Dragon Age II PC

User Score
4.5

Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 4546 Ratings

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  1. May 13, 2011
    2
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I should have known better. I saw some early signals like a mage in a melee fight in the trailer, but I decided to ignore that fact. What can I add? 17 sets of armor that no one can use, a painful experience as a mage, several characters deserving to die in the first chapter because they are flat out intolerable (starting with Carver), weak plot, recycled graphics, ruined tactics system, boring boss battles... don´t keep shielding yourself behind "critic" scores and famous people tweeting about the game, Bioware. Dragon Age 2 is a failure. And you should protect your reputation by admitting this. Expand
  2. May 12, 2011
    5
    Aside from re-used maps, my biggest complaint is that the characters and story were not as developed as they could have been. I had no emotional connection to Hawke or his/her family. I had no significant attachment to any of Hawke's party members. And, no matter what "decisions" Hawke made, the story was going to progress a certain way.
  3. May 11, 2011
    0
    I'm writing this review only to parrot what's already been said.

    Bioware has completely ruined themselves with this game in my eyes, and because of it I will likely not buy in to their future games. They pandered to the rest of EA's Madden-style crowd by severely dumbing the game down and taking shortcuts in EVERYTHING to rush release. My main complaints: 1. Shallow, bisexual characters
    I'm writing this review only to parrot what's already been said.

    Bioware has completely ruined themselves with this game in my eyes, and because of it I will likely not buy in to their future games. They pandered to the rest of EA's Madden-style crowd by severely dumbing the game down and taking shortcuts in EVERYTHING to rush release.

    My main complaints:

    1. Shallow, bisexual characters - there was no art to seduction with these characters, unlike in other Bioware/EA games. A great example that comes to mind was Jack in Mass Effect. You had to WORK to get that relationship to have a happy ending. Not in this one. With 2 male and 2 female relationship options who react the exact one of two ways to your character regardless of your gender, class, or storyline actions, the relationships were a disappointment. 2 of the characters were annoying, needy, and obnoxious to listen to, and 2 of them were brusque, rude, and overly tough. Boring and very formulaic.

    2. Exactly three to four "dungeon" rooms. The developers used the EXACT SAME tilesets/rooms for EVERY DUNGEON and EVERY MISSION you went on. Sometimes they started you in different places in these zones, sometimes they only used half of the zones, but the rooms were always identical. You kept revisiting the same places. Unlike Dragon Age Origins, where everyplace you went was different and unique.

    3. Class Skills were incredibly simplistic, dumbed down, and not unique. They also didn't mesh well. I remember in Origins how you could build a really powerful character by selecting the correct classes and skills and how perfectly they meshed. In DAII everything was really dumbed down, straightforward, and... like I said, didn't mesh well.

    4. Useless armor - the gear you find in DAII is, essentially, useless. There are about three sets that are useful, and all the rest is just filler crap. I liked not having to maintain 8 sets of armor for each one of my companions, but the way they simplified the gear for MY character made it boring.

    5. Boring, lackluster, shallow story. It had so much potential, but fell so flat. I liked the idea of the Mages vs. Templars, and seeing some of my old characters come back for cameos, but ultimately I felt like the story would never really affect anything outside of the city that it was set in. I did like the redesign of elves and qunari, however, making them feel more unique, and how certain characters in your party yielded different results in key dialogue events. But other than that, it was boring.

    6. Flashiness - the game tried to be a lot flashier and faster paced. This was obtained by dumbing all the old, fun combat from DA:O. The combat was either stupidly easy, or absurdly difficult - I remember kiting an ogre for about an hour after all my similarly geared and skilled allies had been killed off. There's no art or class to this game, it's all just dumb hack and slash.

    Where did my delightful Dragon Age; Origins gameplay go?!
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  4. May 11, 2011
    3
    Bottom line: mostly disappointed.

    My main complaint about DA2 is extremely weak story line. For entire game you are completely in the dark waiting for something epic to happen only to have your hopes dashed in the end. Store is nowhere near what is was in DA:O or even DA:A Secondly, did Bioware try to cut development costs? Graphics wise the game was pretty much unchanged compared to
    Bottom line: mostly disappointed.

    My main complaint about DA2 is extremely weak story line. For entire game you are completely in the dark waiting for something epic to happen only to have your hopes dashed in the end. Store is nowhere near what is was in DA:O or even DA:A

    Secondly, did Bioware try to cut development costs? Graphics wise the game was pretty much unchanged compared to DA:O. You would assume that they would put a lot of effort in level design. Not so - the game brutally reuses same locations over and over again. There are less unique locations than in DA:A which is an expansion.

    Thirdly, while it is nice that they have voiced the main character, overall dialog system has taken a turn for the worse. You pretty much have no control over your own character. Hawke's replies are completely unpredictable (so why even give player a choice). The same system works fine in ME and ME2 but is completely screwed up in DA2. And in the end dialog choices have very little effect on the direction of the game.

    There isn't that much equipment available for main character to chose from and even less so for companions.

    To be fair there is one improvement I can name - like simplified rune system (that got unwieldy in DA:A

    Conclusion: If you liked DA:O and aren't desperate to play this game - don't. Wait for DA3 if it ever comes around (and not in the form of MMORPG as it very well may) and see if Bioware would do better then.
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  5. May 11, 2011
    6
    Bought the game on release day before reading any reviews, installed it but not even entered kirkwall after reading the user reviews. The massive changes in the game and the negative reactions to it left no enthusiams in me and made me stay away of it. The only advise I can give: Don't read any reviews after you bought a game.
  6. May 9, 2011
    1
    Why such a low score for Dragon Age II? there are a few reasons;

    1. Why would I buy a fantasy game like this to only play a human? 2. The combat of the first installment was well thought out, on the other hand in this game it simply has been dumbed right down for console users, as it would seem they used DA 2 as a cash flow and not much else. As is seems every game that goes from purely
    Why such a low score for Dragon Age II? there are a few reasons;

    1. Why would I buy a fantasy game like this to only play a human?

    2. The combat of the first installment was well thought out, on the other hand in this game it simply has been dumbed right down for console users, as it would seem they used DA 2 as a cash flow and not much else. As is seems every game that goes from purely pc to pc & console it always seems to go straight down the toilet. This is no exception, but at least they kept the pause tactical menu for pc users

    3. The storyline grabbed me no where near as much as the first, I played the first for hours on end. I didn't even bother finishing DA2 for its sheer lack of interesting things

    4. While the graphics looked good there was simply no amount shine that could fix all of the bugs with this. What could have fixed this however was for bioware to spend some more time on the game, rather than simply trying to push it out asap.

    Overall.

    The game while a great title has no real playability for me. Dirty, boring, rushed and dumbed down are NOT the way I like my games to be.
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  7. May 9, 2011
    3
    The shamelessly hyped and massively inflated "professional" reviews of this guy are absolutely pathetic. The combat is terrible, it feels like diablo except it isn't the mid 1990s anymore. The combat system becomes tedious and boring very early on. I do not consider this to be a true rpg. It is action or hack and slash style "adventure" with very little in the way of environmental andThe shamelessly hyped and massively inflated "professional" reviews of this guy are absolutely pathetic. The combat is terrible, it feels like diablo except it isn't the mid 1990s anymore. The combat system becomes tedious and boring very early on. I do not consider this to be a true rpg. It is action or hack and slash style "adventure" with very little in the way of environmental and item variety. A massive dissappointment to anyone who played Dragon Age: Origins, or anyone actually expecting a full fledged Bioware RPG. Expand
  8. May 8, 2011
    10
    I was absolutely blown away by how fantastic this game is. Great characterisation, a wonderful story with brilliant cinematic set-pieces and very fun. A brilliant evolution of the Dragon Ago franchise. I can't wait to see more.
  9. AGB
    May 8, 2011
    0
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. A below mediocre game that doesn't know what it is. I like dumb button-mashers - like Heavenly Sword - and I like skilful button-mashers - like Tekken, or Fight Night - but the fighting in Dragon Age II isn't nearly half as fun and doesn't need skill - its one tactical trick of tag-team combos is permanently spelled out for you. Setting difficulty to hard just means a long boring slog. Besides I bought the game expecting it to be an RPG. It kind of is an RPG, if you think they are just about superficial levelling mechanics. The game world was also really restricted, no free-roaming and interactivity like you get in Fallout 3 for example - and famously you keep going back to the same locations all of the time, sometimes deliberately, sometimes because the makers were lazy.

    Some of the dialogue is funny - it's the only thing that scores any points with me. Unfortunately every 'funny' conversation option you choose as the main character is weak and pathetic. Your interaction with other characters is restricted and the story doesn't make sense, I was meant to be in a romance with Isabella for years, but you get just two scenes about that. I kept trying to avoid fighting and be diplomatic, but the game's story pushed me into killing everyone whatever I did, while giving an illusion that there were other choices.

    Graphics - a few textures are alright, some of the character designs are ok, but a lot of faces are worse than the original game. The city, countryside and sewers/cellars are quite drab and undetailed. The Qunari are ok, but they all look the same. The Elves have weird unappealing faces. Compared to the first game the voice actors didn't sound convincing, though some were good (but not your main character). In fact, apart from some better textures, there were no improvements.

    I feel like I could go on and describe in more detail why this game sucks, but I want to forget about it and move onto something else.
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  10. May 8, 2011
    10
    If you're looking for a computer version of a dice based RL rpg, then skip this. If you want a computer game that has a lot of rpg elements, Dragon Age II is as good as there is out there. I found the balance between story and interesting game play in fight scenes to be excellent. I do miss the conversation engine from DA:O, but I didn't find the conversation wheel to be game braking byIf you're looking for a computer version of a dice based RL rpg, then skip this. If you want a computer game that has a lot of rpg elements, Dragon Age II is as good as there is out there. I found the balance between story and interesting game play in fight scenes to be excellent. I do miss the conversation engine from DA:O, but I didn't find the conversation wheel to be game braking by any means.

    All in all, based on enjoyment level, of the 4 DA/ME games released so far, I found this to be the most enjoyable, followed by ME, the DA, then ME II, but I would consider them all top notch games. I thought the story, including the expanded time frame, was compelling, and the ending left me wanting more in a good way.

    DA II's combat system, to me, felt far more immersive than it predecessors, especially when playing as a rogue. You can hack and slash your way through the game on normal difficulty, but higher difficulties require some tinkering with the tactics settings, which are much improved as well.

    Just as with a lot of BW games, there were a host of bugs on release, many of which have been fixed in subsequent patches. I do wish there had been a little more crossover from DA:O, but there were strong hints given that there will be something later in the series that ties things together. I also found the frequent recycling of maps leaving me underwhelmed at times. Yes, a city make of stone won't change much, if any, over the course of 10 years, but there should be more than 2 cave formations in outlying area's, and more than 3 building designs. Even small changes would have been appreciated.

    The choices you make throughout the game do have a bearing on some things, though little affect on end game scenarios. Were this a stand alone game, I would be exceedingly disappointed, but viewed with the expected full series, I understand why some things have to be. It's a rather "Doctor Who" type of view of history and what can and can't be changed.

    Overall, this is an outstanding game, with great replayablity and solid story. If you take it for what it is, and not what perhaps you wish it were (DA:O, or The Witcher) then it delivers. If you where hoping for a remake of the seminal title of the series, you'll probably be a bit disappointed.
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  11. May 7, 2011
    1
    I really don't understand the almost universal positive scores the official reviewers are giving this game. I loved the first game, but this game is absolutely terrible. Painful even. Its a disgrace that the official reviewers gave it the scores they did. Totally underminds their objectivity, I'm not going to believe their reviews into the future. Damn I'm disappointed. Bioware we are finished!!!!
  12. May 7, 2011
    0
    I don´t get this BIoware what are you thinking, they had all this beautiful assets and brand new wonderful engine in Origins.. you dish all that out.. To make Dragon age of Duty! is this really, are they going to dumb down all games!? like whats the point if I'm to see a cheap tv lord of the rings clone, I might as well do it for free in my TV.. I dont need another "tour content" rpg.
  13. May 7, 2011
    3
    A failed attempt at making Dragon Age a mix of action an RPG. What we get is a severely dumbed down RPG with unsatisfactory action element, that take up the majority of play time. Plus and uncompelling story that has nothing to do with Origins...

    I do not get how this game has gotten so many positive reviews... This is not a BioWare grade product, this is something straight from the
    A failed attempt at making Dragon Age a mix of action an RPG. What we get is a severely dumbed down RPG with unsatisfactory action element, that take up the majority of play time. Plus and uncompelling story that has nothing to do with Origins...

    I do not get how this game has gotten so many positive reviews... This is not a BioWare grade product, this is something straight from the bowels of EA's rush'n'cash department.

    So where do I start? First of all, as I stated before, the story has virtually nothing to do with Origins. If you were hoping to see big time consequences of your actions in the previous game, you are in for an unpleasant surprise. Nothing you did in Origins has any impact on DA2, apart for some minor and negligible side quests. Furthermore, the story itself feels incredibly forced at times. In Origins, I really wanted to defeat the Blight, even while playing an "evil" character. DA2's story didn't make me care about it's main plot, mainly because, for the most part, it was being shoved down my throat. There is a quest quite early on, which you are forced to do to advance the story, but there is no logical train of thought nor are there any circumstances in game that would make your character want to do this quest, unless they felt a certain way towards one of the main groups presented in the story. It feels more like an optional side quest than a main plot one . And the side quests themselves are a travesty. Mind you, there are some cool ones that clearly have been thought through, but they are drowned in the sea of identical, almost grind-like, minimum flavour text, quest you get in a shoddy MMO.

    Let's have a look at the game mechanics then. The new stats system feels more transparent and logical, the talent trees are better designed than those in Origins, but that's where the good stuff ends. The Mass Effect style dialogue tree looks well and all, except for the fact than in most cases, all you choose is they way your character will say, "Yes I agree". Fortunately this doesn't happen too often, but it becomes very annoying if you want to play, what is after all an RPG game. And speaking of RPG elements, you cannot equip your party with armour, and by that I mean that you can't customize your companions helmet, torso and boots slots. You are stuck with what they have, until you find a special upgrade, and every companion only gets four. Not four upgrade slots which you can fill in from randomly dropped upgrades, because there are no random upgrades. Each companion will only ever get four armour upgrades, so you don't overheat that brain of yours choosing which one to give to who. The combat would be great if not for one thing: enemies that spawn mid fight, usually off camera. And again it wouldn't be so bad if the newly spawned guys were just minions helping the big boss you are currently fighting. But more often than not, they are pretty powerful, and can seriously mess up your party if you don't spot them the instant they are spawned. Also, the difficulty settings have been dumbed down, so now you get friendly fire only on the highest level. And the gap between the two top settings (Hard and Nightmare) is so big, it seems no one had any time to tweak them. On Hard the game is still laughably easy, and on Nightmare it becomes, at times, downright frustrating. Graphically it is an improvement over Origins, allthough I was never the one to dislike a game just because it had old graphics. What I cannot abide however is the endless and shameless recycling of locations. Most of the main ones are ok, but it quickly becomes apparent that there are only so many side quest ones. And it's not like some quest just take place in the same location. The cave you enter on a beach will be the exact same cave you have already visited in the mountains, but maybe with an entrance that is located elsewhere, and with some areas sealed away. You really get the feeling they either rushed the game out, or were just plain lazy about it.

    In an effort to appeal to a broader audience (namely the drunken frat boy demographic) BioWare has dumbed down their game to the point you can barely call it an RPG and added a ton of sub par action and clumsy gore. If this was a game by any other developer, and not a sequel to Origins, this would be an average game with a few memorable moments. Being as it is, it is a poor game with lots of memorable failures...
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  14. May 6, 2011
    7
    I enjoyed a lot of what this game changed. Unlike many, I enjoyed the change to the battle system, and I think that the battle system has been improved and streamlined from the first game. I am ambivalent about not being able to change anyone's armor but the main character, but I can live with that. I enjoy customizing my entire party, however, there is a different kind of enjoyment thatI enjoyed a lot of what this game changed. Unlike many, I enjoyed the change to the battle system, and I think that the battle system has been improved and streamlined from the first game. I am ambivalent about not being able to change anyone's armor but the main character, but I can live with that. I enjoy customizing my entire party, however, there is a different kind of enjoyment that can come from not having to worry about your companions gear very much(especially when half of them are very rarely used). I did not enjoy the fact that certain characters were essentially mandatory for much of the game if you did not pick a mage due to the fact that there is only one real healer in the game. I thought the story was decent. It was not the epic that DA:O was, but it was still interesting to see how one person inadvertently caused a chain reaction. There are three things that I really do not like about this game. 1. DA:O took me roughly 80 hours to finish and do everything there was to do in the game. This game took me roughly 25 hours to do the same. 2. This game uses recycled areas for the entire game. In all of the Acts of this game, you will be revisiting areas that you have already been to over and over and over again. This is probably my biggest gripe of the game. 3. There are too few references to the characters and events of DA:O. As a sequel, and specifically, as a Bioware sequel, I expected to have more appearances from characters of the first game. Also, when characters from the first game do appear, I felt unsatisfied. It seems that they put the characters in the game just to have an appearance rather than actually weaving them into the story of the game. That said, I initially greatly enjoyed this game. It is not a perfect game, but it is still fun. Expand
  15. May 5, 2011
    2
    this is one of the hardest reviews I think I will ever write. I am a long term fan of Bioware. I fondly remember reveling in Baldur's Gate all the way through mass effect and DA1. They are, in my opinion one of the best AAA developers when it comes to story line and polish. So the best description of my play experience with DA2 was a crushing sense of loss. I can only guess at whatthis is one of the hardest reviews I think I will ever write. I am a long term fan of Bioware. I fondly remember reveling in Baldur's Gate all the way through mass effect and DA1. They are, in my opinion one of the best AAA developers when it comes to story line and polish. So the best description of my play experience with DA2 was a crushing sense of loss. I can only guess at what brought about the changes in the level of quality. The monster spawning out of thin air, the feeling of a corridor like linear progression, wooden dialog that leaves the player feeling let down are just some of the elements that, sadly,make this the last game I will buy from Bioware purely based it being crafted by them! if your reading this Bioware earn me back!! one bad title doesn't break you, but it does cause future games to be scrutinized before purchase. as to the critic score....integrity is important...don't you think? Expand
  16. May 5, 2011
    6
    I loved the first dragon-age - The way they made the game personal was a triumph of storytelling. Each betrayal and setback was met with unlooked-for hope and new opportunities. Each character was interesting and worth listening to (for the most part). The conversations were fun! And the ending was epic in every sense of the word.

    This is NOT Dragon Age: Origins. The first problems
    I loved the first dragon-age - The way they made the game personal was a triumph of storytelling. Each betrayal and setback was met with unlooked-for hope and new opportunities. Each character was interesting and worth listening to (for the most part). The conversations were fun! And the ending was epic in every sense of the word.

    This is NOT Dragon Age: Origins. The first problems show up in story immersion and emotional investment for the person playing the game. The game forces you to be human, then you find out immediately that the dwarf is telling this story, and he likes to lie. Once is enough, but they keep interfering in this manner. I kept hoping we would break in and save him, and the real story would begin. But no ... And they make it worse by making the characters bland. The choices people make are poorly motivated (or poorly communicated), on almost every single occasion, and there are often no options to help them mature, or avoid stupid mistakes.

    Even fighting slavers - which usually feels very satisfying - seemed like a morally 'meh' thing. I've never felt so ambivalent about pursuing slavers.

    On the technical side - the decision to remove the tactical camera angle left me with constant problems selecting where I wanted the team to go. If the camera angle is wrong, the computer won't allow me to tell the team to go there. But it gets worse - the game auto-rotates the camera while you're moving, making it even more difficult to keep the angle appropriate for movement.

    So what makes this game utterly forgettable? The endings. They are forced, and there is no real opportunity to fight for a just cause. It made me feel dirty, and betrayed, and there's no option for justice or satisfaction. Maybe that was the goal, but this is not why I play Bioware games.
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  17. May 4, 2011
    3
    In spite of my love for Bioware's games, I have to further confirm the disappointment of Dragon Age 2. A massive chain of uninteresting one-off quests requiring constant, oversimplistic, repetitive combat, playing out with formulaic results over which you have relatively little control. Generic conversation responses tend to lead to the same outcomes, and with the exception of yourIn spite of my love for Bioware's games, I have to further confirm the disappointment of Dragon Age 2. A massive chain of uninteresting one-off quests requiring constant, oversimplistic, repetitive combat, playing out with formulaic results over which you have relatively little control. Generic conversation responses tend to lead to the same outcomes, and with the exception of your companions, none of the characters are interesting. Graphics look absolutely terrible, reuse of environments is questionable, retardedness of Templar who can't figure out that a mage MC is an apostate is inexcusable. Even despite being motivated to carry over event results to the next game, I ended up leaving this game abandoned, bloated and bleached in a field, uninterested in finishing, and swearing I would never Preorder a game again. Expand
  18. May 4, 2011
    0
    I only singed up to metacritic to give this pile of dung the worst possible score I could. I never liked the 1st one, although I loved BG, BGII, IWD & IWD II.

    DOA2 picks up almost exactly where DAO left off... No, not as in story, but in its ham handed bludgeoning and blundering approach to the high fantasy genre. DAO and DA2 are both heavily (sorry I mean entirely) aimed at the teen
    I only singed up to metacritic to give this pile of dung the worst possible score I could. I never liked the 1st one, although I loved BG, BGII, IWD & IWD II.

    DOA2 picks up almost exactly where DAO left off... No, not as in story, but in its ham handed bludgeoning and blundering approach to the high fantasy genre.

    DAO and DA2 are both heavily (sorry I mean entirely) aimed at the teen market, which I guess means the most moronic market available. Instead of Bioware evolving and maturing along side there (previously) faithful fanboy, i.e. me they seem to have undergone some kind of unbelievable retardation process where upon they have de-evolved into a dribbling, giggling, illiterate fool of a teenage boy with all the same sensibilities and philosophical approach that would come with that.

    Both games absolutely smacked of immaturity and both have sunk my hopes on a titanic scale.

    But... this is meant to be a review of DA2 and as such I would like to state that...

    Everything that I absoluetely hated with a fiery, burning passion about DAO is worse by the power of 10 in DA2 and the few things I did enjoy about DAO (like the tactical return to BG for combat) has been ripped out and replaced with the most mindless, mundane and repetative 3rd person shooter style combat system.

    Another shameful change to the format would be the all round sense of adventure. I played most of the game wondering what the plot is? I was often left wondering "What the hell is meant to be going on?" and "Why the hell do I care about menial task A, B, C, or D?".

    Finally (and I mean finally from me as I need to go and make my self a comforting hot drink and calm down before thinking about how awful this game is gives me another panic attack), you are almost entirely stuck in ONE city.... This could have been done very well, look what Rockstar mange to do with their console games located within one area, why not a high fantasy version of a GTA game, maybe? Please don't get me wrong, I am not suggesting to introduce police chases and Ho's into DA2 world. I am merely saying with some time, money and a little hard work on the development side Bioware could have made a intricately designed city full of explorable wonder. Instead they gave us endless brown corridors.

    And brown corridor brings me nicely to the end of my review (well more a rant I guess), as DA2 feels as though Bioware have brought us this game directly from one.
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  19. May 4, 2011
    4
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. â Expand
  20. May 3, 2011
    3
    The 1st DAO was 100% better than this piece of garbage. I have had it since release and I dont think that I will even bother to finish it. The rehashed areas are boring, the plot is terrible and for a dx11 game(patched..) the graphics are not that great. If you have DX11 running just take a look at your characters(or party members) feet sink into the floor..just shoddy. This game seemsThe 1st DAO was 100% better than this piece of garbage. I have had it since release and I dont think that I will even bother to finish it. The rehashed areas are boring, the plot is terrible and for a dx11 game(patched..) the graphics are not that great. If you have DX11 running just take a look at your characters(or party members) feet sink into the floor..just shoddy. This game seems rushed and has a terrible plot. Expand
  21. May 3, 2011
    1
    what happened between DA:O and this spazzed out sequel? someone left the steak out too long and it turned into garbagemeat. poor poor showing. overall gameplay is like a giant flaming bag on my doorstep - i know what's inside.
  22. May 3, 2011
    2
    Totally disappointing
    Bioware should be very a shame of this cheap console port whereas, the predecessor (origin) was very good game in many ways; i.e., it was deep, complex, multiple endings and nice story.
    this sequel is very shallow and unsatisfactory in many ways; i.e., no character development, no real attachment to story, shallow and speedy combat, very poor camera, silly dialogue
    Totally disappointing
    Bioware should be very a shame of this cheap console port whereas, the predecessor (origin) was very good game in many ways; i.e., it was deep, complex, multiple endings and nice story.
    this sequel is very shallow and unsatisfactory in many ways; i.e., no character development, no real attachment to story, shallow and speedy combat, very poor camera, silly dialogue option.
    it is only achievement is brighter and shiner graphics, flashy and speedy combat system which is a shame as i was expecting a great sequel to a great game but these days the greed and rush for release date became primary objective of game publishers which resulted in these kind of games which can satisfy only young ages and new gamers (didn't play great RPG titles like Oblivion, Fallout 3, The Witcher and Dragon Age: Origin)
    Few hours of play convince me that this game does not deserve the space on my HD and should be uninstalled immediately.
    If anyone want to play an RPG game should avoid this title and look elsewhere.
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  23. May 3, 2011
    3
    The same location over and over and over. Utterly uninteresting story and awful, cliched cringe-worthy characters. Nowhere interesting to go, nobody interesting to talk to. Dull, dull, dull...
  24. May 2, 2011
    1
    Une arnaque TOTALE
    Jeu bénéficiant de la licence officielle de DAO, sans ne serait ce qu'en contenir un brin de son essence spirituelle. Une très grosse déception. Je n'ai même pas terminé le jeu tellement je suis dépité par la médiocre réalisation, la
    Une arnaque TOTALE
    Jeu bénéficiant de la licence officielle de DAO, sans ne serait ce qu'en contenir un brin de son essence spirituelle. Une très grosse déception. Je n'ai même pas terminé le jeu tellement je suis dépité par la médiocre réalisation, la pauvreté générale du jeu, l'histoire creuse, les textures pauvres, les Pnj inutiles et sans relief, A éviter à tout prix... ne mériterait même pas d'exister.
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  25. May 1, 2011
    5
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Dragon Age II is the sequel of the award-winning roleplaying game Dragon Age: Origins. You play as Hawke, a human trying to survive in the world, and follow his journey to become the Champion of Kirkwall. But although the game boasts improved graphics, combat, and animations, it simply doesn't hold up to its predecessor.

    After seeing the success of Mass Effect 2, both in sales and ratings, BioWare tried to copy the same formula to the Dragon Age franchise. Unfortunately, Dragon Age already established itself as a classic roleplaying game. BioWare themselves called it the "spiritual successor of Baldur's gate", one of the greatest RPGs of all time. Most fans believed that Dragon Age II would follow up on the success of Dragon Age, which led to much disappointment after realizing the changes to the game.

    Graphically, the game sports more stylized art than the first game. The characters are more jagged and move more fluidly. The textures and details are far more fleshed out for some NPCs, but for others look absolutely dreadful. As for the environments, it's a different story completely. Kirkwall feels like a bland, half-created, static world with no real life. After ten years, you would think a city changed even slightly. This comes off as lazy and rushed and truly deserves to be criticized.

    DA2 tries to fix things from Origins. Unfortunately, it fixes what isn't broken. While Origins almost felt turn-based, Dragon Age II feels incredibly chaotic. It has a more dynamic, cinematic action, but comes off as "a button-mashy God of War clone" in several instances. With your attacks going everywhere and spells flying all over the screen, it becomes very difficult to manage.

    What made combat more enjoyable were the animations. Your character no longer moves in battle like he desperately needs to go to the bathroom, and you don't fire bolts out of a staff like you're shoving a pole forwards. Attacking with a staff in Dragon Age II is, aesthetically, better. The same goes for attacking with weapons. The animations in Dragon Age II are vast improvements to the original.

    But sadly, the game falls flat with its equipment, map, dialogue, and leveling system. No longer can you equip party members with the armor you pick up. Each party member has three or four specific armors throughout the entire game, and that's all. Everything else is either for Hawke or ends up as vendor chow. BioWare most likely made this change due to negative backlash over Mass Effect's inventory system. There are two problems with that. One, Origin's inventory system wasn't difficult at all. It was very friendly and easy to navigate. Two, Mass Effect wasn't a standard RPG. When Mass Effect 2 came out and revealed the lack of a companion inventory system, it didn't matter much because Mass Effect had already made itself out to be a different type of game. As for Origins, it painted its skin as a RPG, which is why having no equipment system for party members in DA2 is highly disappointing.

    In DA2, gear is scaled absurdly. Nothing you earn in the game feels valuable, as it will simply be replaced in a few levels. Quest rewards and powerful lore items will be swapped for standard swords in no time at all, which defeats the purpose of earning those rewards in the first place and ruins immersion. Despite having such lackluster scenery, DA2 also reuses its dungeons. Not just once or twice either. It uses a dungeon to death. Get ready to see one area recycled over and over again with different doors opened and closed.

    The wheel from Mass Effect has made its way into Dragon Age. It's a gift and a curse. As a gift, it allows for easier navigation of desired options. If I want to tell Aveline something friendly, I choose the option with the blue feather. As a curse, it allows for easier navigation of desired options. The whole intricacy of Origins' dialogue system was that it didn't blatantly tell the player 'make this choice to gain approval' or 'make this choice to lose approval'. If the game has to tell the player what an option does, then it isn't a very clear system. But also, in the first game it was hard at times to decipher whether or not an option was kind or sarcastic, given that the PC had no voice. It's a hit and miss addition. And I'm sure giving the PC a voice certainly did improve the game for some other gamers. But not me. Hawke felt bland as Kirkwall itself.

    In Origins I was the Warden, a humble dwarf who rose from the slums and vanquished the Blight. In DA2, I was Hawke, a man that's conveniently in the right place at the right time. I feel like I'm along for the ride, not like a hero. Maybe it's just me. I love Origins, I love BioWare, and I had fun playing this game, but really, it isn't worth more than $39.99. If you're looking for something to pass the time, get it. Otherwise, stay clear.
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  26. May 1, 2011
    9
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. A Truly Excellent Game Which i Look Forward To Replaying.

    The Game Is Not Dragon Age: Origins, Because DA:O Was Most Likely The Prequel To Everything That Is About To Happen In The World Of Dragon Age, At Least That's How i See It Nonetheless Dragon Age 2 Is a Amazing Game But You've Got To Look At It For What It is Not What You Expected It To Be, There Are Some Minor Elements That Might Trouble Even The Most Loyal Of Bioware Fans Like That You Will Be Wandering The Same Dungeons And Areas Over The Course Of The Game, This Did Not However Bother Me Since You Are In fact Set In Kirkwall Not An Country Or State Like In DA:O And Of Course It's Not Going To Be As Big As Fereldan In DA:O, Well Anyway I Have Almost Only Good Things To Say About Dragon Age 2 In fact My Only Complaint Is i Just Wish It Was Longer. It Was Truly Money Well Spent And I Hope Bioware Continues To Make Amazing Games Like This One.
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  27. May 1, 2011
    6
    First, I loved DA:O. It was an amazing game and I had very high hopes for DA2, but unfortunately it's a big let-down. By no means is it a bad game, but it lacks the 'magic?' of DA:O leaving it indistinguishable from its competition.

    DA:O did a great job with the companions - Alistair, Morrigan and Leliana were great characters with great dialogue--the game did an awesome job expounding
    First, I loved DA:O. It was an amazing game and I had very high hopes for DA2, but unfortunately it's a big let-down. By no means is it a bad game, but it lacks the 'magic?' of DA:O leaving it indistinguishable from its competition.

    DA:O did a great job with the companions - Alistair, Morrigan and Leliana were great characters with great dialogue--the game did an awesome job expounding on their backstories and personalities as time passed and the major plot-line advanced. Other than Varric, the companions in DA2 feel rushed, irrelevant, artificial and unnatural. This is a major blow to the game as companions are so central to DA:O's success.

    The changes to the dialog system were good, as was the move to a MassEffect-like friend/rival system.. this isn't dumbing-down and is one of the few improvement over DA:O.

    The fighting, while very cool at first, becomes excruciatingly repetitive very quickly. How many freakin' Shrieks did the developers think we needed to kill? I mean if you're going to build this complex and finely-tuned combat system, why the hell would you populate the maps with Shriek after Shriek, then a big Shriek or spider, over and over and over...

    I was very disappointed by the lack of different locations in the game. You spend pretty much the entire game (~40 hours?) in one city - Kirkwall. That's it. In DA:O you explore an entire continent, from the the cities to the mountains, hidden temples, castles and battlefields... In DA2 you go uptown then downtown, a trip to a cave, and that's about it.

    Overall I'm really disappointed - all they had to do was keep doing what they did so right with DA:O, but apparently that wasn't the plan. To be fair, it's a decent game, but it could have been so much better, and the franchise as a whole has probably lost some legitimacy.
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  28. Apr 30, 2011
    1
    Ah Dragon age 2.. By far the biggest letdown so far of 2011 in my eyes. The graphics are worse than the original, the city which you spend almost the entire game in is so incredibly lifeless, stale and repetitive that you would think this game has been made in 2005 by amateur developers, but sadly this game is made by Bioware who in the past has brought us many great games.

    I for one
    Ah Dragon age 2.. By far the biggest letdown so far of 2011 in my eyes. The graphics are worse than the original, the city which you spend almost the entire game in is so incredibly lifeless, stale and repetitive that you would think this game has been made in 2005 by amateur developers, but sadly this game is made by Bioware who in the past has brought us many great games.

    I for one really hope this isn't a sign for things to come as Dragon Age 2 should have never been released in the state it is in, poor gameplay, poor graphics and artistic direction, poor RPG elements and immersion factor.

    Extremely poor game. 1/10
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  29. Apr 29, 2011
    1
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Where the exciting story? Where is the charm for which all were so fond of Dragon Age origins? The game is completely disappointed me. Why do we unnecessary flips and jumps? If you're happy with sales, you know, everyone was expecting to see a good continuation, not a game for children up to age 11. one location you placed throughout the game. Players are not interested to solve the problems of one citysave a whole lot more interesting korolestvo. What have you done with satellites player? They are horrible to them can not speak normally, do not give the gift, there is no charm. How can we produce a good game for a year, besides making many more other projects? It is better to wait for 3 years, but a really good game. The Witcher 2 will destroy you. It's as if you are good lesson, dear developers. Expand
  30. Apr 28, 2011
    10
    I am so sick of everyone bashing this game!!! I mean seriously! Yeah it's different that doesn't mean you have to hate it!!! Do you want DLC??? Do You want expansion packs??? Do you want DA3??? Then STOP bashing it!!! Seriously!
  31. Apr 27, 2011
    2
    Horrible, horrible game. The recycled maps is completely disrespectful to all people who played the original Dragon Age and Origins. I cannot believe that they did such a poor and sloppy job on this game it even hurts to make a review for it. I for one am glad that a friend let me borrow it to try it and before I WASTED money on such a pile of crap. Dragon Age 3 better not be anythingHorrible, horrible game. The recycled maps is completely disrespectful to all people who played the original Dragon Age and Origins. I cannot believe that they did such a poor and sloppy job on this game it even hurts to make a review for it. I for one am glad that a friend let me borrow it to try it and before I WASTED money on such a pile of crap. Dragon Age 3 better not be anything close to this or else I will most likely never, ever purchase a game from them again. Expand
  32. Apr 25, 2011
    4
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Very bad game... It´s not Dragon Age it´s "Dragon Effect" (but worst). It no have the essence of the firts game... bad of work EA and Bioware... In the game, your decisions are useless...you cant change nothing in the world, all the facts happen without your help...your partners are lineal, they aren´t charming like in origins...is a step back in rol´s game... (sorry for my english...im spanish...) Expand
  33. Apr 24, 2011
    10
    I love it. I thought that this game had several brave changes. The framed narrative was certainly new for me and I have never seen it in a game before. The voice was a much appreciated addition with the 3 different tones, my fav is the witty one. Think that you really should play two different Hawkes to really see how much this changes the game =) this even changes what youI love it. I thought that this game had several brave changes. The framed narrative was certainly new for me and I have never seen it in a game before. The voice was a much appreciated addition with the 3 different tones, my fav is the witty one. Think that you really should play two different Hawkes to really see how much this changes the game =) this even changes what you partymember and companions have to say. I love my DA:O to bits but for me DA2 has more replay value =) best game I have at home. Combat is better than DA:O but the thing I like the most are the companions. They are gold. Especially Fenris Expand
  34. Apr 24, 2011
    2
    Me siento estafada. Origins lo terminé cuatro veces y de este no voy a terminar ni la primera partida. Si el 3 va a seguir este camino, Dragon Age ha muerto para mí.
  35. Apr 24, 2011
    1
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Horrible disappointment.They took everything that was good in Dragon Age Origins&Awakening and threw it out of the window.Graphics? Poor level design,recycled generic dungeons,90% of the quests are located in ONE CITY! Just terrible.Sound? Also much better in Origins,voice acting in DA2 is poor and unconvincing,music was also waaaaay better in Origins.Dialogues? The dialogue system is a very very poor copy of the Mass Effect dialogue system,with pseudoparagon and pseudorenegade answers and supposedly funny answers that usually spectacularly fail to be funny.Dialogue system in Origins provided much more to choose from and it was much better written.Party members? Extremely annoying and shallow (Varric Tethras is the only half bearable character) and you cannot change their armor AT ALL.Romance? Almost non existant options for any interesting romance,especially for male Hawke,you get to choose from retarded elf woman (Merrill) and a slut (Isabella),that is it if you dont count gay romance with Anders.Combat? One of the most annoying parts of the game,dumbed down to the console click click level catered for the very casual RPG gamers,any true RPG gamer will be extremely disappointed with the new combat system.DAO had pretty good combat system,DA2 combat system is total crap.User interface? DAO had beautifully designed user interface with detailed descriptions of items,now you get a bland black user interface that has no place in any game,let alone a fantasy game.Weapon,armor and item descriptions are also totally dumbed down.Now you actually collect "junk",way to go.Storyline,quests and ending? Unlike DAO,DA2 forces some plot developments on you,regardless of what you do or choices you make,lame.In DAO you could influence even major plot developments,often in significant ways.Now you are forced to accept certain decisions and your influence on them is cosmetics.This game is either rushed so it is half done or Bioware decided to dumb down their best RPG since Baldur's Gate to cater for wider audience,and therefore make more money for Bioware.Hopefully they will listen to the widespread criticism of DA2 and make the likely third installment of Dragon Age once again a real hardcore RPG.DA2 is a great example of what NOT to do with a sequel to a game,take everything that was good,throw it away,add horrible redesign and "new features" that are actually crap and you get this.They even managed to screw up the redesign of DAO character faces like Sandal,Zevran or Alistair.Not to mention that darkspawn now look like a joke.In some moments during gameplay I started laughing on how terrible some things were compared to DAO.I just could not believe that Bioware can screw up the sequel this much.Note-I originally posted this review in the Xbox360 section of DA2,instead of the PC by mistake,by mistake,if anyone knows how can I remove that review let me know. Expand
  36. Apr 24, 2011
    1
    Unimmersive and disjointed story, boring characters, the exact same 4 locations over and over again, dumbed down combat to appeal to the masses of the consoles, respawning enemies right in the middle of a fight out of thin air, third person view exclusive, complete removal of strategy with a switch to storm-in-and-shoot-everything game type, no improvement in graphics, horribly inaccurateUnimmersive and disjointed story, boring characters, the exact same 4 locations over and over again, dumbed down combat to appeal to the masses of the consoles, respawning enemies right in the middle of a fight out of thin air, third person view exclusive, complete removal of strategy with a switch to storm-in-and-shoot-everything game type, no improvement in graphics, horribly inaccurate dialog wheel as in Mass Effect, repetitive questing which almost feels like grinding, inability to change the armor of party members, inability to play a race other than human, limitation of classes to warrior-rogue-mage, these are just some of the negative aspects that made me shelve this game indefinitely. When DA3 comes out, I'd rather read a quick story summary than play through this junk ever again. Expand
  37. Apr 23, 2011
    6
    This game isn't as bad as one may be led to believe. If you ignore the "Dragon Age" in it's name and judge it on it's own, it can be an enjoyable 50 hours or so. The problem is, it isn't Dragon Age anymore. Dragon Age Origins was a spiritual successor to Baldur's Gate and it showed. The sequel tried to reach out to people who didn't like BG and DAO, by borrowing heavily from Bioware'sThis game isn't as bad as one may be led to believe. If you ignore the "Dragon Age" in it's name and judge it on it's own, it can be an enjoyable 50 hours or so. The problem is, it isn't Dragon Age anymore. Dragon Age Origins was a spiritual successor to Baldur's Gate and it showed. The sequel tried to reach out to people who didn't like BG and DAO, by borrowing heavily from Bioware's other game Mass Effect. To top it off the game was very clearly rushed.
    Some of the biggest things you'll notice...
    - You can't customize companion armor. Their excuse is that they wanted to create unique models for companions that wouldn't fit regular armor, but it comes off as laziness.
    - The world doesn't change in the 7 years the story spans. Nothing changes from the location of NPCs to clothing, to companions houses (item locations and such).
    - Combat is faster paced. I actually like that.
    - You get a lot of useless item called junk. Why? Who knows, as the name suggests they serve no purpose other than to be sold.
    - Areas are reused to an extreme. Caves are always the same cave, mines the same mine, houses the same house, ect. This really starts to get annoying after about 2-3 hours of gameplay.
    - The story initially gives you little reason to care, and when it looks like it's picking up it's abruptly ended. No conclusion, and your actions have NO effect on how things turn out.
    - You have little impact on the overall story. In the first game you got to make decisions that had a huge impact on the world. Here, you're lucky if it changes a line of speech later on.
    - The dialog wheel will often do a poor job at representing what your about to say. If you've played Mass Effect you know what I mean.
    - Bodies explode when it's not fitting (ie a stab in the back would not cause a body to explode into a million pieces)

    Still the story is alright, despite never being concluded (clearly there is a sequel planned) and combat is improved over DAO. It's probably not worth the full $60 they are asking, but if you can find it for $35-$40 you'll get your money's worth.
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  38. Apr 23, 2011
    5
    Very disappointing sequel. It is sadly inferior in almost every way to its predecessor. The combat has been reduced to button-mashing which is somehow expected to appeal to more people. Also, this game absolutely reeks of shortcuts taken in the name of pushing this pile of garbage out the door. Environments are used over and over and over. Gone are the interesting descriptions ofVery disappointing sequel. It is sadly inferior in almost every way to its predecessor. The combat has been reduced to button-mashing which is somehow expected to appeal to more people. Also, this game absolutely reeks of shortcuts taken in the name of pushing this pile of garbage out the door. Environments are used over and over and over. Gone are the interesting descriptions of items. Forget trying to talk to your companions in any meaningful way unless a quest is involved. Every conversation ends with a feeling of 'that's it? That's the end of the conversation? Where's the rest?' Forget the realism of having half your companions bisexual. Now everyone everywhere is bi all the time, because according to lead writer David Gaider, doing otherwise would have cost too much and taken too much time. Do you like games where your choices matter? In Dragon Age 2 your responses are now limited to three (friendly, snarky, hostile) instead of potentially multiple ones as in DA:O. And those choices have almost no impact on the story. It's incredibly linear and no matter how you respond to people, the outcome is always the same. The disjointed, clunky, and cliched story builds to a decision at the end between two factions and you have to choose between them, only to find at the last second that no, you'll have to fight both. It feels incredibly contrived, and blatantly obvious that Bioware didn't want to take the time to really give you choices that matter because it would make it harder for themselves in a sequel to take those into account. The worst is that instead of acknowledging these issues as faults, Bioware is staunchly defending the awesomeness of these changes as "streamlining" the game. Well I'll tell you what, Bioware, a poptart is a pretty streamlined breakfast. I still prefer steak and eggs. Expand
  39. Apr 23, 2011
    6
    Before game came out I had big hopes for it. Demo was pretty good ..but very misleading for what the game really is. DA2 is very linear game that take place around one location with very linear quest (go and kill, or bring me this and that) graphics are better then first Dragon Age but not much engine was just tweaked and updated to 2011 standards. Combat is satisfying, changed to moreBefore game came out I had big hopes for it. Demo was pretty good ..but very misleading for what the game really is. DA2 is very linear game that take place around one location with very linear quest (go and kill, or bring me this and that) graphics are better then first Dragon Age but not much engine was just tweaked and updated to 2011 standards. Combat is satisfying, changed to more hit&slash paste so you font have to pause game on every encounter but it's still available for those playing on harder difficulty.overall game is a let down after what dragon age 1 was and not worth 30£ (full price) good rent material

    6/10
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  40. Apr 23, 2011
    0
    Terrible game on more levels then one. I do not recommend it at all, very linear unoriginal and unimagined game. It is an obvious cashcow and nothing more. The game morphs into and simple point A to point B fairly quick, with hours of back tracking and very dull fetch quest. The story starts strong but quickly turns into something you would find amongst the indie titles of the RPG world.Terrible game on more levels then one. I do not recommend it at all, very linear unoriginal and unimagined game. It is an obvious cashcow and nothing more. The game morphs into and simple point A to point B fairly quick, with hours of back tracking and very dull fetch quest. The story starts strong but quickly turns into something you would find amongst the indie titles of the RPG world. Its a mess and nothing about it warrants your time. Expand
  41. Zri
    Apr 23, 2011
    5
    Disappointing. The great writing is there as you would expect, and the interaction between your character and your companions is still great, but there are some glaring problems with Dragon Age 2 that Origins didn't have. Combat is just terrible. Enemies pop out of nowhere in waves. The game itself says you should guard choke points with warrior classes to protect others, but thenDisappointing. The great writing is there as you would expect, and the interaction between your character and your companions is still great, but there are some glaring problems with Dragon Age 2 that Origins didn't have. Combat is just terrible. Enemies pop out of nowhere in waves. The game itself says you should guard choke points with warrior classes to protect others, but then continually spawns mobs both in front of and behind the party as the waves progress, meaning that tactics generally go out the window. Long cooldowns on many abilities mean that combat tends to focus on regular hack and slash rather than use of abilities. Companions can only use non-armour equipment, which means the majority of the items you find are useless.

    I suppose the best way to describe what I thought about this game is this: In Origins I played it through multiple times with different races and classes to see all the areas and uncover different stories. It was a pleasure to play through. Dragon Age 2 I will only play through once (barring a bout of amnesia) and as I was going through it felt like work; just trying to advance the story to find out what happens next, because you're always in the same damned areas you've been in the rest of the game and there's nothing new to keep you interested.

    Bottom line: Dialogue good, game design bad. Might as well have been a book.
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  42. Apr 22, 2011
    8
    I give this game a solid 8. It wasn't as great as the very first in the DA series, but it isn't horrible either. The way developers dumb-down games to appeal to the console audience is the major downfall. The new skill trees leave a lot to be wondered about. But the story is good, the game-play engaging, and there is a lot more to this game than meets the eye. Sure the story isI give this game a solid 8. It wasn't as great as the very first in the DA series, but it isn't horrible either. The way developers dumb-down games to appeal to the console audience is the major downfall. The new skill trees leave a lot to be wondered about. But the story is good, the game-play engaging, and there is a lot more to this game than meets the eye. Sure the story is short, but there are tons of side quests. The interpersonal interaction with the companions is not as good as before, but that doesn't degrade the experience very much in my opinion. All in all, if you like DA you will like the game, but chances are you wont love it. Expand
  43. Apr 22, 2011
    4
    A dumbed down collection of kicks in the balls version of ORIGINS. Don't bother. But probally the biggest kick in the balls, is at the very start: You can only pick one race. What a rip-off! That's part of what made Origins so fun! Another kick in the balls, is that they dumped the whole "Go from place to Place" aspect (Another feature that makes Origins so fun) and instead you're stuck inA dumbed down collection of kicks in the balls version of ORIGINS. Don't bother. But probally the biggest kick in the balls, is at the very start: You can only pick one race. What a rip-off! That's part of what made Origins so fun! Another kick in the balls, is that they dumped the whole "Go from place to Place" aspect (Another feature that makes Origins so fun) and instead you're stuck in this boring, lifeless, dumb town with NPCs who keep spouting the words "Hello. Hawke, is it?" every time you get within a 5-feet radious of them. GAAH!! Expand
  44. Apr 22, 2011
    4
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The whole game feels rushed and incomplete, more like a doodle than a landscape. Even the main questline reuses areas that are both geographically and conceptually different, there is a Cave environment, a Warehouse environment and an Undercity environment. Get used to these because you will see them, often. The game takes many of the elements of the first game and discards them on the basis that it's easier to throw away concepts than fix them, discarding the Crafting system in favour of purchasing the crafted items after finding permanent resources in the game.

    Most of the characters are completely unlikable, Anders springs to mind almost immediately. The handling of the games "Romances" for lack of a better term is almost unforgivable, the writing is blunter and less interesting than a cheap fanfiction. The game's fans urge that the Romances are completely voluntary and are a side aspect to the game, this is at odds with the game it self, the Romances are aggressively forced upon the player, with heavy skill benefits for players who partake, as well as some characters actively disliking you if don't show interest in romancing them.

    The ending is just appalling, every faction in the game ends up betraying you, regardless of your choices, just so you have to fight them all. This is unforgivable in an RPG that promotes the value of a choice.

    This game is much, much less enjoyable than the first game in the series, which offers both more features, better writing and more choice.
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  45. Apr 22, 2011
    3
    its a working game with 3d graphics, a story, and characters(not compelling, interesting, deep, or smart in any way, no sign of intelligence from the ones responsible for character design)
    this can be said about almost any game, and thats why we look for what makes the games unique, and that is what DA:O was, this looks like DA:O got robed of its limbs and head, whats left is a bloody
    its a working game with 3d graphics, a story, and characters(not compelling, interesting, deep, or smart in any way, no sign of intelligence from the ones responsible for character design)
    this can be said about almost any game, and thats why we look for what makes the games unique, and that is what DA:O was, this looks like DA:O got robed of its limbs and head, whats left is a bloody gory torso with no depth or the "true" rpg feel that, some people may argue that DA2 should not be compared to its predecessor, because its a different game, but it should, it realy should, they sat the standard with DA:O and if they expect the game to be received well, they need to make a game of equal or better quality, not a dumbed down thing meant for the larger demographic.
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  46. Apr 22, 2011
    5
    Dragon Age 2 is not, overwhelmingly, a bad game. What little there is to be found endearing in Dragon Age 2, unfortunately is dwarfed by issues which go to the core fantastical aspects of a role-playing game, those which should be the highest on the list of priorities and in terms of attention to detail, but were evidently almost complete afterthoughts in terms of execution. Dragon Age 2Dragon Age 2 is not, overwhelmingly, a bad game. What little there is to be found endearing in Dragon Age 2, unfortunately is dwarfed by issues which go to the core fantastical aspects of a role-playing game, those which should be the highest on the list of priorities and in terms of attention to detail, but were evidently almost complete afterthoughts in terms of execution. Dragon Age 2 ticks all the necessary boxes on paper, but fails to deliver on too many to be worthy of Dragon Age heritage.

    Environments in Dragon Age 2 lack variety, use of color palette, textured surfaces, remarkable geometry, landscapes and architecture. To some extent it lacks an appreciable depth of field, somewhat owing to the lack of camera control but mostly due to the sheer absence of ambience. According to Dragon Age 2, in the Free Marches you will struggle to find a single living organism that is not humanoid, the few exceptions being confined to dungeons and necessarily so as to provide some degree of enemy variety. Dungeon design is sadly linear, and the contemptuous re-use of dungeons, caves and buildings, speaks to the very limited abilities of the frenetic copy-paste monkey that works in the level design sub-department.

    The story is merely an interwoven series of loosely or altogether unrelated events, which limp along sluggishly in anticipation of core storyline development. The framed narrative is employed desperately to try and give connectedness to the disjointed combobulation of quests, but ultimately is used far too ineffectually and limitedly to achieve this. Short scenes of framed narrative between Varric and his "host" all but gloss over the concerns of almost an entire chapter in mere seconds, before once again thrusting another tedious act of grinding through the same handful of environments and dungeons on the player, this time for, purportedly, different reasons.

    Also concerning with regard to story development was the painstaking effort taken to segment each act, the first desperately trying to convey uncertainty, the second an illusion of stability, and the third, predictable and unsatisfying, proffering an ill-conceived cliche to lead in to Dragon Age 3. Morality was shambolic. Far too often it was born out of a dialogue option, invariably confused with the horrible conversation wheel, further still by ambiguous paraphrasing, and then turned into a wedge issue between two or more companions competing to be your "friend" or "rival". /golfclap

    The problem with this logic barren system of morality, friends and rivals, is in so much that rivals and friends tend not to party or group together, and certainly not in the circumstances presented in this particular tale. This abomination of morality which presents in Dragon Age 2, is actually the moral consequence of actions on relationships, as opposed to actually being held to account for moral decisions oneself. The conversation wheel really has no place in a fantasy wRPG. I literally lost count of the number of times I chose a paraphrased option based on what it said, rather than the wheel icon, and heard the protagonist deliver a line completely at odds with the tone of the paraphrasing. I don't think i've ever quick-loaded more times in a single game play-through in my entire life. In fact i'm sure I quick-loaded less playing through Origins on Nightmare.

    Dragon Age 2 lacked the often dark, dry, mature, double-entendre rich, witty banter that ensued from companion interaction, as in Dragon Age Origins. In stead it has been replaced with cheap jabs between two companions, very occasionally humorous and even then, far short of witty, and far too often of questionable intent. No, even frolicking elves can't redeem a conversation between Varric and Isabela.

    DA2 had the potential to be a good game, even a great one. Unfortunately it missed the mark by a lot. It wasn't due to sequel expectations, but a significant drop in the quality of product. I'm certain even Bioware is not so far removed from reality, as to have been aware they were not releasing an AAA sequel to Dragon Age Origins. If Bioware was really sincere about trying to capture a wider audience, well, good luck to them with that in the future. Once bitten, twice shy.
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  47. Apr 22, 2011
    8
    Don't come into this chapter of the Dragon Age saga expecting Dragon Age Origins 2, instead prepare yourself for a completely different experience. Don't believe the naysayers when they say this is a terrible game far from it, it's just not the game we all expected.
    The combat is faster, and much more enjoyable outside boss fights then origins was, and no less of a challenge on Hard or
    Don't come into this chapter of the Dragon Age saga expecting Dragon Age Origins 2, instead prepare yourself for a completely different experience. Don't believe the naysayers when they say this is a terrible game far from it, it's just not the game we all expected.
    The combat is faster, and much more enjoyable outside boss fights then origins was, and no less of a challenge on Hard or higher. The lose of the tactical camera is unfortunate and will take some getting used to for those that relied on it heavily in Origins like myself.
    The writing (specifically the party members interactions) is some of the best bioware has given us.

    There are some questionable decisions though, the re-use of dungeons is a big let down, as was the decision to limit party members to one outfit (understandable from a character perspective, but a letdown game play wise) and act 3 seems a little rushed.
    Also, playing as a Mage can be a bit jarring given the lack of a reaction it garners from characters in the world given the overall story within the game.

    Playing on anything other than a dx11 capable pc will be a big let down, the texture work, especially on the characters, is fantastic with the high quality texture pack, though some of the generic npcs still need work.

    All in all this is still an excellent game (even if it is below the quality we expect from bioware), and a must for the plot and character interactions alone, that is if you can get past the changes to the combat system and the vitriol from the online community at large.
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  48. Apr 22, 2011
    4
    Disappointing, a watered-down version of the first.

    The game engine and UI has been improved. I prefer the newer talent trees. And the characters are quite engaging and held my interest. But the story is very watered down and it takes place in the exact same stages over and over. The repetition in stages, as well as combat, almost make the game intolerable. Aside from a (very) few key
    Disappointing, a watered-down version of the first.

    The game engine and UI has been improved. I prefer the newer talent trees. And the characters are quite engaging and held my interest. But the story is very watered down and it takes place in the exact same stages over and over. The repetition in stages, as well as combat, almost make the game intolerable. Aside from a (very) few key events, player choices seem largely irrelevant. For some utterly baffling reason, only Anders (and the player) can learn to heal. I felt as if I was forced to use Anders and Aveline (the tank) if I was to adopt any strategy. Characters that are unused might as well be dead to you.

    It is a decent enough game (and the final battle is actually quite epic), but I felt like the media critics got this absolutely wrong. It has its charms, but it is largely an unworthy sequel and I regret spending $70 on this product. Wait for the price to drop before purchasing this one, you won't be missing much.
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  49. Apr 21, 2011
    0
    It's a rushed game and console port. It's not a roleplaying game either, it's an action game where with too much dialogue, and it's also a terrible action game. It lacks tactics, especially because enemies appear from thin air (from nowhere) in wave after wave after boring wave. The story is absolutely lineal and makes your choices pretty much pointless. Forced character deaths are also aIt's a rushed game and console port. It's not a roleplaying game either, it's an action game where with too much dialogue, and it's also a terrible action game. It lacks tactics, especially because enemies appear from thin air (from nowhere) in wave after wave after boring wave. The story is absolutely lineal and makes your choices pretty much pointless. Forced character deaths are also a big design flaw, proof that the story desperately needed faked intensity in order to appear well made (which is not, in fact it is predictable, slow and unimaginative). The classes have been dumbed down, with very little choice. The boss fights often end up on absurd "benny hill" scenes where your character runs around so the timers for healing potions comes up, proof that the gameplay was poorly designed and barely tested. Overall it's a extremely dissapointing game, especially if you compare it to the first, although it's not a big surprise considering the tiny developing cycle that they went for. Expand
  50. Apr 21, 2011
    3
    Pros:
    + The clear abilities points distribution system is a improvement
    + Voiced protagonist dialogs
    + "Sell All Junk" button (Only a requirement when you have junk)

    Cons:
    - Cheap dungeon design
    - Excessive gore and unnatural moves in combat animations
    - Spiders drop gold (What?)
    - Shallow characters and dialogues
  51. Apr 21, 2011
    2
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Alone, Dragon Age 2 is a decent game. It's not good, and it's certainly not great, but it's decent. As part of a franchise, however, it is a complete and utter failure. The decision to not include (for the most part) any of the characters and location that made the original shine, makes Dragon Age 2 a bland and mostly unintelligible mess. There's no clear enemy, the party members are bland at best, and combat has become so simplistic that it adds almost nothing to the game. Dungeons are repeated endlessly, characters that you don't care about are dragged on screen repeatedly, while the ones you do care about, Zevran, Alistair, Leiliana, get almost no screen time. The "decisions" you make have almost no impact on the actual game. No matter what you do, Anders will become a terrorist. And those are just the failings of the game. As a member of a franchise, there is nothing in this game that is a marked improvement from the first game. Yes, it's a little prettier and runs a little faster, but that was never the draw of the original. What Bioware failed to do in this game was continue with what made Origins great: Characters and story. Dragon Age 2 has neither. Dragons Age 2 features a save game transfer like Mass Effect 2. Unfortunately, the save game transfer has almost zero effect on the game. Mass Effect 2 could be radically different depending on your Mass Effect 1 playthrough, with characters that would otherwise be present for major events of the game being absent, or your status as a galactic agent. The save game transfer in Dragon Age 2 affects who you talk to a few times. Nothing is gained from transferring an old save. Sure, you can hear snippets of dialogue about your old adventures here and there, but they add absolutely nothing. Why Bioware chose to make Dragon Age into a franchise more akin to Mass Effect baffles me. They are radically different games, both in execution and in writing. Mass Effect was designed around one character, Shepard. Forcing one character into the spotlight of Thedas is awkward and does not fit. I can hope and pray that Bioware drops Hawke for the next game, but of course they won't. In short, do not go into this game expecting an experience akin to Dragon Age: Origins. Doing so will just set you up for disappointment. Be prepared for a mediocre experience that is untrue to the original. Expand
  52. Apr 21, 2011
    5
    There I was loving everything DA1 deluxe was offering and DA2 come out and HOLY CRAP! what did they do to this game? combat has turned into some button bashing crap devoid of any tactics, graphically it doesn't seem enhanced at all... in fact the texturing seemed much lower even AFTER downloading the DX11 texture pack... totally ruined the gameplay so much that its hard to care about theThere I was loving everything DA1 deluxe was offering and DA2 come out and HOLY CRAP! what did they do to this game? combat has turned into some button bashing crap devoid of any tactics, graphically it doesn't seem enhanced at all... in fact the texturing seemed much lower even AFTER downloading the DX11 texture pack... totally ruined the gameplay so much that its hard to care about the story at all. Expand
  53. Apr 21, 2011
    4
    Could have worked as a stand alone title but did not feel like a sequel to DA:O. It was almost as if the developers were trying to fix what was broken in DA:O and improve upon it but the problem was there wasn't a lot wrong with the first title in the Dragon Age franchise. Loved DA:O did not care for Dragon Age II.
  54. Apr 20, 2011
    7
    Dragon Age 2 is a fun game that gets a lot right, but is ultimately overshadowed by a rushed development. If Bioware had spent more time on the game and put less emphasis on streamlining, it could have been a masterpiece. While the game was released quite buggy, at the time of writing this most issues have been resolved.
  55. Apr 20, 2011
    1
    I've played and liked quite a few Bioware games. I thought DA:O had a good story and the gameplay was engaging. DA:A was essentially the same gameplay and a slightly less compelling story, but hey, it can't always be The Blight. I even bought a few DLC missions, which usually seemed worth extending my stay in the game world for a few bucks. Dragon Age:II is absolutely horrible. I feelI've played and liked quite a few Bioware games. I thought DA:O had a good story and the gameplay was engaging. DA:A was essentially the same gameplay and a slightly less compelling story, but hey, it can't always be The Blight. I even bought a few DLC missions, which usually seemed worth extending my stay in the game world for a few bucks. Dragon Age:II is absolutely horrible. I feel like a complete sucker for buying it. I even pre-ordered the Signature Edition based on my experience with their previous titles. The story drags along slowly and seems irrelevant. The gameplay and combat system just hack-n-slashing until so that maybe you can use a special ability during a fight. And the fights are no longer strategic. It's just hacking and slashing waves of baddies until the next waves jumps in from all sides like ninjas. The skill tree revamp was interesting and I kinda liked that, but not being able to customize your companions' gear seemed to dumb it down. I will probably still buy Mass Effect 3 on release day (or pre-order) because I think they've prioritized that as their marquis product and won't stray too far from the Mass Effect formula. But as for other Bioware games, especially future Dragon Age games, it will take much more than underhandedly gaming metacritic in order for me to buy it. Expand
  56. Apr 20, 2011
    5
    I realy wonder how people can give a game a 0 rating, whatever. This game ain't bad, it is a bit above average.
    It has flaws, obviously. The graphics aren't that good, the obvious console controls are just slapping you in the face from time to time, but it is infact a fun game.
    It took me about 16 hours to complete, I did most of the sidequest and I died quite alot. The strongest aspect of
    I realy wonder how people can give a game a 0 rating, whatever. This game ain't bad, it is a bit above average.
    It has flaws, obviously. The graphics aren't that good, the obvious console controls are just slapping you in the face from time to time, but it is infact a fun game.
    It took me about 16 hours to complete, I did most of the sidequest and I died quite alot. The strongest aspect of this game is obviously the story, which kinda feels just like a bridge between the last Dragon Age Origin DLC and the next DA game, or possibly Dragon Age 2 DLC.
    I would recommend buying it if the game wasn't so repetetive, had more variety and overall, was just more fun. I am a person, that does realy not care about graphics at all, all I got is a PC, which isn't good, so my graphic limit is mostly at medium.. and a medium resolution. It is a fun game if you just complete the story and just look the other direction when a flaw just walks next to you. Characters are fine... didn't think they would have much depth in it, because it was mostly going for Hawk. It's a 6/10.
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  57. Apr 19, 2011
    0
    Bioware once a great company that produced fabled RPGs has shown an ugly side with Dragon Age 2. The first Dragon Age was excellent but this has been streamlined to become a horrible game, EA has destroyed Bioware.
  58. Apr 19, 2011
    5
    First RPG from Bioware that can be humbly summarised as a mediocrity or even below. While it still shows us that the team has decent writers and artists, a lack of strong design leadership and quality is something we did't see in Bioware RPG's before. It's a linear adventure with watered story and, to some extent, fun to banter with characters, so-so combat and.. that's it. Dragon Age 2First RPG from Bioware that can be humbly summarised as a mediocrity or even below. While it still shows us that the team has decent writers and artists, a lack of strong design leadership and quality is something we did't see in Bioware RPG's before. It's a linear adventure with watered story and, to some extent, fun to banter with characters, so-so combat and.. that's it. Dragon Age 2 lacks freedom of choice (one we have is actually a masterfuly done illusion, which waves if you try to replay game second time), exploration; to some extend, character customisation; puzzles; it does't give player any tactical challenges. Dragon Age 2 also laughs at many DA:O aspects and characters, beating any decentness from them with black emo stick, and fails to deliver long, gripping dialogues. Overall, one can have some fun with this game, but it's almost painful experience to begin with. This game does't worth it's 60$, and makes you sorry and sad for yourself, your time and money after. Expand
  59. Apr 19, 2011
    7
    Although a disappointment after DAO, this game, on its own merits, wasn't especially bad or good in my opinion... just middle of the road. I notice that most reviewers who rate this game highly do so while attacking reviewers who don't. I don't know what this means exactly (I should have studied psychology), but it's interesting. It's almost as if they're ashamed for rating it so high.
  60. Apr 19, 2011
    5
    the game was obviously rushed the combat gets very repetitive after a while and the maps are recycled the story is shorter but although it's a good one i say it's very disappointing game but still if u like stories and rpg in general it s still a good one
  61. Apr 19, 2011
    10
    After playing for 40h (yes it does take that long), I can say that this game is amazing. Almost all of the flaws have been taken out from Origins, the combat is much more fun, the leveling system is better, the animations are far superior, and most importantly of all, the story is good. I completely disagree with the negative reviews, and suspect that a fair few are simply trolls.
  62. Apr 19, 2011
    8
    Although there is some restriction in gameplay and not so great like its precedessor, in my point of view, this is still a good game that worth to play. Hope in the next sequence, the creator should not get the same weakness and restriction that they have made in this game. They deserve to get a praise, though. 8.0 points
  63. Apr 19, 2011
    0
    Disaster of a game. Hack and slash gameplay with a story that would make straight to DVD movies look like Oscar winners. Horrible clipping, textures, and unnecessary "jelly" blood. Most important is how those involved with the game refuse to acknowledge any criticism. Avoid at all costs.
  64. Apr 18, 2011
    4
    Yet another example of EA destroying a gaming studio. Bioware started dying when they hooked up with EA. DA2 is a dumbed down extremely linear corridor-style RPG for ADHD meatheads who can't stand being challenged a little. Why are there so many nonsensical interactions happening? Templars witness tons of mages using magic, yet they only react if scripted.... And worst of all, continuouslyYet another example of EA destroying a gaming studio. Bioware started dying when they hooked up with EA. DA2 is a dumbed down extremely linear corridor-style RPG for ADHD meatheads who can't stand being challenged a little. Why are there so many nonsensical interactions happening? Templars witness tons of mages using magic, yet they only react if scripted.... And worst of all, continuously recycling maps in an RPG...!? Epic fail of a money grab. Studio execs are catering to the mindless spend-happy platform gamers and we end up with all these overly simplified and utterly easy games that feel like you're running down endless hallways. RIP Bioware. Expand
  65. Apr 18, 2011
    3
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This game is very weak compared to the first game. The story was not as good and didnt flow well at all. The game seemed to want to push the player towards a gay romance was a real negative for me. (No I dont care about your politically correct ideas about it....I played the game and thats how I feel) This is the first bioware game I will not play a second time. I would tell my friends not to buy this game. Expand
  66. Apr 18, 2011
    5
    This game takes away many of the components that made Dragon Age Origins' such a compelling RPG. The gameplay and story have all been turned inside-out.

    The combat has been dumb downed in a way that strategy is not much of a requirement anymore to go through many of the game's battles. I've not found a need to even touch the TACTICS system of the game, even on hard, and possibly
    This game takes away many of the components that made Dragon Age Origins' such a compelling RPG. The gameplay and story have all been turned inside-out.

    The combat has been dumb downed in a way that strategy is not much of a requirement anymore to go through many of the game's battles. I've not found a need to even touch the TACTICS system of the game, even on hard, and possibly nightmare. It's mostly just pressing the "R" key, watch pretty visuals and see things blow up. Instead of the strategic element we are so familiar with, Bioware gives us a much more fast-paced and more fluid, action-oriented fights that last much shorter than Origins'. This is still no saving grace to the brainless combat that Bioware thought would be a better alternative.

    The story is where things really start taking a toll for the worse. Origins' had such a compelling story. You travel around Fereldan recruiting and getting aid from different armies to stop an incoming blight. In this game, you go around doing chores for people in the city. A step downwards, considering it was made by Bioware, the same company that brought us classics like Baldur's Gate and Mass Effect. Shame on you, Bioware. It's a decent game at best. There's no real thought needed in this game, but it's fast-paced combat could interest newer players for awhile.
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  67. Apr 17, 2011
    9
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I was completely in love with DA:O and when I had beaten it I looked into the ME-universe and played them. Now I'm back in Thedas and it's not the same game as DA:O but for me this is better.

    Fighting:
    I think fighting is more fun this time around. I have beaten the game with one mage and one rogue and they feel much more responsive than DA:O. I prefer the abilty trees in DA2 to the DA:O version when you had to get them all in a straigh line. Story:
    You are following Hawke and his/her family after they have fleed their home due to the blight, so no big bad thing to fight against from the get go. I like it, it was certainly different from most other games I've played so far.

    * Act 1: You meet up with the majority of the party ( except for Sebastian the dlc-prince ) and get to know Kirkwall. You are dirt-poor and just try to get by. This is pretty much when I try to get a feel for my current Hawke. Do-goody or evil jerk? Night and day-mode was pretty nice and easy to understand on my first Hawke that I played without spilers or info. It can feel perhaps a little long but there are many fun q's and they introduce the characters and lore of the city. Many q's in this act will have a story that continues in the following acts.

    * Act 2: After a few years you and your companions are starting to get to know eachother better, some might even fall in love with you. Others might not. Things are starting to get more heated politicly and since Hawke has moved up in the world gets to be involved in it. My fave-act. I have a tremendous amount of fun with the q's and companions. This act has the two funniest q's involving Varric and Avaline and the sadest q with Hawke's mom. Great story-telling with highs and lows and romance if you choose to pursue it.

    * Act 3: Things get more and more out of hand. You and your comanions might really get to know eachoter better and if you're lucky there is a conclusion to your romance. It ended a bit abruptly. Conclusion to choosen romance if pursued. Have tried the end fight with two Hawkes and it was fun on both. Companion bases:
    Each companion has their own place where you can talk to them, think of Mirandas office in ME2. I like it, this time around we get scenes with our companions and not just see them from the shoulders and up when we talk to them. There are a mention in the q-logg when you should go around to them. I know some people dislike it, feeling that that means that they aren't free to talk to their friends when they like. For me this works better because a) I don't have to run around doing the Garrus-calibrations-routine. If there is something for me to see then I'll know. No point in running around if they've got nothing to say b) in DA:O Leliana had nothing to say for the finishing 1/4 of the game. Since I had used up all my conversations. This way I get to have the romantic conclusion in the end of the game.

    Rivalmance and romance
    One of the best changes they have done to the game. There is a possibility to develop friendship from a point of agreement or more of a agree to disagree-version. This influences dialouge and there are significat changes to the romance-path. Easily one of my favourite changes. Remember always leaving Morrigan at camp because she keept disagreeing with me. In DA2 I would simply have rivalmanced her and that would have been one hell of a romance. Great replay-value to see a romance from a different side.

    Voice and wheel:
    I love having a voice, after playing ME and ME2 I used to really dislike my silent warden. One of the big changes in the game. Prefer F!Hawke but that's just me. I prefer F!Shepard to male shepard also.

    Tone:
    There are 3 different major tones that your Hawke can take on in game. This, and the romance/rivalmance are the two best changes for me. You can call them diplomatic, snarky and direct. Have sofar tried diplomatic and snarky. Both were good but snarky was a bit more fun. One of the best things about it is that it made a second Hawke with a new tone feel very different from the previous Hawke. Great replay-value for me at least. There are also dialouge options that only are open to a specific tone but you won't see that if you don't play several Hawkes.

    What I would have liked to see more of:
    * Perhaps a little more intro to the Hawke family but perhaps they dropped us and the Hawkes straight into action simply so that there would take so much time for the player to get to Kirkwall. Remember having read somewhere that a large number of wardens got stranded in Ostagar and I'm not surprised. I have 2 there at the moment. But that would have made me happy.
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  68. Apr 17, 2011
    5
    The game tries hard to appeal to a wider audience. Tries to go the story route more than the strategy route. Unfortunatelly even on the story part, the game lacks depth. You have nor real background info on your character, you do not know why you are doing what you are doing and the things you do often seem artificial and not natural. One example: Instead of gathering 50 gold to make aThe game tries hard to appeal to a wider audience. Tries to go the story route more than the strategy route. Unfortunatelly even on the story part, the game lacks depth. You have nor real background info on your character, you do not know why you are doing what you are doing and the things you do often seem artificial and not natural. One example: Instead of gathering 50 gold to make a living you gather 50 gold to invest them in something. In order to get to those 50 goldcoins you do a lot of different quests. A few of them are good, but most of them involve running around for ages seeing the same stuff over and over again... back and forth back and forth.... the story has it peaks, but is overshadowed by really bad character integration. The class you play doesnt matter much do the dialogues. Even the world does not react if you are using magic on the streets, which is forbidden in the game. Combat wise, the game is very chaotic. There is no top down view anymore, so you often have problems with controlling the party or getting a good overview. Handling of NPC equipment is reduced to a minimum and there is no "common goal" that unites your party, but rather loose ties that dont really justify the actions of the companions. To me it didnt make much sense in most cases.

    The game didnt develop naturally but feels forced by guidelines: "We need to have this, we need to have that... " In the end they should ve listened more to their stomach I think. Mediocre game with some good story moments, but lacking in most other areas.

    I can only say this:
    "If you try to please everybody you will end up pleasing noone"
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  69. Apr 17, 2011
    1
    For fans of Dragon Age Origins and Awakenings, DA2 is a Epic Fail, which pales in comparison to the original. DA2 will only bring you disappointment. Its a tiny world with recycled maps, recycled music, shallow characters. It is a tedium to play.... and unlike the original you wont want to play it through again.
  70. Apr 16, 2011
    0
    Dragon Age II is terrible when compared to Origins -- which is a one of my favorite games in recent times! It's a rushed cash-in and not a sequel at all. It's not worth its asking cost and should have been nothing more than an offshoot expansion pack.
  71. Apr 16, 2011
    10
    I cannot understand the MASSIVE backlash of negative reviews. I loved this game for the character development, the superb voice over work, the story - which is one of the best I've seen in a video game - and because it was just a bloody good time. There were some things I missed from DAO, like slow-mo kill moves, but those were far from decisive. I give this a 10 because I walked awayI cannot understand the MASSIVE backlash of negative reviews. I loved this game for the character development, the superb voice over work, the story - which is one of the best I've seen in a video game - and because it was just a bloody good time. There were some things I missed from DAO, like slow-mo kill moves, but those were far from decisive. I give this a 10 because I walked away from this game FEELING like a champion. Expand
  72. Apr 16, 2011
    8
    Judging by the review scores, I'm guessing there are a bunch of disappointed Dragon Age: Origins fans and/or perpetually depressed people purposely exaggerating minor annoyances. If you review Dragon Age 2 based on its own merits and not its prequel, its hardly the bad game other people make it out to be. Giving the protagonist a voice? Progress. Speeding up the game play and reducing theJudging by the review scores, I'm guessing there are a bunch of disappointed Dragon Age: Origins fans and/or perpetually depressed people purposely exaggerating minor annoyances. If you review Dragon Age 2 based on its own merits and not its prequel, its hardly the bad game other people make it out to be. Giving the protagonist a voice? Progress. Speeding up the game play and reducing the number of available special abilities? Better combat. The menu system is less complicated. The game is a tad bit shorter as well. Most adults/people with jobs hardly have the time to play a game as large as Dragon Age. Good decision in making the game easier to finish for busy people. The bottom line is that sequels are sequels for a reason. They "try" to make improvements for the better. If your going to harp about anything, talk about the reused level design and assets. That is something worth discussing. Expand
  73. Mat
    Apr 16, 2011
    3
    ...silent...still silent cover my mind. I buy this game before they come, and that is my mistake. But i believe, what bioware said...no more my "dear" bioware...I newer buy your game before they come, even if you give me half prize. I WANT MY MONEY BACK. This game is some joke.

    Very angry, and unhappy player.
  74. Apr 16, 2011
    10
    This game deserves a better rating from real fans. Yes, it is nothing like Origins, but it is still a game that I spent 70 hours. Different but effective graphics, a great story, and a fast paced game play that still is exciting to play. Origins had better game play to me but I still spent a long time hacking and slashing with awe.
  75. Apr 16, 2011
    9
    Dragon Age 2 is not your standard "Hero against the world" or "Hero slays a dragon" story. This is a story about conflict, politics, oppression and personal drama. Unlike most games, it offers no "good" or "evil" way out. That alone is one of its strongest points. I'll list my personal pros and cons first:

    + Breaks out of the stale "Hero defeats an ancient evil" formula. + Companions are
    Dragon Age 2 is not your standard "Hero against the world" or "Hero slays a dragon" story. This is a story about conflict, politics, oppression and personal drama. Unlike most games, it offers no "good" or "evil" way out. That alone is one of its strongest points. I'll list my personal pros and cons first:

    + Breaks out of the stale "Hero defeats an ancient evil" formula.
    + Companions are all well defined, plot heavy and not just people with ten dialogue options
    + The combat system is fast and furious, it feels involved and largely improved
    + No more "You gave me 5 gifts. I wuv you" = "Romance" nonsense. Romances take time, feel real and are part of the drama
    + Side quests and Companion Quests are woven into the main story
    + It no longer takes "approval" to get to know your companions. Friendship and rivalry offer different paths, you are no longer punished for disagreeing with your companions
    + Importing DAO saves add wonderful touches and REAL cameos, unlike the hack job called Awakening
    + Gorgeous graphics
    + I encountered only two quests I could not finish
    + No hours of sludging aimlessly through the Deep Roads or the Fade, killing everything in sight

    - Re-used enviroments. While the enviroments they DID create are gorgeous in color and finely drawn, there are too few. Hopefully this will be fixed via a patch.
    - Much as I like the companion interaction being spread out, I'd have liked to see more and I'd have liked to customize them fully. But worry not, the modders are already at work

    This game is not was not meant to be a direct sequel to DAO. They tried going down that road with Awakening and we know that was a disaster. It is a bold, new way of picking up a conflict that was already hinted at in the original. Also, it was bound to happen sooner or later. The tragedies unfolding in this game cannot be blamed on an antagonist or an ancient evil but on, pardon the RPG pun, human nature. There were so many moments in this game when I was teary eyed or yelling "No, no, NO!" at my screen. I don't want to spoil anything however. Is it a perfect game? No. Was DAO a perfect game? Hell, no. DAO was horribly bugged, the last third of the game was badly written and rushed and never mind its formulaic nature and cliché ending. I love both games though. DA2 represents change and many do not like change. I happen to love it. I cannot wait for the newest DLCs and expansion and DA3 can't come soon enough either. I know the haters will pounce down on my review. It'll be an honor though, because I don't care what they think.
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  76. Apr 15, 2011
    2
    In what feels like an EA money grab the story is uninspired, the design is repetative, and the 'dungeons' have been reduced to a grind of defeating wave after wave of the same enemies. I think this is probably the worst game I have played from Bioware and will remain a dark stain on their otherwise impeccable record. Is this what EA does to their studios? Makes them creat BAD games? BADIn what feels like an EA money grab the story is uninspired, the design is repetative, and the 'dungeons' have been reduced to a grind of defeating wave after wave of the same enemies. I think this is probably the worst game I have played from Bioware and will remain a dark stain on their otherwise impeccable record. Is this what EA does to their studios? Makes them creat BAD games? BAD might be an exagguration but it is definately not worth the 80~ critic average it recieved. Expand
  77. Apr 15, 2011
    4
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The worst Bioware game I have played. Cost cutting decisions, more than any other decision Bioware made, is what ruined this game. Let me be clear - game publishers need to manage costs - but they still need to deliver a first rate gaming experience. Bioware needs to deliver quality story telling, rather than rush a second rate experience out the door. I've listed what I think the most glaring cost cutting flaws in the game are: 1) My choices don't matter. I am constantly forced back into the same story loop. While I understand that there are limits on story divergence, my choices need to be about more than the flavor of the game I am playing. Not every choice I make needs to alter the story line. But some do. And at least a few need to fundamentally alter the course of the game. 2) Characters should be memorable, and not flat. If characters can just sort of fit whatever I want to do, then ultimately it's obvious that I'm playing a video game and not interacting with soulful representations. The game ruins the veil of "suspended disbelief" so critical to fantasy on so many occasions by just allowing characters to go along with whatever I want. Fenris, for example, HATES mages, and refuses to join my fight with the mages. Good for him even though it would have made my end fight more difficult. Then, because I manage a pithy one liner about slavery, he joins my party. IF he hated slavery and mages all along, the game should have built up this conflict more within his character, so that we could see the final crisis and denoument, not have him flippantly choose one side because it's what the player feels like doing. 3) Repetitive use of scenery. Origins got annoying after a while with the same monsters, but the scenery constantly changed. Dragon Age II made this worse by having me fight the same monster models and in the same settings three times in a row. 4) Every male model looks like they are on roids - how about some varied body types? What about the sinewy rogue? The willowy mage? Why as a mage are my muscles still exploding from my robes? 5) Sexuality should be more than a lifestyle choice for my romantic options. In Dragon Age, some characters were bisexual and others were not. Some got offended by homosexuality. This added an extra appreciated wrinkle to the game. Cost containment I could accept: 1) Focusing on fewer origin stories. Valuable development time could be saved if only a few major storylines are played. So, if I only get three origin stories instead of 15 possibilities I am OK with that. However, these three should be divergent not as close together as possible. E.g. female elven mage, male human warrior, male rogue dwarf. 2) Reuse of monster models. Every game has to do it, I get it. 3) Limitations on the number of big decisions that alter a story arc. Understood that these cannot pop up all over the place, but there need to be some and a few need to be big ones. Mass Effect 2 demonstrated that if you have enough divergent story arcs, origin stories are less important. 4) Simpler combat systems. I get it that there are more console games to be sold than PC games. If due to economies of scale I have to have a simpler combat system, I can handle that to if it is still fun and challenging like in Mass Effect 2. I accept the above cost containment, and it's because I expect the game designer to spend extra time making sure that what it DOES do is exceptional. No one has infinite resources. Rather than wisely spending its gaming investment dollars on the areas of most return for its gamers, Bioware was solely focused on their financial returns. They have made it clear that all I am to them is a dollar sign and they plan to cash out on the Dragon Age franchise. Very well, Bioware, your gaming audience understands, and I for one will sit out the next Dragon Age unless user reviews are 8.0+. You can buy off publications but not your user base. Expand
  78. Apr 15, 2011
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The worst Bioware game I have played. Cost cutting decisions, more than any other decision Bioware made, is what ruined this game. Let me be clear - game publishers need to manage costs - but they still need to deliver a first rate gaming experience. Bioware needs to deliver quality story telling, rather than rush a second rate experience out the door. I've listed what I think the most glaring cost cutting flaws in the game are below:
    1. My choices don't matter. I am constantly forced back into the same story loop. While I understand that there are limits on story divergence, my choices need to be about more than the flavor of the game I am playing. Not every choice I make needs to alter the story line. But some do. And at least a few need to fundamentally alter the course of the game.
    2. Characters should be memorable, and not flat. If characters can just sort of fit whatever I want to do, then ultimately it's obvious that I'm playing a video game and not interacting with soulful representations. The game ruins the veil of "suspended disbelief" so critical to fantasy on so many occasions by just allowing characters to go along with whatever I want. Fenris, for example, HATES mages, and refuses to join my fight with the mages. Good for him even though it would have made my end fight more difficult. Then, because I manage a pithy one liner about slavery, he joins my party. IF he hated slavery and mages all along, the game should have built up this conflict more within his character, so that we could see the final crisis and denoument, not have him flippantly choose one side because it's what the player feels like doing.
    3. Repetitive use of scenery. Origins got annoying after a while with the same monsters, but the scenery constantly changed. Dragon Age II made this worse by having me fight the same monster models and in the same settings three times in a row.
    4. Every male model looks like they are on roids - how about some varied body types? What about the sinewy rogue? The willowy mage? Why as a mage are my muscles still exploding from my robes?
    5. Sexuality should be more than a lifestyle choice for my romantic options. In Dragon Age, some characters were bisexual and others were not. Some got offended by homosexuality. This added an extra appreciated wrinkle to the game. Which leads me to comment 5...

    Cost containment I could accept:
    1. Focusing on fewer origin stories. Valuable development time could be saved if only a few major storylines are played. So, if I only get three origin stories instead of 15 possibilities I am OK with that. However, these three should be divergent not as close together as possible. E.g. female elven mage, male human warrior, male rogue dwarf. 2. Reuse of monster models. Every game has to do it, I get it.
    3. Limitations on the number of big decisions that alter a story arc. Understood that these cannot pop up all over the place, but there need to be some and a few need to be big ones. Mass Effect 2 demonstrated that if you have enough divergent story arcs, origin stories are less important.
    4. Simpler combat systems. I get it that there are more console games to be sold than PC games. If due to economies of scale I have to have a simpler combat system, I can handle that to if it is still fun and challenging like in Mass Effect 2.

    I accept the above cost containment, and it's because I expect the game designer to spend extra time making sure that what it DOES do is exceptional. No one has infinite resources. Rather than wisely spending its gaming investment dollars on the areas of most return for its gamers, Bioware was solely focused on their financial returns. They have made it clear that all I am to them is a dollar sign and they plan to cash out on the Dragon Age franchise. Very well, Bioware, your gaming audience understands, and I for one will sit out the next Dragon Age unless user reviews are 8.0+. You can buy off publications but not your user base.
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  79. Apr 15, 2011
    7
    A So So game. Doesn't feel like Origins at all. A good analogy might be. Dragon Age Origins = An Interview with a Vampire.. Dragon Age 2 = Twilight.. I gave it a 7 because, compared to other games, its a 7 but compared to DAO its more like a 5 or a 6. I still had fun, but it felt like a B movie type of fun..
  80. Apr 15, 2011
    8
    Alright. I know there are many idiots in this world, but honestly, look at all these negative reviews. Probably a bunch of kids who quit after the first 5 minutes. (I admit, the beginning was dreadful.)

    But really, I agree that this game doesn't compare to Origins, but it is no where near a bad game. The graphics are good (with HD texture pack). The storyline is forgettable, but not
    Alright. I know there are many idiots in this world, but honestly, look at all these negative reviews. Probably a bunch of kids who quit after the first 5 minutes. (I admit, the beginning was dreadful.)

    But really, I agree that this game doesn't compare to Origins, but it is no where near a bad game. The graphics are good (with HD texture pack). The storyline is forgettable, but not bad. The combat is not as satisfying or challenging as Origins but it is decent. And people who say that the voice acting is terrible are being too harsh on DA2. The voice acting is not as amazing as some games out there (Origins), but it is not dreadful or anything close to it. You're all just sad that it's a console port. You use this 'console port' crap as an excuse to tear this game apart.

    This, of course, is just my humble opinion.
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  81. Apr 14, 2011
    0
    I don't care what any Bioware employee posting on here says, if you want to capitalize and maximize your profit, then this does a good job of that. It does not do a good job at being the game everyone was expecting, it just doesn't. But whose fault is it anyway? YOURS, not the consumers, because the consumers didn't make the game. They buy, and they choose weather they want to buy it andI don't care what any Bioware employee posting on here says, if you want to capitalize and maximize your profit, then this does a good job of that. It does not do a good job at being the game everyone was expecting, it just doesn't. But whose fault is it anyway? YOURS, not the consumers, because the consumers didn't make the game. They buy, and they choose weather they want to buy it and play it or not. And if you think its "individual opinion" then take a look at all the negative reviews on here, I don't think it's individual anymore buddy. I thank those who lost their money to this game for warning others about it, it's consumer rights, and the consumer should be able to protect themselves form these kinds of scams, because it is their hard earned money. With that said, this game is bad. The graphics are terrible, low resolution, no color whatsoever. These graphics are like the kind you would find in Warcraft III (2002-03) and DX11 doesn't make a difference. Story is bad, no development, no character intros, doesn't make any sense, hard to follow, too many cut scenes with more of the same. Hack and slash...rinse, repeat. game ends. bad.Don't buy. And if you do you just wasted 40 bucks, and I am sorry, sucks for you. Expand
  82. Apr 14, 2011
    1
    I can't describe the level of disappointment with this game. I've bought every Bioware game in the last ten years and thought they can go no wrong - how wrong was I. Dragon Age 2 is a bad game and a terrible sequel. The developers tried so hard to pull in the casual crowd that they changed and destroyed almost everything that was so beautiful about Origins. As a result we got explodingI can't describe the level of disappointment with this game. I've bought every Bioware game in the last ten years and thought they can go no wrong - how wrong was I. Dragon Age 2 is a bad game and a terrible sequel. The developers tried so hard to pull in the casual crowd that they changed and destroyed almost everything that was so beautiful about Origins. As a result we got exploding bodies, combat where you have to pause the game every 2 seconds in order to be tactical on higher difficulty levels, ridiculous waves of enemies, reused environments, bland companions, uninteresting and illogical story ..... i could go on and on.
    Stay away !!
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  83. Apr 14, 2011
    3
    A game so totally devoid of all the depths and charm that made the first in the series interesting that it is a wonder to me how Bioware could shove this out the door. It is so dumbed down in quests, background and especially combat that its just a travesty. I feel combat is in such a state of disrepair with teleporting waves of enemies that all tactics and thought is effectivelyA game so totally devoid of all the depths and charm that made the first in the series interesting that it is a wonder to me how Bioware could shove this out the door. It is so dumbed down in quests, background and especially combat that its just a travesty. I feel combat is in such a state of disrepair with teleporting waves of enemies that all tactics and thought is effectively eliminated from the game, all there is left is a "press whatever cooldown is ready" retardations that its worthy of a bungled flashgame

    Score (3.1)
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  84. Apr 13, 2011
    6
    Yes, it's not Dragon Age: Origins or an Elder Scrolls game, but it was fun to play!

    The bad news: reused maps (extremely so), too linear, relatively short and seemed like a rushed job. In terms of story, it seems like half of it. Nothing like DAO's epic 'Lord of the Rings' scale epic fantasy. The good news: great quests, improved combat, Mass Effect-like speech, great characters and
    Yes, it's not Dragon Age: Origins or an Elder Scrolls game, but it was fun to play!

    The bad news: reused maps (extremely so), too linear, relatively short and seemed like a rushed job. In terms of story, it seems like half of it. Nothing like DAO's epic 'Lord of the Rings' scale epic fantasy.

    The good news: great quests, improved combat, Mass Effect-like speech, great characters and great voice acting. Oh and there are one or two fun parts.

    Not a complete train crash, its totally playable. Let's hope DA 3 has more to offer.
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  85. Apr 13, 2011
    0
    As a big bioware fan, I was hoping for another great rpg experience. Instead I've got some boring parody of a game. This game has really nothing to offer, first fallout or baldur's gate was more complex and interesting than this **** People who are talking about better fighting they're lying, it's just faster, you have the same exact moves as you had in origins. This is the first theAs a big bioware fan, I was hoping for another great rpg experience. Instead I've got some boring parody of a game. This game has really nothing to offer, first fallout or baldur's gate was more complex and interesting than this **** People who are talking about better fighting they're lying, it's just faster, you have the same exact moves as you had in origins. This is the first the bioware's game that bored me with leveling up, when I saw the mark that tells you about gaining a level I thought 'not this **** again', they're are tons of useles skills that you forget about imidiately. NPC's are just laughable: generic drunk dwarf, scared fragile elf, a generic pirate, anders that we have already have met in awakening ( best part of the dragon age for me). Music- generic, forgettable. Graphics are mediocre, sometimes ugly and even bioware admitted that by releasing a new texture pack. Storyline is just uninteresting and forgettable, you get absolutely no pleasure in following the storyline. Secondary quests are extremely boring , you are going through the same locations doing exactly the same things. Main Character is also very generic and simple with nothing instererting to offer, casual hero like hundreds before him. DLC's- dropping dlc's in the same exact date as the game is just despicable and shows you the real motives of bioware and ea. This game can only be interseting for people who are under 12 years old or have no actual clue what a good rpg should look like. Expand
  86. Apr 12, 2011
    8
    Dragon Age II is a good game if taken on its own at face value. You will see typically positive reviews by professional critics because of this reason. It is not however, very similar to its predecessor DA:O which is why there are so many negative reviews, more than likely die hard fans of the original. The combat seems a bit simpler and the fact that the story unfolds in a smaller areaDragon Age II is a good game if taken on its own at face value. You will see typically positive reviews by professional critics because of this reason. It is not however, very similar to its predecessor DA:O which is why there are so many negative reviews, more than likely die hard fans of the original. The combat seems a bit simpler and the fact that the story unfolds in a smaller area rather all across Ferelden makes it seems slightly less epic. You are also pushed into the role of a predetermined character, Hawke, rather than choosing from a varied selection as in the first, and the story will unfold in a more structured fashion, whereas the first left you more leeway. While I enjoyed the first more, I still thoroughly enjoyed Dragon Age II. The characters are memorable, and the story well told. The combat, while important I think, was never, and never will be my main draw to an RPG based game. If you are looking for a clone of the first DA:O you won't find it here, but if you are simply looking for a solid game to play through you should pick it up. Expand
  87. Apr 12, 2011
    4
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. After finishing this game, I can find very little good to say about it other than the character development is really well done for the party members. Dragon Age 2 is very inferior compared to Dragon Age: Origins, and the ending is absolutely terrible. The combat is really repetative, the environments all look exactly the same, and the plot is completely linear. I originally gave this a good rating before I finished it, but after going back to try and change the events concerning the main characters nothing happened. The ending is a non-ending that leaves you confused, angry, or both. Expand
  88. Apr 12, 2011
    2
    A game so totally devoid of all the depths and charm that made the first in the series interesting that it is a wonder to me how Bioware could shove this out the door. It is so dumbed down in quests, background and especially combat that its just a travesty. I feel combat is in such a state of disrepair with teleporting waves of enemies that all tactics and thought is effectivelyA game so totally devoid of all the depths and charm that made the first in the series interesting that it is a wonder to me how Bioware could shove this out the door. It is so dumbed down in quests, background and especially combat that its just a travesty. I feel combat is in such a state of disrepair with teleporting waves of enemies that all tactics and thought is effectively eliminated from the game, all there is left is a "press whatever cooldown is ready" retardations that its worthy of a bungled flashgame Expand
  89. Apr 12, 2011
    4
    Okay, did anyone else think the whole.. every mage popping into an A-bom immediately was a little much? its completely unpresidented from the last origins game, and makes the mages ACTUALLY seem evil, unlike in the other game when they seemed moreso like slaves, a brutal waste of time you have to take breaks to stare at your recipt for buying the game before pushing yourself through theOkay, did anyone else think the whole.. every mage popping into an A-bom immediately was a little much? its completely unpresidented from the last origins game, and makes the mages ACTUALLY seem evil, unlike in the other game when they seemed moreso like slaves, a brutal waste of time you have to take breaks to stare at your recipt for buying the game before pushing yourself through the bogus and repetetive side quests, followed by an underwhelming finish were NO ONE WINS, and on top of that, poor graphics, compaired to the games of this time, shugun total war 2 is beautiful in compairison, and also the storyline is too linear, whether im evit or not, the story comes out the same, whether i chose one side of the other i kill them both, its a terrible plot, terrible everything, terrible game, try again Bioware Expand
  90. Apr 12, 2011
    2
    The crticial reception of Dragon Age II is one of the most glaring examples of just how terrified the enthusiast video game press is afraid of upsetting publishers. They wouldn't dare tell you at what point this is a focus-driven rushed-to-market insult to video game consumers everywhere. I never played the original Dragon Age so I'm not an irate fan of the original... there is just notThe crticial reception of Dragon Age II is one of the most glaring examples of just how terrified the enthusiast video game press is afraid of upsetting publishers. They wouldn't dare tell you at what point this is a focus-driven rushed-to-market insult to video game consumers everywhere. I never played the original Dragon Age so I'm not an irate fan of the original... there is just not much to defend here. There isn't a single battle in the game (including bosses) that doesn't involve waves and waves of enemies spawning out of thin air waiting for you to mow them down. Sometimes, even when you give them a gentle whack, they explode into a dozen pieces... which I guess is suppose to make me feel like a bad ass. The entire game takes place in one city made up of a few small disconnected areas and the same two or three dungeons that are reused for the entire game. They even try to trick you into thinking this is a new area by blocking off doors you were previously able to go through and opening other ones. Why can't you go through that door you see this time around? Who knows! You just can't click on it! Look, when asked about this problem in an interview, the developers claim they had two choices: give us all original content and cut the game length down to a couple hours or reuse the same areas over and over until the game lasted twenty-five hours. If that doesn't give you an idea of how rushed this product is, I don't know what will. There is not 60 dollars worth of content here and yet so many people have already bought this game because the video game press is looking out more for themselves and not for us. The sad part of this is that underneath it all, the character interaction is great even if the overally story arc, like the rest of the game, is not well thought out at all. It's clear there were talented people working on Dragon Age II, but they weren't given the liberty or time to make this into a good product. Buyer beware. Expand
  91. Apr 12, 2011
    4
    Disappointment is only part of the story. Not to go into the repeated argument that Dragon Age 2 isn't Dragon Age: Origins, for surely it is not, the game stands very short of what one might consider entertaining on its own merits. The way that this game was designed is often times very counter-intuitive that one has to wonder what the developers were thinking when they came up with theDisappointment is only part of the story. Not to go into the repeated argument that Dragon Age 2 isn't Dragon Age: Origins, for surely it is not, the game stands very short of what one might consider entertaining on its own merits. The way that this game was designed is often times very counter-intuitive that one has to wonder what the developers were thinking when they came up with the original conception. The presentation of the levels is perhaps at the top of the list. There seems little to justify reusing maps short of economic reasons. Yes, there are plenty of games out there that reuse maps, but in Dragon Age 2, this practice goes up into a totally new level where an exceedingly large percentage of the game takes place in the same levels, over and over again. You can have literally twenty or more quests in one single area, and thus you will find yourself revisiting the same areas continuously for the entire game. Even the main storyline (if one can consider it such), takes place in the same areas, and often requires you to do a circuit on the more prominent ones. Little more needs to be said on how annoying this can be.

    In terms of what you do in this game, the truth is, not a whole lot. Almost every quest, every mission, involves you either killing something, looting someplace, finding something someone lost, or simply returning a random item you pick up on the ground to someone you somehow, through the gift of clairvoyance, know who it belongs to. The graphics, while often claimed to be artistically rich, are a step down from Dragon Age: Origins. In fact, its almost a step down from Neverwinter Nights 2. If you wish to see the proof of this, then look up screenshots of Alistair or Leliana, and compare those with the same in the original Dragon Age: Origins and make an opinion for yourself. The main problem, however, is not so much in character modeling, but the overall atmosphere seems like a painting or a cartoon. I can admire paintings, but the Van Gogh depiction of the Dragon Age world probably will not seem as engaging to the average gamer, and does little justice to portray the dark fantasy setting that the original game tried to portray. The other issue with this game is the combat. The combat has been simplified slightly to make it more accessible to the console gamer. This is admirable. Some aspects of the system are in fact, easier to use. The primarily flaw, however, is not about the controls, or accessibility, but by the way combat was handled in the overall context of the game. Your encounters will almost always consist of fighting waves of enemies that spawn out of thin air when you least expect it. Actually, the more you fight these waves, the more that you will expect another wave coming every single time you encounter enemies. While this certainly makes the game more challenging, you will find that immersion will be brittler than ever before in a video game. The story is flat and unengaging. It is often argued that the story in Dragon Age II is a more personal one, without the cliche of always having some big bad boss at the end. I can certainly see the personal aspect of this, but that is also one of its crippling flaws. There is no clear cut antagonist in the game. Nothing that really motivates you to sit down and wonder why you do something in the game. All the "villains" in the game have almost nothing to do with you, and you will often find yourself doing quests for people out of philanthropic reasons (or greed, because they pay you) than for any great reasons. In essence, your character in the game is just another errand boy, or girl.

    The whole game takes about 30-50 hours to complete, but unfortunately, the main plot hardly makes even a fraction of that time. There isn't really a main plot, in fact, for the game is divided up into three acts with almost completely unrelated segments of storytelling. The rest, of course, is filled in with sidequests fitting for the errand running hero that you are. Most of the characters in the game are also forgettable. Almost all of the companions you meet in the game, allies if you wish, are so two-dimensional that you just have to wonder what happened to all the magic that was instilled into characters like Thane, or Jaheira, or Morrigan, or even the scaly lizard of a jukebox bard named Deekin. With the exception of maybe one or two, most of the characters have flat personalities whose depth never goes below the skin. Their motivations only go as far as their graphical portrayal, such as as the dutiful warrior, the stuck-up holyman, the ignorant mage, and a slutty rogue. They are either black, or white, with no grays in the middle. I had to take a point off for each of the points mentioned above. It is truly difficult to, in good faith, to recommend this title to anyone. Its not a broken game, but its so poorly designed that it can hardly hold up on its own.
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  92. Apr 12, 2011
    8
    (Note: I basically explain in this review the actual game there is no spoilers or anything but it will basically give you the idea of why this isnt really a DAO sequel)

    Alright so after playing through Dragon Age Origins and the Mass Effect series, I picked up real quick on what Bioware was doing with Dragon Age 2... A lot of people expected this game to pick up, fill in some gaps and
    (Note: I basically explain in this review the actual game there is no spoilers or anything but it will basically give you the idea of why this isnt really a DAO sequel)

    Alright so after playing through Dragon Age Origins and the Mass Effect series, I picked up real quick on what Bioware was doing with Dragon Age 2... A lot of people expected this game to pick up, fill in some gaps and give use a new cause to well save the world as usual... This however is a middle ground game with a strong prologue plot. So itâ
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  93. Apr 12, 2011
    2
    Dragon Age II is another sequel that would have been better as a new IP. Looking at it as a new IP, it has a flowing combat system, decent customization, good story, and interesting characters. This, however, is not a new IP. This is the sequel to one of the best RPGs i have ever played. Compared to DA:O the customization is laughable, the leveling is limited, combat animation is moreDragon Age II is another sequel that would have been better as a new IP. Looking at it as a new IP, it has a flowing combat system, decent customization, good story, and interesting characters. This, however, is not a new IP. This is the sequel to one of the best RPGs i have ever played. Compared to DA:O the customization is laughable, the leveling is limited, combat animation is more interesting and flowing, but is very limited, and the characters are too stuck in their roles. Essentially the only thing that they improved was making the combat more flowing, especially for the mages. Everything else was cut by 1/3. you have only one race instead of 3, cutting your character options by 1/3, any non mage class is stuck in archery, 2handed swordsmanship, etc instead of being able to choose between 3, and you are stuck in one city and the mountain out back instead of being able to travel around a huge map. Will I buy it? Yes, once the price drops to 1/3 that of DA:O. Expand
  94. Apr 12, 2011
    4
    This game is an embarrassment of Dragon Age origins. The game is nothing like origins, which is the whole controversy, the story isn't compelling as Origins. The characters are so conventional they seem almost lifeless and limited interactions doesn't serve well. Combat is nicely flowed together and much more smoother then origins, but the lack of challenge and constant enemies can make itThis game is an embarrassment of Dragon Age origins. The game is nothing like origins, which is the whole controversy, the story isn't compelling as Origins. The characters are so conventional they seem almost lifeless and limited interactions doesn't serve well. Combat is nicely flowed together and much more smoother then origins, but the lack of challenge and constant enemies can make it all too repetitive. But what really tears me up is that DA2 facilitates for newer gamers with neglecting the older fans. Whatever choices you made in origins have minor or no significant impact on DA2. This game suffers from an overload of enemies, recycled environments and is missing that unique fantasy element that makes rpg 's so grand. Expand
  95. Apr 12, 2011
    10
    I agree that Dragon Age 2 has been dumb down a notch.
    It has taken the mainstream path to lure in more young players.
    This is the road that all games take now days when money talks and unique gameplay walks. None the less. You will not find a better game in this genre for a few years. It is money well spent. Not only for the quality of the gameplay, graphics and voice acting but also
    I agree that Dragon Age 2 has been dumb down a notch.
    It has taken the mainstream path to lure in more young players.

    This is the road that all games take now days when money talks and unique gameplay walks.
    None the less. You will not find a better game in this genre for a few years.
    It is money well spent. Not only for the quality of the gameplay, graphics and voice acting but also for the extensive campaign.

    The game should be considered as a action-rpg from now on. If you are the one who love the old pen n paper play style and prefer baldurs gate 1 & 2 in front of Dragon age 1, then maybe you should take a second thought, but I would suggest you to pick this up anyway. It's not money wasted, no matter what your preferences are.

    /dancodan
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  96. Apr 12, 2011
    2
    All the negative critique that needs to be made about this game has been, it's rubbish and an insult. For everyone who is a long time Bioware fan, this game was a slap in the face. As a lover of RPG games who has bought almost every Bioware game since Baldur's gate, I know I for one want game that are more intricate and more detailed as time goes on, not games that are dumbed down forAll the negative critique that needs to be made about this game has been, it's rubbish and an insult. For everyone who is a long time Bioware fan, this game was a slap in the face. As a lover of RPG games who has bought almost every Bioware game since Baldur's gate, I know I for one want game that are more intricate and more detailed as time goes on, not games that are dumbed down for "bros" to enjoy. There is a very specific type of gamer, like me, who enjoyed the types of games Bioware used to make, and we are the ones who pumped up their company up in the first place, who made them a success. Yet they didn't hesitate to cast us aside in the hope of getting in on the "bro" market. Stay classy Bioware, I'm done with you. Expand
  97. Apr 11, 2011
    0
    Such a disappointment of a game that had so much potential. This game is nothing more than a single player version of Dungeons & Dragons Online. There's zero exploration, every mission takes place in the same 4-5 exact maps. The only positives were the voice acting and art direction. It's really sad to see BioWare fall so far in such a short period of time. It's sad to see all thisSuch a disappointment of a game that had so much potential. This game is nothing more than a single player version of Dungeons & Dragons Online. There's zero exploration, every mission takes place in the same 4-5 exact maps. The only positives were the voice acting and art direction. It's really sad to see BioWare fall so far in such a short period of time. It's sad to see all this new technology and years of game evolution get wasted on dumbed down developed games that are mindless. We're supposed to be moving forward, not backward. SNES games were more challenging then modern day games.

    Also, anything positive you'll see written about this game is an overreaction of personal preference from the bias developers who quickly developed this game in such a short period.
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  98. Apr 11, 2011
    7
    Saying this game is bad would be generally unfair. Bioware's biggest mistake in this case wasn't the game not being a true sequel but being advertised as such even though it is realistically a separate game. Think of Icewind Dale and Baldur's Gate both playing in Forgotten Realms but being two separate story-lines where the events of one may be referred to in another. It's title shouldSaying this game is bad would be generally unfair. Bioware's biggest mistake in this case wasn't the game not being a true sequel but being advertised as such even though it is realistically a separate game. Think of Icewind Dale and Baldur's Gate both playing in Forgotten Realms but being two separate story-lines where the events of one may be referred to in another. It's title should have been Dragon Age: The Kirkwall Chronicles. Story-wise I do have mixed feelings. I am not happy about the lack of alternative storyline aspects but the few being there are still entertaining enough to keep a player happy for a while. Companions still have their own personalities and your personality being a lot less mute than in the original Dragon Age titles certainly helps to blend in. On dialogue side the game presents you with a classical Mass Effect style wheel giving you options for certain type of straight answer or investigative questions - but unlike in Mass Effect series the obvious outcome is not always that clear and not always wholly different for the entire dialogue regardless of which conversation path you chose.

    Sadly the exploration side got a bit of a short straw, it is still there but due to lack of big locations quite limited. It seems a bit symptomatic for recent Bioware games: Exploration getting steadily removed from games altogether. However as saving grace it should be noted that the game allows you to progress in the main plot at your own terms without too much prescribed linearity.

    The combat system got a major overhaul but while it can be challenging on its own terms especially on higher difficulty modes. Its shortcomings are minor compared to the original Dragon Age title, in this case the lack of tactical camera, enemies coming from thin air and Nightmare involving some several issues making making it favour single target ranged combat should be noted. I believe the latter will be addressed by Bioware soon. Talent trees got improved a lot and leave a lot of room for experimentation and replay. Personally I found the issue of fixed but upgradeable companion armor quite an interesting idea. It would have been better though if upgrades would allow more flexibility.

    The old crafting system got replaced by a less hunter-gathering aspect but more one which people who played Mass Effect 2 are familiar with. Instead of gathering the resources into your backpack you are now mostly out for finding resource locations you'll have to tag/unlock depending on the locations you are visiting. The more resource locations you find the higher classes of runes, potions and poisons you can craft. Crafting also isn't done in the same spot but done at certain shop-like locations. While this hurts any fan of the classical gathering & crafting game I feel the old system did not actually limit you aside from backpack size whereas the new one obviously uses your cash as limiter. In the end I personally liked the old system more but to be fair the new system is achieving the same results in the end without forcing the player to reserve a large part of his backpack for resources and materials.

    Graphically it's looks are stunningly good even though it does lack the deliberately dark look of its predecessor title. Animations are well-down although the game overdoes a lot on the explosions side making it unnecessarily messy-looking when there is no reason for it. I do miss effects on weapons from runes and the lack of a bit more beautiful inventory graphics. The game's locations are well done although a lot of quests do lead to several previously locations. This does lead to a certain level of repetition but amusingly also to a lot of familiarity. The game however does a good job in keeping Kirkwall more than just one town although its lack of aging, progression and liveliness as the story goes on does make the town feel static and lacking the realistic feel of years spent within it. The whole story could be in fact one of a single 24 hrs. day when taking the persistent looks of the town's scenery into account.

    The GUI has been overhauled quite well and it's quite intuitive from the get-go. Nothing more to add this one is done well.

    What needs to be left noted is the relative subtlety of game's score, even though the score is quite excellent it does lack the certain epic factor which the original title was known for. Otherwise the atmosphere, combat and ambient are in parts a lot better done than in the original titles.

    In conclusion I think it is worth buy if you see it as a game within the Dragon Age universe or setting. If you are truly seeing a linear successor to the original Dragon Age titles you might not like it. It certainly does come with a lot improvements of its own but also another set of issues left to be addressed in another possible upcoming Dragon Age title. Perhaps both titles will give Bioware sufficient amount of material to find the real alchemy for an ultimate Dragon Age game.
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  99. Apr 11, 2011
    6
    Good graphics, combat and music. The story is alright in my book. There are still many bugs present in the game. For instance, one quest did not even show up in the game world. I'm disappointed in Bioware's decision to recycle the areas throughout the game. At some point, you will know when and where to expect traps and treasures. Also, the game doesn't feel very lively any more at someGood graphics, combat and music. The story is alright in my book. There are still many bugs present in the game. For instance, one quest did not even show up in the game world. I'm disappointed in Bioware's decision to recycle the areas throughout the game. At some point, you will know when and where to expect traps and treasures. Also, the game doesn't feel very lively any more at some point. Replayability is high due to the various class combinations that are possible. I hope that the next installment will be more akin to Dragon Age: Origins. Expand
  100. Apr 10, 2011
    3
    Reason it's getting such a High Critic review, E.A./Bioware are literally throwing money at them to write anything nice & give it high numbers. Trust the User's, we know how much this game failed us.

    This game should never came out when it did, they just wanted to make money & be damned of the issues, they'll just throw more money at it, say look see have this great game, expect stupid
    Reason it's getting such a High Critic review, E.A./Bioware are literally throwing money at them to write anything nice & give it high numbers. Trust the User's, we know how much this game failed us.

    This game should never came out when it did, they just wanted to make money & be damned of the issues, they'll just throw more money at it, say look see have this great game, expect stupid awards for it, because more money is being thrown at the judges.

    JJ
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Metascore
82

Generally favorable reviews - based on 45 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 38 out of 45
  2. Negative: 0 out of 45
  1. PC PowerPlay
    Apr 18, 2011
    90
    Moving even further from the classic RPG, strong story and clever combat are nonetheless still found within Dragon Age II. [May 2011, p.52]
  2. Apr 12, 2011
    58
    Despite some advancement in storytelling approach and liberal borrowing from Bioware's Mass Effect approach to gameplay, Dragon Age 2 on the PC has a lot of bugs and is populated with re-used settings that make this feel like a play performed on a stage with two sets.
  3. Apr 11, 2011
    85
    For a rushed product that is still battling bugs, the currently offered product still provides 40 hours of challenging and engaging gameplay. This combines to provide a good, but not great gaming experience.