Nostalgia gamer
04-28-2012, 05:20 PM
I have a love/hate relationship with this game.

The good:

I absolutely love the dialogue,and how each character's backstory.Most of the game is ridiculously easy too.
The characters are quite well done,and i do like the class system to a certain point.

I have a love/hate relationship with this game.

The bad
In some fights,the game is ridiculously hard:Eg the dragon fights.
The boss fights hate melee,and love ranged,in fact:The bosses favor ranged and magic over any attack.
Some fights are a stroll in the park,and some fights rape your ass,that they make a gamer who has experienced embarrassed on how badly they do.

I lost 9 times already on the arch demon,and i am at the point that i want to fucking crucify the one who thought this was a good example of programming.

I actually started cheating after getting sick of dying.This game seriously needs to balance this out.

There is also a lack of money,and no way to make money to make sure you have enough items for the final boss.
There are also a lack of skill points to fill in specific roles,and that is a flaw i think that is not a good thing.

Darth Revan
04-28-2012, 06:36 PM
Tip to make the fight against the Arch Demon easier... use the nearby ballistae scattered around the rooftop. If you think that dragon is the hardest boss... try fighting the Harvester, the final boss of the Golems of Amgarrak DLC on Hard... then you will tear your hair out in frustration.

Nostalgia gamer
04-28-2012, 07:37 PM
I don't have dlc.To do so,i would need to pay extra for those.Also:What is with the bullshit of paying extra to get the shale? He should have been in the game.
I also used that

Also:I was using the ballista.

Darth Revan
04-29-2012, 12:35 AM
I guess I was fortunate, as I had preordered my copy (which a family member had gotten me another copy for Christmas, thinking I didn't have it... so I have two copies: One new and my original burnt to all Hell) and I got 'The Stone Prisoner' DLC for free (As well as the Blood Dragon Armor, The Memory Band and Ring of Fire). I do agree Shale should've been in the game from the get go, but more than likely it was EA who ordered BioWare to keep some content back for release as paid DLC to those who didn't preorder.

Warden's Keep, The DarkSpawn Chronicles, Leliana's Song, Golems of Amgarrak and Witch Hunt were all released some time after the main game's release, which are all good DLC (except Golems) and upon completion of each, unlocks some powerful items to use in the main game.

Nostalgia gamer
04-29-2012, 08:40 AM
This is why i don't buy dlc.Also:I got a free dlc with the game i purchased for ps3:Blood armor
I don't even technically use it,because juggernaught has better stats for a tank,and the armor that is worn by dwarves underground,is the best armor for people who use zerkers.

04-29-2012, 12:06 PM
The game is inconsistent in its difficulty. Practically all enemy fighters and demons are a joke, but enemy mages are deadly. Later on, enemy archers can be quite dangerous too. I find having a mage with the 'Force Field' spell, is a life saver in most cases. It always works, and you can just cast it on the hardest or most damaging unit the enemy has to knock them out of the fight for a precious period of time, allowing you to kill all the other enemies and thus focus your efforts on them when they finally break free. It keeps mages from casting their deadly spells, puts hard fighters out of action, etc etc.

Can't agree about the Archdemon though - I find it really easy, as are all the Dragons. Just make sure that you only send in one character to combat it, and have everyone else hang back, space out from each other, and pour fire on it. With only one character to heal, its easy to keep things under control.

To kill the Archdemon, follow these guidelines:
1) I have found that high defence is the best way to keep characters alive - much better than having high HP or armour etc. Make a Tank character with really high Defence - i.e bump up their Dex (Alistair or Loghain are very good for this, as their shields already give them good Dex). Put Shield Defence on, so their dex is even higher, then give them any items you can to boost general attributes and health regen (key to the city, Evon the Great's Mail, Lifegiver etc etc). The rest of the party should be 1 mage with Spirit Heal (either your character or Wynne), 1 ranged rogue or Fighter, and a fourth character of your choice (if they can cast spells or use ranged, it is helpful but not necessary).

2) Send the Tank in as the only character to actually engage the dragon. Do not summon any troops from your army. Cast Regen on him, have everyone else pelt the Dragon from range. Keep moving the party around away from the Dragon as it flies about, keep throwing the Tank in to combat with it, healing him when necessary. Do not use any of the Ballistas yet.

3) Eventually, the Dragon will fly over that little chasm and summon some darkspawn. Summon the Dwarf army, and they will keep the darkspawn generally at bay. Your party should now move to the steps leading up to the Ballista nearest the Archdemon. Your fighters stay at the base of the steps, fending off Shrieks and other threats. Your rogue and mage go up to the Ballista and start firing it at the Archdemon, whilst your mage throws spells and keeps healing etc.

4) When its taken enough damage, the Archdemon flies up to the highest level of the area. Follow it up there, run over to the Ballista with everyone except your Tank (who should be in combat with the Dragon again, now its back). Keep firing the Ballista and healing the tank until you win.

Simple. You shouldn't ever need to call more troops than the Dwarfs if you keep them back for the first section of the fight. They will last until the end, and are easily better than the darkspawn. They don't do much to the Archdemon, but every little helps. This encounter requires quite a bit of micromanagement, and if you dont have a spirit healer (particularly if you don't have the resurrection spell), it can be a little tense, simply because of the length of the fight. But it really isn't very hard at all.

The game is never so hard that you can't do it IMO. My only issue on that score is that you can lose some key characters with choices you make, and the game really punishes you for that. Its very easy to lose Morrigan, and there are several opportunites to lose Wynne as well, which can leave you in all kinds of trouble, with no Healer! The game is also pretty unforgiving in its character building - there's not much margin for error, and if you spend some points unwisely, it can make things much harder than they needed to be.

I don't mind about the money though. I much prefer that there are actually items worth buying, which can't be said for most RPGs (where you usually find all the best items in the field, and have millions of gold pieces that you can't spend on anything). This game forces you to make some hard choices on what gear to buy, and have to consider taking bribes or jobs you might not want to do (because your character might not like cheating people or working for bad guys etc), just so you can serve the greater good by buying better gear.

Its interesting that you say you love the dialogue, because Dragon Age's team comes under a lot of fire for the dialogue - mainly from Mass Effect fans, who feel the Dragon Age team are Bioware's 'B' squad. I'm with you though - I think the dialogue in this game is great.

Nostalgia gamer
04-29-2012, 12:45 PM
Its just that the dialogue for characters like morrigan and zevran is really really good.Sure i'm not as big a fan of leliana,because its always about religion,but damm is it funny when she argues with zevran,or morrigan.
Also:When you choose a character,your story influences some small gaps in the story,making it have a backstory.I think that this adds replay value.

04-29-2012, 01:00 PM
Well, the lack of integration of the Origin stories into the main game was one of my only complaints actually. Yes, there is a little overlap but not much. The story and world is pretty much the same regardless of who you are, what race you are etc etc. Like I say, there is some nods towards your Origin, but not as much as I would have liked.

Its most apparent if you are playing as an Elf or a Mage, because you never get the sense of being part of those people and facing the mistrust and predjudice they face, in anything like the way the game world supposedly does treat those people. Basically everyone in the game treats you the same if you are a Dwarf, Elf or Human, which is jarring considering how poorly elves are supposed to be regarded. And nobody seems to care at all that you are a mage, and you don't have any sense of this 'constant temptation' from Demons etc that all mages are supposed to be suffering from.

Its the Grey Warden thing that does the most damage. Bioware always make you part of some secret brotherhood who effectively have high level clearance to go everywhere they want, speak to kings and monarchs etc etc. So regardless of what else you are, who your character is, they are still a member of that elite organisation, and that is how people look at you first and foremost. So when you meet mages in both games and they constantly winge on about their rights being curtailed, you can't sympathise with them even if you are a mage, because the same things don't apply to you. You're just allowed to roam free, carry your staff in plain sight, cast spells in front of templars etc etc.

So to me, the Origin stories were the only parts of the story where I felt the world was portrayed as it really is. The rest of the time, you are a kind of superhero who is slightly above all that, and for whom the everyday rules do not apply. And whilst I still love the game, it just gets really old playing as these kinds of VIPs in Bioware's games all the time.

Nostalgia gamer
04-29-2012, 01:32 PM
I understand,but i am talking about the personal relationship to the actual characters,rather than the others.

Example:There isn't much change,but only slightly different changes.If you are an elf mage,you get a little extra dialogue with:wynne,morrigan and zevran most likely.
Alistair has very minor dialogue differences with you,with the exception that the awkwardness that is supposed to be felt,is not really felt either.I thought that perhaps there should have been a bit more awkward feeling,because your a mage,and alistair was a mage hunter.

Another example:If you play a human noble,your best relationship,will be with alistair,and perhaps leliana.
If you are a dwarf,the dialogue is minor,because nobody really has anything in common with dwarves,with exception of 1 character who i don't like.

Overall:I still think its the best game i have played of recent types,and its still unbalanced in some areas,and the learning curb is a bit too steep,but i still really enjoy it.

04-29-2012, 04:07 PM
Well, Alistair is not nearly as hardline as some Templars are. He's basically too nice a guy to do such a bloody and oppressive job. He does consider magic to be very dangerous, but most of his time is spent keeping an eye on Morrigan! And it soon becomes apparent that he is someone who can look past stereotypes and see the actual people - he admits that the more he speaks to Sten, the more he understands the Qunari and how their beliefs could actually work, even if he doesn't share them himself. At least the game recognises that you are a mage at all - I spent 3 games of Mass Effect being told by NPCs how biotics work, even though I use them in front of them all the time!

I don't agree that the racial choice affects dialogue that much though, even with your party. Alistair is always friendly, and Leiliana has some of the better conversations related to Elven characters. It does crop up from time to time which is nice, but not enough. And once again, instead of developing on this, Bioware went in completely the opposite direction in the sequel, disallowing you to be anything other than a Human Noble.

Given the promise of how the Origins could have made each experience (and the game certainly advertised itself this way), it actually goes to great lengths to curb the importance of your Origins in the main game. Whenever you do interact with the relevant society, none of the choices you made in your Origin matter to any great degree, and the people you were dealing with in those, are often either dead or don't show up again. So I think the different race element and the Origin stories are probably the biggest wasted opportunity in this whole game.

Nostalgia gamer
04-29-2012, 04:36 PM
I still think the dialogue is better than FFXIII.

Most final fantasy games are very predictable,and FFXIII is no different.
Its refreshing to see something more adult,and have characters who aren't your typical teenage angsty whiners.

04-29-2012, 07:01 PM
Oh grow up, will you? Don't you get tired of constantly bringing up FF13 for no reason? What relevance does it have here? Its pointless to compare the dialogue of JRPGs and WRPGs - they are from different cultures, with different styles of storytelling, and are aiming to do different things. Like I said before, I am a great admirer of DA:O's dialogue, but go to the Bioware forums, and you'll see that the Mass Effect fans do not agree - at all. Although ME's fans (the ones that hold this view anyway) ate being very immature in a 'my game's better than your game' kind of way, comparison of dialogue between 2 games from the same culture of storytelling is at least more appropriate.

Which leads nicely into this issue of Bioware being 'mature'. I think a lot of people would take issue with that statement. Obsidian often poke fun in their games at how whiny the characters in Bioware's games are. They all have some sob story about their life has been so hard, and have issues with their family blah blah blah. Bioware games are many things (and I like them very much indeed), but mature? Its just wish fulfillment, superhero stuff. You play the greatest person ever, saving the world, and doing whatever you want to whoever you want, whenever you want. All of the party interaction is about you, the party members only interact with you, NPCs only really interact with you (often giving you the final say in things that you should have no authority over). You are the center of the world, around which everything revolves. Your actions and words determine what happens. They are game versions of a 'Choose your own Adventure' book.

These games pander to the fantasises of genre fans, so let's not be calling them mature, shall we? They take no credible stance on any important issues, as these things can always be solved by your character beating up the bad guys, or 'telling the politicians what you think of them etc etc.' For all their talk of power corrupting, Bioware's games continually reinforce the idea that the rules of society do not apply to powerful people (i.e your character). You can do anything you like and make judgements on anyone and everyone in their games. And at the end of the day, you'll win, get the girl, beat the baddies and maybe even become King, Viscount, whatever.

They are great for what they are, and they can and do have some mature storylines. But a lot of it is still comic book adventure romps, designed to make you feel powerful, popular, important etc etc. Which is a primary reason why literary critics refuse to acknowledge games like this as mature or works of art etc. Because at their core, they are still just Choose your own adventure gamebooks.

Nostalgia gamer
04-30-2012, 08:44 AM
And you call whiny little bitchy hope mature?

Final fantasies are more towards young teens,if you can't see that,then i suggest you take off the blindfold.

Thats not to say some final fantasies don't have good dialogue,its just that most of it is very predictable.Also:Not all american games have good dialogue.I thought that the dialogue in
Fable series is for kids too.
fallout 3 was pretty boring,and oblivion was the blandest dialogue i have seen.
I wil repeat again:Final fantasy tries to be for young teens,and Some american rpgs are also for teens,but they don't necessarily have great dialogue.Its just that the japanese usually stick to games for kids in the rpg genre,and are flat out predictable.

Look at tales of vesperia for an example.Actually:Final fantasy is more mature than vesperia in my opinion,its just that the story is sometimes stupid in some of these games,and the characters are boring.
The reason i mention that game,is because it is an example of why i don't play final fantasy anymore,or trust se.They sold out,and i no longer have faith in them anymore.

As for american companies:I have mixed thoughts actually.I keep hearing bad things about me,and the new dragon age 2.I am actually losing confidence in american rpg companies.
I hear a lot of great stuff about kotor,but i'm not sure if i'd like it or not.
Skyrim supposedly fixes some problems with oblivion,but i also hear that the intro is really long,and extremely boring.I also heard that they use the fallout 3 vat system,and also the lockpick system.
I heard that in dragon age 2,you can't even talk to anyone,unless it has a sign saying:talk to me or some shit.I also heard that the fights take forever.The ability to tell my characters to go behind is a welcomed site,since my characters run around randomly doing stuff in dragon age origins.

06-15-2012, 05:11 AM
Totally agree with the review (back to topic). What I really hate about the game is that some parts are super easy and others are abysmally hard. And on harder difficulties at the beginning of the game boss fights are almost impossible unless you have a healing-spec'd mage in addition to the small number of potions you burn through. I ended up installing a whole bunch of mods to make the game, well, better.