So I finally got my hands on Dragon Age: Origins, which is the only 2009 game title that I was really wanting to play. I spent a good portion of the this past weekend playing it, or wishing I was playing it.
I’m uncertain if the game has the 100(?) hours of gameplay that Ray Muzyka mentioned some time ago, but I’ve played a lot of hours (doing a lot of side quests in the process) and I doubt I’ve gone past one fourth of the game’s story.
We bought the Collector’s Edition, preordered from GAME UK, and sadly their CE does not include the cloth map, which I was somewhat interested in. That was expected, as I had contacted them regarding the information they had on their website. The only thing we should have gotten and didn’t was the preorder bonus item code, and my sweetie has sent them an e-mail asking about it. I don’t really care for the +1% XP much, but if we’re entitled to it…
Anyway, I rolled a Human Noble Fighter, dual wielder extraordinaire. The only down side of this is that since I’m dual wielding, I focus a lot of my points on Dexterity, instead of Strength, and the bonus Dragon Armor requires a ton of Strength to wear, so it will have to wait for a lot more level ups.
What I’m liking so far:
Awesome graphics, which have been running smoothly on my PC so far. Some of the spell and abilities’ animations are very well done also.
The world design. I haven’t seen all of the environments in the game, but so far I’m impressed with what I’ve seen.
The combat system. It’s not perfect, but I like real time combat (or something that simulates that well enough), not turn-based combat, which is the main reason I usually can’t be arsed playing japanese RPGs.
I’m especially liking the dialogues and the characters. I thought I’d hate Morrigan, but so far she’s been very entertaining, with her cold outsider views of the world and bluntness. The interactions between party members have also been entertaining, as have been some of their backstories. I don’t know who BioWare hires to write the plots, and develop characters, but they deserve praise because I never ever would think of, say, a certain story Leliana tells involving birds. I’ve had a quite a few laughs out loud moments while playing the game, and that’s a very good sign.
Little details like being able to offer gifts to party members to gain approval add to the coolness also. Incidentally, my sweetie, who’s also been playing the game decided to offer Leliana a lamb bone or something, and was surprised that she didn’t like it. I gave her flowers, and she loved it. A girl liking flowers over a bone? Go figure. 😉 Regarding this system I’ve noticed that some gifts are more effective on party members than others, and that you can sometimes figure the ‘correspondence’ out by talking to them about their stories. A little spoiler incoming in the rest of this paragraph: for instance, if you talk to Leliana long enough you realize she loves fashion, especially shoes. You can buy shoes from at least one merchant in the game, and if you give them to her she loves getting them.
What I haven’t liked:
Small inventory space. 70 slots for 4 characters in the party isn’t much. I hear the already available downloadable content introduces more space for items, somehow, but even though I’m liking the game, I prefer waiting a bit longer before cashing in another 6,35€ for content. Also, I just love the euro/dolar conversion: $7 = 6,35€. Okay…
Call me a sissy but I’ve started finding the game really hard after a point. At the moment I’m stuck in front of a boss with a grand total of three healing pots because before I got to her, I had to slay huge groups of mobs non-stop, and having no healer in the party I developed a… drinking problem. Fortunately, the peeps over at BioWare seem to have realized this and it seems that patch 1.01a addresses this among other things.
Spiders. Urgh. Okay maybe this isn’t a game flaw. 😛 I just really hate spiders and the last few hours of gameplay have been filled with unending hordes of giant spiders. Which I hate. Brrr… *shivers*
What I’m still looking forward to:
The Dragon Age Toolset. It’s out and I want to get it asap. I’m probably only going to try it out after I finish the game, though.
Knowing how some stories work out.
Will Morrigan turn evil(er)?
Will Alister become who he doesn’t want to be?
Will Leliana ever get enough shoes?