More Reviews
REVIEWS Slender: The Arrival Review
Few games can offer genuine scares in the horror genre. Can Slender: The Arrival prove otherwise and it can offer more?

Pillars of Eternity Review
Obsidian Entertainment creates a retro Infinity Engine RPG funded by Kickstarter. Is it as good as previous Infinity Engine games, or does the novelty quickly wear off?
More Previews
PREVIEWS Dirty Bomb Preview
Looking for a more competitive, challenging online FPS multiplayer game? Splash Damage is introducing just that by dropping a Dirty Bomb on the free-to-play game market.
Release Dates
NEW RELEASES Stealth Inc 2: A Game of Clones
Release date: 04/01/15

Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin
Release date: 04/07/15

LATEST FEATURES 6 Helpful Tips for Pillars of Eternity
Simply put, Pillars of Eternity can become maddening if players aren't careful.

Top 10 Active Video Game Kickstarter Campaigns
There are lots of indie projects going on right now, so we did the dirty work for you and found the best.
MOST POPULAR FEATURES Top 50 Pokémon of All Time
Can you believe there are now six generations of Pokémon? Six!! That's a crazy amount of different creatures to collect. But which are the cream of the crop? Don't worry, Magikarp isn't actually one of them.

Read More Member Blogs
The perils of the Hype Train…
By shandog137
Posted on 03/09/15
The recent release of Evolve and The Order 1886 really got me to thinking about the disparity between the perspective of sales-driven publishers and the quality-driven purchases of consumers. The “Hype Train” is nothing new, but the way it is utilized has been creating far more...

Dragon Age 2 Member Review for the PC

Ivory_Soul By:
M Contains Blood and Gore, Language, Sexual Content and Violence

What do these ratings mean?

The Good: Excellent story with strong moral choices, wonderfully crafted characters, beautiful graphics with DX11 support, combat is fast paced, lots of abilities to unlock, tons of loot, great boss fights

The Bad: Very linear and repetitive environments, sterile looking compared to Origins, constant loading between areas

Dragon Age: Origins was Bioware's gift to gamers missing the old action RPGs of yonder such as Diablo, Baldur's Gate, and Icewind Dale. Dragon Age II has come along and is really a love it or it hate it type of thing. It's almost nothing like Origins, but there's a lot of good in this as well, but the game does have more flaws than the original, but I will get to those later.

DA2 tells the story of Hawke who is the Champion of Kirkwall in events that take place right after the last game. DA2 really concentrates on a more personal level with the companions and Hawke instead of an overall save-the-world type story. The Darkspawn play a very small roll in this story and you only encounter them a few times. Don't mistake DA2 for a poor linear story because the moral outcomes become the usual Bioware head scratchers, and as the game goes on your choices make bigger and bigger impacts. The story is broken up into three acts which respectively has you rising to power, using that power, then finally completely unleashing your abilities as Champion of Kirkwall to either save the mages or help the Templars destroy them. The character in DA2 are absolutely amazing in both looks and personality plus some cameos and appearances from the last game. You really get attached to each one and want to use them all during battle.

The story is probably the best thing going for DA2, but it does have a bit of a slow start. If you are used to Origins huge overarching story you might actually get bored for a while with this one. Little things help influence the story like romances (yes gay romances work here), but there are so many choices during dialog that the story could turn so many different ways, so you always feel like you have complete control. The dialog is more like Mass Effect with a wheel that has several options. You can choose from the usual good/bad dialog, but a new sarcastic one has been added in the middle and I always chose these because they were just clever. Just like any Bioware game relationships with characters can also impact dialog and will give you advantages or disadvantages depending on that.

So, if you go into DA2 expecting an excellent story you won't be upset there. What you will probably hate is the more action oriented combat and more linear and repetitive environments. The combat has fast fluid animations instead of the clumsy combat from Origins. Characters strike hard and fast and there are lots of gore which I didn't mind. Of course you can have up to ten quick slots equipped for abilities and the new tree is very intuitive. There are different ability classes and then each ability can also be upgraded inside that. Loot collecting and leveling up works just like Origins including junk, but you can't equip armor on companions. Yeah, its one of those "What the hell?" type issues with the game. Sure you can add runes to their armor and weapons, but just don't expect to change their armor.

There are a lot of changes from Origins that really shouldn't have been touched including the linear and extremely repetitive environments. You move around a map and just follow the arrow on your map to each goal. Since you are just in Kirkwall you are moving around the same hallway dungeons, and the same main map cities. After act 1 you have probably seen 75% of the game. I really missed the open areas from Origins and the feeling of being in an open world. Sure the graphics got a huge upgrade and it all looks nice, but there isn't much variety. This disappointed me more than anything else in the game were the repetitive areas that kept you strictly in Kirkwall. There are some outdoor environments, but don't expect a lot of them. There is also constant loading between areas and this drove me nuts early on.

Of course there's a lot of good loot, resource collecting, and you can use poisons and grenades like before, but what I hate still are the potion cool down times that are set at 30 seconds. This can make hard boss fights very frustrating because later on you'll have a ton of money and have over 100 potions but you can only use one every 30 seconds, and this goes for stamina droughts as well. The only thing I  like about the new combat system is the faster pace and speed. There are so many abilities that you won't even unlock them all in one play through.

Overall DA2 feel like a Dragon Age game, but that nostalgic feeling from Origins is gone and I really missed that. DA2 will keep you busy for a good 30+ hours and there even some great side quests. The visuals are great with DirectX 11 support and high-resolution textures on the PC, so if you have the rig this is the way to go. However, the graphics seem more sterile than Origins due to linearity so it loses its charm in that area a bit. I highly recommend DA2 to fans of the past game, but don't expect this to be a true to heart sequel.

More information about Dragon Age 2
B+ Revolution report card
Views: 1279 Review rating:
comments powered by Disqus

More On GameRevolution