The game is great fun. It's got that Dead Space compass, so you never get lost, but there is always somewhere else to go for more gold and stuff.
I play as the female almost exclusively, because I think the shooter gameplay is more fun than the melee (both characters can shoot or melee, but the male character's crossbows are always slower). Even though I am opposed to cover shooters from a philosophical standpoint, it's a ton of fun here.
The RPG elements are implemented a bit differently. There are no experience points, but tons of meters and bars, counters to fill. Imagine if your achievements in any other game were how you expanded your HP and ammo capacity... that's pretty much how it is here. For example, killing 250 enemies with a bow will increase your arrow capacity. Besides that, it is like Zelda in that there are a pre-determined number of upgrade items located throughout the whole game (in this case, it would be magic items that grant talent points). There is new game+ according to the manual, so I am sure that is when people will be exploring the most (I lost 45 minutes worth of exploration because I didn't make it to the next checkpoint, which really pissed me off. It was the first time I wished I could save anywhere, since I had upgraded my revival capabilities by being brought back from near death 2 or 3 times during that period, which fulfilled a requirement. It's not easy to do that on purpose)
The story presentation uses cool hooks and the characters are very likable, and there is a constant sense of immersion. Not sure if the the plot content is going to amount to anything, but the immersion is there, so it is successful.
E'Lara (the elf chick) is pretty hot, and has a distracting ass. Buttcheek curvature is barely visible when she runs, allowing the maximum viewing area without requiring the nudity tag from ESRB.
It turns out that they added a split-screen 2-player mode as well.
I can't redeem my Gamestop preorder bonus because the Playstation Store is down.
It's really addicting.
I like this game. Without a real inventory system or levels, I don't know if it will outlive it's actual gameplay, but it's really fun right now.