Matt Chat 42: Dragon Age Origins

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This week, I look at Bioware's new Dragon Age: Origins, a smash hit to join the ranks of earlier hits like Jade Empire and Knights of the Old Republic. Dragon Age: Origins is a dream come true for many fans of older, more tactically-oriented RPGs, though we're still far from the turn-based micromanagement of games like Pool of Radiance or Wizard's Crown. What I particularly like about DA:O is the emphasis on characters' feelings--which include romance and "adult situations!" Enjoy.

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Matt Barton
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You make some good points.

You make some good points. Stronger AI, or at least an option for it, would have made the game greater. But I'm also wondering if it's just the game itself. I had lots of fun initially, but then got bogged down in Orgizzimar or whatever it's called. I don't feel that strong urge to explore that I felt with Pool of Radiance and Baldur's Gate 2. I think one reason that parties worked there was that the individual tactics weren't so complex. You didn't have so many choices, and could distribute responsibilities pretty evenly (and obviously). DA:O is pretty daunting with all of those trees. I like choices, but again when you're hit with so many, they ought to matter less.

Still, I think you could have all of these faults and still have a great game. There's just something missing that I can't quite put my finger on.

n/a
adamantyr
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Joined: 01/28/2007
DA:O
Matt Barton wrote:

I had lots of fun initially, but then got bogged down in Orgizzimar or whatever it's called.

Yeah, I've been feeling that too, and I'm only on Redcliffe so far. I'm a little annoyed that if I don't want to kill a little boy or his mother, I have to go and do ANOTHER full quest arc in another place. The fact I still haven't achieved vengeance on two weasels yet is also galling. It doesn't feel like I'm making much progress.

Trying to manage my party members is also annoying; I'm constantly having to watch out for approval drops and raises. Since most of these result from unavoidable plot elements, it's especially irksome. I have to go to wiki's to find out which people to take into a region to avoid drops.

Matt Barton wrote:

Still, I think you could have all of these faults and still have a great game. There's just something missing that I can't quite put my finger on.

The story may be part of this... I have a distinct feeling I'm being manipulated and used as a pawn by someone who already knows what I'm going to do. I hate this in books and even more so in games. At least in Mass Effect, it felt like you were at least a disruption in the enemy's plans.

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