.
Ancient temple ruins have risen from the ground, providing access to a network of interconnected underground areas such as catacombs and dungeons. As a result, the humans have put in place an Inquisition, forbidding anyone from exiting their city or the island.
The game is set in a fictional, fantasy-orientated region of its in-game world that is based on the Caribbean tropics. The world is divided up into multiple locations across a fictional world map made up of islands (or coastal areas) home to jungles, caves, tribal villages and outposts. Each location can only be accessed for the first time through progression of the main story quest yet can be revisited at a later time, now being optional for the player. Travel between islands is done with the player's pirate ship. When visiting each location, the region is near open for the player to explore. While certain routes and paths may be divided by mountainous or watery passes or story scripted events, the location allows the player to take multiple routes and discover new, even hidden sites or locales. The player must travel on foot through most of the locations but can obtain a map of it that shows a complete overview of the island, including marked points related to current quests and if discovered, points of interest.