Dragon Age Inquisition: Why It’s The Best Time to Return to Thedas

Posted in Action Adventure, DLC, Dragon Age Inquisition, Fan Service, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, My Stuff, PC Gaming, PS3, PS4, RPGs, Xbox One, Xbox360 on September 16th, 2015 by thelonegamer

The Trespasser DLC marks the end of the Inquisition, one way or another…

Many months ago, Bioware’s Dragon Age: Inquisition came out on consoles and PC, and RPGers were scrambling all over it. There were highs and lows, with the game impressing with its gorgeous graphics, expansive and varied locales, engaging gameplay and wonderful cast of characters. On the other hand, the game’s linear story, lack of ‘deep’ dungeons and many cutbacks from earlier versions garnered mixed feelings. Still, I say overall that DAI was a wonderful RPG which entertained me for a couple of playthroughs right after release.
Now, more than nine months later though, I am playing Inquisition again. So why have I dusted off my Inquisitor’s Helm and armor from the closet and called the gang back together? There are quite a few reasons why today is the best time to get back into Thedas, or discover it for the first time.

Play as A Different Class. If you are coming back to DAI after playing through it once, try playing again, as a different class. You’ll be surprised how different the gameplay style is. If you played a Mage or Archer who dealt death from afar before, try this time as an in-your-face combatant as a Warrior. Aside from trying out all the new perks and abilities, you’ll find that the story will be slightly different as well.

This time, Play it RIGHT. I remember playing very much like a noob in my first DAI Playthrough- I didn’t really learn all the nuances and rules. I blundered through the first region of the game, barely optimized my characters’ gear and took advantage of their various abilities, and spent WAAAY too much time in the starting Hinterlands.
This time, I knew that it was key to gather as many crafting materials as possible, where to get good stuff, great gear and thus start kicking ass earlier, making the most out of my time. Seeing your characters do much better and handling previously brutal skirmishes more handily is very gratifying. Try out various Character Builds, get into Crafting and start Kicking Ass in the most spectacular ways.

Do the Other Path. There are two distinct paths to take in a crucial moment in the game, that affects the story. This time, play the one you didn’t choose before and see a different chapter, different benefits, allies and villain to battle. Try out different romances. Get the girl. Or the guy. Or not. Ultimately. Maybe.

Bioware’s DAI PAX2015 Panel.

Enjoy the Later Tweaks and Tons of New Gear, Items and Clothing. Since the original launch, DAI has seen many patches to fix exploits (like the legendary Thousands Cuts trick) and balance out gameplay that made particular classes well-nigh invincible (and broken) later in the game. Also, lots of new gear like crafting materials, items, schematics, weapons and armor have been added, including stuff in subsequent DLCs. Also, lo and behold, your Inquisitor needn’t run around in their annoying beige pajamas around Haven all the time thanks to the new Wardrobe. Oh, and Armor Tinting. ARMOR TINTING. YEEESSSS. MY GOSH I may be doing playthroughs with different Character COLORS. Not Classes, COLORS. My God this game rewards my OC Self like no other.

Finish the Fight, er Story. If you love the game like I do, the three DLC Story/Campaign Expansions- Jaws of Hakkon, The Descent and Trespasser- are Must-Haves. All of them can (or perhaps should) be played after completing the Main Game and Story, giving your Inquisition further adventures to test their skills. And you’ll probably need the powerful items and weapons you’ll get then in the final confrontations in Trespasser. No Ifs or Buts about it, Trespasser is the Final DLC of Inquisition, and it gives this corner of Thedas a definite ending that any Dragon Age fan should try themselves.

Right now, Dragon Age: Inquisition is in its most complete form and it’s an awesome package. Currently, I’m enjoying the hell out of DAI, possibly even more so than I did months ago. It’s awesome to see all the stuff I missed or just plain didn’t see before, and to play the game better this time around. Even if Trespasser has marked the End of Dragon Age for now, I won’t be leaving Thedas or my Inquisition anytime soon.

Love’s Sweeter the Second Time Around in Dragon Age: Inquisition

Posted in Dragon Age Inquisition, Fan Service, Fantasy, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, My Stuff, PC Gaming, PS4, RPGs, Xbox One on December 18th, 2014 by thelonegamer

Bioware’s epic RPG, Dragon Age: Inquisition, has passed my litmus test- after spending almost 100 hours in my first playthrough, I wasted no time in starting my second Inquisitor’s adventures. So far, I’ve plowed through another 40 hours and it’s STILL as obsessively engrossing as ever.

Of course, I know most of the story, but this time it’s not so much the mystery of who the Big Bad is, but seeing the different paths you can take in the story, getting to know more of the characters I just glossed over the first time, and best of all, playing the game more competently than before. A big part of DAI’s fun, I now realize, is the combat and fighting- though at first it may seem daunting and repetitive, this game is BLISS once you have a party working like a well-oiled, efficient killing machine. It just clicks. The trick is in choosing your perks/abilities right and most importantly, UPGRADING your equipment and armor by crafting. CRAFTING is a big part of going through this game like a boss.

This time, I was playing a Male Human Rogue Archer- a class I thought would be boring, given what I had seen in many videos on Youtube. It’s basically a character who stays away from the thick of combat, peppering enemies with an infinite number of arrows. Luckily by crafting your bow your shafts do more damage and really pack a punch in battles, letting my Inquisitor be a truly deadly force assisting his companions. Even better was in Dragon Fights- this time I wasn’t really depending on a somewhat Overpowered build (as my previous Inquisitor was a nigh-invincible Knight Enchanter) but more on my own skills- I even didn’t rely on my Archer Tempest’s supposedly broken Focus ability (which I think has been patched). Still though, I now have a much bigger respect for the tanks- the fighters- my second dragon I pretty much solo’ed with Grey Warden Blackwall, simply by keeping his Guard up and holding the line as the rest of the party lay KO’ed due to some bad luck.

I do see myself playing DAI maybe a couple more times at least- after this Archer Rogue playthrough, surely a Warrior build. Well, that’s my Christmas vacation booked already. Heheh.

Kicking Butt and Taking Names in Thedas

Posted in Dragon Age Inquisition, Fan Service, Fantasy, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, My Stuff, Open World Games, PC Gaming, PS3, PS4, RPGs, Xbox One, Xbox360 on December 1st, 2014 by thelonegamer

Vivienne and Cassandra show off their stuff in the latest Characters Trailer for DAI.

When I last posted about Dragon Age: Inquisition, I told of my epic, uphill battle (well, more like WAR) against the first dragon in the game- the Hinterlands’ Ferelden Frostback- supposedly the ‘easiest’ dragon in the game. Well, humorously enough, since then I’ve killed THREE more dragons, and although the battles were certainly epic, I actually killed them all pretty much as a matter of course, thanks mainly to my character- the Inquisitor in particular- suddenly becoming this all-powerful badass.
As I’ve said before, my first Inquisitor is a female Elf Mage. At the start, mages are very weak, with low damage output and low armor. It was offset by the variety of flashy spells at their diposal (with Barrier, glorious BARRIER). However, it is always a bit of a scare when you see big, armored bruisers gleefully running at you, aching to bury their huge swords hilt-deep into your gut. Well, that changes once you become a frekkin’ Knight Enchanter.

Once you reach a certain level in DAI, you can specialize your character- which opens up a new skill tree and new spells and powers to employ. For Mages, you can choose from three- Necromancer, Rift Mage or Knight Enchanter. I went for KE, which the trainer touted as the class for those who want ‘To Lead’. Basically what it does is turn your scrawny mage into a Magical Tank, wading into the thickest battle and laying waste to the opposition with her magic powers and a blade of solid light. Yes, basically you’re a goddamn JEDI in Thedas.

Your initiation is pretty straightforward- you gotta build your own Lightsa- well, spirit sword hilt (which entails you opening up an area to collect the needed metals). Once you do, congrats! You’re on your way to becoming a veritable scourge of the battlefield even Iron Bull will respect.

The key to your power is both your offense and defense- the Knight Enchanter uses Barrier to keep themselves from being damaged. With the right passive skills in place, you can keep your barrier up indefinitely by simply hitting with your spirit blade- so basically the more you attack and cause damage, the more you keep invulnerable. It sounds awesome, and it IS. However, it’s doesn’t make you TOTALLY unkillable or indestructible- I was overmatched in one instance by a pretty exceptional enemy group, but other than that I have been kicking ass every time- it kinda helps that I am a bit over-leveled now- at Level 20.

You’d think some games would become boring or un-fun once you become too poweful, but not really in this case- nor was it when I reached a certain level in Skyrim. It just opens up the world for you which is quite liberating and empoweringly fun. Also, being so powerful fits with you character being this unstoppable leader of what amounts to Thedas’ most feared and powerful army of justice, and at this point I am having so much freakin’ fun with the game. FINALLY I got back to those stupid overpowered Rifts in the Hinterlands and wiped the floor with those damn demons. Heh.
I’ve actually still got quite a bit of the game to go, but thanks to my power, I do think I’ll more or less coast through to the ending, which is fine. I wonder though what class I’ll take in my second playthrough… and I hope it’s as powerful or just as kickass… but hell- my Knight Enchanter Elf Inquisitor is one almighty fury on the field. Love it.

The Lone Gamer’s Tips to Playing Dragon Age: Inquisition

Posted in Dragon Age Inquisition, Fantasy, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, My Stuff, Open World Games, PC Gaming, PS3, PS4, RPGs, Xbox One, Xbox360 on November 28th, 2014 by thelonegamer

Have you made the leap into Thedas yet?

Since I started playing Dragon Age: Inquisition last November 18, I’ve clocked in more than 50 hours into this mammoth Bioware RPG. There are things I’ve learned during that time that will surely make the lives of subsequent Inquisitors a lot easier. Here are some of them, placed for your reference!

Being a Pack Rat is Good. Like in every good RPG, one thing you’ll want to do as a matter of course in DAI is to just grab everything that isn’t nailed down and stuff it into your Inquisitor backpack. There are dozens of things to find- loot, weapons, armor, valuables, crafting materials and what have you. Every so often you’ll find an awesome sword, staff or clothing to upgrade your party members. The random stuff you pick up may be a crucial ingredient for some sidequest, requisition or potion, so you’ll kick yourself if you realize you ignored that rare reagent.

Don’t Buy. Craft! In the course of your journeys, you’ll eventually amass a lot of gold (sell those valuables!) and you may get tempted to grab some powerful-looking weapon or armor from some merchant. I say, resist. The most powerful gear is stuff you craft yourself- save your money for buying RECIPES and SCHEMATICS. Crafted arms and armor have the benefit of getting max values and additional properties like buffing the wearer’s health or giving them extra powers.

Socialize. Always take the time to find your companions when you’re hanging out in the stronghold or so. Chat and get to know them, and perhaps unlock a romance option or a personal quest. These sidestories are the best parts of DAI, so don’t miss out on them because you were too focused on silly crap like saving the world…

Find those shards! Yes, they have a use and they’re kinda worth the effort. Gotta get ‘em all!

Killing Dragons is Awesome. To be sure, these monstrous titans are not to be taken lightly. But don’t be afraid to give it a try and see if you can make a dent in the buggers. Tactical Cam view may be key to taking them out, or just really good preparation or a strategy. When you do take out a dragon, the rewards are worth it and, well, it just feels damn good. Kinda sad though that there are only ten of them…

Get Fade Step. If you’re a Mage, there’s a power in the Winter
tree that lets you zip forward like a white flash- kinda like Whirlwind Sprint but one you can actually curve or aim if you wish. Using this can get you to some seemingly unreachable parts of the world- all the better to get those darn irritating shards…

Broaden Your Horizons. Don’t stay too long in The Hinterlands. This is something a lot of sites have said, and they’re right. Don’t try to finish off an entire zone before moving on. You can always revisit them to finish off whatever you missed. The variety of locales and atmosphere you’ll see in Thedas is awesome, and you shouldn’t burn yourself out in just one region for days and days. Take care though that some regions will probably be very high-level and dangerous unless you’ve leveled up some.

Save Often, and do Many Saves Slots. Sometimes you may want to redo a dungeon, or discover that you missed a crucial part or segment. Or maybe you wish you answered someone differently? Making saves ensure you can give something a second try if you want, without having to go through another new playthrough to do so (unless you want to!).

But one thing I still recommend is to NOT rush. Just take in the sights, read what can be read, do what you want to do. This is a game that is so stuffed with content you may miss a ton if you don’t see things through with care. But hey, whatever floats your boat is good. You can always just play again. Thedas is your oyster, peeps! A demon-infested oyster but heck, isn’t that the best kind?

Killing My First Dragon: Dragon Age Inquisition

Posted in Dragon Age Inquisition, Fantasy, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, My Stuff, Open World Games, PC Gaming, PS4, RPGs, Xbox One on November 26th, 2014 by thelonegamer

Stay a while and listen. This is a long story.

About forty or so hours into Bioware’s RPG opus, Dragon Age: Inquisition, I took on my first dragon. FORTY HOURS. Yep, when they said DAI was a big game, they weren’t kidding. When they said it was best to take it nice and slow, savour the moments and enjoy it, they meant it. And I took that all to heart. I haven’t been playing this game since launch day- I was living it.

There’s a TON of things to do in Inquisiton- all apart from the main mission or quest to save the world from that big HOLE in the sky. There’s the endless amount of tasks and miniquests to strengthen your fledgeling army from being just a rag-tag bunch of refugees to Thedas’ most badass legion of justice. There’s tons of little troubles and wrongs to right in every region of the world, zones to open up, Power to accumulate to open those zones, gear to find, customize, upgrade or build, skills to learn, secrets to dig up and heck, you also have to decide what kind of BED you’re going to sleep in at night. ZOUNDS! No one ever said the life of the Inquisitor would be easy.

But in between all of the demon-slaying, rift-sealing, treasure-hunting, druffalo-recovering you’re going be doing, you’re eventually going to have to kill a dragon. Well, several dragons. And believe you me, that isn’t a small thing. If you thought the things were scary in Skyrim (well, they were, at the time), the wyrms in Thedas will really make you squirm. Well, this IS a game called Dragon Age, after all.

Dragons in Thedas are big. They’re bigger than big- they’re HUGE. I’d go as far as saying they are probably ten times bigger than Skyrim dragons. Each one is a veritable one-thing army (or air force) complete with artillery or napalm air strike capability. To be quite blunt, one does not simple walk into a dragon fight. Against the first dragon you’ll meet in the game- the Ferelden Frostback- your party will easily and immediately be broiled in seconds unless you’re strong enough and prepared enough. Don’t even try if you’re not ready. Truly- it is folly.

Since I am a slow learner and I took my sweet time, I only got to facing off with the Frostback 40 hours into my first playthrough. My party members were all 14th Level- I think that’s a bit over the required level, but hey, I wanted to make sure. Even at this point, going up against the dragon would be suicide unless all your members have some sort of Fire Resistance equipped. The easiest would be Fire Resistance Tonics, which you have to find a recipe for in your travels.
Have that mixed up and equip everyone with a bunch. Although the game only allows the entire party to share from a common pool of 8 initial Healing Potions, everyone can have a personal stash of two bunches of other types of potions. I gave everyone Regeneration (which is almost as good as Healing anyway) and the Fire Resistance Tonics. My Inquisitor was an Ice mage, so that was fine- I opted to bring just my Warrior Tanks for the fight- Iron Bull, the Qunari mercenary captain, Cassandra and Blackwall, the Grey Warden Lone Wolf.

My first attempt didn’t start so well. The first phase of the fight has you entering the zone called Lady Shayna’s Valley, which introduced the Frostback and has it circling around and sending a fireball your way every so often. The trick is to just avoid it long enough so that it just goes away. Aside from that, there are Dragonlings about which will attack you. I opted to just make a run for the second adjacent area in the valley, which is a more open field where you’ll actually be able to take on the dragon on the ground. As my Inquisitor hot-footed it into the place, the Dragon was there before us, HUGE even though it was still very, very far away- an intimidating sight to be sure… and that high-pitched screeching wail- intimidating sounds as well.
The thing began to beat it’s wings, causing everyone to be drawn in like a magnet. This actually works well for the fighters, who NEEDS to be right up in the monster’s face. The trick is once you get into range, quickly switch to each of your characters individually to chug a Fire Tonic when needed (they won’t use them on their own, sadly). The trick was to keep my mage Inquisitor out of the way and keep her protected with Barrier (my warriors had to make do with Guard, their own kind of health-buffing ability). From there it was a fierce battle of attrition, but we WERE making a dent in the damn thing. Unfortunately, about halfway through the Frostback’s health, a bunch of Dragonlings suddenly came in to help mama- and that I fear turned the tide. I think I made the mistake of ignoring the little buggers, which ended up in all my party getting KO’ed with the sole exception of Cassandra.

I have to say, Lady Pentaghast BLEW ME AWAY with how she was able to keep fighting alone, against both the big Momma Dragon and her little brood, for quite a while before she was finally, inevitably overwhelmed. However, at that point I saw that it was possible. I had made a crucial mistake with Cassandra going into the fight- I had not equipped her with Regen potions for some reason. BUMMER! But hey, we learn by doing.

The second attempt came quicker. Instead of rushing to Phase 2, the party stayed in Shayna’s valley to annihilate the Dragonlings. I had thought maybe doing this would prevent them appearing later in the actual dragon fight, but that was false- either there are other hatchlings in the second area or they just spawn regardless.
We headed into the second area, the Frostback waiting. Everything went as before- fighters waded in, chugging Fire Resistance Tonics and then wailing away with their implements of death. I kept my Inquisitor at a distance, casting Ice spells as often as I could. Eventually though, I switch to one of the fighters- Cassandra, and just kept fighting in close. I had to trust that my Mage’s AI would keep her alive.
The battle wore on for many minutes, but finally we got the dragon to below half her health. ALL of us were still standing. The Frostback would occasionally fly off, making me worry if she was going to pepper us with fire- I wasn’t sure if all of my guys still had enough Fire tonics. But thankfully, the dragon came back to melee, and the fight continued. After a while though, the Dragonlings swarmed in, coming to their matriarch’s aid. I had Cassandra fight the things, to try and kill them as quickly as possible, using every ability once it was available from cooldown. At that point, things suddenly turned grim. Iron Bull went down. My Inquisitor followed. It was down to Cassandra and Blackwall.

I was a bit worried then- Blackwall tended to be the one warrior in my group that seemed to take damage the most easily and fall the quickest. Somehow though he was still standing, so I switched to him and kept his health up with Regeneration potions. FINALLY we killed off the last Dragonling and the Frostback was less than a fourth of her health. She flew up to an elevated area and stayed there. It was time to take the battle to her and finish it.

Thanks to the bit of respite, I was able to get my downed teammates up again, and we made our way up the rocky path to the Frostback’s nest. There the final battle was ON. Again, as the Frostback’ health whittled down, my party members fell one by one until it was once again only Cassandra standing alone, holding the line. But I wasn’t worried at this point- somehow, she was at full health (her guard seemed invincible!) and she still had a lot of regeneration potions at hand, and the dragon seemed to have given up on using fire. It was all just a final stretch of a slugfest to the finish line. As the monster was on the last sliver of health, I ventured to have Cassandra wake up the other members so they could all share in the XP gain. It was a bit of a gamble (who knew if that turning of the back could have left her open), but it was a done deal by then. The Frostback finally, FINALLY reared up and fell, DEAD. The party stared at it and exchanged their banter. We. Had. WON. My gosh that was a fight.

To show for it, we got a few high-level items, some extremely rare materials for crafting which I know I’ll want to save for something really, really good. Oh, and the Dragonslayer Achievement. YAY! I think it also goes that with the killing of a dragon, the Inquisition’s status and influence as a whole will grow even more.

However, even at 40 hours, I still had a long way to go in the quest to save Thedas. There were literally armies of enemies in our way. I had killed one dragon. The easiest one, I think. There were at least nine more to go.

After all this, I can only say- bring it on.

Dragon Age Inquisition (XBox One) First Impressions!

Posted in Dragon Age Inquisition, Fantasy, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, Open World Games, PC Gaming, RPGs, Xbox One on November 19th, 2014 by thelonegamer

Introducing my first-ever Inquisitor: The Elven mage, Eon Lavellan.

Yesterday, I spent a load on new games- GORGEOUS new games for my XBox One; the ones that should really show off ‘Next-Gen’ awesomeness. The first game I popped in of course was Bioware’s Dragon Age: Inquisition. With respect to GTAV and Far Cry 4, I’ve been waiting for DAI for the past two or so years and I can NOT wait another night. Luckily, installation and updating with a Day One patch didn’t take too long.

Jumping into this heady stew of fantasy RPG bliss wasn’t hard- a lot of gaming sites talk up how you need to know a lot about the world of Thedas as you start up this epic, but heck, I don’t think its that vital to know your Orlais from your Ferelden. But yeah, it does help to know some basics- like how Mages are more or less given to be pariahs in the world; kinda like mutants in Marvel Comics, with Templars being their watchdogs or sentinels. There’s the Fade, which is the Spirit realm (the realms of Oblivion for you Elder Scrollers), and Elves are second-class citizens in cities, or wild rebels in the countrysides (kinda like the Forsworn..? Well, not THAT wild).

Your character though starts off the game a bit addled and suffering from amnesia, so you could just play along in that angle. The game does a good job of holding your hand for a while, but I would suggest letting go of it before long and just savoring the sights and sounds as you see them.

Soon after the opening or intro which sees your character (you choose race, class and gender) surviving a cataclysmic explosion which kills thousands in a momentous peace summit and subsequently opens up a big ‘Breach’ in the Fade, you are held prisoner by the Seeker Cassandra and the somewhat shady Sister Leliana. Apparently my poor Elf mage stands accused for the explosion, due to the appearance of a glowing green mark on her hand (the same light from the Breach, or rip in the Fade after all).

Stills really don’t do this game justice. It. Is. Beautiful.

Soon though you find yourself fighting alongside one another as you fight to close the Breach and stop the tide of demonkind pouring through. Along the way you meet the Dwarf Rogue Varrick, a returning playable from Dragon Age 2, and the Elven mage Solas, a self-described expert on All Things Fade. Together you make your way to the ruined Temple of Sacred Ashes, where some hints of your shadowy enemy are heard, if not seen. Battle ensues, which ends with the Breach subsiding, but not entirely closing.

When it becomes clear that the Chantry (Thedas’ version of the church) is in chaos with all sorts of little wannabee Divines (Pope?) scrambling to get into the high seat, Cassandra brings out a big BOOK which reveals that the late Divine Justinia had given them the authority to reform the Inquisition- an organization from the olden times whose job it was to combat big, bad things like the Breach. Kinda like SHIELD, but without Helicarriers and more swords. Right now, however, the Inquisition is little more than the last will from a (supposedly) dead woman, two kick-ass ladies and their surviving, loyal troops and in this case a poor confused Elf with a glowing green palm. YIPEE!

Cue in Lord of the Rings travel music.

Well, thankfully we get a couple of new faces shortly after- Cullen, a Templar NPC who appeared in both previous Dragon Age games, returns looking like this game’s version of Alistair as the Inquisition’s new Military Commander. A new character named Josephine Montilyet is introduced as your Ambassador, while Leliana is designated as your Spymaster. They’re your Inner Circle, your Advisors- they don’t join you in adventures but carry out ‘operations’ on their own, using Force/Threat of Force, Subterfuge/Assassination or Diplomany/Socializing to gain assets and influence for the Inquisition. It’s pretty awesome, and the way you all gather at the War Table makes you just feel like you’re a Non-evil Doctor Evil plotting to rule the world (well, you ARE, but for the Greater Good. THE GREATER GOOD.

Cassandra Pentaghast has come a long way since DA2. You GO, Girl.

Despite the urgency of circumstances, the pace you set for your adventures is all your own. I spent the first couple of hours after the actual Founding of the Inquisition (marked by the appearance of the Title screen, after all the fracas) just wandering around the small village of Haven, which serves as the Inquisition’s initial headquarters. In hindsight, I still have lots of discover there but soon I was on my way to the first open world region to explore- The Hinterlands.

This first area is a HUGE forested expanse, and is crawling with enemies to take on and level your mates up with. I was playing on Normal, so I was more or less coasting through skirmishes without any need for the Tactical view- Basically I just let my NPCs do what they will; Cassandra wading in, Solas casting Barrier and Varrick just letting fly with Bianca (his unique, upgradeable crossbow). My Inquisitor, Eon, was a mage and shot forth bolts of fire or ice from her staff, every so often casting potent spells which had a bit of cooldown. Still, if I let an enemy get too close, it was bloody. A couple of times I suddenly ran into an enemy that totally murdered the whole group in a flash- enemies in DAI don’t scale, so those baddies will get theirs once we level up and come back to kick their asses.

Quests and side quests come in fast and furious- talking to people who have something to say will usually open up objectives- from gathering meat for refugees or finding mysterious magical shards scattered in the land, these come up with regularity. So what else can you do but GRAB EVERYTHING not nailed down. Use the Search button to scope out stuff lying around (so easy to miss them) and keep killing baddies (rogue mages and templars are everywhere). Healing is a bit of a pain since you have limited healing potions and no healing magic (at least at beginning levels). Still, it helps that being able to just RUN AWAY if you’re getting outmatched is pretty viable- if you see your mates getting one-shotted, just make a break for it… once you get clear of the enemy’s territory, your party members will appear behind you, alive if quite bloodied and bruised. Hey, it beats having to reload.

What can I say about my first six hours (after all that above?). The game looks GORGEOUS. The world is massive and invites exploration. Next-Gen is the way to go, people- if you can, get the XBOne, PS4 or PC versions. Hi-res gloriousness is to be had. Gameplay may be a bit much to take in all at once, but this game is very forgiving and just take things nice and slow. DON’T RUSH. ENJOY. I do see myself playing this sucker for days and days. Damn, it’s about time. It really is about time.

No, this isn’t really a review but damn all I can say is that this game is the Lambourghini of RPGs right now. There’s no bigger or better game to be had. I say, get it now and get it good. Thank me later.

GOT GAMES: Dragon Age Inquisition, Far Cry 4 and GTAV Next Gen

Posted in Action Adventure, Dragon Age Inquisition, Fan Service, Fantasy, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, Grand Theft Auto V, Open World Games, RPGs, Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown, Xbox One on November 18th, 2014 by thelonegamer

Not just a wonderful but beautiful (if sinister) world…

In the early hours of the morning, when most sane people would be lost in the Land of Nod, I was awake and playing Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown on my PS3 while the computer monitor behind me played the video above- the Launch trailer for Dragon Age: Inquisition. I guess with this one, the idea of using a haunting or sinister rendition of a normally wholesome or whimsical song for a trailer is really a thing now (like they did in the trailers for Maleficent and The Avengers: Age of Ultron). Some may think it’s getting a bit cliche, but so far I like it. And well, damn- the world of Thedas in DAI truly does look freakin’ wonderful.

And it’s a world I expect to be immersing myself in starting tonight, as I have just a few hours ago purchased my copy (XBOne) of the game, along with Far Cry 4 and Grand Theft Auto V (Next-Gen). On this one day, my XB1 library just became so much more awesome (and thankfully I just finished the campaign of Sunset Overdrive).

While DAI is my main game for now, I do expect I’ll still be working on my Skyrim LPs, and I do want to get in some hours of roaming the slopes and forests of Kyrat in Far Cry 4 as well. GTAV isn’t a priority, but it’s a game I just have to have in my library as a matter of course.

Anyway, did you guys get your new games today? So many awesome releases!
My bank account is sad as hell, but I don’t care- happy now. Heh.

Dragon Age: Inquisition ‘The Breach’ Trailer

Posted in Dragon Age Inquisition, Fan Service, Fantasy, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, Open World Games, PC Gaming, PS3, PS4, RPGs, Xbox One on November 14th, 2014 by thelonegamer

One more cinematic trailer to whet our appetites for the RPG bliss next week.

Bioware’s mammoth RPG, Dragon Age: Inquisition is about four days away, and really- it’s all just a matter of time and waiting. So far we’re getting what appears to be a constant stream of trailers- some have been character-based spots, but this one in particular is pretty cool; a cinematic trailer that just screams EPIC! Loving the quality of the visuals, from sweeping vistas of the war-torn, varied lands of Thedas, culminating in a pitched battle between the Inquisition and Demons of the Fade. Awesome!

Conceivably, one can already be playing the game now, with an Xbox One and an EA Access subscription. This will give the player 6 hours of trial gameplay, which can then be passed into the final game once you purchase it. Very tempting, I guess. I am intending to try the PC and Xbox One versions, and have decided to just delay getting a PS4 until next month (when Guilty Gear Xrd SIGN arrives).

For now, all I can do is wait and just subsist on the many early access vids appearing online. But when this game arrives… MAN, this is going to be… glorious.

10 Things About Dragon Age: Inquisition

Posted in Dragon Age Inquisition, Fantasy, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, Open World Games, RPGs on November 10th, 2014 by thelonegamer

Iron Bull is ready for the Inquisition. Are you?

It’s pretty much just about a week away, and I am stoked to the rafters for Dragon Age: Inquisition. Heck, if you’re an RPG fan, this is the game to watch out for, this is the game to get, this is THE big thing. Going into this, I have thoughts, desires, wishes and intentions for or about the game, so to deal with the waiting I decided to post them here.

1. This is going to be LONG. I like my RPGs big and epic, and I love investing my time in them. Dragon Age: Inquisition (DAI) certainly looks to be one of these biggies, where you’ll be taking your fledgeling wannabe-hero, thrown more or less literally into a trial by fire and the role of Savior of the World. The climb to the top will surely be long and involve many adventures, campaigns and chapters that will have you traveling the length and breadth of Thedas. Awesome.

2. You’re Part of a Team. Something that I will need to get used to quite a bit is that you’re not The Dragonborn. Well, you’re the Inquisitor, which means simply that you’re not meant to take on the world on your own. You will be of a single class, a character of definite skill sets and power, but just as important as your own development is the development of your party- the comrades on whose shoulders the burden of saving the world will be shared. There are nine possible party members to recruit, so decide which ones you’ll get. Try others in future playthroughs and Inquisitors. That should make for replay value in spades.

3. You’re the Head of the Inquisition. Aside from being the leader of a party of adventurers, you’re the leader of an organization- an army, a movement- the Inquisition may sound sinister (and cool that it does) but in Thedas at least it stands for keeping the peace, order and restoring the land from the destruction of The Breach. How the Inquisition grows and what it becomes hopefully will be reflected by your choices and style- will you be a beloved, goody-two shoes Army of Light, or a feared, iron-willed legion cloaked in shadows and greys? I have to admit, the Power Freak in me has this as our primary desire- to really feel how it is to be the head of this mighty force.

4. Awesome Bad Guys. This is something I really want to see in DAI which I haven’t seen yet in most other RPGs- really strong, really terrifying baddies who keep you on your toes, who are growing more powerful as you do, who are a challenge. I want a threat that demands that you get stronger fast. DAI’s rogue’s gallery is so far promising – DAI’s Big Bad is a secretive, faceless ‘Elder One’- who seems to give off the arrogant malevolence of a wannabee god. Those who follow him are threatening and powerful- the gladiator-like Venatori, the mad Red Templars, and of course the hordes of Demons spewing from the Breach. Then there are the nation-based factions from Ferelden, Orlais and Tevinter, who surely won’t just bow down to the Inquisitor without a fight. Oh and then there are the Dragons- who make Skyrim’s vanilla wyrms look like garter snakes in comparison.

5. Combat will take getting used to. I can’t ignore this issue, having played modded Skyrim more or less continuously for the past three or so years. DAI combat is party-based, MMO-ish in look and pretty over-the-top in terms of effects and visuals. I will never really like how even warriors seem to initiate veritable light shows of VFX with many of their attacks, but I guess I can just simply choose not to use some cheezy cartoon tactics. Or I may get used to it after many hours of play.

6. I want Loose Ends Tied. I played Dragon Age: Origins a LOT years ago, and I want to see how Ferelden, my enthroned King Alistair and the Warden Queen tie into the story. What is the role of Morrigan’s god-child? What will happen when the Inquisition and the Grey Wardens meet? The lore of this world is so rich, so many threads to pick on and nibble. DAMN I wish I played more DA2.

7. Exploration is going to be awesome. So far all the hours of videos online have shown limited views of the game’s regions- The Hinterlands, Redcliffe, the Deep roads, the coasts… but we still have TONS of places to go to, and the world looks simply amazing. Best to get the rig with the best visuals, but darn I can’t really afford a 4K PC right now… oh well.

8. Multiple Endings means I’m going to be playing this for years. But I wonder- can you play an Evil Inquisitor? A good one? Can you really get into a role and play as that way? Or will it be discouraged by the game? It will be interesting to see how much you can go through the game as an arse or as a white knight.

9. Probably going to play this either on Xbox One or PS4. I am pretty sure by now that my current gaming PC won’t be able to play this game to the max. I already own an Xbox One, so I can easily get the game for that. But then, I also want a PS4, for which I can get GTAV, Far Cry 4 and DAI on the 18th or so.

10. There’s more to come. I know that the game will let you continue playing after the Main Quest, and there may be more stuff to come as DLC and expansions. And of course the inevitable DA4. I guess DAI is as good a place as any to be a foundation for the DA future.

Eight days to go. MAAAN it’s going to be a long eight days. Sigh…

‘The Breach’ is coming in Dragon Age: Inquisition

Posted in Action Adventure, Dragon Age Inquisition, Fantasy, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, Open World Games, PC Gaming, PS4, RPGs, Xbox One on November 2nd, 2014 by thelonegamer

Short and sweet.

The latest teaser trailer for Dragon Age: Inquisition doesn’t say much, but the voice is that of Morrigan’s, which is all that it needs to be. This game just can’t be hyped any more than it already has- I was sold on it months ago. The only question now is, do I play it on PC, Xbox One or do I buy a PS4 for it? Chances are, I’ll get either the PC or XBox One versions- pretty easy to do so. I may save getting a PS4 for Guilty Gear Xrd this December. In any case, MAN, I just want to play Inquisition yesterday. I do intend to do a Let’s Play series on Youtube for it, though the roleplaying elements won’t be the same as with Skyrim since your Inquisitor does have a voice in the game.

There are still two weeks to go before we can probably get our hands on a copy- though I am not sure if we’ll actually get copies in store on the 18th. I do plan on playing a bit of Origins (now loaded on my Surface Pro 2) to pass the time. I need to keep busy till release, to make the days pass even quicker. Just a little bit more. Yep, the Breach is coming. Whatever that is.