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Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 4170 Ratings

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  1. Mar 12, 2011
    This is a hack & slash console action game. If you're looking for an RPG game, look elsewhere. If you like arcady-console-street fighter-action-games, then this is it. The original DA game was a lot more RPG and more similar to the BG saga. To even compare this game against older RPG games such as BG and Planescape is crazy because it would be like comparing a shooter against Civ5.
  2. Mar 12, 2011
    Dragon Age II is a great game once you get past any bias you may have or false expectations over why it isn't "Dragon Age: Origins 2". I will try and keep my feedback spoiler free and focus on the core tenants of what the game offers and why I rated as I did:

    Pros: 1. Unique story-line, new characters and setting.

    Although you spend a majority of your time playing in one area of the
    Dragon Age world, you never run out of things to do. The advancement of the story allows for deeper sense of exploration and understanding of the world you are thrust into and the impact you have on its evolution. 2. A compelling set of characters and individual back-stories to work through.

    Although it may miss some of the classic characters of DA:O, DA:2 does not fail to deliver on high-quality characters with a rich background to explore. Each one bringing with them a unique set of opportunities and challenges that you as the hero will work through as you relationship grows. 3. A plot that will leave your head rolling by the time you get to the end, with some of the best and morally challenging decisions I've faced in an RPG of this type.

    It is harder to describe the story without going into spoilers, I am now on my second play-through and my head is still spinning from the first. By far one of the better stories I've had a chance to be part of in any RPG. Every action, every relationship, every decision will lead to plot twists and turns that you just won't see coming... And in the end, all must decide....

    4. Action packed combat, no dancing around your enemies for 5 seconds before you start combat. The combat moves as fast as you do. I love what they did with the pace of combat, it gets the blood pumping and really makes you feel epic. Your characters react as quickly as you do, so you can move through fights quickly and with devastating force. At the same time, for the more complex engagements, you have the ability to take a more strategic approach by pausing combat and issuing commands to individual party members.

    5. Simplified user interface

    I love the idea that I spend far less time managing my inventory then I do playing the game, definitely one of the better features. Potions, Crafting & Armor are all simplified for players to be able to get things done without investing countless hours into organizing through tons of items you may never use. Cons:

    1. Limited environment, repetitive maps

    Sadly, where the game lacks in a large way is a true sense of open world exploration. Although the world of Kirkwall is huge in and unto itself, it doesn't quite offer you the freedom of true exploration. I can understand why it is the way it is based on the story, however I am a fan of being able to explore and this was one area that hurt. The other is the fact that several of the dungeon maps get recycled, after a time you will start to see several familiar maps come up time and time again. 2. Over-simplified armor and customization

    Although I am a fan of simplifying the armor and inventory management, I do prefer to have control over what armor my party members wear and when. I feel the game did not really offer a lot of variety where party armor was concerned.

    3. Race restriction

    Although I can appreciate the character of Hawke, I feel the limitation to human takes away from story. The story would have been equally as compelling having an Elven, Dwarf or Human protagonist but that's a personal preference. 4. Can't import a finished game

    Though not game breaking, if its a feature your hoping for it isn't there.... You finish your game and you can replay as often as you want (Obviously), but you'll have to start a new each time.

    In closing, my review is favorable and I personally feel the game excels in its own right. Although many on these posts have said otherwise, I'm not comparing it to something its not, I am rating it for the experience I had. Its a fantastic game and well worth the investment, just don't go in expecting Elder Scrolls, Fallout or any other of the Open Ended RPGs its been compared to.

    Dragon Age II is not opened ended, its a narrative with a specific plot you act out as the player. From that perspective, the game delivers on one of the more action packed thrill rides I've had.
  3. Mar 12, 2011
    So much dislike here i thought i`d put in my 2 penny worth.. Its not excatly the same as DAO no.. but get over it. To me DA2 is like mass effect becomming mass effect 2. ok not as much fuiddling to get the right gear etc more fast paced combat and fun.. dont get me wrong im a fan of the old baldurs gate series and not a console rpg tourist. I think half the reviews here are written by peeps who have probably played the demo.. or maybe 1 or 2 hours of the game and want to flame at the change.. To me every minute or hour that passes in the game i see a lovingly created story, some seriously crazy fights and spells and just enuff rpg to keep u hooked. Yes i did love DAO.. but this is summin fresh and fun.. its damn right crazy at times and i apluad u bioware for trying to push games forward.... Now flame me if u like but there are times during DA2 it feels more like baldurs gate 2 than any game ever has.. so just because u lot have pushed this score down so low.. im gonna give it a 10.. Expand
  4. Mar 12, 2011
    I felt this game was interesting in story (something other people seem to disagree with, I'm not sure why??) and was very entertaining. I'm not much of a critic, but I felt I'd come with my opinion anyway, seeing as I had been slightly worried about the quality of the game after reading so many poor reviews of it.
    I truly enjoyed playing it and to me, that's really the most important part.
    I'm not sure about the quality of the graphics. I rather liked them, but other people seem to find them outdated? I haven't got much to compare it to tbh because I don't play that many games. The story was good and I liked the way they did the narrative (and I also found myself really liking the narrator, lol). I knew of the companions beforehand, yet I still found myself liking some of the ones I did not expect to like. I mean, there are problems with the game, sure, hence why I didn't give it a 10, but really, they are so insignificant compared to how great the other parts are. So I think if you liked Origins and don't play Dragon Age 2 with a "GOD DAMNIT I HATE THIS" attitude from the start, you will be pleased. If you are content being dissatisfied or unwilling to try because of the bad user reviews, then your loss I suppose :/ Expand
  5. Mar 12, 2011
    All good in Orgins is gone, this is an insult to rpg players from EA/bioware, where is the spirit from Baldurs gate?. Simply, it is dead.
    - Dialog wheel breaks any rpg experience. Good/Bad/Stupid decisions insults human intelligence.
    - No tactical view, wtf! Baldurs legacy!? ( for me the best of the battles in Origins)
    - UI terrible, consolized, ugly and ridiculously small for 1920x1200
    ( subtitles hurts my eyes)
    - Corridors maps once and once again, repeat maps once and once again.
    - Companions/history/inmersion far far far from Origins. ( for me the best in Origins)
    - Graphics/Art Design and Music/Effects far worst than Origins.
    - a lot of bugs/side effects in pc because is a very very bad port. (DAO was designed for PC, ME was a bad port, ME2 was a very bad port, and this is extremely bad port, whats the next bioware?)
    - very poor performance for main characters (i like me/me2 character performance but this not)
    - uninspired side quests and typical main quest, always in the same place.
    - etc..., all good in Origins is dumped down extremely.
    - this is not a rpg game, is a kick in the face from bioware for all loyalty customers who support them since their beginning.
    - From more than 900 hours in Origins and still playing to 18 hours in DA2 and uninstalled, this is the evolution for me.
  6. Mar 12, 2011
    They tried to appeal to the masses and in doing so did not make a deep RPG. IF it was called something else it might be a good game. But it is no Dragon Age. I recommend playing DA Origins and not DA2 .
  7. Mar 13, 2011
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  8. Mar 13, 2011
    Epic Fail. Terrible game.Old graph, many bugs, Not RPG, but fighting slasher!! Total trash. Omg and this company create godly Dragon Age: Origins ? I dont beleive =(
  9. Mar 13, 2011
    I find it annoying to see all the lowscore reviews from people that clearly never even finished the first chapter of the game, or in fact never played anything else than the demo. The game is not without a few minor flaws, but is all in all absolutely brilliant. The story isnt as focused as stories usualy are in rpgs but that actualy have a rather posetive effect on the game. Its much more personal and more than anyhting else I praise the choise to finaly abandon the "chosen one" or "save the world approach". The world is brilliant in its complexity, the normal boring "go here and fetch this" sidequests are almost nonexistent. Graphics is a huge improvment over origins and I cant understand anyone that claime the game looks bad or even worse than origins. I have some minor issues with inventory and the dialogue wheel but all in all an excellent game. Expand
  10. Mar 13, 2011
    Don't beleive the people giving this game 10/10 it is no were near a 10/10 game their just lying to you at best this game is a 3/10 this game has been dumbed down so much how can they call it an rpg game its just complete and utter rubbish as im said the people that are giving 10/10 are just lying buyer beware
  11. Mar 13, 2011
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This review is coming from someone who absolutely loved Dragon Age: Origins and came into Dragon Age 2 with high expectations. I fully expect that if I didn't like Origins so much I'd give this game about a 5 or 6.

    I just completed this game as a sword and shield tanking warrior. Dragon Age 2 has many good qualities but just as many faults. The combat in this game reminds me of old arcade games with enemies constantly spawning in from the sides while you beat them up. Most of the fights in this game involve enemies swinging down from the rooftops like monkeys. I spent most of my battles trying to pick up aggro on stray enemies spawning in behind my mages. I enjoyed the new combat animations, but not much else. The dual wielding dagger Templars doing back flips in full plate was pretty entertaining.

    Another problem with the combat is the lack of npc character specializations. You can't, for instance, make Isabela an archer or make Fenris a tank. Your only choice for a healer for most of the game is Anders. With my warrior I felt like I was forced to take Anders with me even though I didn't really like him. It feels a lot like having to take Wynne with you in Origins if you weren't a mage. At least there you had the option of making Morigan into a healer. Also, as I'm sure many previous reviews have stated, you can't change your companion's armor. The graphics do look pretty good. However, there are so few environments that the visuals eventually lose their appeal. You literally see everything you are going to see in the first act of the game as far as environments go. I wish that Dragon Age 2 had at least one more substantial area to visit. There were a few graphical glitches I encountered such as the shield on my warrior's back appearing and disappearing during dialogues.

    The plot starts off strong, gets weaker in the middle, and ramps up near the very end. This game really hammers you with the whole Templars vs Mages concept and doesn't stop. I was getting tired of being reminded around every corner that the two groups just don't like each other. I guess they are just trying to explain that to new players who haven't played Origins, but even then it seems excessive. Along this line, it appears that every mage in the city of Kirkwall can just whip out a knife and perform blood magic. I was shocked by the amount of blood mages in this game. It really got old fast.

    I really liked the Qunari in this game, and looked forward to all the segments involving them. They were voiced well, and by the end of the game I thought they would have made a much better antagonist than the actual antagonist.

    I enjoyed the voice work and the music of the game for the most part. Some of the pronunciation of certain locations in the game have changed from Origins (I cringe whenever an elf says Arlathan), but that is my only complaint. The characters are believable and are quite interesting. Their voices are pretty quiet though, requiring me to crank up the speaker volume and lower the soundeffect/music volume to hear them well.

    The side quests in this game are quite mundane. You usually either go somewhere and kill some guys or you bring some item you found back to somebody in the town. There are so many side characters involved in these quests that you quickly forget who they are when they show up later. I'd have characters appear and say something like, "You killed my brother!!!" and I'd just be standing there thinking, "I did?" It helps that several of these encounters have a dialogue option along the lines of, "Who are you again?"

    The game froze on me about 8 times, with about two cases of quests not working correctly. I had just completed a character quest with Anders, and the quest text told me to speak with him in his clinic. When I went to his clinic and clicked on him, all he did was speak one line of dialogue. The quest remained in my log until the end of the game. I found out later that some other quests I thought I had completed didn't show their ending scenes.

    It took me about 30 hours to complete the game, doing all of the side quests I could find and beating optional boss encounters. It was pretty fun in the beginning, but I gradually just wanted to hurry up and complete it near the end. For every one thing that Dragon Age 2 does right, it does one thing wrong. I can't recommend paying full price for this game, but you should pick it up after the price has come down a bit or steam has a sale. Well, only if you enjoy the setting of Origins. I can't really imagine someone getting much out of this title without having played the first game.
  12. Mar 13, 2011
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I didn't play DA:O for almost a year, then DA2 is out and i was overjoy to test it out. The short guy and the girl seeker looked promising, then bang the first DA fail, only human to choose (even if u font play the others, it was part of the lore and to play in DA:O)

    Has many said combat is less tactical and that, well i prefer this new method and mage and rogue looks very well designed while in combat and u can still make ur own tactic if ya want (but actualy u don't, just pick tank, healer , damager and it goes how ya want)

    Grapics, man.. its better aright ,but when i was mid act II of the game i got bored of the same city quests, lets face it, combat is nice, graphics is better, but its boring looking to the same place.

    After this i got the mood to go grab my DA:O and start a new game to see the dif better, and i did forget how was and is far better than his sequel.

    Graphics is almost the same, and u can get a good overview when in combat (but still i prefer the fast paced that DA:2 offers). But.. when u became a grey warden and the battle of ostagar begins.. thats the real Dragon Age, thats the real feeling that i loved playing this game.

    And yes, Alistair and morgan moments while ur walking, its epic.

    To conclude my first and only post, DA:O gives much more to the player than its sequel, and u are always on the move from city to city, wild to villages, while DA2 ur stuck in a boring city, even with the nice visual combat system that DA2 offers, origins its in other league of rpgish.

  13. Mar 14, 2011
    This is the worst... First Person Shooter ever. BUT IT IS THE BEST RPG EVER! Dragon Age 2 is absolutely phenomenal in every single way. I bought it and I still can't put it down. It is a brilliant technical accomplishment by BioWare, and is easily one of their best games. BioWare never fails to impress, and Dragon Age 2 is no different.
  14. Mar 13, 2011
    This is game can not be termed as sequel to Dragon Age :Origins. Period. Normally I never write on public forums but the way DA series is being treated after such a great game like DA:O saddens me. Origins had it owns short comings but hey BIOWARE should have improved on them rather stripping Origins completely and making DA2 a hack & slash game with few rpg elements.
    Why I am
    disappointed, - Re-used maps, I mean same place over and over again ? what happened to exploration ? -Communication System - hello this is rpg right ? so why is the interaction with npc so restricted ? how do I build relationships with them or actually feel anything, right now I dont feel or give a damn if any of the the companions live or die
    -Weapons,Crafting,Loot - You can not equip companions the way you want, damn restricted, the loot you get after killing seems meaningless ... Crafting .... well there isnt any !
    - Voice Over : Some may like it , some may not but this Hawke is not me or atleast certainly not my warden. I dont feel connected with this guy
    -Companions - well, the characters arent deep either, I mean really they are shallow, I feel like I am playing an action or adventure game not an RPG

    Combat System : Well I must say it is more fluid and I liked it but they took it TOO FAR, this is not suppose to feel like HACK & SLASH game. They have almost killed the tactical aspects of the battles, which I hate it. It is not a shooter with swords... come on ! The combat is a mixed bag, you like some you dont like some things. I will take it with a pinch of salt

    Verdict --- If you loved DA:O for what it was with its shortcomings - then you will hate DA2
  15. Mar 13, 2011
    So, after watching the hate for this game explode all over the internet, it has left me wondering if people actually give games a fair go these days. people complain about the difficulty been stupidly easy on anything but hard, but Bioware did say that this would be the case, saying that each difficultly was made to suit different play styles and is it even that bigger hassle to turn up the difficulty? and about 5 hours into the game it really does start to feel like the way a dragon age game should be. now dont get me wrong, i am still disappointed in how it turned out, with the graphics especially, but it still for a game that was rushed by its producers. its a great game without a doubt. Expand
  16. Mar 14, 2011
    Abysmal game. Graphics same as Origins, retarded dialogue system, japaneese-style combat, TERRIBLE camera, lack of tactical mode( as in Origins), dumb story with no actual choice. Forcing decisions upon player that actually got no alternative.
    Complete and utter degradation compared to OriginsAwakening
  17. Mar 14, 2011
    "Darker, sexier, prettier" were the advertising words for this sequel. Unfortunately the ONLY thing that actually has got better (in some parts of the game) is combat dynamics. Story line itself is very narrow comparing to original DAO, darkness has been replaced with fierce button smashing combating and then sex... well that's completely REMOVED. Okay, you actually can get to kiss someone and invoke some dirty dialogue, but anyone who has actually played DAO will be very disappointed. There's no passion, no mature decisions to be made and absolutely nothing to see in terms of mature gaming. It looks like this sequel is more targeted to 13 years old console gamers than to people who actually played and enjoyed the original Dragon Age.

    The only thing that could save the game amongst DAO players would be fast introduction of expansions and toolset, that would make possible to enchange game in mentioned areas. Without that, I think the game is doomed and will only result financial loss and more sadly, ruin the name of Dragon Age.
  18. Mar 14, 2011
    Dragon Age 2, isnt something what i expected it to be. Maybe i was hoping for DA:O sequal. The game does have improvment at some points. The combat is more fun now, it isnt clunky and the animations are smooth. It was nice to see my rogue just kill stuff with style. The spells and skills look nice, First time i casted rock armor i was amazed how much better it looked compared to DA:O. The new Qunari look nice, but in the game you dont see any female Qunari's also you dont see any female Dwarfs. The dialogue wheel is something they tried to take over from ME2, but it dosent fit for DA2. In a rpg i wanna be the character and choose what i say like i did in DA:O, but with the new dialogue wheel i often felt like i didnt bother reading any options. Making me pay less attention to the story. I always knew top was good, middle was neutral and bottom was evul. So i always clicked the top one and didnt bother reading anything else. Which was a huge letdown. In DA:O you had so many diffrent choices and you chose the option which felt what you would have said so you were thinking what you would do, you were in the game. Also the dialogue options were sometimes confusing, because i hoped it to say something diffrent and it kept me sometimes wondering if i pressed something wrong or could the other options say what i wanted to say.

    Companion customization is dumbed down. You can't change ur companion armor, except rings,necklace, belt and weapon. In a rpg i always want to customize all my characters. Or maybe it was too much to expect. 1,5 years to make a sequal isnt that much, comparing to DA:O and i guess Bioware didnt have the time to make armors for your companions. But not being able to change armors, resulted my main character who was a rogue, have more armor/defence than my tank. Even though you can upgrade your companion armors, by getting some special upgraders or doing companion quests it isnt as effective compared to DA:O, where you could give them your old set.

    Another thing about companions, you cant talk to them everytime you want. Basically if you want to know about them you need to wait for the companion quest to open. I always was checking all my companions, because i wanted to know about them more, but i never was able to talk with them unless they had a quest and that wasnt really what i was looking forward to. In DA:O you could talk with them everywhere, which was great, but now the only chance to talk with them is during companion quests and occasionaly cutscenes. In DA:O, you talked with them everytime gave them gifts, laughed at their jokes and dialogues, but now it feels like they removed it from the game. True the companions to have funny dialogue with eachother from time to time, but here i don't bother listening to them at all, unless its Varrick whos talking. Varrick will probably be the companion i will remeber. Compared to DA:O, where i loved Alistair, Morrigan, Shale, Zevran, Oghren and so on. The companions in DA2 arent that memorable.

    The theme is Kirkwall, you spend all the time in Kirkwall and its surrounding places. Kirkwall is a huge city and you can choose to visit at night and day, which is nice, but the city is empty. I mean there arent npc-s. The huge city seems kinda empty, but that isnt a big problem, the biggest problem is the dungeons and recycled areas. After ACT1 you will spend ur time revisiting the places u visited for several more times. Basically after ACT1 you have seen the whole game. Compared to DA:O, where there were so many diffrent places, citys this seems like they didnt have money or the time to make new dungeons. After revisiting a dungeon the 20-th time you know where the most treasures are and it isnt as rewarding and the game lacks exploration.

    What is the deal with DLC before the game is even released. They are trying to milk too much money out of the gamers who like the Dragon Age universe. There are 2 dlc-s already, which 1 has a new companion and the other has some bonus items. You can play DA2 without dlc-s easily, because those dlc don't add that much depth to the game. Also on hard/nightmare the game is challenging, however some places are unbalanced and make you wanna tear your hair out. To play on nightmare you gotta exploit all the weakness and the stupidness of the enemys ai. The game started feeling like hit and run. The game isnt as tactical as DA:O, yes you can play it tactically, but after waves and waves of enemys ur tactics mostly end up being useless, because enemy's come out of nowhere and just take out ur mage or rogue. So you never can be prepeared.

    Dont get me wrong Dragon Age 2 is a good game, but i always kept comparing it to DA:O. DA2 was rushed out, it wasnt polished like DA:O. If there wasnt DA:O i would give DA2 a score of 8, but it felt for me that it isnt as good as DA;O and i always compared to it. So imma give it a 7.
  19. Mar 14, 2011
    As a stand alone game, Dragon Age II is a passable and entertaining game. Nothing fancy or groundbreaking, but entertaining non the less. However, it does have its flaws. The caves, houses and locations in the City of Kirkwall - the location of the majority of the game - are constantly recycled. Does that location look familiar? It probably is, because even though the missions change, the locations quite often don't. You'll find yourself slogging through a location you visited half an hour ago. Sometimes, the game spices things up and you start of where you left the location during your previous visit.

    The combat is pretty smooth and visualy appealing but also rather simple. Positioning your party to best use the lay of the land is not needed and also not usefull because enemies spawn pretty much out of nowhere from all sides of the map in a neverending tide. That well placed mage, screened by your warrior and rogue just got jumped on by a group of enemies that just were not there.

    As for the storyline, following Hawke's rise from refugee to champion is a novel idea and has merrit, but story's lack of a clear goal and sense of urgency makes it lack a soul. As a result side-quests feel like filler and of no import. Now there is one thing that truly vexes me, the impact of my Warder from Origins in DAII. There is none, merely comments on his past actions which is a far cry from Mass Effect II, where the choices made in ME I had strong consequences.

    DA Ii is ntertaining, but with flaws and would've scored a 7. DA II only becomes a '4' (see my user score) when you compare it to Dragon Age: Origins. origins had a compelling storyline, fleshed out locations, entertaining characters you could bond to, a clear goal to work towards and tactical combat.

    Why Bioware took such a radical approach to a very much acclaimed game as Dragon Age Origin is beyond me.
  20. Mar 14, 2011
    As the low "user score" shows there's a ton of negative feedback from the community on this game. Some is very valid, some is sensationalism.

    The interface; Big update since DA:O. Pretty much the entire UI is nicely set up, clean, and easy to use. The first thing that will hit when you first play the game (if you played the first) is they adopted the "dialog wheel" from Mass Effect, which
    was a huge bonus for myself. It was something i was wishing for when playing the first dragon age. Lots of people don't seem to feel the same way as me, but i guess it all comes down to person preference here.

    The gameplay; Very fast paced, which is fun but after a few hours and you start to gain abilities, it becomes an absolute cluster****. Spell effects going off everywhere, sometimes i cant even tell if abilities are from my party or from the enemy. The game is also very difficult. I started on normal, but after wiping to one of the boss fights for about an hour i gave up and switched it to casual. Apparently i am all of a sudden bad at video games, Haha. Don't get me wrong, I find the gameplay years ahead of the first game. Which im probably alone in saying, Its much more fun to just pick up and run with. One thing that disappointed me was the fact that you couldn't give gear to your group (except for rings/belts/necklaces) which i thought was a bit lame. The talent trees are well laid out, I would say mages probably have the best set up trees of all of them, they a lot have incredibly powerful spells. But thats not much different from DA:O except now the CC is toned down quite a bit. With my playthrough I chose a rogue. After a few hours i started playing one of the mage side-characters when in combat because of how powerful they are, thankfully after getting the rogue some more abilities i switched back and she's a beast now, lots of hard hitting abilities and the gameplay for rogue after you get up to level 8-9 is just so fast paced and fun.

    The story; Well... this is probably the weakest part of the game. When going through the storyline it feels a little forced, but I still find it engaging. I would say the story is a lot more accessible than the first game. I wont get into specifics so there are no spoilers but there have been a few points that made me facepalm and say "REALLY?".

    Graphics; I dunno where the complaints about this are coming from... It looks beautiful once you get the HD texture update. But it probably takes quite a newly updated computer to seriously run it at high settings.

    All in all, This game has some major flaws, but is well worth a play-through. I had a hard time getting into DA:O. But DA2 is much more accessible and fast paced for gamers that are newer to the RPG format. Which I guess can be viewed as a good or bad thing depending on your standpoint.
  21. Mar 14, 2011
    Dragon Age 2 is a step backwards in many ways from Dragon Age: Origins. DA:O was supposedly the spiritual successor to Baldur's Gate and while it fell short of that lofty goal, it did manage to be a great step in the right direction and a great first entry for a new RPG franchise. A sequel merely needed to build upon that success by giving the fans more of the same with a new story to sink their teeth into. Sadly DA2 fails to do this. Many of the great features of the original have been removed. The origins choice and playthrough at the start where a race/class is chosen and it affects the character entirely, has been removed. Full dialogue options have been removed in favour of a simple good/bad/neutral choice. Combat has been made very simple and less tactical. The overhead camera has been removed.

    It has the better graphics that we would expect from a sequel but the substance and the depth and richness that would have been needed to cement this is as a great RPG franchise have been forgotten in favour of flashier animations, extra voice acting and simpler gameplay to appeal to a mass market.

    This is bad enough but the game was also rushed. The environments are recyled to a very noticeable extent that ruins immersion and the gameplay feels linear in comparison to better rpgs.

    I do not know if it is possible in the modern gaming market to produce something with love and care like BG was but Bioware, if you are listening - please go back to your roots and make a TRUE baldur's gate successor! Or at the very least make sure that Dragon Age 3 is more like it's origins.
  22. Mar 14, 2011
    Why the lack of interesting and diverse locations? Why one repeating cave and houses over and over again? Why waves of enemies spawning from the ceiling? Why the brutal requirements in DX11 in 5 year old looking game? Why no interesting and surprising puzzles? Why many other things i don't want to even remember? If it wasn't for DA:O and if it wasn't Bioware I would give 7 points but like this i fell it deserves 5 points max.
    Btw. I didn't like many things in DA:O (skill system, class imbalances) but it was still a pearl in comparison to this game.

    PS: Why so high scores from magazines? Does EA pay that well? It was the same with NFS:Shift and I completely understand people who give 0 points as a defense against so exaggerated ratings.
  23. Mar 14, 2011
    Is this an RPG? It might be an ok Hack 'n' Slash game, but as an RPG it falls flat almost every respect. Where's the subtle nuanced dialogue? Where's my options of talking my way out of a fight? I appreciate that often you have to fight, but why everytime? and whats with the magically spawning waves of enemies? sometimes you see them jump from roofs or come through door sure, but you also see them appear infront of you. Probably the most disappointing Bioware game ever. This isn't Baldur's Gate 3, it's not even Dragon Age 2 (in spirit). This is to Origins what Dark alliance games were to Baldurs Gate. Expand
  24. Mar 14, 2011
    A massive disappointmentof a game. I feel like this game has taken everything good about origins and removed or neutered it, as well as making the bad aspects even worse. (And I would only give origins a 7/10) I really wanted to like Dragon age 2, as I have every other Bioware game to date. The problem is that it sells itself as an WRPG, when in actual fact it's more of an action game with JRPG elements. The quests feel like they're stolen straight from WoW, with one liners on completion and little to no introduction text. I've put 12 hours into this game, doing all the side quests and trying to role play and I've found it impossible. I'm not controlling Hawke, I'm watching a predefined character and subtly influencing him. The main reason for this is the lack of dialogue options. Terrible, terrible game. Expand
  25. Mar 14, 2011
    There are things I really like about the game and things that I don't like much at all. To put this in perspective, this is the first time that I've been motivated enough to write a review for one of these games. Generally, I'm a big Bioware fan and I've been playing RPG games for close to 30 years now. So far I've played a female mage.

    What I like: 1. There are some very stark choices in
    this game whose consequences are much more real than in past games. Before this, I've been able to predict the outcome for each choice whereas in this one I've been surprised at times. Kudos for this, because some of these choices have made the game seem more real. 2. I've also generally enjoyed the different way of presenting talents and some of the abilities that weren't there before. 3. Varric is a great character as well. He's a refreshing change from the brooding males and my only lament regarding him is that I would have liked him to be one of the characters that could be romanced. Ah well... I like Aveline as well. Merrill is not bad, though not as memorable as the DA:O.
    4. I like overall the tension between the different factions and I would have liked the game to focus on and develop these even more. Why not spend more time on Ander's side quests instead of all those "out of nowhere and only for XP" side quests?
    5. I also enjoyed that the main character was also involved in some of the banter outside of specific conversations.
    6. I enjoy the city setting and actually would have preferred that the game not go outside at all. A few more settings in the city would have given it more depth and complexity. Having the outside made both outside and inside took away from the depth of the city while not really providing a satisfying complement to it (with the few and repeated outside settings).

    What I don't like: 1. Like many others, I feel that laziness or lack of effort gutted some parts of this game. The scenery is an obvious one and the general lack of different opponents is a less irritating but present one as well. 2. The bland nature of most of the inventory was also something that has taken much of the fun out of the game for me. It feels like this: "Magic Sword +1; Magic Sword +1.1; Magic Sword +1.2" Many of the items that we pick up just don't seem to matter. I would rather there be fewer ones that really matter. Also, why do so many of the robes look exactly the same? Couldn't they have had at least a few different models? In fact, if they didn't want to do too much designing, I would have preferred that they do the same for the main character as they did for the sidekicks (set costumes) but with, say, 5+ choices at the beginning so that one could choose. 3. The male sidekicks were quite forgettable for me. I was delighted in Origins because there were multiple people I could enjoy building relationships with, each with their own quirks that mostly did it for me. Here, on the other hand, I find the males pouty, often too similar, and generally uninteresting. Isabel hasn't really done it for me either, which is quite the thing to say since I usually enjoy that kind of sidekick.
    4. I really could do without the enemies suddenly appearing out of nowhere. It breaks the immersion for me completely at times. 5. Similarly, the endless stream would be good for some encounters to give them context, but for others I would rather have a few tougher enemies rather than the same, eventually mind-numbing, swarm.
  26. Mar 14, 2011
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. DA2 just didnâ Expand
  27. TeN
    Mar 14, 2011
    Okay, the real feeling of being a grey warden and the atmosphere that da:o had is not really there, but the feeling while being in battles nice. It's a somewhat dull story, but mostly all i want is to fight, so i don't see a 'big' problem. Personally i find the game to be a 7 - 8 but i rate it a 9 , because most of you people talk like this: "oh noo, it's no RPG anymore but it has become a hack and slaaaash". While some RPG elements are a bit fading from this game (which i can acknowledge) The major elements are still there.
    So if they are still there, but just a bit less, why rate it a 0 or 1 just because its not dungeons and dragons anymore?
  28. Mar 14, 2011
    Dragon Age 2 is the one of the best RPG is have ever played. Story is well thought and really complex. Dark and gloomy setting is incredible. Game play has noticeably improved since Dragon Age: Origins. If you are true RPG fan, you just have to play this game. Be excellent to each other. End of Line.
  29. Mar 14, 2011
    After amazing Dragon Age I, the Dragon Age II is a big let down. It has thrown away everything that made Dragon Age I such an epic adventure. For example in Dragon Age II you never leave the Kirkwall which makes environment more and more boring when time passes. The combat is just bad and over used. It is dull when a group of bandits or spiders jump on you on every corner. Not to talk about enemy reinforcements: seems like every gang in Kirkwall got a lot of men to spare. Reinforcement idea is also too heavily over used. I swear there wasn't a single battle without more enemies popping from ground.

    Do not believe "professional" critics, the game is just bad and should never been released. User score speaks for the game quality.
  30. Mar 14, 2011
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The worst sequel i ever played. Perhaps developers planned this game for dumb heads? 3 variants of answers in dialogs, poor armor and weapons arsenal, stupid, oh sorry, idiotic combat system, absolutely predictable story and a lot of other "great" innovations...
    Am i sleep or this guys really developed the greatest rpg games in past?
    Also, about magazines score - Are U F Kidding? 9/10 - for what? O_o
    2.0/10.0 - enough for this "masterpiece"
  31. Mar 14, 2011
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Well its been 4 days and I went through DA2 twice to try out the impact of different decisions. Did my second run through on casual to get over the repeated dungeons asap. A good game on its own but it shouldn't be called DA2. Yes yes we all want change but not too much shall we? We can't franchise Macdonalds and not sell burgers!

    Some plus points first. It was nice to hear my character speaking, but this is nothing extraordinary. Music was average, and the environments were well designed and nice to look at (I like the wounded coast sky), if one ignores the reuse of environments and the static nature of everything. The grey area of decisions is a good step forward, but it was not used properly and left players (me at least) hanging. Cliffhangers are good, but a balance is needed. There was no closure at all (not to mention the cliffhangers from DAO).

    I must say, that if Kirkwall was ruined and converted entirely into one expansive dungeon, it would have been kinda cool (Like ghastheim in good ol' ragnarok). It would have served excellently as ONE major quest, but the content given to us was far to short and limited to be DA2 in its entirety.

    Also, the entire of DA2 had to do with mages. The problem is that the enemy mages were useless! They casted less spells than their demonic counterparts and there are so many interrupts available to stop them (or to kill them in one shot). In DAO, a battle with just 2 emissaries could be fatal if you didn't plan your tactics properly. In DA2, a rogue can tank 5 mages that do nothing but shoot at you with their staves. As one of the core classes of the story, this was one major disappointment. Improvements to the combat system were definitely appreciated, and I liked the junk system as well. However, I felt that the items were just bland, and there was no kick from getting an EPIC item from a boss kill. The star system wasn't really helpful.

    I missed how expansive the word of DAO was. Yes you can say that DAO was just in ferelden and it is good to move out of ferelden but the fact remains that the entire DA2 was in one city! Uptill "chapter 3", I was still thinking that the entire game was just one small chapter of a larger story, and was waiting for some epic war against tevinter to materialize. How disappointed I was when the game suddenly ended (WAY TO SUDDEN).

    One major attraction of RPGs is the variety: of environments, of creatures and of items that a player faces. It is an expression of human imagination: it is thrilling and refreshing. Cutting back on these three aspects is most disadvantageous: they the pulling factors that retain old players and draw new ones. Remember how deep we could go into the deep roads in DAO? Remember the myriad of creatures found in each area in DAO? There was so much variety just for every single chapter, and now this? Obviously there has been a massive shift in corporate strategy, and from my financial background, this is one colossal red flag. Note that DAO is just one basis of comparison. All successful rpgs (Diablo, WOW etc) tend to have large varieties of enemies and deep lore. Also there were some comments on how the escape from lothering didn't feel like an escape. Well I think the demo sums up what you can expect from the game. I remember other 'escape' scenarios in other games, like Maiev running away from Illidan as the cave collapsed all around her, or the Protoss evacuation from Aiur. These were ancient games but with whatever technology they had, the missions actually embodied the urgency of an escape. It is this lack of atmosphere, coupled with the reuse of environments, that has degraded the utility of DA2.

    Also, you rescued Flemeth, one of the characters that has had an excellent redesign, and she was like "KTHXBYE". What? Thats it? Ain't even a cliffhanger.

    Such a pity for a game with an excellent foundation. There were so many advances and improvements (including good looking characters), but the developers did not realize the full potential of their creation. There is no need to rush games to increase revenue (why else would you rush it?). Investments have long horizons are take time to realize their true value (Look at blizzard!). Was it worth it to risk Bioware's reputation (You cannot deny all these honest, negative reviews when they are the majority!)? Will I buy DA3? Yes, but only because DAO was really good, and because I am waiting for Diablo 3 to come out (which better not be a disappointment) and have nothing to play in the mean time.
  32. Mar 15, 2011
    Dragon Age II is great sequel to Dragon Age. It feels more like Mass Effect 2, which I think was Bioware's idea. Some aspects of the game were made more simple which probably alienates some hardcore RPG fans. But for me the game feels like a novel in a book series, and I can enjoy the game and the story, rather than spend most of my time finding better equipment and leveling to survive the game. All in all a great game, and I have high hopes for future DLCs and Dragon Age III. Expand
  33. Mar 15, 2011
    Dragon Age II is filled with choppy, wooden animations, it suffers worse soulless faces than the Mass Effect series had, graphics worse than Origins, and it is not an immersive RPG despite the high budget and amount of voice acting. They dumbed down the UI and spell casting system to appeal to people who's first RPG was probably Dragon Age 2 and to take in the casual Call of Duty players ( This is without a doubt Bioware's worst RPG by far. It's a shame to see that the name they've grown through RPG treasures they made like Jade Empire and Kotor are smeared by trash this. I've decided to give up on Bioware until I hear some enlightening news about TOR Expand
  34. Mar 15, 2011
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Compared to DA1, the sequel is trash in my honest opinion. The game lacks depth in storytelling, lore and quests. Storytelling was even lower quality than DA1. What I mean is that if I am playing a "movie RPG" like DA2, I expect to see some scripted custom animations, high quality dialogue or even nice prerendered cut scenes but when I completed the game I felt empty handed. I was also expecting to see some advancement in the Dragon Age core lore but after the brief introduction of Flemeth and her reappearance mid-game, the game just kept centering on the Champion of Kirkwall. Lore-wise speaking the game should have been an expansion or DLC to original DA, very much like DA:O. The quests themselves are mindless, which might be enough for some people but I feel that there should be something new to these "go to the point X, kill Y and bring me the Z". Recycling maps is usually acceptable in this kind of games but if we are just running around one city lik in DA2, I get the expression the game was pushed out too early. Every mansion looks the same, every house has the same rooms and even all the close by caves, five or six of them, look completely the same. I felt like playing one of those low grade Asian role-playing game made for kids which would not see the similarity of the maps.

    Combat and skill system is surely better than in DA1. Fighting in general feels more smooth and even thought number of abilities/spells was reduced, I think the general feel of the abilities/spells is better. The "combo states" (staggering etc.) game the fighting a little more depth too but overall these positive features can't save the game.

    All-in-all, I feel like I've brought an overpriced and hurried expansion pack to Dragon Age. Makes me a sad panda.
  35. Mar 15, 2011
    I honestly found this game to be a glowing success. There are certianly issues, my biggest gripe being with the slightly less manevrouable camera, but this game goes so far beyond the scope of the first game (which I also loved) and really creates an amazing experiance. The combat is faster, which has negative and positive effects because of that, and although people say "oh, the conversation system is just a console one now" it was exactly the same in number one, this time it just gives a slight hint at what reaction you'll get before you say it. I dont like how abysmally this game is doing review wise, as I personally beleive it is truly the best game of the 2010/2011 period. Expand
  36. Mar 15, 2011
    C'mon guys those of you who gave it less than 6 are pretty harsh aren't you? What did you expect a perfect game from Bioware? For God's sake if you didn't like the demo why the heck did you buy the game and then **** and moan and give it a zero?! I've played it for 10 hours so far and personally I feel that the story feels more personal this time, I'm quite intrigued by the whole idea of 10 years of the main protaganist's life spanning the entire game. Really interested to see how things will progress from here on. And when you do things in the game it feels like you'll actually building up your reputation and relationships, due to the no so insignificant matter of the main character actually able to speak. That's a welcome addition and personally I feel that it covers whatever the game lacks as compared to DAO. Yeah inventory was simplified and stuff but c'mon did it really matter what your party was equipped with? If all you guys out there wanna compare DAII with Planescape Torment, Baldur's Gate or whatever fantasy epic you've put on a pedestal go ahead. And continue to **** and moan and probably not enjoy any of the games coming out now and in the near future cause you guys never will, since no modern rpg will ever match whatever exacting standards you guys have. Don't get me started on those zeros, now those are really insanity at work. Personally I'll give it a 9 because Bioware is one of those companies who consistently push out decent and enjoyable RPGs, despite having to endure the crapstorm that inevitably follows every time people don't like certain changes. Imagine having only Baldur's Gate to play for what the next ten years? I WILL go insane. Anyway just wanted to say a big thank you to the developers for loving what they do and being brave enough to change certain aspects of the game, for better or for worse, rather than spinning out Dragon Age Origins II Expand
  37. Mar 15, 2011
    this is the worst game made by bioware. graphics, animations, character design, dialogues...all i really crappy. if i wanted to play a action rpg, i would play diablo, but i expect MUCH more from bioware
  38. Mar 15, 2011
    Totally disappointed for a game shamefully dumbed down, poor in content, and with very low production quality. Probably sold for the only reason to make quick money on the name of the previous game.
    This is the last Bioware game I spend my money on.
  39. Mar 21, 2011
    They would have been better off naming this game "Diablo Age 3". The incessant combat, random loot generator, uninspired voice acting, and complete lack of RPG elements made for a thoroughly underwhelming gaming experience. Had EA been honest and told everyone up front that this was going to be a hack-n-slash gear hunt with some cinematics thrown in for good measure, I think people would have been willing to cut them a little slack. To claim this half complete abortion as the inheritor of the crown of Dragon Age and the "spiritual" successor of Baldur's Gate is a spit in the face of every RPG gamer who has ever played those games. If you are an RPG player, DO NOT BUY THIS GAME, it sucks (as an RPG). If you're just looking for 30 or so hours of mindless hack and slash in repetitive and over used environments on an aging graphics engine, and you have $60 that you just can't find something better to waste on, then this might just be the game for you. Expand
  40. Mar 15, 2011
    Firstly, I was always a huge bioware fan. I played all the rpg/frp games created by them (hell I finished Baldur's gate 5 times). I preordered Dragon Age 2 and I was so disappointed that I am not even sure if I'll finish the game. Beatiful voice acting, gorgeous graphics and sadly zero game play satisfaction. Sometimes you don't even know what's going on in the screen. It's just a hack and slash game with zero burden on your brain. Combats just play themselves automatically, dialogues are non existing, good evil choices are too plain with no real content in it. And on top of that, most of the dungeon maps are repetitive, copy paste, including the hidden doors and their entrances. Literally, two dungeons I visited on after the other had the exact same cave room. Do yourself a favour, go and buy Baldur's gate 2 and start playing it again. Expand
  41. Mar 15, 2011
    this game is a joke!!!! and seeing the high reviews from reviewers makes me sick!!!! you should be ashamed of yourselves!!!! Terrible game on all platforms. 2003 graphics, mediocre gameplay, underwhelming story. Just go replay Dragon Age: Origins or Neverwinter Nights 2 instead and avoid this disaster. Spiritual successor to Baldur's Gate, MY ASS!
  42. Mar 15, 2011
    Its like this, the developers didnt even try, you fight the same enemies over and over again, the fights are all EXACTLY the same, you run into a group of mobs, with 1 or 2 mini bosses, kill a certain number of mobs and one more wave of mobs will spawn. EVERY DUNGEON IS THE SAME, they just shut off or open some passages and move a chest around, its like they didn't even try, Dragon Age Origins was a good game, so they capitalized on its success by taking a **** in a box, throwing some glitter on it and selling. Oh and they obviously payed of quite a few reviews. DO NOT BUY! THE DEVELOPERS SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF THEMSELVES! Expand
  43. Mar 15, 2011
    A pile of ass. Really, why does this exist? Did the demo not tip you off? If you're going to buy it, I probably can't stop you... just be aware that you could buy many better games for the same $60. Also, I paid $60 for a PC game. Brb, shooting self.
  44. Mar 15, 2011
    an absolute disappointment. from begining to end it is far inferior to DA:O and is a complete failure on bioware's part. I hope that DA3 fixes what this game broke because the world of Thedas is a cool one
  45. Mar 16, 2011
    Per quanto concerne la mia esperienza di gioco, in un'ottica GDR, dopo diverse ore di gioco a questo nuovo titolo, devo dire che è davvero poco appagante.
    Non c'è immersione: ci si limita a galleggiare in superficie, intuendo che poteva esser fatto molto di più.
    La grafica è abbastanza curata, anche se preferivo i toni più
    maturi di DAO. Quello che non va proprio bene è che ci saranno una cinquantina di location che vengono riproposte allo sfinimento, il che non aiuta certo ad immergersi in un gioco di ruolo, dove l'ambientazione dovrebbe essere resa minuziosamente a video.
    La grafica dei menù è a dir poco oscena. Mi chiedo, con una grafica tanto scarna, come sia stato possibile rendere il sistema di menù più confusionario rispetto al precedente DAO... mah: ci sono riusciti, proponendo, ad esempio, un sistema grafico di avanzamento nei talenti che richiede ogni volta di visualizzare un albero di skill, impedendo una visione globale ed un confronto veloce tra le varie abilità.
    Il sistema di dialoghi è abominevole: in base a quale malato ragionamento non si può più cliccare sulla esatta frase che il nostro PG dovrebbe pronunciare, con senso chiaro, ma si deve interpretare una linea di scelta che spesso ci mette in bocca cose che non volevamo dire?
    Lasciamo perdere il combat system, e la gestione dell'inventario, il sistema di crafting, la possibilità di interagiore con gli altri personaggi in senso ampio, che di ruolo qui hanno mantenuto solo ed esclusivamente la dicitura.
    Coerenza a video rispetto alle abilità dei PG, a quelle che dovrebbero essere le loro effettive capacità e limitazioni: inesistente.
    Si salva qualcosa? Forse la storia sì, quella si salva, anche se è raccontata in modo non più che discreto.

    Ma parliamo di altri aspetti: COERENZA ed IMMEDESIMAZIONE..
    Ogni mondo, quello reale, ma anche quelli immaginari, ha delle regole.
    Regole sia fisiche imposte dalla natura, forza di gravità etc, sia convenzionali imposte dalla società, sistemi giuridici, etc., sia di altro tipo.
    Queste regole sono fondamentali perché qualsiasi mondo possa funzionare.
    Stessa cosa in un gioco fantasy, in cui i personaggi si muovono in un mondo di certo immaginario, ma comunque con delle regole.
    Se, ad esempio, un mago passa tutto il suo tempo a studiare magie, di certo non avrà potuto studiare le tecniche di combattimento corpo a corpo... se volesse imparare queste tecniche dovrebbe sacrificare parte del suo tempo (leggi: punti abilità) e così si creerebbe un personaggio ibrido mago/guerriero, che però non eccelle in nessuna delle due classi.
    Stessa cosa per le caratteristiche fisiche del guerriero: un'arma a due mani implica colpi più lenti, ma più potenti.
    Insomma le "regole dei mondi" fanno sì che se tiri la coperta da una parte, la accorci dall'altra...
    E allora?
    Semplice, tutto ciò è fondamentale per due cose importantissime: CREDIBILITA' e, quindi, IMMEDESIMAZIONE.
    E l'immedesimazione è tutto ciò a cui punta un GDR.
    Se faccio venir meno il realismo fregandome delle regole, tutto il mondo immaginario creato crolla, e non è più credibile: e la mancanza di credibilità fa venir meno l'immedesimazione.
    Per questo la COERENZA è tanto importante, in ogni sistema-mondo fantasy: perché rispettando il realismo (con riferimento alle regole del mondo immaginario creato) permette l'immedesimazione.
    Se in un film di cawboy ambientato nel passato del nostro mondo ad un certo punto gli indiani si mettessero a volare come pipistrelli, lo spettatore verrebbe catapultato di forza fuori dalla storia e comincerebbe a ridere.
    In un mondo fantasy, quindi, il realismo è ancor più importante che nel mondo reale: per il semplice motivo che nel mondo reale il realismo c'è per forza... e ci mancherebbe! Mentre in un mondo immaginario va creato e mantenuto con arte e sforzo e fatica: ma è prprio da quel realismo che nasce la magia!
    Ora, Dragon Age 2 non rispetta le regole del mondo in cui è ambientato, e quindi non è credibile, e quindi non è coerente e quindi chiude le porte in faccia all'immedesimazione.
    Cosa comporta ciò? Che:
    - se DA2 fosse un DGR, sarebbe davvero un pessimo GDR
    - se DA2 fosse un gioco action, sarebbe un brutto gioco action se paragonato ad altri del genere (soprattutto dungeon siege...)
    - se DA2 fosse un misto action-GDR, lo troverei tirato via e poco studiato.

    Dopo aver giocato per diverse ore la versione definitiva di DA2, purtroppo, devo confermare le mie impressioni inziali.
    Brutto gioco, fatto in fretta e male: basta guardare la ripetività delle location o la scarnissima grafica dei menù.
    Coerenza zero, tatticità zero, personaliazzione zero.
    La storia si salva, ma non è assolutamente ai livello di DAO.
    Io ragiono nell'ottica GDR, che è quello che mi aspettavo di trovare e che mi sarebbe piaciuto giocare.
    Spero che alla Bio ritrovino presto il senno e sfornino un GDR che sia un GDR vero!
  46. Mar 16, 2011
    I personally play rpg mostly for the story and not so much for the combat, so i cant say much about the combat part. It does feel a bit repetitive, but overall it is not my biggest complaint.
    Problem is they have tried to make Dragon Age 2 into a cross between Mass Effect 2 and Dragon Age Origins. Problem is its not close to being as good as either of these games. Its stuck in the murky
    middle somewhere. There is little to no immersion, and you are stuck in one city with a few variations the whole game through. Apart from more side quests, which i think is good, the whole game feels like your just doing errands around the city, and not much variation in environment. I felt i had no control over (Shepard)Hawk at all. His companions are not boring per se, but the little you actually talk to them makes them feel disjointed from you and each other. The ME dialog wheel can make you frustrated, because it seems you can never convey the right emotions at the right time. Also the romance side of this game seems meaningless as you cant really talk much to them, and you get little heart icons on the wheel to indicate when its flirting time...DA:O was not perfect but it was far from this silly.
    The disappointment for many is probably due to this being called a sequel. It just a completely sub-par and different game ( in a bad way). Its DA:O and ME light. They could have done better with this story. The writing seems good, but they did not have time it seems to implement it the right way. They had to get it out the door quickly , and it shows.
  47. Mar 16, 2011
    Game is full of bugs, story is stupid and you can't affect anything, graphics are sometimes ok, often ugly, quests are usually stupid and blablabla. Game is worth 10â
  48. Mar 16, 2011
    Dragon Age II is exactly what it promises. It's a sequel, meaning it's not DOA. It does inherit one thing from DOA however, and that is the exceptional character driven storyline. It also has extraordinary supporting characters and as is the Bioware standard; the game has exceptional writing and brilliant voice acting.

    That's not to say the game is flawless. There is a pretty annoying map
    repetition, and the close up detail is a bit lacking, but the story more than makes up for it. Just remember it's not DOA... Expand
  49. Mar 16, 2011
    Not bad. Excellent screenplay and characters, good music and graphic. Boring gameplay, poor roleplay system (if compare with DAO). But the Story is brilliant. This is an interactive book.
  50. Mar 16, 2011
    There seem to be lots of mean-spirited, spiteful people who give exaggerated negative ratings and reviews for this game in particular. I'm coming to believe that many RPG fans are deeply conservative in their gaming desires. They want "improved' games, as long as the new version has all the same good stuff they had before, instead of breaking new ground. That's my theory, anyway.

    Age II certainly isn't perfect-- what is?-- but it's extremely improved and refined in many ways over a product (DA:O) that was flawed but nonetheless outstanding. I play in Hard mode on a mid-level PC, and the sequel is greatly improved graphically. The storylines are somewhat less cliche, and at least as well-written and voice-acted as before. The cinematics, which I don't usually get into, are much MUCH better. DA2 is a smaller game than Origins, yes, but it's still a very big game. I'd certainly like more environments/locales, but I understand Bioware's reasons for focusing on Kirkwall. The environments are great.

    What really baffles me is how anyone can perceive this product as tactically "dumbed-down" in any way. The only rational justification for such opinion is the fact that there are so many unpredictable new waves of enemies in some major encounters. I do find this a bit excessive at times, but if anything it requires MORE tactical finesse and situational awareness than before. I love the fact that it forces me to pace battles, reserving key AoE and crowd control, etcetera at times in case of emergencies. DA2 also often requires more aggro management than in Origins, depending on party structure. The class and talent designs are more well-defined and much more, well, awesome than before. Overall, the combat is by far the best tactical RPG combat I've ever experienced, although I haven't played (for example) Icewind Dale. My only serious criticism is that the game does indeed have some stability issues on my system (with nvidia 9800 GTS+) as well as others. It doesn't crash any more often than lots of other new games, though, and I expect that Bioware will patch for performance in the fairly near future.

    Anyway, I don't know what else to say, except that you shouldn't be scared of all these whiny user reviews if you're interested in the game. Just don't expect it to be a conservative remake or update of the first Dragon Age.
  51. Mar 16, 2011
    Fantastic game. A masterpiece. Bioware as always have shown that they the best rpg developers. The combat, a plot, and characters are incredible. Game is ideal in all. Thanks for Fenris, Anders, Isabella and certainly Hawk. The original plot holds throughout all game. A one minus - repeating locations. But this isn't neccesary. I always buy your games. Thanks once again that you have made!
  52. Mar 16, 2011
    I liked the game ... I do not know why you are criticizing her so ... yes it is something new, but it does not mean that it is worse ... at the expense of graphics is nothing bad I can not say, if you download the patch, the graphics in the game becomes a normal By the way ... I do not care what you think at the expense of what I wrote
  53. Mar 16, 2011
    Nothing I can really say except without a doubt the production company bought and paid for any decent critic reviews. There is no way a professional game critic could endorse this pile of crap. It's story is for a 5 year old, the gameplay is boring, and you can't even choose the equipment for your party (dead serious)
  54. Mar 16, 2011
    I was shocked by how bad this game was. I am not a hardcore gamer and don't follow all the industry news, but isn't this the same team that designed Dragon Age: Origins? How is that even possible? That was such a great game that I bought DA2 on Steam without even playing the demo. Shame on me. I'm a pretty simple gamer. I've bought buy every Civilization sequel and every Dragon Quest sequel since I first played those games in the 80's. I like a certain style of game, and I don't often take a chance and try a new game. I did for Origins and was quickly hooked. I bought all the DLC. The story and visuals were simply amazing, and the game was completely immersive. Dragon Age II is much too bland and boring to be immersive. I played five or six hours before deciding I was never going to get that feeling in this game. I know my rating is harsh, but that is my anger at the complete waste of money. They should not have used the Dragon Age name for this game. Expand
  55. Mar 16, 2011
    This game has NO HEART in it. The world is boring. No NPC to talk to. Full of one liners. All you do is stare at the mini map and follow in one direction towards the marker. There is no exploration. There is no good loot. In fact they made it easy by letting you find a bunch of junk items and a "SELL ALL JUNK" when visiting a merchant. What's the point of picking up junks simply for selling? Normally junk is considered items you end up not using but could be used if you had plans or skills for it. They really took the "role playing" out of RPG. All that left really is just a vanilla game. You cannot customize your party equipment. You are forced into using certain roles for your companion if you want to maximize their potential. The actions of this game also go so fast that it feels like you're in a freaking shooter game with the ability to pause. Don't get me started on the DLC money making scheme either ... ... and be careful with these reviews. Google "dragon age Chris Hoban" and see for yourself. This game should rank somewhere in the low 7s as average score due to the graphics.â Expand
  56. Mar 16, 2011
    This game is so epic that bring tears to my eyes!

    Everything it's perfect, story, characters, combat, world, polemic, the big pwned that the "Bioware can't go wrong" fan boys are taking. Play Dragon Age 2 it's watch the history being written!
  57. Mar 16, 2011
    I had some problems with Dragon Age: Origins - the story came off like it was written by teenagers who had just finished a George R. R. Martin book; the events were supposed to be dramatic or shocking, but they were more comical and predictable. The combat was difficult in the sense that it was an endurance test - a tedious exercise in patience and the amount of healing potions you were packing. I also didn't care for many of the companion characters.

    Dragon Age 2 fixes all of these issues, and more. Bioware gives your character a family, roots in the world and a reason to care from the very beginning. The story is told in amazing fashion by one of the better written and acted characters in recent years, a dwarf named Varric. It takes place over the course of a decade in a city state, allowing you to see the consequences of all your actions. Talking to other friends also making their way through the game, it's like a collection of parallel universes. You don't need to wait for the epilogue to have an impact in this game.

    The combat is a dream. I really think this is what Bioware has been shooting for with its fantasy games for 10 years now, finally realized in true form. At first glance it may appear simpler than its predecessor's - there are fewer talents, for instance; but they are arranged in unique trees and every one of them has significance. The interplay between the classes is extremely engrossing: there is real strategy here in cross-class combos, setting up your allies for thrilling maneuvers. A far cry from the first game's "strategy" of making sure you have enough potions to last the fight. The bosses are actually fun encounters, not the dreary exercises in patience they were in Origins.

    Your character has a voice, which is a welcome addition. It also has to do with the reason I feel this game has so many low reviews: people were expecting an old school RPG in the style of Baldur's Gate, and this really isn't. It's a new game, an incredible game; but it is not Baldur's Gate. Unfortunately, few people seem willing to review it on its own merits. Having disliked Origins so much, I was dreading this release but it was a very pleasant surprise and here's hoping Bioware doesn't take the negative reaction to heart and continues to make bold, enjoyable games.
  58. Mar 17, 2011
    Dragon Age 2 is the "Phantom Menace" to Dragon Age: Origin's "A New Hope". Thank you George for making this comparison possible and instantly recognisable by nerds everywhere. In many ways, I wouldn't need to say anything more than that, but I will anyway: When writing a review of Dragon Age 2, you probably have to say a few words about where you are coming from first. Are you the wide-eyed fanboy or the disgruntled, estranged hater formerly known as a "true" fan? Then you claim to be neither, but the one true voice of reason who's got a neutral view on this issue. Personally, I have bought and played repeatedly pretty much everything Bioware published since Shattered Steel and I've enjoyed each game on his own merits. I loved Planescape Tormet, Baldur's Gate 2 just as much as Jade Empire, even though that game is radically different in terms of combat. I'm saying that to illustrate that I am very well capable of enjoying a game that does not have the traditional isometric view of tactical combat.

    Dragon Age 2 however, I cannot get into no matter how much I want to like it. This game is a train wreck of Mass Effect 2 and Dragon Age and not in a good way. Let's take a look at some of the "bad" things. First of all: Combat. I cannot, for the life of me, see how anyone could view the new system as an improvement. They tried to make combat incredibly fast paced and action packed, but somehow this does not play out the way it's intended, at least not for me. Seeing a guy in full platemail armed with a huge two-handed weapon move faster than Neo in the Matrix doesn't just break immersion for me, it shatters it beyond all hopes of repair. Most enemies die in one hit now and they do so in a spectacularily silly and over the top gory way. There's more blood in here than in the silliest splatter movie I ever saw. There's a fine line between "adult" and "graphic violence" and enemies EXPLODING into 20 gallons of blood and shishkebab upon being stabbed in the chest once. To compensate for all the insta-kills, enemies now spawn in waves by the dozens. This robs the individual enemy of any significance. How can I be intimidated by a blood mage or a horrible demon if there's 20 of each under every other rock? Beats me. The sadest thing about DA2 is that it actually fails where bioware usually excells. The story and dialogue. Take the human noble origin story in Dragon Age Origins, for example. Before everyone dies a gruesome death you spend some time to get to know them. Thus, when they do die, their death has some impact on you. In DA2, we skip the first part in favor of turning the gruesomeness of the death up to 11. The thing is, if some random red shirt dies twice as horribly, I don't care twice as much. The "main story" if it can so be called, is anything but an improvement over the original as well. Granted, you are not saving the world, which in theory can make for an interesting story as well, but many people take this fact alone to mean the story is brilliant. Unfortunately, that is not quite true. The writing is incredibly ham-fisted at times. I cannot count how often the game prevents you from using obvious solutions to problems simply because the plot requires that this problem cannot be solved in a simple manner. This adds to the "rushed" vibe the game gives off in general. There's barely any "fluff" anymore. You cannot talk to your companions at will anymore, for example. Some of the events of DA:O are imported and the game shoe-horns them into DA2, but if you spend even 2 seconds thinking about "Why was Alistair here just now?" you'll notice that he had no significance to the plot, provided no insight whatsoever and was there simply as a little bit of fan-service. Oh yea, and the RPG part got dumbed down some more, but that was to be expected I guess and is barely worth mentioning in light of all the other shortcommings the game has. Still, rating the game a 0/10 as many people do is just as silly as rating it 10/10. There is good to be found if you can look past your expectations for a bit. Some of the quests are indeed well written and fun. The voice actors did a really good job, almost without exception. Flemeth's new look is a vast improvement over her old one, too bad she is in the game for about 5 minutes, tops. It's almost like she notice "Oh snap, this is gonna hurt!" and flapped out of the game on her dragon wings. I cannot say I blame her. In conclusion, Bioware lost a lot of credibilty with me for this game. No longer will I blindly buy whatever they release. Once burned, twice shy. The shady things they did here on metacritic are not helping that image. I hope they learn a lesson from this disaster and can recover and return to what made them successful in the first place instead of succumbing to EA's corruption for good.
  59. Apr 16, 2011
    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.
  60. Mar 17, 2011
    Is it as good as DA:O? No. Ist it on my list of possible Game of the Year candidates? No. Was Bioware cutting corners left and right.. yes.. Let's face it, DA2 feels like it was rushed to the market without the care and attention to detail that made its predecessor special. DA2 suffers from repeating dungeons over and over again and disappoints me with a over simplified skill tree. Let's just skip over the whole party armor upgrading business and while we're at it, cram the stupid dialog wheel system from Mass Effect down the players throats. It's getting almost too casual now. Yes,I do feel like this title was produced with minimal effort, to rake in some more additional cash. And yes i do blame EA for it.

    Act 1 unfortunately being especially bland, while Acts 2 and 3 do pick up a quite bit, with my party members finally starting to develop some actual profile. But does it deserve a meager 0-4 scores? Hell no. It is still an entertaining title that will keep fans of the old DA:O or faster paced W-RPGS entertained for a good 20h if not way more. My first play thru took 38h. It has a decent storyline, it's technically 'sound' - not great, mind you, just average. I haven't experienced any bugs, crashes or whatnot. I liked the story, it even does lend itself to be played at least a second time through. Plenty of quests to go around, too. I think this title is getting bashed a bit too hard here.
  61. Mar 17, 2011
    Plot is good, companions are at least as interesting as in the first installment, but probably because the game was rushed (its 1,5 year since Origins are on the market) its overly simplified. Interiors are repeatable, running around Kirkwall is boring after a while, and game stutters on DX11 mode when using GF cards. Throw in some bugs and glitches, and i recommend waiting for new drivers and some patching before trying it out. Don`t get me wrong - the game is good, but its not as good as Dragon Age one. Expand
  62. Mar 20, 2011
    I`m big fan or RPG games, hell big fan of Bioware but come on, OK lets start with graphic really great (compered with DA-O)but i don`t think it has more than few maps and who play RPG games for great visual, we play for story, making our character more and more better with next level, going trough lots of mission to get that perfect item, so at the end of the game we can see how our perfection look like. Fighting well big zero click this and yeee this explode click that and wow another explosion, story well i can dig it but this is part 2, the story should have been much better you have 3 dialog and that is it? come on i have finish 5 time allover ahead Dragon age origins just because of story, and now i play DA II i`m level 11 and still trying to find good reason for play(damn how a great commercial and reputation can make you feel stupid for paying 50 euro). Skills really you can chose what ever you want, trust me i`t going to look great when you click to use it and there it end it`s value , inventory well i like how they handled resource but that is it if you want to upgrade armor of your companion you need to look out trough all town just sad. Items also i don`t see some great innovation there, and what the f*ck is junk. if you liked first dragon age this one is going to be huge disappointment, really how it get that great critic review i don`t know, this is what it is a mediocrity game with nothing special, and please guys from game industry enough of DLC and promo item that we need to pay, make it free or don`t make it at allâ Expand
  63. Mar 17, 2011
    Anybody that gives this game a score less than 5 needs to pull their head out of the extremely dark place it has wedged itself into. We gamers have all basically agreed upon a 10 point scale for universally rating our games. 10 means this game is so utterly fantastic it will more than likely be named in the all time greatest games list, 8-9 says this game is worth playing even if you typically do not like this genre, 7 shows this game has potential but for some reason has fallen short of the must play scores in other words completely average. 5-6 says this game is not really worth your time or money. Now a 4 means that this game is COMPLETELY BROKEN, this is Superman 64. So everyone that is reviewing this game with a score of 4 or less is saying that Dragon Age 2 should sit next to Superman 64 in the craptastic section of your video game library. I understand some people have a problem with the direction this game took but the majority of you are acting like a bunch of whiny and spoiled little bed-wetters. Please grow up because your little crusade is quite frankly proving to the rest of the entertainment industry that games are for kiddies.

    Now onto the game. I like it! Have not finished yet as work has been hectic. The story so far seems to be highly personal and not the "we have an imminent danger knocking on our doorstep we must hurry" kind of story, I have no problem with the latter type of story and neither do I with the former they are just different. Let me say that there are things I feel were improved on and things which took a step back in comparison to origins and awakenings. I truly like the faster paced combat in comparison to origins but do miss the top down "pulled back view" that was lost from the pc version. I am seeing people gripe about the combat and how there is no tactics needed for most of the battles, well there were not very many battles in origins where tactics were needed either it is still mostly the boss battles where you feel you need to micromanage things. The speed is what I am really enjoying, especially if playing a mage. If you were a mage in origins you cast your spells then auto attack, in DA2 you cast your spells then auto attack but I look a heck of a lot cooler during the second part of this equation, which is the same for both games. The quest structure is intriguing and I do like it better than the 1 major quest per area of its predecessor. In origins it seemed you did the side quests for the major area, then went onto the major quest for the area and then onto the next major area. I am enjoying doing a portion of the major quest for the act, then some side quest sprinkled in between each scenario. I do not have a problem with the graphical style as some seem to. Elves look worse than they did in Origins but humans looks better and Dwarfs will always be ugly. The Qunari designs are very nice in my opinion as are most of the monster types. The environments are hit and miss, some look good some not so much. I do have a problem with the re-using of dungeons and interiors, just like I did for the original Mass Effect and most every game I play. I look past it and tell myself they must have pre-fab buildings in their universe as well. The spell animations are wonderful, a major step up from origins. The companions are great, nice writing so far. I have mixed feelings about the party members equipment. On one hand the character designs are wonderful and you avoid the cookie cutter appearance we had in Origins but I am old school and enjoy finding a helm and saying that definitely goes to Isabela, now it is just accessories so most equipment you find becomes vendor trash.

    All in all this game so far has been a blast and all the boo-hoo's and "you're sellouts" barking is just getting on my nerves and making every gamer on the planet look like a bunch of children. Baldur's Gate is one of the greatest games of all time, but if someone made a game today like that I would say its crap and so would you. I am not saying all of the complaints are unfounded, I have some as well, but this organized effort to hurt this game is just crazy. They told us everything they were changing, if you have a problem with the changes its because you let them happen. If you don't like them voice your complaints but don't exaggerate as the majority on the net are doing. I assure you a score of 7 hurts a whole lot more than a 2. That 2 says a vocal minority of idiots are trying to make a point, a 6 or 7 says we really got some things wrong and need to address them.

    When Origins came out I felt it was a game that deserved and 8.5 rating, I feel the same way about DA2. Once the modding community and expansions and DLC came out for Origins I felt it was deserving of a 9.5 rating, I feel confident that will hold true here as well, so long as people grow up and quit trying to cause this game to fail.
  64. Mar 17, 2011
    I can certainly understand why there is so much hatred for this game after finally playing it through. Rarely have I experienced such an anger while playing a game. Dragon Age 2 is a shockingly pathetic combination of a weak story, retarded game mechanics, ugly graphics (compared with ALL current games) and extremely annoying companions and NPCs. It is unbelievable that they dare charging 60 bucks for this piece of trash. I would rather cut both my hands and legs than to ever buy another Bioware "product" again ("work of art" my ass!). To the extremely lucky who have not yet bought the game but are curious to try (curiosity here only brings more pain than good), I humbly advise you to torrent the hell out of it (Dragon Age 2's shoddy quality doesn't even justify your patient waiting for its price tag to drop to 10%!). Just torrent, try and then utterly forget it! Expand
  65. Mar 17, 2011
    After playing through the game I think its a solid game. It is very different from Dragon Age: Origins, but thats not necessarily a bad thing. I feel like the game is more streamlined than Origins. It reminded me more of Knights of the Old Republic than Baldur's Gate. I enjoyed my first playthrough and and am working on my second and there will probably be a few more over the next few months. So, if you are expecting a rehash of Origins, you'll be disappointed. It's a completely different game, but it's still a fun game and has plenty of merits of its own. Download the demo, give it a whirl and see for yourself. Expand
  66. Mar 17, 2011
    I love DA:O very much, it's one of the most impressive games I've ever played,. I'm not at all impressed with DA2, however. In DA:O, I could log in, and immerse myself for 12 hours without realizing it - here, I have to fight to want to play an hour at a time. The graphics are pretty, but otherwise, this is a step backward from DA:O in almost every way. It feels like a fairly primitive console game thus far, and the inability to swap nearly any armor on your party members is beyond stupid. The questing is vapid (One never even knows what you're actually doing half the time, or why) with many quests being things like "Go talk to X group member at the tavern" when that group member is, in fact, in your travelling party and standing right next to you. The storyline, while potentially intriguing, is so broken up that it isn't particularly enjoyable. Everything feels like an excuse to go from one cut-scene to the next. In DA:O, it felt like you, the player, actually controlled the flow of the plot, and could make a difference in what would happen. In DA2, everything is preordained, and you're just along for the ride, being pushed from one step to the next, whether you will or no. Also, you felt an attachment to your character - you understood and helped shape the back-story that would be with your throughout the game. In DA2, you're some random nameless person, back-story already established, and everybody already knows everything about you... except you the player. They forget the part where they tell you about yourself.

    The voicing of the main character is unnecessarily lengthy, and appallingly inaccurate - you almost never say anything resembling the option you selected, and conversations take twice as long as they used to, because you have to wait for (or ESC through) constant banter that you apparently have no control over anyway. The whole chat-wheel thing is a damnable console derivative that needs to die in a fire, and makes it unclear what number keys to use for keyboard chat control. To top it all off, there is no non-combat skill-tree! This isnâ
  67. Mar 17, 2011
    A disappointment compared to Origins. While I did enjoy it im not going back for a 2nd playthrough anytime soon, this is the complete opposite of origins which i could not get enough of. The responsiveness in combat was nice but i felt it made the game play more like an action than an tactical rpg. The problem with Dragon Age 2 is that it sorta sits half way between origins and mass effect and this results in players interested in either 'genre' being disappointed. I find it strange that bioware completely changed the game rather than improving on it like they did between mass effect and mass effect 2. Expand
  68. Mar 17, 2011
    I loved DA 1. I waited with great anticipation for this sequel to the point where I marked it on my calender lol
    I have never been so disappointed in a sequel before and that is saying a lot lolol
    The characters were flat and uninteresting. The characters were so whiney I cringed when I had to pick which ones to take with me. The plot was extremely messy to the point it seemed act 3 was
    thrown together last minute and not actually a part of the original plot. The combat was much worse then the first DA. There was no real stradegy thinking to kill mass amounts of low grade uninteresting monsters.
    There was only 1 decent boss fight in the whole game (the high dragon) and that wasn't "great". Overall I was beyond disappointed in this game! When will game designers give us combat with boss monsters that are interesting to fight?! Don't keep throwing more of the same thing at us and expect us to be thrilled ~ give us great boss fights and plenty of them! As another reviewer said, going more into my review for this game isn't worth my time.
  69. Mar 18, 2011
    Spawning enemies in front of your eyes, repetitive locations, boring quests, lots of the same demons from Dragon Age: Origins, no ability to change armor of your companions, money make no use in this game anymore, the ending of the game is quite the same and no matter what path you choose, imported saved games from DA:O make no significant role. Final word: this game is bad sequel.
  70. Mar 18, 2011
    Copy/Pasted dungeons and building interiors : Check Inability to customize companion armor : Check Very limited companion interaction : Check Uninteresting protagonist : Check Less than half the abilities/spells compared to its predecessor : Check Lack of tactical combat : Check Mediocre storyline : Check Boring side quests inserted into the title for the sole purpose of increasing the playtime: Check

    To sum all the above up, Bioware going down in flames : Check

    I had high hopes for this title and I really thought that it would improve as I continued to play the game. I was bored from the start, but instead of writing a scathing review after just 10 hours of play I decided to give the game a chance and played the game to completion before writing this review. At times during the game play experience I found that I was trying to force myself to enjoy it. The game really does feel incomplete and buggy at times and never truly draws the player into its world. I loved Dragon Age : Origins despite its few flaws and I was hoping that this game would improve upon that winning formula, instead of taking one step forward it seems that Bioware has taken 2 steps back with this title.

    Bioware and/or EA were not generous enough to give this product the extra year of development that it probably required, so I'll be generous and give it a 5 out of 10 score which is more than it deserves.
  71. Mar 18, 2011
    Simply the best RPG of the last 10 years, together with Dragon Age Origins.

    Incredible plot
    Incredible OST
    Incredible gameplay
    Incredible storytelling

    Bioware learns how to create games, as always.

  72. Mar 18, 2011
    Origins pulled you in and didn't let go - I wanted to marry it and devote my life to exploring every facet of the game. It was what I look for in a woman - it was rich, deep, engaging, beautiful, and filled with brutal, visceral combat. We had something real together, the kind of thing you can build a real life on.

    I feel like DA2 got me drunk and gave me herpes.
  73. Mar 19, 2011
    Okay, let me preface this by saying that i am not one to prescribe to the mob mentality of trolling video game forums and dumping heaps of praise/criticism on games unnecessarily. I understand that video games, like most things, are subjective and may appeal to some but not all. However, i feel overwhelmingly compelled to point out the flaws in this title, because of the depressing trend of the "consolization" of the big AAA releases, to the point that finding quality PC titles yields as much fruit as searching for unicorns. What makes this bastardization of a title so much more rage inducing is that the original dragon age was a game which harken back to the roots of PC rpg's and offered an epic story strategic gameplay and a level of complexity that was engrossing and satisfying. This is not a true sequel as much as it is an unveiled attempt to draw more people into the game by delivering dragon origins "light'. To call this game an utter crap storm, might be a bit excessive, yet that is the feeling i got when i played the first ten or so hours of the game. I really hate this game, but not because it is a bad game. On its own, played on a console, it would be an awesome experience. However, it should not be the sequel to what was one of the strongest pc releases of the last decade, when it is in fact as step back. My point in writing this little tirade, is to add more voices to the growing mass of pc gamers becoming frustrated with the iterative releases of FPS like COD:BLOPS and the horrible ports of console games to PC. I am sick and tired of the graphical enhancement, and innovation possible on PC's being hamstrung and tired needlessly to the 5 year old and aging consoles. I want a game that is not cognizant of the limitations of consoles and designs a game with them and mind and only later attempts to sling the crap together to release it on PC. That is why i took this game back to gamestop got my money back and preordered the witcher II. That is a PC game and is an example of what a PC game should look and feel like. So while dragon age 2 is not a bad game it is not the game that DAO was and anyone looking for a similiarly satisfying experience should look elsewhere. console = 8 PC = 5 Expand
  74. Mar 19, 2011
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. What a waste of money... terrible DX11 performance on Fermi cards, lackluster story, trapped in a single city for the entirety of the game. The game drops you on a brand new continent never before explored in the previous Dragon Age and what does it do? Lets you fast travel between all of four small districts and a handful of recycled "wilderness" areas. The game is ~95% side quests, while the main plot can be played through in about 2 hours if one of the main quests didn't FORCE you to do side quests right when you arrive in Kirkwall. If that wasn't bad enough, side quests keep returning you to exactly the same generic "mansion", "sewer", or "alley" and force you to fight generic and unchallenging enemies re-skinned depending on the flavor text you got at the start of the quest. Also, if you had held out hope that BioWare would make a game for adults then you'll be sorely disappointed. The game is insultingly juvenile with respect to sex and violence. It's just an uninspired mind-numbing hack-and-slash grinder. It's as though they took everything that's hated about MMOs and dumped it into a singleplayer game for general consumption. BioWare lost a lot of my respect with this release and all the marketing stunts pulled with it. Expand
  75. Mar 19, 2011
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Improved several things from DA:O, while taking large steps backwards on others. Having a voiced character whose dialogue would change based on whether the PC typically chose diplomatic/sarcastic/direct dialogue options was a big plus. The combat skill trees were an improvement. And in my opinion, letting characters simply upgrade their armor instead of micromanaging was an aspect I enjoyed as well. Steps backwards are most obvious in areas Bioware typically shines. You cannot talk with party members unless they are giving a quest. So instead of Hawke taking time to get to know the party, the game gives quests letting you know when they want to talk to you. The storyline is hit and miss. The first 2/3 of the game are actually pretty decent. Showing a refugee rising up from the slums to eventually have a hand in saving the city from an imminent threat. Then act 3 happens. Normally, this is where choices the PC in Bioware games really come out to shine in the conclusion to a story. But no, turns out everyone in Kirkwall is just crazy. Instead of having the chance to rule Kirkwall, the player simply gets to kill the largest factions in the game even after siding with one over the other. It really felt like a DLC meant to set up the future of Thedas more than a standalone game. Easily the worst Bioware ending they've done and really depressing considering the great job they've done in the past on RPG stories.

    However, Bioware is known for writing great and engaging stories in their games. In DA:O, the Warden was tasked with uniting a divided country to push back the Blight that threatened everyone. Simple on paper, but Bioware did a good job in creating dynamic factions with different motives and concerns in a way that immersed you into Ferelden. In DA2, Hawke shows up and things just happen around him. But despite claiming the players choices dramatically affect Kirkwall as time passes, this simply isn't true. Too often the player is presented with multiple dialogue choices, but will experience the same outcome.
  76. Mar 20, 2011
    Absolutely disappointing. This was my last bioware game...
    For the next 5 years I will give the money for every bioware game released, to charity instead buying the game !!!
  77. Mar 19, 2011
    thats simple.
    DA2 is the jar jar binks of western rpg. seriously. why Ea enjoy taking good companies and killing them and filling the carcases with crap?
    EA buy maxis and kill the simulation genre. the last hit with spore and now is doing the same with rpg and bioware.
  78. Mar 20, 2011
    First of all: in my 20 years of C-RPG experience I've never written a game review before because I've never felt the need for it (by the way: apologies for my bad English, I'm not a native speaker). With Drageon Age 2 I believe a worrying tendency emerges I have to adress: short development periods (18 month for DA2), incomplete game world and story, simplistic gameplay to broaden the audience, demanding full prize while preparing DLCs that shall fill in the remaining gaps. Bioware was once regarded as "the bringer of rain" after a drought in the genre of RPGs (for the PC). But now they could play the opposite role: if they are the most prominent agents of the genre (besides Bethesda) and their games are setting trends, then other companies will follow their example, if they haven't already. To be more detailed I'll point out aspects that annoyed me the most: Game World:
    - The most insolent re-use in an state-of-the-art RPG I've seen so far: dozens of times you walk through levels which are IDENTICAL, and I mean identical. Every corner, texture, modell, architecture, lighting etc. are exactly the same, just with another label (for example "cave xyz" instead of "cave abc").
    - The main game world consists of just 15 to 20 small or very small locations in a city (small means an area which takes 20 seconds to 60 seconds to cross, very small means a simple flat)
    - There are no (more or less) diversified regions like snowy mountains, deserts, jungle, forest, real dungeons, castles, other towns etc., just this one city and three outer regions that are not noteworthy
    - The few existing places look sterile and somehow empty although there are a few people standing around, but they are just copies doing nothing. There are no animals, no interesting props, no interesting architecture, no waving foliage, no sounds of wind, loud chatter etc.
    - Most of the levels are extremely tubular: just one way, no possibility for exploration. If you use such level design, you should use it for thrilling script events like in COD to propell the storytelling, but that's not the case for DA2. A proper game world would have been to expensive...

    - 90% of gameplay consists of running and killing: go to place X, kill everyone, talk to person Y to have a reason for killing and then go to place Z and kill everyone. Most of the time there are no alternative ways to solve problems (the only exceptions are found in dialogues with companions). But hey: that's what's the world about, ain't it?
    - There are no possible interactions with the environment, just run, fight, talk, (rudimental) barter. No environmental riddles, no forging, no eating, no sleeping, etc. Would be to complex, eh?

    Items and Inventory:
    - Companions can't be equipped with armor, just with a weapon, a ring, a belt and an amulet. Would be to complex...
    - In the inventory and shops items look absolutely uninteresting and the same: each type of item has the SAME grey and white icon, for example the same symbol for a sword. The only difference are the values of the item. To much effort giving them a distinguishable look?
    - Most of the time the few items you can purchase outvalue the few items you find in your travels
    - There are no real item sets or unique items
    - Why does a plate armor take exactly the same space / weight in inventory (= 1 Slot) as a ring or an amulet (= 1 Slot)? Too much to think about?

    - Remember, you have to fight and fight and fight, and sometimes to fight, but don't worry: there isn't much to do, sit back and watch, no tactics needed (you could raise the difficulty but that just means opponents don't take as much damage and hit you harder).
    - No overview allowed: forget Dragon Age Origins or Baldur's Gate, not immersive enough, has to be a close look over the should like Mass Effect 2 or say COD!? Another "advantage": the game world seems to be larger than it is.
    - In many fights there are up to four or five waves of the same opponents like in good old arcade gaming. That's a challenge RPG-players really like. - If a fight ends successfully health, mana and stamina of all your companions are restored instantly. No need for rest, healing etc.... Waste of time, there are more interesting fights waiting 10 yards ahead.
    - Ammunition is for prigs: arrows and bolts are created the moment they are shoot, no buying needed.

    - The backgrounds and dialogues preceding and following missions are of high quality, BUT what about a larger conflict, to what end am I killing hordes of idiots? Is there any greater inner or outer threat than a killer whom the player seeks to kill? The Qunari are a threat, for twenty minutes of gameplay. Templar and Magicians don't like each other and there's a fight, but that's it. No threat and no thread. Calling Hawke "Champion" is an exaggeration to cover that he hasn't achieved much. The whole game is "unepic" and seems to be a chapter of an epic game.
  79. Mar 20, 2011
    Dragon Age Origins was one of the best games I ever played and I was really looking forward to Dragon Age 2. After playing the game for around 8 hours I started skipping all cut scenes and dialogues because i could not stand it any more. The fights are boring. How could the magazines give such high ratings?
  80. Mar 20, 2011
    ILL make this short and sweet, i loved dragon origins and played the hell out of that game, but when i played this game, i could not be more shocked to see they would actually sign this game off as bio ware approved. I never at any point felt i was an epic character, or felt a huge attachment to my characters as i did in part 1. This sequel should of been easy to make. keep what worked and fixed what didn't. its like bio ware didn't think twice about how there fans really felt and instead killed everything i loved about the first.

    if you like half assed then this is the game for you :(
  81. Mar 20, 2011
    This game is a complete and utter failure compared to the first game, and its expansion.
    3/4 of the maps in this game are all completely recycled. The battle system is fast, and enemies spawn in swarms out of nowhere. The first game was focused more on taking down powerful enemies with tactics. This game seems more focused on making things look shiny and appealing. Although the characters
    are much more interesting and stylized in this title, it doesn't make up for the lack of characters and new areas. The plot line always winds up leading to the same conclusion, and a majority of the game is spent doing side quests. This is a one time only sort of experience. I couldn't stand making a second character for any reason. This game seems very similar to the story of Kotor 2, in which Bioware rushed the game, throwing it out there incomplete. It would be acceptable if this title were perhaps not called Dragon Age II, but something else, like "Dragon Age: Kirkwall Hero" or something along those lines, because I personally feel that this game does not deserve the title of a direct sequel. Expand
  82. Mar 20, 2011
    Generally a very bland and disappointing experience versus other "RPGs" and especially vs its legacy. This game is a linear shooter, barely an RPG and only very distantly related to the first game, Dragon Age Origins, a very strong traditional CRPG. It basically feels like a completely separate team was told to build a console shooter based in the Dragon Age universe. At its core DA2 a very simple refined shooter: 1) you run from nondescript environment to the next, 2) spamming AOE attacks to deal with the same waves of enemies, and 3) running circles around tedious boss fights. This is not however an RPG by any stretch: 1) the story is almost non-existent (I'm in Act 2 and no clue), 2) there is no character development, 3) the skill trees are there, but given how streamlined combat is, there is no strategy involved, 4) only the main character inventory can be changed (other than weapons) limited. In summary: Overall: 4 (Gameplay: 5, Story: 3, Graphics/Sound: 6, Fun: 2). Replay value: 0 Expand
  83. Mar 27, 2011
    enemies appear out of nowhere, item names have no back story - you can't even attack enemies that you SEE until you get close enough that they turn red
  84. Mar 21, 2011
    Just played Dragon Age 2 for some time and Iâ
  85. Mar 21, 2011
    Bioware need to learn that rushing out or fast tracking a game for a quick buck is a sure fire way to lose there fanbase. While the combat system and graphics (if maxed out with high texture pack) are cool the plot of the game is a complete joke.

    Story wise it's very bland and unlike every other Bioware RPG it dosen't make any difference what dialogue options you pick for 95% of the game
    as the final outcome is exactly the same and this totally kills replay value. The fact that so many characters can't be saved from their fate really bugged me and killed the idea of being the hero of the story. Expand
  86. Mar 22, 2011
    Refrain from buying this game if you have any expectations. While the game is not a complete disaster when regarded as a standalone game, you will get disappointed if you want to play it because you liked Dragon Age: Origins. Basically it is just a thumbed down, simplified version of its predecessor.

    My rating is not only game related, but mostly Biowares fault. While I would give the
    game a 4-5/10, Biowares extreme failure forces me to make it 1/10. How can a gaming company even dare to censor people opinions about the game in their forums, having workers write ridiculous hymns of praise on metacritic and paying major magazines money to give outrageous scores? Just refrain from buying Bioware products if you can avoid it. Don't support companys with such low ethical standards until they feel the consequences. This is the only way to hurt them for deceiving people in such a shameful, pathetic way. Greedy bastards.

    But now to the game, which I played to the end. DA2 had 18 Months of development time, while DA:O took about five years. This manifests throughout the game which looks nice in the beginning, but lacks quality the longer you run around doing mindless, uninnovative quests. The combat system itself is fun at first but gets annoying due to it repetitiveness and unfair spawn system. A typical mission looks like this: Go to a cave, do x, collect y. Encounter enemies which spawn in weird waves that make no sense at all. When you run into the middle of a room you can be sure that enemies spawn right around you and the first thing you have to do in every fight is moving your fragile casters around the place and kite monsters so they don't die. Monsters are killed, many more enemies spawn for an unknown reason (couldn't they just be there from start) right in your casters again. Repeat kiting. Expect this to happen in 95% of all fights. And why do monsters suddenly spawn in hordes when there was not the slightest sign of enemies seconds before the encounter? Challenge in the fights come from unfair mechanics like hordes of monsters spawning in your ranged characters. This was so annoying, I can't put enough emphasis on it. Boss fights suck. On higher difficulties they are next to impossible due to near infinite health rather than intelligent design. You will do the same few button combinations for half an hour if you decide to fight that dragon/random other boss on hard difficulties. Often the result is endless kiting until the boss is finally dead - not worth it. A really sad game mechanic for a hyped 2011 game but probably the only possible outcome for a game which is rushed to make more money from the franchise.

    Next annoying thing is the game recycling as you advance through the game. While the main city Kirkwall and 4 locations outside of the city are not too shabby at first, EXPECT TO SEE THEM OVER AND OVER AGAIN THE WHOLE GAME. EXPECT INSIDE LOCATIONS TO BE SEEN DOZENS OF TIMES WITH DIFFERENT ENEMIES. Every house, every dungeon, every cave is used multiple times. Seriously, there is no excuse for this in any way. Next thing are shallow companions inculding a crappy dialogue system. Low friendship/romance options are usually maxed out by pressing the "friendly" or "heart" answer 3-4 times. Clicking through the choices couldn't be simpler and has really nothing to do with role playing. Random pirate **** which offers sex to you the minute you talk to her, eerie looking elves on crack and other rather uninteresting characters you can have fight along your side.

    The storyline is another failure, since there is NONE. You flee from darkspawn to Kirkwall and try to become a champion there, which you are later on by collecting generic herbs, fighting some bad boys and rescuing maidens. There is no real mainplot which guides you through the game, generally you don't have a clue what to do next or what happens, since you will start running from one questmarker to another. At a certain point I didn't even bother to read quest texts anymore but rather collected the exp from certain generic, really, really, boring sidequests. This game is tricky though, at first it made me think "Aww.. what a bunch of haters, the game is not too bad. Nice fighting, decent graphics." But then you realize more and more that the hate has a foundation. The foundation is bad game design which can hardly be considered standard in a 2011 AAA+ game. Basically you end up running around in the same textures over and over again, slaying the same models of enemies over and over again as you advance through the three acts in the game. I also did not like the unlogical choices you are forced to make later on, but this is rather my personal taste on the story, which I found really awful.

    Do not buy this game if you are searching for a good role-playing game.
  87. Mar 22, 2011
    I found the artwork absolutely gorgeous, and the interface extremely slick. Some things were 'streamlined' compared to the first, but I much preferred the new interface. Combat was still challenging and required strategic placement and use of skills - though I did miss friendly fire on Hard mode. I loved the new ability trees and crafting mechanics, which didn't feel like a chore. But what I really play Dragon Age for is the story. This one did not disappoint. It felt a bit slow at the start, since Act I is mostly building up your character through various tasks without really being able to see where it is going. The threads fairly quickly begin to weave together though, into very satisfying second and third acts. The story isn't quite as epic as the first one, but I think a more personal story is actually the better choice here, rather than a "save the world again" rehash. My character went through moments of tragic loss, impossible moral dilemmas, and a shocking betrayal. The new companions can give the old ones a run for their money, and having a protagonist that isn't silent is a big improvement in character interaction. Secondary characters are extremely well done; the Arishok was a particular favourite. Expand
  88. Mar 22, 2011
    Installation and configuration of the game went well. Once starting the game, there was a mediocre amount of character visual choices on character creation looking adequate. The amount of character types, however, were somewhat limited. This was true for Dragon Age 1 as well, but was even more streamlined/simplified in this game.

    In the middle of character
    creation, you were thrown more or less into the game in a fairly creative manner. But really, isn't "starting off with a bang" getting a little old? And what is wrong with a little cinematic to put the player into the right mood? And for some reason, the feeling was a little "rushed" into completion. All in all: Not bad, not good. The classic 5/10, industry standard. GRAPHICS (5/10): In my personal opinion, not the most important aspect of the game. At least not in pure technical respects. With that said, Dragon Age 2 appears to be a little dated compared to other action games. And compared to Dragon Age 1, it did not show any particular improvements. Even though the graphics are nothing special and lacks new features, they seem to have polished the look of what was there fairly well. All in all: Somewhat dated, well polished. 5/10, industry standard. VISUAL APPEAL (3/10): Different from the more technical quality of the graphics is the visual appeal of the game. More or less an artistic viewpoint of the graphics. The landscape, city and indoor environments look everything from ok to good. But it lacks a soul. Non player characters do not respond well to what happens around them, they stand around stiff and bland. Too many locations were recycled throughout the game making it appear artificial, a dead thing. No improvement in weather or wind furthers nails the lid on this coffin. There are also vastly too few types of enemies which contribute to making the game appear without variation. All in all: 3/10. Somewhat lifeless, fairly bad. SOUND (3/10): What happened to the music in this game? The sound effects and general environment is overall ok. Some taunts and tidbits is played too often and is too repetative for non player characters in many areas. But it's not bad, just not anything special. The music, however, is near being described as horrible. There are only a few tunes I want to bother listening to. I am usually into listening closely to ingame music for the atmosphere, but the music in Dragon Age 2 did nothing for me. All in all: 3/10. Sound effects are ok, the music is pretty bad and boring. STORY (6/10): Heard it before, nothing special. However, creative narration and overall well done. There is simply nothing remarkable about the story in the game. In many places, it is easy to see that the player really has no choice. And even though there are some different choices to make that counts in the game, there isn't truly many "world-spinning" actions. The voice acting is pretty good, but sometimes a little bland. It is a little hard to care about the characters in the game. This might be because there are few choices, especially in the start. Personally, most of them annoy me and I would send them somewhere to die if I could. What breaks an otherwise decent story, is that the quests related to the main story is pretty far from entertaining or interesting. Personally, I simply want to wander off into the wilderness. Overall: 6/10. Even with some major flaws, the story is above average. Keep in mind industry standard is bad. COMBAT AND CAMERA CONTROL (2/10): Is this an RPG? No. It's an action game. But I say: Rate it as an RPG because it says so on the "box". *CACKLES NERVOUSLY* Where to begin... Let's keep it simple: Every fight is the same. Boom! A bunch of enemies drop down on your head. Your mage spams the same spells as last time and your fighters/rogues mop up, you need to push a few buttons. Boom! Group nr. 2 drops on your head. Repeat. Where is the development? What new strategic or tactical challenges are there? Since when was spawning encounters in your face good game design? Why is everything solved by doing the exact same thing over and over? Even bosses are mostly fairly simple - both in regard to defeating them and to how they behave. WHY THE **** DID THEY MAKE THIS SO CRUDE AND REPETATIVE? AND FOR GODS SAKE, WHY MUST EVERYTHING SCALE? Another annoying lack of feature is the strategic view of Dragon Age 1. With enemies dropping on/in from all directions, some would say it would be nice to have a strategic view camera. This further underlines the action game transformation of Dragon Age 2. On the positive side, combat is responsive and dynamic. The characters do what you tell them to do, and they mostly do it without any delay. There are a good amount of fun animations and moves whi Expand
  89. Mar 22, 2011
    I just finished the game on pc and i'm still not sure how I should feel about this game. It's definatly a fun game. The story, dialogue wheel and combat mechanics is a positive change for me but the fact to you play the whole game in 1 city and that all the dungeons are the same puts alot of it's charm backwards.

    I give it a 7 cause it has dragon age slap on it and i'm a fan of the
    series.If it had been a new rpg I would have rated it a 5 or maybe 6. Expand
  90. Mar 28, 2011
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. It is much worse than the first part, talents are bad, story is too short and quests are so simple so i didnt have to think to finish them, the game was made for stupid people who dont want do anything just watch the grafics. Expand
  91. Mar 23, 2011
    The story is good, but riddled with fetch quests. This isn't the best game Bioware has made but they've set the bar pretty high with titles like the original Dragon Age and the Mass Effect series. Fans of RPGs will eat this up, while your average lover of adventure games will find enough appreciation in the storyline to justify trying it out too.
  92. Mar 23, 2011
    The combat system revamp does not bother me. What does bother me is when party members don't ****ing hold position when I tell them. Let me give you an example: fighting the first dragon you come across in the deep roads. I want to kite the boss back to a better position, I tell my party to HOLD POSITION, meaning that unless I get a loading screen, or a cut-scean, they should not move from that spot under any circumstances no matter what. What actually ends up happening is that the horrible party AI system decided to teleport them to me three times in the course of no more than a 15 second walk from where I told them to HOLD POSITION. Since I'm playing on nightmare and my party for the most part is completely useless anyway, due to iffy at best aggro mechanics, (I have abandoned my warrior since she does so little damage, once the 10 second taunt is up, it all runs to the casters anyway), and party member's AI being too stupid to move out of the way of 1 shot kill boss mechanics, I have abandoned my party almost all together. This has let to the already nearly non existent party member story lines, to be nonexistent all together since it is not worth it to bring them with me.

    Furthermore the lack of being able to give your party members armor, has made it so that my mage has both twice the armor and defensive stat of the game's intended warrior tank, making that party member useless (she is also a bit of a stuck up **** anyway).

    My largest gripe BY FAR is how lazy the level design team was: FIVE count them FIVE times, the game reused the EXACT SAME DUNGEON. I don't mean, oh you have to go back into the dungeon, no, a completely different area has the EXACT SAME DUNGEON layout, even the set pieces are the same. This game has no re-playability at all, $60 is a rip off for this piece of garbage, maby $20 is worth it. I wouldn't know, I'm glad I torrented it or I woudl have been pissed off that I wasted $60.
  93. Mar 23, 2011
    While entertaining, this game doesn't come close to its predecessor. There are two problems with DA2: first it has a number of extremely silly design flaws, and second that it differs from Origins in many respects without bringing any improvement to the table.

    Just to list the obvious mistakes: no tactical camera (why would anybody kill a degree of freedom that doesn't come with any
    development cost?), companion armor restrictions (same question), copy/paste levels (it seems there only 10 maps in the game or so), poor artwork in Kirkwall (where you spend 90% of your time), enemies spawning out of thin air every fight (which ruins tactical gameplay in a lot of ways) and last but not least nasty bugs. Those mistakes could be made by beginners in game development, sitting on a tight budget, without any established rules to build upon, but to get them from Bioware team, having EA financial backing? Shocking.

    What's probably even more important for the fans of the Origins is that this game is different even where not outright bad. Everybody understands the desire to broaden the customer base and get more people to play this, but it's customary to tread carefully when naming something a sequel to something else. Combat is fast-paced while it was more tactical in Origins, the wheel-based dialogue system allows less room to role-play, you don't really get to know your companions, and their character development is weak. The strongest selling point of Dragon Age, the story seems dull and short at the same time, a collection of random encounters and errand missions. Hawke is more of a chip in the whirlpool, as it's impossible to influence most of the important events in the game. While I appreciated some changes (crafting for example), and most of the changes are a matter of taste, what surprises is the willingness of the developers to alienate their own fanbase in the first place, as none of this changes are obvious and straightforward.

    What's very disappointing is that the opinion of the average critic differs wildly from the opinion of average gamer whom the critic is supposed to represent. Whether the result of the PR machine at work or just the sequel effect, that's an important lesson for those looking at the (meta)critic scores.

    Financially, the results of this flawed design and sloppy execution are going to be deferred to DLCs and DA3, if it's greenlighted at all. Contrary to what "evil EA" theory suggests, EA's long-term profits are going to be negatively impacted by killing one of the most prominent franchises in the portfolio of acquired company (and honestly, if there is anything to learn from the film imdustry, it's the importance of having a good franchise and solid "customer base" aka fanbase).

    What EA/Bioware have done to Dragon Age is, in Talleyrand's words, worse than a crime - it's a mistake.
  94. Apr 23, 2011
    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'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.
  95. Mar 23, 2011
    Instead of building on the Strengths of Dragon Age: Origins, Bioware created a game that failed to capture the imagination of gamers everywhere. A failed sequel in every way, the game should have been marketed as The Kirkwall Chronicles; a story that bears no relevance to its predecessor. The adventure that follows is repetitive, tedious, and very shallow. A Dragon Age for Dummies, where its strength lies in its recycled approach to maps, characters, story and quests. The Plot is miserable, your actions donâ Expand
  96. Mar 24, 2011
    Worst Bioware game ever in this company. They sold their souls to the EA money. Storyline is absent. Boring, monotonous tasks in the same locations are forgotten immediately. The dialogues are long and have no humor.
  97. Mar 24, 2011
    Dragon Age II feels more like a RPG lite than a true successor of Origins, it's not a really bad game but in many ways it leaves a feeling of disappointment.
    The combat, while faster than in Origins, feels shallow and tedious due to the wave mechanic employed in most battles. The gritty, semi-realistic animations have been replaced by over the top combat animations that remind more of
    cartoons/anime than dark fantasy.
    Non-combat skills like coercion or survival have been stripped from the game and overall the game feels strongly focused on combat and action.
    The story itself isn't bad, though the pacing seems somewhat odd at times. The companions are generally likable, though companion interaction takes place mostly during the companion quests.
    The city of Kirkwall, to which the player is mostly confined, feels unfortunately lifeless. NPCs are basically static background, which wouldn't be much of a problem if the game's story wouldn't take place almost entirely inside the city.
    Dungeons consist mostly of a few maps that are recycled over and over, with various passages blocked off by locked doors. Unfortunately the mini-map doesn't reflect the blocked passages, making the lack of variety in maps even more obvious.

    The game is certainly ok for a beginner RPG, but it cannot compare to BioWare's masterpieces by any means. It lacks the depths and complexity that Origins had and would have better been marketed as a spin off game than a sequel.
  98. Apr 23, 2011
    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 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
  99. Mar 26, 2011
    After replaying through the initial Dragon Age multiple a time, it was a no brainer to pick up DA2 as well. While the openers magic is slightly lost along the way the sequel does a lot right. The story itself is written nicely, albeit missing out on a lot of potential drama and interesting scenes. Characters are all around nicely done and actually have a lot of unexpected reactions and decisions which make the game feel genuinely interesting.

    On the minus side the game has a bit too much of fighting going on. After you learn the gimmick of the fight, it does get nice. Yet wave after wave of extra enemies per each fight does get kind of tiresome. Either way a very well done sequel and a way lengthy as well. Clocked at 90 hours on nightmare after completing about every quest I could find.
  100. Apr 1, 2011
    Severely disappointed in this game, which is absolutely nothing like Dragon Age: Origins. This is basically a Mass Effect beat em up in the Dragon Age setting (except with worse graphics, storyline, voice acting and gameplay). Bioware have unfortunately dropped their standards to unbelievable depths and 'Consolofied' what was a once brilliant PC style RPG. Gameplay is so simple you can do it with your eyes closed, no tactics just button mashing. Graphics are very bland, brown, basic and repetitive. Just look at the majority of NPCs up close and they look like they came from Tomb Raider 1! And how can you call this an RPG when all you can explore is one tiny city? Pathetic. This game is a huge mistake on Bioware's behalf. They seem to have rushed this out, maybe to make some quick money to further fund development of SWTOR?? I have played every Bioware game I can think of, and this is the first one ever to go straight back to the shop for part exchange. Sorry Bioware, but I no longer love you... you have failed me miserably. To coin a phrase from Darth Vader that seems to apply here, "Now his failure is complete". Collapse

Generally favorable reviews - based on 45 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 38 out of 45
  2. Negative: 0 out of 45
  1. Apr 18, 2011
    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
    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
    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.