Gothic is an action role-playing video game developed by Piranha Bytes and published by Egmont Interactive. It was first released on November 23, 2001 in North America. The game occurs in a fictional medieval realm wherein humans fight a losing war against Orcs. The player assumes the role of an unnamed prisoner who committed a crime within a mining colony. Because the humans are losing the battle, the king decided to assign the player to extract magical ores from a mine that can be used to forge powerful weapons against Orcs. This quest leads the player to unfold the game’s story.
In the game, the player must finish quests and kill monsters and wild animals in order to gain skill points. Skill points can be used to improve skills, increase basic attributes and learn trades. However, these skill points can only be used by searching for the right teacher. Fighting skills have two proficiency levels while the some of the skills only have one level. The player also has the option to become a Mage or be part of the Swamp Camp. If the player prefers to become a Mage, he will have the opportunity to learn the six Circles of Magic. Although the player has the option to select which camp he will join, the game’s quests will become linear and as the game progresses, the distinctions between the factions will diminish.