Apr 6, 20115Not as bad as people say it is but it's definitely not "good" either. I give this a 5 because it's such a repetitive game with recycled locations and quests. The boss fights look like they were tripped from WOW. The character dialog can be interesting at times but you're basically forced into a canned character concept defying the whole point of a fantasy RPG. Also, many of the events of DA:O don't seem to matter very much in this game. The character of hawk is non compelling. On the plus side there are some OK graphics and environment design.… Expand
Apr 6, 20115A good stand alone game, but doesn't live up to Dragon Age Origins. The story suffers the most, as the characters are far less interesting the crux of the plot considerably less epic and the narrative consistency of the world has fallen by the wayside. The inventory interface is terrible the DLC invalidates the need for any equipment for the first act and the dialog tree is irrelevant. It's still worth buying, but only after the price has dropped a little.… Expand
Apr 6, 20119For me this game is far superior than the first one. Combat, graphics, voice acting, story, setting, atmosphere, everything is perfect. These people that whine so much are living in the past. This is not a Dragon Age Origins DLC.
For me, Dragon Age Origins in unplayable, but DA2 is great!
Apr 7, 20114Less than great. I bought it sight unseen because of how fully realized and fun DAO was. Never making that mistake again.
I get the sense DA2 was just too rushed. The combat, the quests, endless map rehashing and even recycled music from DAO just hugely disappointed me. Fairly weak story on top of it. And yes the ham fisted handling of dialog was just sloppy and very unappealing. For example you get +10 rival with Anders when you pass on his homosexual come-on. I get the sense this is an old guy's idea of giving something for everyone and an equally dated concept of PC approaches to sexuality by actually increasing rival points for choosing "Not interested". The flashiness of the combat, the 'edgy' dialog, all of it just adds up to a very dated and cynical delivery of someone's idea of what people are supposed to want instead of the openness and focus on a quality game I got from DAO.
I am trying to be fair and try to factor out my frame of reference with DAO but at best I can still only come up with a slightly below average rating. There are far more in depth reviews here than mine but they're accurate. I rate it below average without my DAO bias, which would otherwise have made it higher. In all truth I played it once and have absolutely no desire to play it again. The one play added up to some 20+ hours of game play vs the 50+ of its predecessor… Expand
Apr 7, 20115I haven't seen a more confused collection of polish and poor design choice since, well, ME2.... Like BrutallyHonest points out: Bioware now design games via marketing research and focus group responses! This is a game entirely designed with the ADD addled, "ewwww, look at the Shiny object!", celebrity crotchshot demanding, Corporate pablum swilling, Generation Shallow, in mind... In otherwords: Gaming's "Brave New World". Existing fans? **** 'em. This, to me, isn't about the console-ification of gaming... nor, is it about being upset with a company trying something new... It's about sacrificing quality and depth to appeal to a greater market. Some people just don't like RPG's... and, it's ridiculous to sell out on what made you famous in the first place, in the hope that you'll expand your market into that group. Out: game affecting choices, In: "Choose Your Own Inflection'... Out: Epic storytelling, In: episodic confusion... Out: any attempt at graphical realism, In: graphic novel inspired art style... Out: tactical combat, In: Devil May Cry enemy wave spawns... Out: depth of any kind, In: skin deep surface veneer... And, On and ON it goes, ad nauseum.... Cutting out the "RPG", only to replace it with ideas from other game genres, in a sad attempt to appeal to the lowest common denominator. Again, as I stated earlier, it's the maddening production decisions I'm having the hardest time with! Why work so hard to develop top quality voice acting... and then decide to reuse the same 4 - 5 minimaps 7, 8, 9 ^*%#* TIMES EACH!?! IT MAKES NO SENSE! Polish this... be mind bogglingly lazy with that! I mean, seriously, WTF! There are more headscratching story flaws in this game than ALL OF THE PREVIOUS BIOWARE GAMES COMBINED! Some of the plot twists are beyond obsurd. Choices, in this game are merely illusions... The dialog wheel is nothing more than changing how your character's voice sounds as the exact same oucome occurs 95% of the time IRREGARDLESS of what, or how, you say shiite. Bioware is in decline, folks. Mark my words. More fans have been alienated by their recent turn of direction than any new ones have been picked up. A 5/10 rating SOLELY for the games level of polish in comparison with the game industry as a whole. Ptew!… Expand
Apr 7, 20110This is an incredibly disappointing game. The story isn't told very well, combat no longer requires much thought (nor enjoyment), and exploration isn't an option. When i played DA:O, I would have moments in which I would have to put down the controller and seriously think about the decisions that I made for my character and his companions. It challenged my values (albeit in a very small and easy to forget way). I didn't have one such moment in the entirety of DA2. Also, as others have voiced, playing through the same few and recycled dungeons was tiresome.… Expand
Apr 8, 20116I loved DAO. I played it to completion at least 4 times. I loved the different endings, the total freedom to roleplay, and I found the characters, which from the superficial level seemed totally cliche (bastard prince, wicked witch, drunken dwarf...) thoroughly engaging. I loved all the little permutations. As such, I was expecting great things from DA2. I think like a lot of people, maybe I expected too much - or perhaps I just expected Bioware to be aware of why such a large portion of its fanbase loved it too. Quite honestly, if DA2 was marketed under a different name, I'd give it an extra 2 points. It loses marks because it's a poor follow-up to a game that was, pretty much, the only high-end party-based RPG around (Mass Effect isn't as strong strategically and lacks companion customisation, while The Witcher forces a main character on you and lacks party dynamics).
My basic feeling is, given another year in development to properly work on the story, sort out the bugs, and tweak the comabt, and DA2 could have been a masterpiece. The ideas are there. But the execution is sloppy, the game lacks cohesiveness and there are far too many elements which fail - not least being, if the entire storyline is about oppression of mages, why you can make your main character a mage and no-one says anything. Even when you use magic in front of a Templar's face. If they really wanted to pull off this impression of a world of prejudice and oppression - they needed to work the mechanics around it. As it is, it's fun.... but it's never going to be a classic. Also, given this, I'm not sure whether or not I'll bother with DLC for this game... it seems to me the EA marketing machine has already brought in far too many cash-ins everywhere.
The Pros: The continuing stories of characters you meet in every act is quite interesting and does vary MINORLY depending on your decisions.
Companions are, once you get to know them a little, interesting, though Bioware have once again done what they tend to do for expanions and 'rushed for time' games and made characters that are mostly known for their unusualness (e.g. Varric - very NOT traditional dwarf) - still, they've got the writers to back this up. There is no 'right choice' in most scenes; this is not a good vs evil choice. DAO had that too (with the exception of the werewolves/elves) but not to this extent.
Therw was one moment in the endgame where my jaw literally hit the floor :) Bioware still tell a good story. Unfortunately, there's not enough genuine story to make the whole game feel connected.
The main cons seem minor, but are so repetitive that by the end of the game you;'re beating your head against the wall, and they have been repeated more times than DA2's single 'cave' map, so I won't rant too much.
Overwhelming re-use of maps: every cave in the game is identical, and I have played story missions where you enter different caves at different locations consecutively and play the same map - just one you start at the other end.
Combat flaws - the respawning of enemies out of nowhere, the lack of tactical combat, the 'pretty' spell effects that obscure the actual battle, the fact that every boss battle is almost identical (horde of minions at every quarter health lost) and one of my main gripes - dragon battles should feel epic, not like yet another boring hack'n'slash encounter!
Related to both the above, the numerous predictable low-level mobs that appear in the same locations every map and leave the game feeling like a slog, not an exploration.
Incredibly boring loot, plus the lack of ability to change companion armour - every item gives one or a combination of +attack, %damage, % damage resistance, and +stamina/health/regeration. Most of it looks identical. In DAO I took on hordes of enemies to complete an armour set that game me stuff nothing else had - here, everything seems the same so I can't be bothered.
The neon yellow arrows over anything quest-related, which rules out any exploration possibility and means most quests are just a matter of running from arrow to arrow to arrow; apart from a very few exceptions, if it doesn't have an arrow over it's head, you can't interact with it. Completely brain-deadening. The exception is the couple of 'extra' quests which can be obtained, which ar virtually identical in structure to one another and ddon't even give you very good rewards...
The achievements! I mean seriously, did they set those achievements for 5 year olds or what? getting one of switching the damned map from day to night makes me feel like a kid being patted on the head because it wiped it's own bum. Seriously, Bioware, we're not idiots.… Expand
Apr 8, 20111How can you possible go from something so awesome to this pile of digital crap, Bioware? Seriously! The story, characters, setting, and...well everything have been dummed down so horribly it's an insult to the original. This looks more like Bioware made it for 9 year olds.
Nice job **** it up, Bioware. Nice job.
Apr 10, 201110The first mistake people make regarding DA2 is to think that it is the same as DA1, the game has been streamlined for the less devoted RPG fans. This game is made for the masses, and I love it. Yes it is not as long as DA1, yes it is not as complicated as DA1, but it is still a good game which you should not dismiss because you don't like the new combat system. This game is epic, I could not stop playing since the moment I sat down to play it. Stop judging and just play, you will enjoy it.… Expand
Apr 9, 20119I rate 9 for this game. This is the best game i ever played. The graphics are solid. The wide variety of consequences that can occur from choices you make(or fail to make). Intriguing and open yet linear story. Easy combat system, and the pause is beneficial to play on hard or nightmare. Only thing I see negative about Dragon Age 2, is the repetitive use of game zones; There is a wide enough story, and number of zones, that you aren't going see how overused the zones are, unless you focus on the environment. The development of love affairs with different party members is a nice addition to the game. It will take more then 1 run at this game to see all this game has to offer. played with mods and DLC… Expand
Apr 9, 20110This game plain sucks, I loved DAO but from the game play to the storyline this game is a freaking pain, I couldn't even finished, every time I started the game I fell like pucking, hated every moment of it, I wish I could get my money back, EA and Bioware really screw this up.
Apr 9, 20111Under any other name, I would've probably given this game a solid 6.5 or 7. Sure, it's got its share of shortcomings, but it was still much more fun than, say, stabbing red hot needles into my eyes.
As a sequel to Dragon Age: Origins, however, I give this steaming pile of manure a 1/10. This game fails to follow up on (let alone surpass) DA:O on virtually every level. I feel lied to and cheated that Bioware/EA would use the success and critical acclaim of DA:O to trick hardcore RPG players like this. DA2 is completely watered down and diluted. This is literally a console port and a rushed one at that. Diminished customizations of party members' gear, stats not as detailed anymore, quests are simply kill or fetch stuff and lots of childish gore. Clearly, if Bioware/EA wanted to break into the Call of Duty market, by all means, go ahead. They could've simply called this game something else...anything else. But the fact that they masquerade this as a sequel to one of the best - if not THE best - modern Western RPGs is a direct insult to the faith I had in them. Also, watch Mark Laidlaw's (lead developer, Bioware) interviews post-launch if you want more insult to injury. I… Expand
Apr 9, 20116Well...I'm pretty sure this game could have been made better (an understatement). Looking at all the negative reviews I do understand that everyone is trying to make the point that they are very disappointed but it isn't as bad as you might think. First I'll start with the cons. It is certainly no DA:O but it still has a good story although it really suffers for a lot of the "improvements" that were added. For one thing its world is absurdly small. You had all of Ferelden to roam around in DA:O but in this? I don't know who made the decision but Bioware should have a job opening in that department. Other departments that should have openings are: where ever the decision was made to take out finishing kill animations, whoever decided ragdoll still isn't necassary (I mean really it's 2011), whoever thought up that irritating emo elf Faric or "who-the-eff-cares" as I think of him, and whoever decided it was a good idea to have day 1 DLC and have the players revisit every freaking location multiple times.
Pros: Well...its still Dragon Age. They have that going for them. It really doesn't improve on the first at all and in many cases steps back but it will feel familiar. It is undeniably in that DA universe. Another improvement is that the character you play has a voice and a control wheel for dialogue like Mass Effect.
Speaking of Mass Effect why did its sequel take such a wonderful leap forward while this one still more or less chokes on the dust of its predecessor? I… Expand
Apr 10, 20112What did you do bioware?! What in gods name did you do?!?! The first game was one of the most Epic, and Amazing games I have played by this company. The cutscenes, The music, the lore, The stylization of the characters, Specifically Morrigan. Her actor was terrific. (this is a biased statement about Morrigan) but her aside, I felt for the characters, and felt for the story! Even though the enemies were a little repetitive without much variance as well as seeing the same clothing on characters multiple times in the same cutscenes, the game still got the point across. But the second game?! The music was terrible. In the first game right away you hear this blood pumping epic theme with a woman chanting strange words beautifully...what was wrong that you decided to take such a thing out of the second game?! The voice acting was horrible, It didn't make me laugh or entertain me in the slightest. And most importantly, didn't make me feel for the characters. The gameplay was completely changed, simplified, and made boring! and don't get me started about the poor choice of party members as well. All in all I felt nothing for these people...the Hero of Ferelden was only mentioned in passing. It's like what you did barely mattered especially since the whole damn game was a story being told by a Dwarf while the story was being played....I admit they had balls trying something different but it ruined the suspense for me. I couldn't even make it through the whole entire game cause of how sorry it all was...shame on you Bioware, shame on you. I will not be playing Dragon Age 3...you had something beautiful, and you ruined it! You better not have ruined Mass effect 3 like this! Or mark my words I will never purchase another Bioware game as long as I live!… Expand
Apr 10, 20111I made an account and am giving this game a 0 because metacritic seems to have removed a review from gamecritics.com, by Brad, that gave the game a 2.5.
Whether you disagree with that reviewer or not, you should not remove his review. This is exactly why users are so pissed and are backlashing against the outrageous 8.0+ rating this game is getting from wussy Critics who refuse to give Dragon Age 2 a bad review just because it's a popular title.
Shame on you Metacritic, but I might as well post my main complaint about Dragon Age 2.
Typical Dragon Age: Origins quest:
A kid has been possessed by a demon, who is now terrorizing and killing off a village. Your choices that have an effect on this story:
1.) If you picked a mage as your origin story, the person that accidentally helped the demon possess the boy is a friend of yours in the circle.
2.) You find this mage in a prison when you storm the castle. You can choose to kill him or not.
3.) When you get to the boy, you can choose to kill him or enter the dream realm.
4.) You can use blood magic to enter the dream realm if you have it. If you don't, you can have the imprisoned mage get you into the dream realm. You can also get help from the circle if you did the quest and saved the circle.
5.) When you enter the dream realm you can choose to deal with the demon or not. If you do, it grants you access to some powerful rewards, but leaves the demon to torment the boy later on in his life.
6.) Oh by the way, you could choose not to save the village at all.
a.) If you complete this quest, the father of the boy will help you in the end. A very modest effect on the end story, but it is there.
Typical Dragon Age 2 quest:
Merryls broken mirror. Choices you have:
1.) You can choose to help her with it or not. The mirror cannot be restored. No choices you make effect the outcome.
a.) You can kill villagers after the quest is done or not. (lol...)
This problem, on top of the constantly reused assets and mostly uninteresting companions, makes for a painful and uninteresting story and a mere shadow of the original game.
I will not buy another game from Bioware before trying it ever again. I want my 60$ back and another 60$ for the insult.… Expand
Apr 10, 20111This game deserves 3/10 but because of Bioware employees posting their fake reviews here I decided to give it a 1/10. Like all the other negative comments, stay away from this game. Save your money. If someone told me this was Bioware game I would laugh at them but unfortunately Bioware's name is on the box.
The people who says this game is good should give you back your $50 after you throw this game out your window. This game destroyed bioware's reputation. This game has destroyed the reputation of all the critics who gave this game a good review. This is not a RPG. The story is full of plotholes. Your decisions makes no difference in the ending. The settings are constantly reused. Your companions are all gay too lol. Makes me wonder if Mass Effect 3 will still be called a RPG if bioware "streamlines/consolize" it like DA2.… Expand
Apr 11, 20116Good graphics, combat and music. The story is alright in my book. There are still many bugs present in the game. For instance, one quest did not even show up in the game world. I'm disappointed in Bioware's decision to recycle the areas throughout the game. At some point, you will know when and where to expect traps and treasures. Also, the game doesn't feel very lively any more at some point. Replayability is high due to the various class combinations that are possible. I hope that the next installment will be more akin to Dragon Age: Origins.… Expand
Apr 11, 20110Such a disappointment of a game that had so much potential. This game is nothing more than a single player version of Dungeons & Dragons Online. There's zero exploration, every mission takes place in the same 4-5 exact maps. The only positives were the voice acting and art direction. It's really sad to see BioWare fall so far in such a short period of time. It's sad to see all this new technology and years of game evolution get wasted on dumbed down developed games that are mindless. We're supposed to be moving forward, not backward. SNES games were more challenging then modern day games.
Also, anything positive you'll see written about this game is an overreaction of personal preference from the bias developers who quickly developed this game in such a short period.… Expand
Apr 12, 20112All the negative critique that needs to be made about this game has been, it's rubbish and an insult. For everyone who is a long time Bioware fan, this game was a slap in the face. As a lover of RPG games who has bought almost every Bioware game since Baldur's gate, I know I for one want game that are more intricate and more detailed as time goes on, not games that are dumbed down for "bros" to enjoy. There is a very specific type of gamer, like me, who enjoyed the types of games Bioware used to make, and we are the ones who pumped up their company up in the first place, who made them a success. Yet they didn't hesitate to cast us aside in the hope of getting in on the "bro" market. Stay classy Bioware, I'm done with you.… Expand
Apr 12, 201110I agree that Dragon Age 2 has been dumb down a notch. It has taken the mainstream path to lure in more young players. This is the road that all games take now days when money talks and unique gameplay walks. None the less. You will not find a better game in this genre for a few years. It is money well spent. Not only for the quality of the gameplay, graphics and voice acting but also for the extensive campaign.
The game should be considered as a action-rpg from now on. If you are the one who love the old pen n paper play style and prefer baldurs gate 1 & 2 in front of Dragon age 1, then maybe you should take a second thought, but I would suggest you to pick this up anyway. It's not money wasted, no matter what your preferences are.
Apr 12, 20114This game is an embarrassment of Dragon Age origins. The game is nothing like origins, which is the whole controversy, the story isn't compelling as Origins. The characters are so conventional they seem almost lifeless and limited interactions doesn't serve well. Combat is nicely flowed together and much more smoother then origins, but the lack of challenge and constant enemies can make it all too repetitive. But what really tears me up is that DA2 facilitates for newer gamers with neglecting the older fans. Whatever choices you made in origins have minor or no significant impact on DA2. This game suffers from an overload of enemies, recycled environments and is missing that unique fantasy element that makes rpg 's so grand.… Expand
Apr 12, 20118(Note: I basically explain in this review the actual game there is no spoilers or anything but it will basically give you the idea of why this isnt really a DAO sequel)
Alright so after playing through Dragon Age Origins and the Mass Effect series, I picked up real quick on what Bioware was doing with Dragon Age 2... A lot of people expected this game to pick up, fill in some gaps and give use a new cause to well save the world as usual... This however is a middle ground game with a strong prologue plot. So itâ… Expand
Apr 12, 20112The crticial reception of Dragon Age II is one of the most glaring examples of just how terrified the enthusiast video game press is afraid of upsetting publishers. They wouldn't dare tell you at what point this is a focus-driven rushed-to-market insult to video game consumers everywhere. I never played the original Dragon Age so I'm not an irate fan of the original... there is just not much to defend here. There isn't a single battle in the game (including bosses) that doesn't involve waves and waves of enemies spawning out of thin air waiting for you to mow them down. Sometimes, even when you give them a gentle whack, they explode into a dozen pieces... which I guess is suppose to make me feel like a bad ass. The entire game takes place in one city made up of a few small disconnected areas and the same two or three dungeons that are reused for the entire game. They even try to trick you into thinking this is a new area by blocking off doors you were previously able to go through and opening other ones. Why can't you go through that door you see this time around? Who knows! You just can't click on it! Look, when asked about this problem in an interview, the developers claim they had two choices: give us all original content and cut the game length down to a couple hours or reuse the same areas over and over until the game lasted twenty-five hours. If that doesn't give you an idea of how rushed this product is, I don't know what will. There is not 60 dollars worth of content here and yet so many people have already bought this game because the video game press is looking out more for themselves and not for us. The sad part of this is that underneath it all, the character interaction is great even if the overally story arc, like the rest of the game, is not well thought out at all. It's clear there were talented people working on Dragon Age II, but they weren't given the liberty or time to make this into a good product. Buyer beware.… Expand
Apr 12, 20112A game so totally devoid of all the depths and charm that made the first in the series interesting that it is a wonder to me how Bioware could shove this out the door. It is so dumbed down in quests, background and especially combat that its just a travesty. I feel combat is in such a state of disrepair with teleporting waves of enemies that all tactics and thought is effectively eliminated from the game, all there is left is a "press whatever cooldown is ready" retardations that its worthy of a bungled flashgame… Expand
Apr 12, 20114Okay, did anyone else think the whole.. every mage popping into an A-bom immediately was a little much? its completely unpresidented from the last origins game, and makes the mages ACTUALLY seem evil, unlike in the other game when they seemed moreso like slaves, a brutal waste of time you have to take breaks to stare at your recipt for buying the game before pushing yourself through the bogus and repetetive side quests, followed by an underwhelming finish were NO ONE WINS, and on top of that, poor graphics, compaired to the games of this time, shugun total war 2 is beautiful in compairison, and also the storyline is too linear, whether im evit or not, the story comes out the same, whether i chose one side of the other i kill them both, its a terrible plot, terrible everything, terrible game, try again Bioware… Expand
Apr 12, 20118Dragon Age II is a good game if taken on its own at face value. You will see typically positive reviews by professional critics because of this reason. It is not however, very similar to its predecessor DA:O which is why there are so many negative reviews, more than likely die hard fans of the original. The combat seems a bit simpler and the fact that the story unfolds in a smaller area rather all across Ferelden makes it seems slightly less epic. You are also pushed into the role of a predetermined character, Hawke, rather than choosing from a varied selection as in the first, and the story will unfold in a more structured fashion, whereas the first left you more leeway. While I enjoyed the first more, I still thoroughly enjoyed Dragon Age II. The characters are memorable, and the story well told. The combat, while important I think, was never, and never will be my main draw to an RPG based game. If you are looking for a clone of the first DA:O you won't find it here, but if you are simply looking for a solid game to play through you should pick it up.… Expand
Apr 13, 20110As a big bioware fan, I was hoping for another great rpg experience. Instead I've got some boring parody of a game. This game has really nothing to offer, first fallout or baldur's gate was more complex and interesting than this **** People who are talking about better fighting they're lying, it's just faster, you have the same exact moves as you had in origins. This is the first the bioware's game that bored me with leveling up, when I saw the mark that tells you about gaining a level I thought 'not this **** again', they're are tons of useles skills that you forget about imidiately. NPC's are just laughable: generic drunk dwarf, scared fragile elf, a generic pirate, anders that we have already have met in awakening ( best part of the dragon age for me). Music- generic, forgettable. Graphics are mediocre, sometimes ugly and even bioware admitted that by releasing a new texture pack. Storyline is just uninteresting and forgettable, you get absolutely no pleasure in following the storyline. Secondary quests are extremely boring , you are going through the same locations doing exactly the same things. Main Character is also very generic and simple with nothing instererting to offer, casual hero like hundreds before him. DLC's- dropping dlc's in the same exact date as the game is just despicable and shows you the real motives of bioware and ea. This game can only be interseting for people who are under 12 years old or have no actual clue what a good rpg should look like.… Expand
Apr 13, 20116Yes, it's not Dragon Age: Origins or an Elder Scrolls game, but it was fun to play!
The bad news: reused maps (extremely so), too linear, relatively short and seemed like a rushed job. In terms of story, it seems like half of it. Nothing like DAO's epic 'Lord of the Rings' scale epic fantasy.
The good news: great quests, improved combat, Mass Effect-like speech, great characters and great voice acting. Oh and there are one or two fun parts.
Not a complete train crash, its totally playable. Let's hope DA 3 has more to offer.… Expand
Apr 14, 20113A game so totally devoid of all the depths and charm that made the first in the series interesting that it is a wonder to me how Bioware could shove this out the door. It is so dumbed down in quests, background and especially combat that its just a travesty. I feel combat is in such a state of disrepair with teleporting waves of enemies that all tactics and thought is effectively eliminated from the game, all there is left is a "press whatever cooldown is ready" retardations that its worthy of a bungled flashgame
Score (3.1)… Expand
Apr 15, 20117A So So game. Doesn't feel like Origins at all. A good analogy might be. Dragon Age Origins = An Interview with a Vampire.. Dragon Age 2 = Twilight.. I gave it a 7 because, compared to other games, its a 7 but compared to DAO its more like a 5 or a 6. I still had fun, but it felt like a B movie type of fun..
Apr 15, 20118Alright. I know there are many idiots in this world, but honestly, look at all these negative reviews. Probably a bunch of kids who quit after the first 5 minutes. (I admit, the beginning was dreadful.)
But really, I agree that this game doesn't compare to Origins, but it is no where near a bad game. The graphics are good (with HD texture pack). The storyline is forgettable, but not bad. The combat is not as satisfying or challenging as Origins but it is decent. And people who say that the voice acting is terrible are being too harsh on DA2. The voice acting is not as amazing as some games out there (Origins), but it is not dreadful or anything close to it. You're all just sad that it's a console port. You use this 'console port' crap as an excuse to tear this game apart.
This, of course, is just my humble opinion.… Expand
Apr 15, 201110This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The worst Bioware game I have played. Cost cutting decisions, more than any other decision Bioware made, is what ruined this game. Let me be clear - game publishers need to manage costs - but they still need to deliver a first rate gaming experience. Bioware needs to deliver quality story telling, rather than rush a second rate experience out the door. I've listed what I think the most glaring cost cutting flaws in the game are below:
1. My choices don't matter. I am constantly forced back into the same story loop. While I understand that there are limits on story divergence, my choices need to be about more than the flavor of the game I am playing. Not every choice I make needs to alter the story line. But some do. And at least a few need to fundamentally alter the course of the game.
2. Characters should be memorable, and not flat. If characters can just sort of fit whatever I want to do, then ultimately it's obvious that I'm playing a video game and not interacting with soulful representations. The game ruins the veil of "suspended disbelief" so critical to fantasy on so many occasions by just allowing characters to go along with whatever I want. Fenris, for example, HATES mages, and refuses to join my fight with the mages. Good for him even though it would have made my end fight more difficult. Then, because I manage a pithy one liner about slavery, he joins my party. IF he hated slavery and mages all along, the game should have built up this conflict more within his character, so that we could see the final crisis and denoument, not have him flippantly choose one side because it's what the player feels like doing.
3. Repetitive use of scenery. Origins got annoying after a while with the same monsters, but the scenery constantly changed. Dragon Age II made this worse by having me fight the same monster models and in the same settings three times in a row.
4. Every male model looks like they are on roids - how about some varied body types? What about the sinewy rogue? The willowy mage? Why as a mage are my muscles still exploding from my robes?
5. Sexuality should be more than a lifestyle choice for my romantic options. In Dragon Age, some characters were bisexual and others were not. Some got offended by homosexuality. This added an extra appreciated wrinkle to the game. Which leads me to comment 5...
Cost containment I could accept:
1. Focusing on fewer origin stories. Valuable development time could be saved if only a few major storylines are played. So, if I only get three origin stories instead of 15 possibilities I am OK with that. However, these three should be divergent not as close together as possible. E.g. female elven mage, male human warrior, male rogue dwarf. 2. Reuse of monster models. Every game has to do it, I get it.
3. Limitations on the number of big decisions that alter a story arc. Understood that these cannot pop up all over the place, but there need to be some and a few need to be big ones. Mass Effect 2 demonstrated that if you have enough divergent story arcs, origin stories are less important.
4. Simpler combat systems. I get it that there are more console games to be sold than PC games. If due to economies of scale I have to have a simpler combat system, I can handle that to if it is still fun and challenging like in Mass Effect 2.
I accept the above cost containment, and it's because I expect the game designer to spend extra time making sure that what it DOES do is exceptional. No one has infinite resources. Rather than wisely spending its gaming investment dollars on the areas of most return for its gamers, Bioware was solely focused on their financial returns. They have made it clear that all I am to them is a dollar sign and they plan to cash out on the Dragon Age franchise. Very well, Bioware, your gaming audience understands, and I for one will sit out the next Dragon Age unless user reviews are 8.0+. You can buy off publications but not your user base.… Expand
Apr 15, 20114This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The worst Bioware game I have played. Cost cutting decisions, more than any other decision Bioware made, is what ruined this game. Let me be clear - game publishers need to manage costs - but they still need to deliver a first rate gaming experience. Bioware needs to deliver quality story telling, rather than rush a second rate experience out the door. I've listed what I think the most glaring cost cutting flaws in the game are: 1) My choices don't matter. I am constantly forced back into the same story loop. While I understand that there are limits on story divergence, my choices need to be about more than the flavor of the game I am playing. Not every choice I make needs to alter the story line. But some do. And at least a few need to fundamentally alter the course of the game. 2) Characters should be memorable, and not flat. If characters can just sort of fit whatever I want to do, then ultimately it's obvious that I'm playing a video game and not interacting with soulful representations. The game ruins the veil of "suspended disbelief" so critical to fantasy on so many occasions by just allowing characters to go along with whatever I want. Fenris, for example, HATES mages, and refuses to join my fight with the mages. Good for him even though it would have made my end fight more difficult. Then, because I manage a pithy one liner about slavery, he joins my party. IF he hated slavery and mages all along, the game should have built up this conflict more within his character, so that we could see the final crisis and denoument, not have him flippantly choose one side because it's what the player feels like doing. 3) Repetitive use of scenery. Origins got annoying after a while with the same monsters, but the scenery constantly changed. Dragon Age II made this worse by having me fight the same monster models and in the same settings three times in a row. 4) Every male model looks like they are on roids - how about some varied body types? What about the sinewy rogue? The willowy mage? Why as a mage are my muscles still exploding from my robes? 5) Sexuality should be more than a lifestyle choice for my romantic options. In Dragon Age, some characters were bisexual and others were not. Some got offended by homosexuality. This added an extra appreciated wrinkle to the game. Cost containment I could accept: 1) Focusing on fewer origin stories. Valuable development time could be saved if only a few major storylines are played. So, if I only get three origin stories instead of 15 possibilities I am OK with that. However, these three should be divergent not as close together as possible. E.g. female elven mage, male human warrior, male rogue dwarf. 2) Reuse of monster models. Every game has to do it, I get it. 3) Limitations on the number of big decisions that alter a story arc. Understood that these cannot pop up all over the place, but there need to be some and a few need to be big ones. Mass Effect 2 demonstrated that if you have enough divergent story arcs, origin stories are less important. 4) Simpler combat systems. I get it that there are more console games to be sold than PC games. If due to economies of scale I have to have a simpler combat system, I can handle that to if it is still fun and challenging like in Mass Effect 2. I accept the above cost containment, and it's because I expect the game designer to spend extra time making sure that what it DOES do is exceptional. No one has infinite resources. Rather than wisely spending its gaming investment dollars on the areas of most return for its gamers, Bioware was solely focused on their financial returns. They have made it clear that all I am to them is a dollar sign and they plan to cash out on the Dragon Age franchise. Very well, Bioware, your gaming audience understands, and I for one will sit out the next Dragon Age unless user reviews are 8.0+. You can buy off publications but not your user base.… Expand
Apr 15, 20112In what feels like an EA money grab the story is uninspired, the design is repetative, and the 'dungeons' have been reduced to a grind of defeating wave after wave of the same enemies. I think this is probably the worst game I have played from Bioware and will remain a dark stain on their otherwise impeccable record. Is this what EA does to their studios? Makes them creat BAD games? BAD might be an exagguration but it is definately not worth the 80~ critic average it recieved.… Expand
Apr 16, 201110This game deserves a better rating from real fans. Yes, it is nothing like Origins, but it is still a game that I spent 70 hours. Different but effective graphics, a great story, and a fast paced game play that still is exciting to play. Origins had better game play to me but I still spent a long time hacking and slashing with awe.
Apr 16, 20113...silent...still silent cover my mind. I buy this game before they come, and that is my mistake. But i believe, what bioware said...no more my "dear" bioware...I newer buy your game before they come, even if you give me half prize. I WANT MY MONEY BACK. This game is some joke.
Very angry, and unhappy player.
Apr 16, 20118Judging by the review scores, I'm guessing there are a bunch of disappointed Dragon Age: Origins fans and/or perpetually depressed people purposely exaggerating minor annoyances. If you review Dragon Age 2 based on its own merits and not its prequel, its hardly the bad game other people make it out to be. Giving the protagonist a voice? Progress. Speeding up the game play and reducing the number of available special abilities? Better combat. The menu system is less complicated. The game is a tad bit shorter as well. Most adults/people with jobs hardly have the time to play a game as large as Dragon Age. Good decision in making the game easier to finish for busy people. The bottom line is that sequels are sequels for a reason. They "try" to make improvements for the better. If your going to harp about anything, talk about the reused level design and assets. That is something worth discussing.… Expand
Apr 16, 201110I cannot understand the MASSIVE backlash of negative reviews. I loved this game for the character development, the superb voice over work, the story - which is one of the best I've seen in a video game - and because it was just a bloody good time. There were some things I missed from DAO, like slow-mo kill moves, but those were far from decisive. I give this a 10 because I walked away from this game FEELING like a champion.… Expand
Apr 17, 20111For fans of Dragon Age Origins and Awakenings, DA2 is a Epic Fail, which pales in comparison to the original. DA2 will only bring you disappointment. Its a tiny world with recycled maps, recycled music, shallow characters. It is a tedium to play.... and unlike the original you wont want to play it through again.
Apr 17, 20115The game tries hard to appeal to a wider audience. Tries to go the story route more than the strategy route. Unfortunatelly even on the story part, the game lacks depth. You have nor real background info on your character, you do not know why you are doing what you are doing and the things you do often seem artificial and not natural. One example: Instead of gathering 50 gold to make a living you gather 50 gold to invest them in something. In order to get to those 50 goldcoins you do a lot of different quests. A few of them are good, but most of them involve running around for ages seeing the same stuff over and over again... back and forth back and forth.... the story has it peaks, but is overshadowed by really bad character integration. The class you play doesnt matter much do the dialogues. Even the world does not react if you are using magic on the streets, which is forbidden in the game. Combat wise, the game is very chaotic. There is no top down view anymore, so you often have problems with controlling the party or getting a good overview. Handling of NPC equipment is reduced to a minimum and there is no "common goal" that unites your party, but rather loose ties that dont really justify the actions of the companions. To me it didnt make much sense in most cases.
The game didnt develop naturally but feels forced by guidelines: "We need to have this, we need to have that... " In the end they should ve listened more to their stomach I think. Mediocre game with some good story moments, but lacking in most other areas.
I can only say this:
"If you try to please everybody you will end up pleasing noone"… Expand
Apr 17, 20119This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I was completely in love with DA:O and when I had beaten it I looked into the ME-universe and played them. Now I'm back in Thedas and it's not the same game as DA:O but for me this is better.
I think fighting is more fun this time around. I have beaten the game with one mage and one rogue and they feel much more responsive than DA:O. I prefer the abilty trees in DA2 to the DA:O version when you had to get them all in a straigh line. Story:
You are following Hawke and his/her family after they have fleed their home due to the blight, so no big bad thing to fight against from the get go. I like it, it was certainly different from most other games I've played so far.
* Act 1: You meet up with the majority of the party ( except for Sebastian the dlc-prince ) and get to know Kirkwall. You are dirt-poor and just try to get by. This is pretty much when I try to get a feel for my current Hawke. Do-goody or evil jerk? Night and day-mode was pretty nice and easy to understand on my first Hawke that I played without spilers or info. It can feel perhaps a little long but there are many fun q's and they introduce the characters and lore of the city. Many q's in this act will have a story that continues in the following acts.
* Act 2: After a few years you and your companions are starting to get to know eachother better, some might even fall in love with you. Others might not. Things are starting to get more heated politicly and since Hawke has moved up in the world gets to be involved in it. My fave-act. I have a tremendous amount of fun with the q's and companions. This act has the two funniest q's involving Varric and Avaline and the sadest q with Hawke's mom. Great story-telling with highs and lows and romance if you choose to pursue it.
* Act 3: Things get more and more out of hand. You and your comanions might really get to know eachoter better and if you're lucky there is a conclusion to your romance. It ended a bit abruptly. Conclusion to choosen romance if pursued. Have tried the end fight with two Hawkes and it was fun on both. Companion bases:
Each companion has their own place where you can talk to them, think of Mirandas office in ME2. I like it, this time around we get scenes with our companions and not just see them from the shoulders and up when we talk to them. There are a mention in the q-logg when you should go around to them. I know some people dislike it, feeling that that means that they aren't free to talk to their friends when they like. For me this works better because a) I don't have to run around doing the Garrus-calibrations-routine. If there is something for me to see then I'll know. No point in running around if they've got nothing to say b) in DA:O Leliana had nothing to say for the finishing 1/4 of the game. Since I had used up all my conversations. This way I get to have the romantic conclusion in the end of the game.
Rivalmance and romance
One of the best changes they have done to the game. There is a possibility to develop friendship from a point of agreement or more of a agree to disagree-version. This influences dialouge and there are significat changes to the romance-path. Easily one of my favourite changes. Remember always leaving Morrigan at camp because she keept disagreeing with me. In DA2 I would simply have rivalmanced her and that would have been one hell of a romance. Great replay-value to see a romance from a different side.
Voice and wheel:
I love having a voice, after playing ME and ME2 I used to really dislike my silent warden. One of the big changes in the game. Prefer F!Hawke but that's just me. I prefer F!Shepard to male shepard also.
There are 3 different major tones that your Hawke can take on in game. This, and the romance/rivalmance are the two best changes for me. You can call them diplomatic, snarky and direct. Have sofar tried diplomatic and snarky. Both were good but snarky was a bit more fun. One of the best things about it is that it made a second Hawke with a new tone feel very different from the previous Hawke. Great replay-value for me at least. There are also dialouge options that only are open to a specific tone but you won't see that if you don't play several Hawkes.
What I would have liked to see more of:
* Perhaps a little more intro to the Hawke family but perhaps they dropped us and the Hawkes straight into action simply so that there would take so much time for the player to get to Kirkwall. Remember having read somewhere that a large number of wardens got stranded in Ostagar and I'm not surprised. I have 2 there at the moment. But that would have made me happy.… Expand
Apr 18, 20113This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This game is very weak compared to the first game. The story was not as good and didnt flow well at all. The game seemed to want to push the player towards a gay romance was a real negative for me. (No I dont care about your politically correct ideas about it....I played the game and thats how I feel) This is the first bioware game I will not play a second time. I would tell my friends not to buy this game.… Expand
Apr 19, 20110Disaster of a game. Hack and slash gameplay with a story that would make straight to DVD movies look like Oscar winners. Horrible clipping, textures, and unnecessary "jelly" blood. Most important is how those involved with the game refuse to acknowledge any criticism. Avoid at all costs.
Apr 19, 20118Although there is some restriction in gameplay and not so great like its precedessor, in my point of view, this is still a good game that worth to play. Hope in the next sequence, the creator should not get the same weakness and restriction that they have made in this game. They deserve to get a praise, though. 8.0 points
Apr 19, 201110After playing for 40h (yes it does take that long), I can say that this game is amazing. Almost all of the flaws have been taken out from Origins, the combat is much more fun, the leveling system is better, the animations are far superior, and most importantly of all, the story is good. I completely disagree with the negative reviews, and suspect that a fair few are simply trolls.
Apr 19, 20115the game was obviously rushed the combat gets very repetitive after a while and the maps are recycled the story is shorter but although it's a good one i say it's very disappointing game but still if u like stories and rpg in general it s still a good one
Apr 19, 20117Although a disappointment after DAO, this game, on its own merits, wasn't especially bad or good in my opinion... just middle of the road. I notice that most reviewers who rate this game highly do so while attacking reviewers who don't. I don't know what this means exactly (I should have studied psychology), but it's interesting. It's almost as if they're ashamed for rating it so high.
Apr 20, 20115I realy wonder how people can give a game a 0 rating, whatever. This game ain't bad, it is a bit above average.
It has flaws, obviously. The graphics aren't that good, the obvious console controls are just slapping you in the face from time to time, but it is infact a fun game.
It took me about 16 hours to complete, I did most of the sidequest and I died quite alot. The strongest aspect of this game is obviously the story, which kinda feels just like a bridge between the last Dragon Age Origin DLC and the next DA game, or possibly Dragon Age 2 DLC.
I would recommend buying it if the game wasn't so repetetive, had more variety and overall, was just more fun. I am a person, that does realy not care about graphics at all, all I got is a PC, which isn't good, so my graphic limit is mostly at medium.. and a medium resolution. It is a fun game if you just complete the story and just look the other direction when a flaw just walks next to you. Characters are fine... didn't think they would have much depth in it, because it was mostly going for Hawk. It's a 6/10.… Expand
Apr 19, 20115First RPG from Bioware that can be humbly summarised as a mediocrity or even below. While it still shows us that the team has decent writers and artists, a lack of strong design leadership and quality is something we did't see in Bioware RPG's before. It's a linear adventure with watered story and, to some extent, fun to banter with characters, so-so combat and.. that's it. Dragon Age 2 lacks freedom of choice (one we have is actually a masterfuly done illusion, which waves if you try to replay game second time), exploration; to some extend, character customisation; puzzles; it does't give player any tactical challenges. Dragon Age 2 also laughs at many DA:O aspects and characters, beating any decentness from them with black emo stick, and fails to deliver long, gripping dialogues. Overall, one can have some fun with this game, but it's almost painful experience to begin with. This game does't worth it's 60$, and makes you sorry and sad for yourself, your time and money after.… Expand
Apr 20, 20111I've played and liked quite a few Bioware games. I thought DA:O had a good story and the gameplay was engaging. DA:A was essentially the same gameplay and a slightly less compelling story, but hey, it can't always be The Blight. I even bought a few DLC missions, which usually seemed worth extending my stay in the game world for a few bucks. Dragon Age:II is absolutely horrible. I feel like a complete sucker for buying it. I even pre-ordered the Signature Edition based on my experience with their previous titles. The story drags along slowly and seems irrelevant. The gameplay and combat system just hack-n-slashing until so that maybe you can use a special ability during a fight. And the fights are no longer strategic. It's just hacking and slashing waves of baddies until the next waves jumps in from all sides like ninjas. The skill tree revamp was interesting and I kinda liked that, but not being able to customize your companions' gear seemed to dumb it down. I will probably still buy Mass Effect 3 on release day (or pre-order) because I think they've prioritized that as their marquis product and won't stray too far from the Mass Effect formula. But as for other Bioware games, especially future Dragon Age games, it will take much more than underhandedly gaming metacritic in order for me to buy it.… Expand
Apr 20, 20117Dragon Age 2 is a fun game that gets a lot right, but is ultimately overshadowed by a rushed development. If Bioware had spent more time on the game and put less emphasis on streamlining, it could have been a masterpiece. While the game was released quite buggy, at the time of writing this most issues have been resolved.
Apr 21, 20114Could have worked as a stand alone title but did not feel like a sequel to DA:O. It was almost as if the developers were trying to fix what was broken in DA:O and improve upon it but the problem was there wasn't a lot wrong with the first title in the Dragon Age franchise. Loved DA:O did not care for Dragon Age II.
May 18, 20116I really liked the first one... although I always preferred the Mass Effect games... and The Witcher... I really wanted to like this game... and guess what! I liked it... it was not this epic adventure, which the first one was... it was nowhere near the masterfully executed Mass Effect... it did not even hold a candle to KOTOR... BUT it WAS fun. But let me get to the specifics: The graphics are for todays standards very bad. OK, face animation is great... but the designs and the cartoony art style... did not work for me. The story did not seem like a whole story... but random scripted events tight together... Although the years advanced... Kirkwall stayed the same... the same almost dead and unimpressive city... characters did not age, at least not visually!
The whole sub story with managing the Bone pit... completely wasted... Locations looked often very similar if not exactly the same... the music was unimpressive, the fighting was ridiculous over the top...
I could go on like this... BUT IN THE END... AS LONG AS IT LASTED... I had fun with it... despite it's numerous flaws and design short comings... The characters were interesting, the story seemed intriguing... but ultimately turned out to be mostly about nothing... just a random string of scripted events... I think the only reason I really can recommend the game... is for it's characters...
It is nowhere as good as the critics-score... but it is better than the User-Score...… Expand
Apr 21, 20115There I was loving everything DA1 deluxe was offering and DA2 come out and HOLY CRAP! what did they do to this game? combat has turned into some button bashing crap devoid of any tactics, graphically it doesn't seem enhanced at all... in fact the texturing seemed much lower even AFTER downloading the DX11 texture pack... totally ruined the gameplay so much that its hard to care about the story at all.… Expand
Apr 21, 20112This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Alone, Dragon Age 2 is a decent game. It's not good, and it's certainly not great, but it's decent. As part of a franchise, however, it is a complete and utter failure. The decision to not include (for the most part) any of the characters and location that made the original shine, makes Dragon Age 2 a bland and mostly unintelligible mess. There's no clear enemy, the party members are bland at best, and combat has become so simplistic that it adds almost nothing to the game. Dungeons are repeated endlessly, characters that you don't care about are dragged on screen repeatedly, while the ones you do care about, Zevran, Alistair, Leiliana, get almost no screen time. The "decisions" you make have almost no impact on the actual game. No matter what you do, Anders will become a terrorist. And those are just the failings of the game. As a member of a franchise, there is nothing in this game that is a marked improvement from the first game. Yes, it's a little prettier and runs a little faster, but that was never the draw of the original. What Bioware failed to do in this game was continue with what made Origins great: Characters and story. Dragon Age 2 has neither. Dragons Age 2 features a save game transfer like Mass Effect 2. Unfortunately, the save game transfer has almost zero effect on the game. Mass Effect 2 could be radically different depending on your Mass Effect 1 playthrough, with characters that would otherwise be present for major events of the game being absent, or your status as a galactic agent. The save game transfer in Dragon Age 2 affects who you talk to a few times. Nothing is gained from transferring an old save. Sure, you can hear snippets of dialogue about your old adventures here and there, but they add absolutely nothing. Why Bioware chose to make Dragon Age into a franchise more akin to Mass Effect baffles me. They are radically different games, both in execution and in writing. Mass Effect was designed around one character, Shepard. Forcing one character into the spotlight of Thedas is awkward and does not fit. I can hope and pray that Bioware drops Hawke for the next game, but of course they won't. In short, do not go into this game expecting an experience akin to Dragon Age: Origins. Doing so will just set you up for disappointment. Be prepared for a mediocre experience that is untrue to the original.… Expand
Apr 21, 20113Pros:
+ The clear abilities points distribution system is a improvement
+ Voiced protagonist dialogs
+ "Sell All Junk" button (Only a requirement when you have junk)
- Cheap dungeon design
- Excessive gore and unnatural moves in combat animations
- Spiders drop gold (What?)
- Shallow characters and dialogues
Apr 21, 20110It's a rushed game and console port. It's not a roleplaying game either, it's an action game where with too much dialogue, and it's also a terrible action game. It lacks tactics, especially because enemies appear from thin air (from nowhere) in wave after wave after boring wave. The story is absolutely lineal and makes your choices pretty much pointless. Forced character deaths are also a big design flaw, proof that the story desperately needed faked intensity in order to appear well made (which is not, in fact it is predictable, slow and unimaginative). The classes have been dumbed down, with very little choice. The boss fights often end up on absurd "benny hill" scenes where your character runs around so the timers for healing potions comes up, proof that the gameplay was poorly designed and barely tested. Overall it's a extremely dissapointing game, especially if you compare it to the first, although it's not a big surprise considering the tiny developing cycle that they went for.… Expand
Apr 22, 20114Disappointing, a watered-down version of the first.
The game engine and UI has been improved. I prefer the newer talent trees. And the characters are quite engaging and held my interest. But the story is very watered down and it takes place in the exact same stages over and over. The repetition in stages, as well as combat, almost make the game intolerable. Aside from a (very) few key events, player choices seem largely irrelevant. For some utterly baffling reason, only Anders (and the player) can learn to heal. I felt as if I was forced to use Anders and Aveline (the tank) if I was to adopt any strategy. Characters that are unused might as well be dead to you.
It is a decent enough game (and the final battle is actually quite epic), but I felt like the media critics got this absolutely wrong. It has its charms, but it is largely an unworthy sequel and I regret spending $70 on this product. Wait for the price to drop before purchasing this one, you won't be missing much.… Expand
Apr 30, 20111Ah Dragon age 2.. By far the biggest letdown so far of 2011 in my eyes. The graphics are worse than the original, the city which you spend almost the entire game in is so incredibly lifeless, stale and repetitive that you would think this game has been made in 2005 by amateur developers, but sadly this game is made by Bioware who in the past has brought us many great games.
I for one really hope this isn't a sign for things to come as Dragon Age 2 should have never been released in the state it is in, poor gameplay, poor graphics and artistic direction, poor RPG elements and immersion factor.
Extremely poor game. 1/10… Expand
Apr 22, 20118Don't come into this chapter of the Dragon Age saga expecting Dragon Age Origins 2, instead prepare yourself for a completely different experience. Don't believe the naysayers when they say this is a terrible game far from it, it's just not the game we all expected.
The combat is faster, and much more enjoyable outside boss fights then origins was, and no less of a challenge on Hard or higher. The lose of the tactical camera is unfortunate and will take some getting used to for those that relied on it heavily in Origins like myself.
The writing (specifically the party members interactions) is some of the best bioware has given us.
There are some questionable decisions though, the re-use of dungeons is a big let down, as was the decision to limit party members to one outfit (understandable from a character perspective, but a letdown game play wise) and act 3 seems a little rushed.
Also, playing as a Mage can be a bit jarring given the lack of a reaction it garners from characters in the world given the overall story within the game.
Playing on anything other than a dx11 capable pc will be a big let down, the texture work, especially on the characters, is fantastic with the high quality texture pack, though some of the generic npcs still need work.
All in all this is still an excellent game (even if it is below the quality we expect from bioware), and a must for the plot and character interactions alone, that is if you can get past the changes to the combat system and the vitriol from the online community at large.… Expand
Apr 22, 20115Dragon Age 2 is not, overwhelmingly, a bad game. What little there is to be found endearing in Dragon Age 2, unfortunately is dwarfed by issues which go to the core fantastical aspects of a role-playing game, those which should be the highest on the list of priorities and in terms of attention to detail, but were evidently almost complete afterthoughts in terms of execution. Dragon Age 2 ticks all the necessary boxes on paper, but fails to deliver on too many to be worthy of Dragon Age heritage.
Environments in Dragon Age 2 lack variety, use of color palette, textured surfaces, remarkable geometry, landscapes and architecture. To some extent it lacks an appreciable depth of field, somewhat owing to the lack of camera control but mostly due to the sheer absence of ambience. According to Dragon Age 2, in the Free Marches you will struggle to find a single living organism that is not humanoid, the few exceptions being confined to dungeons and necessarily so as to provide some degree of enemy variety. Dungeon design is sadly linear, and the contemptuous re-use of dungeons, caves and buildings, speaks to the very limited abilities of the frenetic copy-paste monkey that works in the level design sub-department.
The story is merely an interwoven series of loosely or altogether unrelated events, which limp along sluggishly in anticipation of core storyline development. The framed narrative is employed desperately to try and give connectedness to the disjointed combobulation of quests, but ultimately is used far too ineffectually and limitedly to achieve this. Short scenes of framed narrative between Varric and his "host" all but gloss over the concerns of almost an entire chapter in mere seconds, before once again thrusting another tedious act of grinding through the same handful of environments and dungeons on the player, this time for, purportedly, different reasons.
Also concerning with regard to story development was the painstaking effort taken to segment each act, the first desperately trying to convey uncertainty, the second an illusion of stability, and the third, predictable and unsatisfying, proffering an ill-conceived cliche to lead in to Dragon Age 3. Morality was shambolic. Far too often it was born out of a dialogue option, invariably confused with the horrible conversation wheel, further still by ambiguous paraphrasing, and then turned into a wedge issue between two or more companions competing to be your "friend" or "rival". /golfclap
The problem with this logic barren system of morality, friends and rivals, is in so much that rivals and friends tend not to party or group together, and certainly not in the circumstances presented in this particular tale. This abomination of morality which presents in Dragon Age 2, is actually the moral consequence of actions on relationships, as opposed to actually being held to account for moral decisions oneself. The conversation wheel really has no place in a fantasy wRPG. I literally lost count of the number of times I chose a paraphrased option based on what it said, rather than the wheel icon, and heard the protagonist deliver a line completely at odds with the tone of the paraphrasing. I don't think i've ever quick-loaded more times in a single game play-through in my entire life. In fact i'm sure I quick-loaded less playing through Origins on Nightmare.
Dragon Age 2 lacked the often dark, dry, mature, double-entendre rich, witty banter that ensued from companion interaction, as in Dragon Age Origins. In stead it has been replaced with cheap jabs between two companions, very occasionally humorous and even then, far short of witty, and far too often of questionable intent. No, even frolicking elves can't redeem a conversation between Varric and Isabela.
DA2 had the potential to be a good game, even a great one. Unfortunately it missed the mark by a lot. It wasn't due to sequel expectations, but a significant drop in the quality of product. I'm certain even Bioware is not so far removed from reality, as to have been aware they were not releasing an AAA sequel to Dragon Age Origins. If Bioware was really sincere about trying to capture a wider audience, well, good luck to them with that in the future. Once bitten, twice shy.… Expand
Apr 22, 20113its a working game with 3d graphics, a story, and characters(not compelling, interesting, deep, or smart in any way, no sign of intelligence from the ones responsible for character design)
this can be said about almost any game, and thats why we look for what makes the games unique, and that is what DA:O was, this looks like DA:O got robed of its limbs and head, whats left is a bloody gory torso with no depth or the "true" rpg feel that, some people may argue that DA2 should not be compared to its predecessor, because its a different game, but it should, it realy should, they sat the standard with DA:O and if they expect the game to be received well, they need to make a game of equal or better quality, not a dumbed down thing meant for the larger demographic.… Expand
Apr 22, 20114This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The whole game feels rushed and incomplete, more like a doodle than a landscape. Even the main questline reuses areas that are both geographically and conceptually different, there is a Cave environment, a Warehouse environment and an Undercity environment. Get used to these because you will see them, often. The game takes many of the elements of the first game and discards them on the basis that it's easier to throw away concepts than fix them, discarding the Crafting system in favour of purchasing the crafted items after finding permanent resources in the game.
Most of the characters are completely unlikable, Anders springs to mind almost immediately. The handling of the games "Romances" for lack of a better term is almost unforgivable, the writing is blunter and less interesting than a cheap fanfiction. The game's fans urge that the Romances are completely voluntary and are a side aspect to the game, this is at odds with the game it self, the Romances are aggressively forced upon the player, with heavy skill benefits for players who partake, as well as some characters actively disliking you if don't show interest in romancing them.
The ending is just appalling, every faction in the game ends up betraying you, regardless of your choices, just so you have to fight them all. This is unforgivable in an RPG that promotes the value of a choice.
This game is much, much less enjoyable than the first game in the series, which offers both more features, better writing and more choice.… Expand
Apr 23, 20110Terrible game on more levels then one. I do not recommend it at all, very linear unoriginal and unimagined game. It is an obvious cashcow and nothing more. The game morphs into and simple point A to point B fairly quick, with hours of back tracking and very dull fetch quest. The story starts strong but quickly turns into something you would find amongst the indie titles of the RPG world. Its a mess and nothing about it warrants your time.… Expand
Apr 23, 20116Before game came out I had big hopes for it. Demo was pretty good ..but very misleading for what the game really is. DA2 is very linear game that take place around one location with very linear quest (go and kill, or bring me this and that) graphics are better then first Dragon Age but not much engine was just tweaked and updated to 2011 standards. Combat is satisfying, changed to more hit&slash paste so you font have to pause game on every encounter but it's still available for those playing on harder difficulty.overall game is a let down after what dragon age 1 was and not worth 30Â£ (full price) good rent material
Apr 24, 20111This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Horrible disappointment.They took everything that was good in Dragon Age Origins&Awakening and threw it out of the window.Graphics? Poor level design,recycled generic dungeons,90% of the quests are located in ONE CITY! Just terrible.Sound? Also much better in Origins,voice acting in DA2 is poor and unconvincing,music was also waaaaay better in Origins.Dialogues? The dialogue system is a very very poor copy of the Mass Effect dialogue system,with pseudoparagon and pseudorenegade answers and supposedly funny answers that usually spectacularly fail to be funny.Dialogue system in Origins provided much more to choose from and it was much better written.Party members? Extremely annoying and shallow (Varric Tethras is the only half bearable character) and you cannot change their armor AT ALL.Romance? Almost non existant options for any interesting romance,especially for male Hawke,you get to choose from retarded elf woman (Merrill) and a slut (Isabella),that is it if you dont count gay romance with Anders.Combat? One of the most annoying parts of the game,dumbed down to the console click click level catered for the very casual RPG gamers,any true RPG gamer will be extremely disappointed with the new combat system.DAO had pretty good combat system,DA2 combat system is total crap.User interface? DAO had beautifully designed user interface with detailed descriptions of items,now you get a bland black user interface that has no place in any game,let alone a fantasy game.Weapon,armor and item descriptions are also totally dumbed down.Now you actually collect "junk",way to go.Storyline,quests and ending? Unlike DAO,DA2 forces some plot developments on you,regardless of what you do or choices you make,lame.In DAO you could influence even major plot developments,often in significant ways.Now you are forced to accept certain decisions and your influence on them is cosmetics.This game is either rushed so it is half done or Bioware decided to dumb down their best RPG since Baldur's Gate to cater for wider audience,and therefore make more money for Bioware.Hopefully they will listen to the widespread criticism of DA2 and make the likely third installment of Dragon Age once again a real hardcore RPG.DA2 is a great example of what NOT to do with a sequel to a game,take everything that was good,throw it away,add horrible redesign and "new features" that are actually crap and you get this.They even managed to screw up the redesign of DAO character faces like Sandal,Zevran or Alistair.Not to mention that darkspawn now look like a joke.In some moments during gameplay I started laughing on how terrible some things were compared to DAO.I just could not believe that Bioware can screw up the sequel this much.Note-I originally posted this review in the Xbox360 section of DA2,instead of the PC by mistake,by mistake,if anyone knows how can I remove that review let me know.… Expand
Apr 24, 20111Unimmersive and disjointed story, boring characters, the exact same 4 locations over and over again, dumbed down combat to appeal to the masses of the consoles, respawning enemies right in the middle of a fight out of thin air, third person view exclusive, complete removal of strategy with a switch to storm-in-and-shoot-everything game type, no improvement in graphics, horribly inaccurate dialog wheel as in Mass Effect, repetitive questing which almost feels like grinding, inability to change the armor of party members, inability to play a race other than human, limitation of classes to warrior-rogue-mage, these are just some of the negative aspects that made me shelve this game indefinitely. When DA3 comes out, I'd rather read a quick story summary than play through this junk ever again.… Expand
Apr 24, 201110I love it. I thought that this game had several brave changes. The framed narrative was certainly new for me and I have never seen it in a game before. The voice was a much appreciated addition with the 3 different tones, my fav is the witty one. Think that you really should play two different Hawkes to really see how much this changes the game =) this even changes what you partymember and companions have to say. I love my DA:O to bits but for me DA2 has more replay value =) best game I have at home. Combat is better than DA:O but the thing I like the most are the companions. They are gold. Especially Fenris… Expand
Apr 25, 20114This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Very bad game... ItÂ´s not Dragon Age itÂ´s "Dragon Effect" (but worst). It no have the essence of the firts game... bad of work EA and Bioware... In the game, your decisions are useless...you cant change nothing in the world, all the facts happen without your help...your partners are lineal, they arenÂ´t charming like in origins...is a step back in rolÂ´s game... (sorry for my english...im spanish...)… Expand
Apr 27, 20112Horrible, horrible game. The recycled maps is completely disrespectful to all people who played the original Dragon Age and Origins. I cannot believe that they did such a poor and sloppy job on this game it even hurts to make a review for it. I for one am glad that a friend let me borrow it to try it and before I WASTED money on such a pile of crap. Dragon Age 3 better not be anything close to this or else I will most likely never, ever purchase a game from them again.… Expand
Apr 29, 20111This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Where the exciting story? Where is the charm for which all were so fond of Dragon Age origins? The game is completely disappointed me. Why do we unnecessary flips and jumps? If you're happy with sales, you know, everyone was expecting to see a good continuation, not a game for children up to age 11. one location you placed throughout the game. Players are not interested to solve the problems of one citysave a whole lot more interesting korolestvo. What have you done with satellites player? They are horrible to them can not speak normally, do not give the gift, there is no charm. How can we produce a good game for a year, besides making many more other projects? It is better to wait for 3 years, but a really good game. The Witcher 2 will destroy you. It's as if you are good lesson, dear developers.… Expand
May 1, 20116First, I loved DA:O. It was an amazing game and I had very high hopes for DA2, but unfortunately it's a big let-down. By no means is it a bad game, but it lacks the 'magic?' of DA:O leaving it indistinguishable from its competition.
DA:O did a great job with the companions - Alistair, Morrigan and Leliana were great characters with great dialogue--the game did an awesome job expounding on their backstories and personalities as time passed and the major plot-line advanced. Other than Varric, the companions in DA2 feel rushed, irrelevant, artificial and unnatural. This is a major blow to the game as companions are so central to DA:O's success.
The changes to the dialog system were good, as was the move to a MassEffect-like friend/rival system.. this isn't dumbing-down and is one of the few improvement over DA:O.
The fighting, while very cool at first, becomes excruciatingly repetitive very quickly. How many freakin' Shrieks did the developers think we needed to kill? I mean if you're going to build this complex and finely-tuned combat system, why the hell would you populate the maps with Shriek after Shriek, then a big Shriek or spider, over and over and over...
I was very disappointed by the lack of different locations in the game. You spend pretty much the entire game (~40 hours?) in one city - Kirkwall. That's it. In DA:O you explore an entire continent, from the the cities to the mountains, hidden temples, castles and battlefields... In DA2 you go uptown then downtown, a trip to a cave, and that's about it.
Overall I'm really disappointed - all they had to do was keep doing what they did so right with DA:O, but apparently that wasn't the plan. To be fair, it's a decent game, but it could have been so much better, and the franchise as a whole has probably lost some legitimacy.… Expand
May 1, 20119This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. A Truly Excellent Game Which i Look Forward To Replaying.
The Game Is Not Dragon Age: Origins, Because DA:O Was Most Likely The Prequel To Everything That Is About To Happen In The World Of Dragon Age, At Least That's How i See It Nonetheless Dragon Age 2 Is a Amazing Game But You've Got To Look At It For What It is Not What You Expected It To Be, There Are Some Minor Elements That Might Trouble Even The Most Loyal Of Bioware Fans Like That You Will Be Wandering The Same Dungeons And Areas Over The Course Of The Game, This Did Not However Bother Me Since You Are In fact Set In Kirkwall Not An Country Or State Like In DA:O And Of Course It's Not Going To Be As Big As Fereldan In DA:O, Well Anyway I Have Almost Only Good Things To Say About Dragon Age 2 In fact My Only Complaint Is i Just Wish It Was Longer. It Was Truly Money Well Spent And I Hope Bioware Continues To Make Amazing Games Like This One.… Expand
May 1, 20115This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Dragon Age II is the sequel of the award-winning roleplaying game Dragon Age: Origins. You play as Hawke, a human trying to survive in the world, and follow his journey to become the Champion of Kirkwall. But although the game boasts improved graphics, combat, and animations, it simply doesn't hold up to its predecessor.
After seeing the success of Mass Effect 2, both in sales and ratings, BioWare tried to copy the same formula to the Dragon Age franchise. Unfortunately, Dragon Age already established itself as a classic roleplaying game. BioWare themselves called it the "spiritual successor of Baldur's gate", one of the greatest RPGs of all time. Most fans believed that Dragon Age II would follow up on the success of Dragon Age, which led to much disappointment after realizing the changes to the game.
Graphically, the game sports more stylized art than the first game. The characters are more jagged and move more fluidly. The textures and details are far more fleshed out for some NPCs, but for others look absolutely dreadful. As for the environments, it's a different story completely. Kirkwall feels like a bland, half-created, static world with no real life. After ten years, you would think a city changed even slightly. This comes off as lazy and rushed and truly deserves to be criticized.
DA2 tries to fix things from Origins. Unfortunately, it fixes what isn't broken. While Origins almost felt turn-based, Dragon Age II feels incredibly chaotic. It has a more dynamic, cinematic action, but comes off as "a button-mashy God of War clone" in several instances. With your attacks going everywhere and spells flying all over the screen, it becomes very difficult to manage.
What made combat more enjoyable were the animations. Your character no longer moves in battle like he desperately needs to go to the bathroom, and you don't fire bolts out of a staff like you're shoving a pole forwards. Attacking with a staff in Dragon Age II is, aesthetically, better. The same goes for attacking with weapons. The animations in Dragon Age II are vast improvements to the original.
But sadly, the game falls flat with its equipment, map, dialogue, and leveling system. No longer can you equip party members with the armor you pick up. Each party member has three or four specific armors throughout the entire game, and that's all. Everything else is either for Hawke or ends up as vendor chow. BioWare most likely made this change due to negative backlash over Mass Effect's inventory system. There are two problems with that. One, Origin's inventory system wasn't difficult at all. It was very friendly and easy to navigate. Two, Mass Effect wasn't a standard RPG. When Mass Effect 2 came out and revealed the lack of a companion inventory system, it didn't matter much because Mass Effect had already made itself out to be a different type of game. As for Origins, it painted its skin as a RPG, which is why having no equipment system for party members in DA2 is highly disappointing.
In DA2, gear is scaled absurdly. Nothing you earn in the game feels valuable, as it will simply be replaced in a few levels. Quest rewards and powerful lore items will be swapped for standard swords in no time at all, which defeats the purpose of earning those rewards in the first place and ruins immersion. Despite having such lackluster scenery, DA2 also reuses its dungeons. Not just once or twice either. It uses a dungeon to death. Get ready to see one area recycled over and over again with different doors opened and closed.
The wheel from Mass Effect has made its way into Dragon Age. It's a gift and a curse. As a gift, it allows for easier navigation of desired options. If I want to tell Aveline something friendly, I choose the option with the blue feather. As a curse, it allows for easier navigation of desired options. The whole intricacy of Origins' dialogue system was that it didn't blatantly tell the player 'make this choice to gain approval' or 'make this choice to lose approval'. If the game has to tell the player what an option does, then it isn't a very clear system. But also, in the first game it was hard at times to decipher whether or not an option was kind or sarcastic, given that the PC had no voice. It's a hit and miss addition. And I'm sure giving the PC a voice certainly did improve the game for some other gamers. But not me. Hawke felt bland as Kirkwall itself.
In Origins I was the Warden, a humble dwarf who rose from the slums and vanquished the Blight. In DA2, I was Hawke, a man that's conveniently in the right place at the right time. I feel like I'm along for the ride, not like a hero. Maybe it's just me. I love Origins, I love BioWare, and I had fun playing this game, but really, it isn't worth more than $39.99. If you're looking for something to pass the time, get it. Otherwise, stay clear.… Expand
May 2, 20111Une arnaque TOTALE
Jeu bÃ©nÃ©ficiant de la licence officielle de DAO, sans ne serait ce qu'en contenir un brin de son essence spirituelle. Une trÃ¨s grosse dÃ©ception. Je n'ai mÃªme pas terminÃ© le jeu tellement je suis dÃ©pitÃ© par la mÃ©diocre rÃ©alisation, la pauvretÃ© gÃ©nÃ©rale du jeu, l'histoire creuse, les textures pauvres, les Pnj inutiles et sans relief, A Ã©viter Ã tout prix... ne mÃ©riterait mÃªme pas d'exister.… Expand
May 3, 20112Totally disappointing
Bioware should be very a shame of this cheap console port whereas, the predecessor (origin) was very good game in many ways; i.e., it was deep, complex, multiple endings and nice story.
this sequel is very shallow and unsatisfactory in many ways; i.e., no character development, no real attachment to story, shallow and speedy combat, very poor camera, silly dialogue option.
it is only achievement is brighter and shiner graphics, flashy and speedy combat system which is a shame as i was expecting a great sequel to a great game but these days the greed and rush for release date became primary objective of game publishers which resulted in these kind of games which can satisfy only young ages and new gamers (didn't play great RPG titles like Oblivion, Fallout 3, The Witcher and Dragon Age: Origin)
Few hours of play convince me that this game does not deserve the space on my HD and should be uninstalled immediately.
If anyone want to play an RPG game should avoid this title and look elsewhere.… Expand
May 4, 20110I only singed up to metacritic to give this pile of dung the worst possible score I could. I never liked the 1st one, although I loved BG, BGII, IWD & IWD II.
DOA2 picks up almost exactly where DAO left off... No, not as in story, but in its ham handed bludgeoning and blundering approach to the high fantasy genre.
DAO and DA2 are both heavily (sorry I mean entirely) aimed at the teen market, which I guess means the most moronic market available. Instead of Bioware evolving and maturing along side there (previously) faithful fanboy, i.e. me they seem to have undergone some kind of unbelievable retardation process where upon they have de-evolved into a dribbling, giggling, illiterate fool of a teenage boy with all the same sensibilities and philosophical approach that would come with that.
Both games absolutely smacked of immaturity and both have sunk my hopes on a titanic scale.
But... this is meant to be a review of DA2 and as such I would like to state that...
Everything that I absoluetely hated with a fiery, burning passion about DAO is worse by the power of 10 in DA2 and the few things I did enjoy about DAO (like the tactical return to BG for combat) has been ripped out and replaced with the most mindless, mundane and repetative 3rd person shooter style combat system.
Another shameful change to the format would be the all round sense of adventure. I played most of the game wondering what the plot is? I was often left wondering "What the hell is meant to be going on?" and "Why the hell do I care about menial task A, B, C, or D?".
Finally (and I mean finally from me as I need to go and make my self a comforting hot drink and calm down before thinking about how awful this game is gives me another panic attack), you are almost entirely stuck in ONE city.... This could have been done very well, look what Rockstar mange to do with their console games located within one area, why not a high fantasy version of a GTA game, maybe? Please don't get me wrong, I am not suggesting to introduce police chases and Ho's into DA2 world. I am merely saying with some time, money and a little hard work on the development side Bioware could have made a intricately designed city full of explorable wonder. Instead they gave us endless brown corridors.
And brown corridor brings me nicely to the end of my review (well more a rant I guess), as DA2 feels as though Bioware have brought us this game directly from one.… Expand
May 4, 20113In spite of my love for Bioware's games, I have to further confirm the disappointment of Dragon Age 2. A massive chain of uninteresting one-off quests requiring constant, oversimplistic, repetitive combat, playing out with formulaic results over which you have relatively little control. Generic conversation responses tend to lead to the same outcomes, and with the exception of your companions, none of the characters are interesting. Graphics look absolutely terrible, reuse of environments is questionable, retardedness of Templar who can't figure out that a mage MC is an apostate is inexcusable. Even despite being motivated to carry over event results to the next game, I ended up leaving this game abandoned, bloated and bleached in a field, uninterested in finishing, and swearing I would never Preorder a game again.… Expand
Jun 16, 20113A really bad game. Plain and simple. The 'level design' - and you have to use that term loosely - just consists of a few a very narrow corridors. The areas are shamelessly reused. How a developer can get away with making about 6 tiny areas for a 40 hour long game and calling it a day is beyond me. The game mostly takes place in a city and its surroundings. Needless to say, they never even bothered to design a city, only 3 separate and small areas that you can fast travel to.
The combat is frantic. Gone are the strategic battles of Origins. A lot of enemies bumrush you in the small corridors and you have to press the awesome button. On top of that, it is very tedious, since each and every single encounter you have will have about 4-5 waves of the exact same enemies literally teleporting in out of nowhere to bore you to death. Ridiculous game design. Not to mention that most encounters are random i.e. you just walk around and explore and don't see your enemy until the fight begins. Quite ironic from the company that bashes jrpgs. The difficulty curve is pretty much nonexistent if you keep your equipment in check since level scaling is in effect. A hurlock won't be easier to kill at lvl20 than at lvl1.
Your character, Hawke, has 3 stock replies locked in their respective places: Good, funny or aggressive. Funny is especially bad. Like "wanting to punch whoever wrote that crap" kind of bad. Good or aggressive is most of the time what you'd expect. Emphasis on most of the time, since the few words they put in the dumb dialogue wheel so you don't bother your pretty litle brain with too much reading can be misleading. Sometimes extra options or questions show up but most of the times they're just stuff that isn't worth asking or has already been answered.
The party members feel like wasted potential. You have to visit them in their homes so they all explain their backstories in about 2-3 conversations over time and all have a chain of quests tied to it. At the core, they're not all that bad but everything feels very formulaic so you end up not caring much about them. But hey, they're mostly bisexual and you can romance them since that's obviously more important than the rest of the game, so it's all good. Their armor isn't customizable but weapons, stats and skills are up to you.
Finally, the story. If you last long enough (trust me, that's difficult) to make it to the final act, you'll have a somewhat interesting story on your hands that just ends up being predictable, but at least you get the 'epic' high fantasy feel for a while and a laughable final boss. The first act just feels like a needless prologue and you will feel a general lack urgency or motivation. Act 2 is more bearable but still nothing to write home about. The side quests are all derivative and boring.
Lazy game design, bad writing, and poor production values are what make this a title that isn't just hard to recommend, but should simply be avoided by anyone. The icing on the cake is that overall, the game feels like a slap to the face for the people who had hope in the Dragon Age franchise and took it the exact opposite direction from what they were hoping for.… Expand
May 5, 20116I loved the first dragon-age - The way they made the game personal was a triumph of storytelling. Each betrayal and setback was met with unlooked-for hope and new opportunities. Each character was interesting and worth listening to (for the most part). The conversations were fun! And the ending was epic in every sense of the word.
This is NOT Dragon Age: Origins. The first problems show up in story immersion and emotional investment for the person playing the game. The game forces you to be human, then you find out immediately that the dwarf is telling this story, and he likes to lie. Once is enough, but they keep interfering in this manner. I kept hoping we would break in and save him, and the real story would begin. But no ... And they make it worse by making the characters bland. The choices people make are poorly motivated (or poorly communicated), on almost every single occasion, and there are often no options to help them mature, or avoid stupid mistakes.
Even fighting slavers - which usually feels very satisfying - seemed like a morally 'meh' thing. I've never felt so ambivalent about pursuing slavers.
On the technical side - the decision to remove the tactical camera angle left me with constant problems selecting where I wanted the team to go. If the camera angle is wrong, the computer won't allow me to tell the team to go there. But it gets worse - the game auto-rotates the camera while you're moving, making it even more difficult to keep the angle appropriate for movement.
So what makes this game utterly forgettable? The endings. They are forced, and there is no real opportunity to fight for a just cause. It made me feel dirty, and betrayed, and there's no option for justice or satisfaction. Maybe that was the goal, but this is not why I play Bioware games.… Expand
May 5, 20112this is one of the hardest reviews I think I will ever write. I am a long term fan of Bioware. I fondly remember reveling in Baldur's Gate all the way through mass effect and DA1. They are, in my opinion one of the best AAA developers when it comes to story line and polish. So the best description of my play experience with DA2 was a crushing sense of loss. I can only guess at what brought about the changes in the level of quality. The monster spawning out of thin air, the feeling of a corridor like linear progression, wooden dialog that leaves the player feeling let down are just some of the elements that, sadly,make this the last game I will buy from Bioware purely based it being crafted by them! if your reading this Bioware earn me back!! one bad title doesn't break you, but it does cause future games to be scrutinized before purchase. as to the critic score....integrity is important...don't you think?… Expand
May 7, 20113A failed attempt at making Dragon Age a mix of action an RPG. What we get is a severely dumbed down RPG with unsatisfactory action element, that take up the majority of play time. Plus and uncompelling story that has nothing to do with Origins...
I do not get how this game has gotten so many positive reviews... This is not a BioWare grade product, this is something straight from the bowels of EA's rush'n'cash department.
So where do I start? First of all, as I stated before, the story has virtually nothing to do with Origins. If you were hoping to see big time consequences of your actions in the previous game, you are in for an unpleasant surprise. Nothing you did in Origins has any impact on DA2, apart for some minor and negligible side quests. Furthermore, the story itself feels incredibly forced at times. In Origins, I really wanted to defeat the Blight, even while playing an "evil" character. DA2's story didn't make me care about it's main plot, mainly because, for the most part, it was being shoved down my throat. There is a quest quite early on, which you are forced to do to advance the story, but there is no logical train of thought nor are there any circumstances in game that would make your character want to do this quest, unless they felt a certain way towards one of the main groups presented in the story. It feels more like an optional side quest than a main plot one . And the side quests themselves are a travesty. Mind you, there are some cool ones that clearly have been thought through, but they are drowned in the sea of identical, almost grind-like, minimum flavour text, quest you get in a shoddy MMO.
Let's have a look at the game mechanics then. The new stats system feels more transparent and logical, the talent trees are better designed than those in Origins, but that's where the good stuff ends. The Mass Effect style dialogue tree looks well and all, except for the fact than in most cases, all you choose is they way your character will say, "Yes I agree". Fortunately this doesn't happen too often, but it becomes very annoying if you want to play, what is after all an RPG game. And speaking of RPG elements, you cannot equip your party with armour, and by that I mean that you can't customize your companions helmet, torso and boots slots. You are stuck with what they have, until you find a special upgrade, and every companion only gets four. Not four upgrade slots which you can fill in from randomly dropped upgrades, because there are no random upgrades. Each companion will only ever get four armour upgrades, so you don't overheat that brain of yours choosing which one to give to who. The combat would be great if not for one thing: enemies that spawn mid fight, usually off camera. And again it wouldn't be so bad if the newly spawned guys were just minions helping the big boss you are currently fighting. But more often than not, they are pretty powerful, and can seriously mess up your party if you don't spot them the instant they are spawned. Also, the difficulty settings have been dumbed down, so now you get friendly fire only on the highest level. And the gap between the two top settings (Hard and Nightmare) is so big, it seems no one had any time to tweak them. On Hard the game is still laughably easy, and on Nightmare it becomes, at times, downright frustrating. Graphically it is an improvement over Origins, allthough I was never the one to dislike a game just because it had old graphics. What I cannot abide however is the endless and shameless recycling of locations. Most of the main ones are ok, but it quickly becomes apparent that there are only so many side quest ones. And it's not like some quest just take place in the same location. The cave you enter on a beach will be the exact same cave you have already visited in the mountains, but maybe with an entrance that is located elsewhere, and with some areas sealed away. You really get the feeling they either rushed the game out, or were just plain lazy about it.
In an effort to appeal to a broader audience (namely the drunken frat boy demographic) BioWare has dumbed down their game to the point you can barely call it an RPG and added a ton of sub par action and clumsy gore. If this was a game by any other developer, and not a sequel to Origins, this would be an average game with a few memorable moments. Being as it is, it is a poor game with lots of memorable failures...… Expand
May 7, 20110I donÂ´t get this BIoware what are you thinking, they had all this beautiful assets and brand new wonderful engine in Origins.. you dish all that out.. To make Dragon age of Duty! is this really, are they going to dumb down all games!? like whats the point if I'm to see a cheap tv lord of the rings clone, I might as well do it for free in my TV.. I dont need another "tour content" rpg.
May 7, 20111I really don't understand the almost universal positive scores the official reviewers are giving this game. I loved the first game, but this game is absolutely terrible. Painful even. Its a disgrace that the official reviewers gave it the scores they did. Totally underminds their objectivity, I'm not going to believe their reviews into the future. Damn I'm disappointed. Bioware we are finished!!!!
May 8, 20117This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I think the user scores here are a little harsh, its a good enough game generally just a terrible one for what we are used to from Bioware.
They removed most of the things I love about rpgs and especially from DAO and flashed up the combat a lot. Saying that I liked some aspects of the combat but not enough to justify the removal of all the crafting and personalising of characters and party members.
I missed terribly the immersion from being able to converse with my team members whenever I liked and of course the romances were for me totally lacking especially compared to other Bioware games.
The story was okay, missions were ok. The mirror of transformation an awesome idea, so we could change characters appearance mid game, yay!
I would recommend this to friends but I would stress, do NOT expect to be able to enjoy it the same way you did as Origins. It plays and feels more like an action/shooter game… Expand
May 8, 201110If you're looking for a computer version of a dice based RL rpg, then skip this. If you want a computer game that has a lot of rpg elements, Dragon Age II is as good as there is out there. I found the balance between story and interesting game play in fight scenes to be excellent. I do miss the conversation engine from DA:O, but I didn't find the conversation wheel to be game braking by any means.
All in all, based on enjoyment level, of the 4 DA/ME games released so far, I found this to be the most enjoyable, followed by ME, the DA, then ME II, but I would consider them all top notch games. I thought the story, including the expanded time frame, was compelling, and the ending left me wanting more in a good way.
DA II's combat system, to me, felt far more immersive than it predecessors, especially when playing as a rogue. You can hack and slash your way through the game on normal difficulty, but higher difficulties require some tinkering with the tactics settings, which are much improved as well.
Just as with a lot of BW games, there were a host of bugs on release, many of which have been fixed in subsequent patches. I do wish there had been a little more crossover from DA:O, but there were strong hints given that there will be something later in the series that ties things together. I also found the frequent recycling of maps leaving me underwhelmed at times. Yes, a city make of stone won't change much, if any, over the course of 10 years, but there should be more than 2 cave formations in outlying area's, and more than 3 building designs. Even small changes would have been appreciated.
The choices you make throughout the game do have a bearing on some things, though little affect on end game scenarios. Were this a stand alone game, I would be exceedingly disappointed, but viewed with the expected full series, I understand why some things have to be. It's a rather "Doctor Who" type of view of history and what can and can't be changed.
Overall, this is an outstanding game, with great replayablity and solid story. If you take it for what it is, and not what perhaps you wish it were (DA:O, or The Witcher) then it delivers. If you where hoping for a remake of the seminal title of the series, you'll probably be a bit disappointed.… Expand
May 8, 20110This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. A below mediocre game that doesn't know what it is. I like dumb button-mashers - like Heavenly Sword - and I like skilful button-mashers - like Tekken, or Fight Night - but the fighting in Dragon Age II isn't nearly half as fun and doesn't need skill - its one tactical trick of tag-team combos is permanently spelled out for you. Setting difficulty to hard just means a long boring slog. Besides I bought the game expecting it to be an RPG. It kind of is an RPG, if you think they are just about superficial levelling mechanics. The game world was also really restricted, no free-roaming and interactivity like you get in Fallout 3 for example - and famously you keep going back to the same locations all of the time, sometimes deliberately, sometimes because the makers were lazy.
Some of the dialogue is funny - it's the only thing that scores any points with me. Unfortunately every 'funny' conversation option you choose as the main character is weak and pathetic. Your interaction with other characters is restricted and the story doesn't make sense, I was meant to be in a romance with Isabella for years, but you get just two scenes about that. I kept trying to avoid fighting and be diplomatic, but the game's story pushed me into killing everyone whatever I did, while giving an illusion that there were other choices.
Graphics - a few textures are alright, some of the character designs are ok, but a lot of faces are worse than the original game. The city, countryside and sewers/cellars are quite drab and undetailed. The Qunari are ok, but they all look the same. The Elves have weird unappealing faces. Compared to the first game the voice actors didn't sound convincing, though some were good (but not your main character). In fact, apart from some better textures, there were no improvements.
I feel like I could go on and describe in more detail why this game sucks, but I want to forget about it and move onto something else.… Expand
May 9, 20113The shamelessly hyped and massively inflated "professional" reviews of this guy are absolutely pathetic. The combat is terrible, it feels like diablo except it isn't the mid 1990s anymore. The combat system becomes tedious and boring very early on. I do not consider this to be a true rpg. It is action or hack and slash style "adventure" with very little in the way of environmental and item variety. A massive dissappointment to anyone who played Dragon Age: Origins, or anyone actually expecting a full fledged Bioware RPG.… Expand
May 9, 20111Why such a low score for Dragon Age II? there are a few reasons;
1. Why would I buy a fantasy game like this to only play a human?
2. The combat of the first installment was well thought out, on the other hand in this game it simply has been dumbed right down for console users, as it would seem they used DA 2 as a cash flow and not much else. As is seems every game that goes from purely pc to pc & console it always seems to go straight down the toilet. This is no exception, but at least they kept the pause tactical menu for pc users
3. The storyline grabbed me no where near as much as the first, I played the first for hours on end. I didn't even bother finishing DA2 for its sheer lack of interesting things
4. While the graphics looked good there was simply no amount shine that could fix all of the bugs with this. What could have fixed this however was for bioware to spend some more time on the game, rather than simply trying to push it out asap.
The game while a great title has no real playability for me. Dirty, boring, rushed and dumbed down are NOT the way I like my games to be.… Expand
May 11, 20113Bottom line: mostly disappointed.
My main complaint about DA2 is extremely weak story line. For entire game you are completely in the dark waiting for something epic to happen only to have your hopes dashed in the end. Store is nowhere near what is was in DA:O or even DA:A
Secondly, did Bioware try to cut development costs? Graphics wise the game was pretty much unchanged compared to DA:O. You would assume that they would put a lot of effort in level design. Not so - the game brutally reuses same locations over and over again. There are less unique locations than in DA:A which is an expansion.
Thirdly, while it is nice that they have voiced the main character, overall dialog system has taken a turn for the worse. You pretty much have no control over your own character. Hawke's replies are completely unpredictable (so why even give player a choice). The same system works fine in ME and ME2 but is completely screwed up in DA2. And in the end dialog choices have very little effect on the direction of the game.
There isn't that much equipment available for main character to chose from and even less so for companions.
To be fair there is one improvement I can name - like simplified rune system (that got unwieldy in DA:A
Conclusion: If you liked DA:O and aren't desperate to play this game - don't. Wait for DA3 if it ever comes around (and not in the form of MMORPG as it very well may) and see if Bioware would do better then.… Expand
Apr 12, 201158Despite 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.