10 Things About Dragon Age 2

Posted in Dragon Age 2, Dragon Age Origins Awakenings, Dragon Age: Origins, Game-related Events, Gaming, PS3, RPGs, Xbox360 on March 14th, 2011 by thelonegamer

Dragon Age 2: Kinda familiar, nicely different, still freakin’ BLOODY.

Back in Ferelden… NOT! In Dragon Age 2, you play as Hawke, a human refugee fleeing The Blight when it destroyed your home in the village of Lothering. Along with what remains of your family, you end up in the City of Kirkwall in the Free Marches, where Fereldens are actually discriminated against. Somehow you gotta work your way from unwanted refuse to city hero, no matter what heroic or black deed it takes. Wowers!

All Too Human. Unlike in Origins, main hero Hawke can only be a Human in DA2, but you can still choose to be either female or male, and one of three classes- Warrior, Mage and Rogue. Though there are only three classes, each has very varied skill trees that you can choose from to fit your party member’s role. The Warrior and Rogue also got new skills aplenty to make them as formidable as the Mages were in the first game.

Familiar Stuff. There are nice nods and references to the original games, and you can set much of that up by importing your Save Data from the original Origins and subsequent expansions. Even if you don’t, you can still set the general atmosphere of the land by choosing from three conditions on how The Blight was defeated.

Hey, I’m talkin’ here! In contrast to the original DA, your main character is now fully-voiced, which is a nice change from being silent nodder to active influencer. The old dialogue system is now gone, replaced by a Dialogue Wheel that has varying intentions behind every line of response- from olive leaf goody-goody to fist-rattling I’M GONNA KILL YE retorts.

Friends and Rivals. Nice bit of change, whether you please or piss off a companion, that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re aching to leave or knife you in the back. Your dialogue choices will make your allies go for either Friend or Rival, each of which has their own advantages and abilities to be unlocked. Even if an ally is a Rival and hates your bloody guts, they’ll still respect you unless you do something really bad to make them up and leave, or start a fight to the death.

Fight to the Finish Line. Combat is now a LOT faster-paced, almost to real-time action game levels. Mages zap off bolts from their staves like ray guns, and warriors cut down hordes of enemies wholesale. For the most part it’s easier but still mashing away without thinking will get you the dreaded Red Screen of Death. As usual, you can still pause the action to set up more detailed strategies and commands, and you can cycle to any companion to control them directly.

Sex, Sex, SEX! Yeah, you can still romance some companions, and apparently all of them can become lovers whether you’re playing as dashing male or ravishing female Hawke.

What’s Old is New Again. There are a few redesigns here and there, mostly for the better. The Qunari now look more beast-like and inhuman compared to the ones in DAO… think of the change along the lines like the Klingons from the original Star Trek to the movie versions. There are also some subtle changes among the Elves and- hey, is that a beardless dward???

This is Your Life. Unlike the more cut-and-dried quest in Origins, DA2 has a more personal saga in the making. There’s no more Blight thanks to the Grey Warden Hero, so what’s the big brouhaha behind everything? For the most part new hero Hawke is just trying to find his own way and make a name for himself in Kirkwall, but rest assured there’s something big behind it all. Maybe.

Stay Awhile and Listen! In actuality, everything you see onscreen is initially just a retelling of the mysterious events that occurred in the past that shaped Hawke into the Champion of Kirkwall, from the mouth of one loquacious dwarf who is prone to exaggerating. What’s the truth? Where’s it all going? These are the things you’re gonna find out as you put on a hero’s boots and walk the shadowy path of Champion in Dragon Age 2.

Now, if you’ll excuse me… gotta get back to adventuring. I’ve got me Sovereigns to earn! Dragon Age 2 is now out for PC, PS3 and Xbox360.