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4.4

Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 2326 Ratings

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  1. Apr 24, 2011
    5
    I have put over 100 hours into DA2 and I do not see how anyone can give this game anything above a 5 with a straight face. This game was clearly rushed. Did you know they ripped a character and all their missions right out of the game and sold separately as DLC on day one? The 60 dollar game you bought was an incomplete version of the game. The game is also one of the most glitchy I haveI have put over 100 hours into DA2 and I do not see how anyone can give this game anything above a 5 with a straight face. This game was clearly rushed. Did you know they ripped a character and all their missions right out of the game and sold separately as DLC on day one? The 60 dollar game you bought was an incomplete version of the game. The game is also one of the most glitchy I have ever experienced. The stats that rpg gamers spend so much time perfecting doesnt even work! all those points you're spending on skills isnt being calculated properly. There are tons of mission and AI glitches they are already working on a 2nd patch. I hate the dialog wheel. Hawk will always say something completely different than what you select on the wheel. I want to feel part of the conversation not alienated. I'd rather no voice acting at all than to have my main character always say something different than my selection. The combat and tactics are sloppy. As I mentioned earlier the stats do not calculate and the tactic behaviors conflict with each other leaving your AI useless on the battlefield. Your only choice is to manually control each attack or action on lengthy pauses. The original KOTOR for xbox would put this game to absolute shame. The graphics praises is nothing but brainwash propaganda. The framerate is less choppy but the actual graphics and art is a huge step back. The entire game is done in kirkwall not to mention the countless recycled caves, rooms, etc. Like I said this is a rush job. The only joy I got out of this game is the challenge of trying to beat it on nightmare mode. Look no further than your broken achievement list and store items as proof that they ripped a piece of the game right out and sold as DLC on day one. I didnt find this out until I was already somewhat deep into the game but had I known what I know now I would NOT have purchased this game. I think it's safe to say that EA has ruined Bioware like they ruined so many other developers. Expand
  2. Mar 16, 2011
    5
    Liked DAO until the "Golems of Amgarrak". The conversions became useless and idiotic. "I wonder what's over there? What could be in that tunnel?" "Lame!" - Now with DAII, the dialog seems pointless just the same. I don't feel involved and it doesn't matter what choices you make. Tactics for fighting are bad. I liked in DAO that you could target a mob, tell your guy to fight it andLiked DAO until the "Golems of Amgarrak". The conversions became useless and idiotic. "I wonder what's over there? What could be in that tunnel?" "Lame!" - Now with DAII, the dialog seems pointless just the same. I don't feel involved and it doesn't matter what choices you make. Tactics for fighting are bad. I liked in DAO that you could target a mob, tell your guy to fight it and at the right moment insert special abilities, now its just click click click. Mob placement could be way better, sure there are waves of monsters coming at you from ALL sides, but the fights are pretty weak and having to figure out how to combat a foe would be exciting. except for the Rock Boss, that was well done and probably the only reason why i have rated it as high as i did. If they have an addon for this game, I won't be buying it. With DAO, I would order in pizza, with DAII I think Ill go out. Expand
  3. Mar 17, 2011
    5
    Ok, this is the third time I've revised my review. Now that I am completely finished with the game I can firmly state I stand behind everything I said before. The limitations they've put on this game are inexcusable. To all the people saying it's a seperate game and shouldn't/can't be compared, let's be realistic. Not only is this a company we expect great things from, but it's a SEQUEL soOk, this is the third time I've revised my review. Now that I am completely finished with the game I can firmly state I stand behind everything I said before. The limitations they've put on this game are inexcusable. To all the people saying it's a seperate game and shouldn't/can't be compared, let's be realistic. Not only is this a company we expect great things from, but it's a SEQUEL so there are bound to be expectations based on the first. To all the people that are crying foul that the negative scores are a conspiracy theory, grow up. Not everyone has the same tastes and not everyone will accept anything less than their expectations. If your standards were set low, don't cry foul because we were holding this game to a higher standard. They stripped the character interactions with the party members astronomically compared to the first. They removed all customizing from your party members gear except for weapons and rings etc. The relationship building has been totally ruined in my opinion, it's nowhere near the depth of DAO. The fact that it has enemy scaling is also ridiculous in my opinion. That's what difficulty settings are for, if I work to be a badass, let me be one, don't make the enemies grow stronger with me. What, are they questing doing Darkspawny things like finding an amulet for another Darkspawn in Darkspawn village for xp and sovereigns? Having enemies pouring in from all directions is also annoying. It allows for little technique in setting up tactics for random encounters. As for positives, some of the characters are truly likable thanks to some excellent voice work and writing. The combat is a step in the right direction, but I still don't understand why developers think I want to wail on the x button for 3 hours at a time just because I'm playing on a console, patch in auto attack for my thumbs sake. The story is more up close and personal which in itself is interesting, but overall if you played the first, there's no comparison. The term "epic" could easily describe DAO, the term "meh" could easily describe this story. Interesting and good don't mean the same thing and this is just interesting, not 10 material. People need to stop being paranoid and nerd raging. The game doesn't hold up to the bar set by it's predecessor. Expand
  4. Mar 16, 2011
    5
    Just wanted to say to my xbox 360 brothers that are just as disappointed with DA2 as I am - go ahead and try Torchlight it was developed in under a year with far fewer developers than DA2 had and is a far superior game in nearly all aspects and costs a fraction of the price!
  5. Mar 13, 2011
    6
    Payed 60$ on steam just because of a review, and got what?! DAO was weak enough, but this ...! Simplifying everything to nothing.

    Dialogs reduced to 2-3 phrases, and thats great! Cause world and chars are totally empty. Their acts are so nonlogic and unpredictible, that in a half an hour i was just clicking icons. "Be nice", "be rude". Why DA2 is so gay?! Seriosly, in a few hours 3 f..
    Payed 60$ on steam just because of a review, and got what?! DAO was weak enough, but this ...! Simplifying everything to nothing.

    Dialogs reduced to 2-3 phrases, and thats great! Cause world and chars are totally empty. Their acts are so nonlogic and unpredictible, that in a half an hour i was just clicking icons. "Be nice", "be rude". Why DA2 is so gay?! Seriosly, in a few hours 3 f.. proposing "their services" and not even one girl blinking.

    Enemies are just fallin at you from nowhere like in some DMC. Do you need any tactics in chess when opponent can put any figure anywhere he wants?..

    Plot reminded ME2. Just get 50 sovereins (10 companions) to get to the new chapter. And you call that a scenario? Written in 15 minutes?! I dont even know what i'm doing when takin quest in 2 clicks, killing some more enemies, done in 2 clicks. What was is?!

    Locations look like Orzamar entrance. Sooooo lowpoly. No more to say.

    3-4 hours of DA2 was enough. Looks like nothin left of Bioware i ones knew. Bye guys.

    WHATS UP WITH REWIERS?!
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  6. Mar 8, 2011
    5
    As someone who deeply enjoyed DA:O, I am immensely disappointed by this sequel.
    Dragon Age 2 is inferior to its predecessor in basically every way.
    And how Bioware manged to even implement worse graphics than DA:O is completely beyond me. Ratings are always subjective but if you see game reviewers give this game a 10/10 praising its superior graphics .. you cant help but wonder how much
    As someone who deeply enjoyed DA:O, I am immensely disappointed by this sequel.
    Dragon Age 2 is inferior to its predecessor in basically every way.
    And how Bioware manged to even implement worse graphics than DA:O is completely beyond me.

    Ratings are always subjective but if you see game reviewers give this game a 10/10 praising its superior graphics .. you cant help but wonder how much of this praise came directly from EA itself.
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  7. Mar 26, 2011
    7
    Dragon Age II has been a difficult game for me to review. On one hand, it does so many things right that it is nearly impossible not to enjoy it. On the other hand, BioWare has made some extremely lazy and downright uncharacteristic design decisions that really hamper the experience and keep it from truly living up to its potential. On a technical level, the game is a vast improvementDragon Age II has been a difficult game for me to review. On one hand, it does so many things right that it is nearly impossible not to enjoy it. On the other hand, BioWare has made some extremely lazy and downright uncharacteristic design decisions that really hamper the experience and keep it from truly living up to its potential. On a technical level, the game is a vast improvement over Origins. The graphics, while still not nearly as good as the best in the industry right now, are a massive step up from the muddled, poorly textured mess that was DA:O. However, given the fact that there are only a scant handful of relatively tiny areas in the entire game, I am personally shocked that they are not the best graphics I've ever seen. There is a distinct lack of inspiration and polish in the visuals (with the exception of the blood effects, which are excellent even if they are a little over the top), and to be honest I find that fairly unforgivable due to the small volume of content that the devs had to polish. The sound is a technical high point here; battle is a cacophony of clanging, banging, grunting, and yelling and often sounds far more epic than it actually is. The voice acting is superb in most cases, and even the bad sections are better than the acting found in most games these days. I am truly floored by the amount of work that must have gone into recording all the possible conversations for Dragon Age II, and I have to give BioWare credit for not shirking here. The musical score is decent, but there are sections that seem as if they were recycled from Mass Effect 2 and, for the most part, none of the orchestral background music really does much to add to the experience. It's just sort of there most of the time. On the narrative side, BioWare once again shows that they are the kings of story telling in video games today, and even though the vast majority of the story is told without some looming evil or major focal point beyond your character's development it still succeeded in keeping me interested. The fact that the narrative engaged me on little more than a character development is quite impressive, and I actually wish more developers would choose this route over the cliched good vs. evil stories most RPGs give us. The other characters in your party are collected through a series of missions and happenings in the first act, and by and large they are quite well fleshed out. Despite some claims I have read to the contrary, I found nearly all of the new companions to be quite memorable and unique - the Dalish Merril is cute and naive, but has a substantial darkside, Fenris is suitably bitter and revenge-focused to fit nicely into his backstory, and Isabella the sensual pirate captain is a seemingly shallow woman who actually has a somewhat tragic past. These three were by far my favorites, but other characters such as Varric and Anders were also well thought out even if I personally found them both a little irritating. There is plenty of dialogue between your companions as you wander the world, and some of it is actually quite entertaining. As for the gameplay, combat has been vastly altered; the game now plays as more of a deep hack and slash than the standard BioWare RPG (think closer to Diablo than KOTOR). While I initiallly favored this change, I soon found myself wishing for the old click-once-to-attack functionality. I think the problem is that the abilities (shield bash, backstab, etc.) take far too long to cool down in most circumstances. This is coupled with enemies that seem far tougher than one would expect in terms of hit points, and the end result is a feeling of endlessly mashing A while waiting for abilities to cool down. I think there is potential in this system - even a heavy attack button would break up the A mashing - but as it stands now it feels a bit shallow. Finally, the setting. This is where I feel a lot of people, including myself, feel a little let down by the old and faithful BioWare. Let's get one thing out of the way: this is not the world-travelling DA:O. Nearly all of the game takes place in one city. While I can appreciate that BioWare wanted to tell a focused and relatively small scale story, the game certianly needed more areas to explore. Most quests take place in only slightly altered dungeons (some doors open for some quests, and for others they close), and it's hard not to feel a bit disappointed when you recieve an achievement for exploring ten caves and know that all ten caves were actually the same tiny piece of game painted in different contexts. It is forgivable in the beginning, but by about 25 hours (the game is roughly 30-40 hours in length) it begins to feel extremely repetitive and downright lazy on the part of the dev team. I am not sure why they made this decision, and I hope it is different next time. For now, we will have do make do knowing that this great game could have been much greater. I say rent. Expand
  8. Mar 9, 2011
    5
    This game is like Fallout 3. Not a bad game at all, but sucks like a sequel. I hate the new dialogue system (unfortunately games like PS:T will never return - zylions of text lines to read, I loved that), I hate lack of tactical view (and action style of combat) and I hate scrypted, miraculously spawned enemies. So if this game was called Hawke Adventures it would get 7 note from me, butThis game is like Fallout 3. Not a bad game at all, but sucks like a sequel. I hate the new dialogue system (unfortunately games like PS:T will never return - zylions of text lines to read, I loved that), I hate lack of tactical view (and action style of combat) and I hate scrypted, miraculously spawned enemies. So if this game was called Hawke Adventures it would get 7 note from me, but as a continuation of good (not a legendary, like Fallout) cRPG it could get only 5. Expand
  9. Mar 10, 2011
    6
    Not one of Bioware's strongest titles, but a fun romp. Having beat the game I can honestly say the story is an afterthought, and exploration is non-existant because you spend the entire game within a single town. They constantly reuse places you've been too before, by cutting off certain doors and opening others up in an attempt to make it different. Where the game doesn't fall flat onNot one of Bioware's strongest titles, but a fun romp. Having beat the game I can honestly say the story is an afterthought, and exploration is non-existant because you spend the entire game within a single town. They constantly reuse places you've been too before, by cutting off certain doors and opening others up in an attempt to make it different. Where the game doesn't fall flat on it's face is the combat, which is much better than the original. The dialogue isn't terrible either, though the dialogue wheel is a hassle. I expected much more than this after playing Dragon Age Origins, but I guess I can't fault them for only having a year to develop. Expand
  10. Mar 9, 2011
    7
    I've had some time to reconsider after my initial shock; the game in and all by itself isn't so bad. My problem is more that this was the game I was most looking forward to this year and this is not the sequel I was looking for. If marketing had chosen to call it "Dragon Age: The Champion of Kirkhall", I might have looked at it differently. If they had only let the same team of artistsI've had some time to reconsider after my initial shock; the game in and all by itself isn't so bad. My problem is more that this was the game I was most looking forward to this year and this is not the sequel I was looking for. If marketing had chosen to call it "Dragon Age: The Champion of Kirkhall", I might have looked at it differently. If they had only let the same team of artists mess with the original DA:O engine and give me another 40 hours of adventure, I'd have been +10 content. This one doesn't feel nearly as complex and deep as the first Dragon Age, and I don't feel as immersed and connect to the characters. I just don't care very much about them. The other aspect I really miss is the feeling of exploring a huge, mythical country. And I struggle with the framing story that just leaves unexplored gaps. Expand
  11. Aug 18, 2013
    6
    Dragon Age: Origins was an incredible game for the depth of it's story and characters, the consistency of it's world, and the many twists and surprises that keep things quite interesting along the way. Big shoes to fill. And while Dragon Age II makes many cosmetic and interface improvements over it's predecessor, in the big picture it simply falls flat in trying to deliver anything closeDragon Age: Origins was an incredible game for the depth of it's story and characters, the consistency of it's world, and the many twists and surprises that keep things quite interesting along the way. Big shoes to fill. And while Dragon Age II makes many cosmetic and interface improvements over it's predecessor, in the big picture it simply falls flat in trying to deliver anything close to experiences of DA: O.

    First the good. The games menus, skill trees, and inventory have been completely redesigned to offer a more streamlined and less cluttered presentation. Skill trees for combat abilities look amazing, and the ability to upgrade certain abilities with addition perks adds even more depth. Combat itself has also been redesigned to have a much tighter action feel. Attacks and magic feel powerful and look great. I also like the fact that dialogue options provide a range from diplomatic to aggressive and your character is voiced, giving a cinematic feel to the experience.

    Now for the bad. While a lot of attention was given to streamlining the look and feel of the game and it's combat system, the games improvements over it's predecessor rarely reach bellow the surface level. Firstly, the story arch of the game simply sucks. At many points in the game I literally felt that the writers were making things up as they went along. Dragon Age: Origins was exceptional in how it tied even many side quests back into the main quest of the game, giving the entire game world an amazing connected and consistent feel. And while DA II at times comes close, it ultimately fails flat at ever opportunity. Characters feel shallow and downright annoying in some regards, and felt more like chatty accessories then actual companions who share a common stake in journey.

    But perhaps that is the games biggest short coming. You will spend hours traversing back and forth completely the most trivial and unrewarding quests only to reach the chapters "climax" which usually consists of around 20 mins of pretty fun combat, only to kick you back into the mundane story where another few hours of errand running until the next big plot point. I am greatly disappointed that the "blight" that was the main focus of the first game is but a mere side note here.

    You play the part of a refugee fleeing the blight with his family. The game starts promising, but quickly goes to hell once you arrive in the city that you will spend the remainder of the game in. You are not a Grey Warden. You are not concerned with the blight. Hell, you ran from it. You are essentially an inconsequential thug who turns to pretty crimes and murder to make ends meet in the city. Although the story implies you become something special, a "Champion", essentially you play the part of an opportunist who has no real great purpose or calling other then aspiring to move up from the slums to the "High Town" estate your family once owned. Sound exciting?

    The high point of the game for me was a venture into the Dark Roads which presented some of the coolest environments and enemies of the game, one of the only points in the game were a little nod to the world of Origins is given. But you are not there for any meaningful purpose other then to loot treasure so your families wealth can expand. There is nothing epic or noble about it. But then again, there is nothing epic or noble about anything you will do in this game.

    You will spend hours questing in preparation for exciting battle sequences that are over in less then half an hour. Then it's back to the city where the next set of fetch quests and killing contracts await, none of it resembling anything with purpose.

    Story aside, the game can still be entertaining at times. But perhaps the most unforgivable aspect of Dragon Age II are the inconsistencies between it's world and the world of origins and the fact the plot is at best half the quality of what we were given in Origins. I completed the game as mage, and while I still enjoyed the experience, at no point did I feel the kind of emotional connection I felt the world and characters of Origins.

    You can pick it up in the bargin bin of most game stores now for quite cheap, which I'd say is the only way I can honestly recommend playing this game without feeling too let down.
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  12. Mar 28, 2011
    5
    This game will get a 5 or a mixed review from me. The game was such a mix of good and bad. On the one hand, the characters were awesome,( perhaps a little too exaggerated at times) the quests were fun and actually had a story behind some of them, the combat was greatly improved from the first game, and Bioware did something different, not the standard four to five main missions beforeThis game will get a 5 or a mixed review from me. The game was such a mix of good and bad. On the one hand, the characters were awesome,( perhaps a little too exaggerated at times) the quests were fun and actually had a story behind some of them, the combat was greatly improved from the first game, and Bioware did something different, not the standard four to five main missions before confronting th final boss. The bad side is something that could have been fixed if the 'EA Overlords' allowed this game to become more than a cash grab: development for a couple extra months. Seriously, how hard is it to release a *finished* game? The game itself is so buggy, the last quarter of the game convinced me it was rushed out the door, no polish or final testing. I pre-ordered the Signature Edition, and enthusiastically looked forward to a game from the best developer of rpg's out there. They did put out a great story,but they also put out a mess of a game. As a college student/casual gamer, this game convinced me to put down the video games for awhile. I have sadly never been more convinced what a waste of time video games can be. Expand
  13. Apr 1, 2011
    5
    After the initial shock I decided to make a third attempt at Dragon Age 2. I couldn't do it. There are indeed a few things RIGHT with this game like the better flowing combat and re-used mass effect 2 engine, but there are so many things wrong with this game that make it unplayable to me. For one, it feels insulting. This isn't an RPG, there is not a suitable amount of depth to be had forAfter the initial shock I decided to make a third attempt at Dragon Age 2. I couldn't do it. There are indeed a few things RIGHT with this game like the better flowing combat and re-used mass effect 2 engine, but there are so many things wrong with this game that make it unplayable to me. For one, it feels insulting. This isn't an RPG, there is not a suitable amount of depth to be had for a bioware level RPG. Through my entire 16 hours of play I found one particular thing eating at my head, I couldn't shake the feeling that I was playing a beta. The game has an overwhelming unfinished feeling to it. It literally seems like the developers had so much more in store, but were rushed out the door before they got completely dressed. Dragon Age 2 could use some polish in ALL departments. The product I'm playing is at best a raw attempt at people trying to capture the dragon age feel, but failing to do so. This is the first time I've ever been able to put down a bioware game without finishing it. My 5/10 review is only as such because 5/10 denotes that yes, there is indeed a game somewhere in here, but it's so lost in a pile of problems that it's nearly impossible to find and enjoy. Sorry bioware, it has to be said. Expand
  14. Mar 9, 2011
    5
    After having a blast playing Dragon Age: Origins I had high expectations for DA2. A few weeks before the release date I read on some forums that they were trying to pull "a new audience" to the game but things would remain the same for the so called "elitist rpg player". I don't think Bioware will ever be able to please both type of players in the same game but I understand that money isAfter having a blast playing Dragon Age: Origins I had high expectations for DA2. A few weeks before the release date I read on some forums that they were trying to pull "a new audience" to the game but things would remain the same for the so called "elitist rpg player". I don't think Bioware will ever be able to please both type of players in the same game but I understand that money is what drives the world and right now the money is on the "press a button something awesome happens" crowd. Eventually some new action game will come, DA2 will be overshadowed and only the old fans will remember Bioware and most of those will probably still be enraged by this weak RPG game. - No character customization, lack of classes;
    - Cannot equip different armor on party members (that is just to cruel in a party based game);
    - Lack of in-game items! Lots of useless junk (it even goes to a section called Junk in the inventory) that you can't use. Couldn't you be bothered to create some simple items?
    - Items stats are not enough. Most rings give +stamina/mana (not even separated, it's decided based on character's needs);
    - Some parts of the story are quite good but they are just too few to make a difference. - Voice acting is not that good, Hawke doesn't really sound mad or pissed when you press the RED DIALOGUE FOR SOMETHING AWESOME TO HAPPEN;
    - Map is too small, there's no exploration and you keep on re-using the same map for different places! I went into dozens of different caves, they are ALL the same. The only difference is that in one door A is open, and in another door A is closed preventing you from going further. Even a mine used the same level design for a cave. What's going on with that? Didn't you learn anything from Mass Effect?
    - Kirkwall looks too empty;
    - Combat is spamfest of mobs... There's no tactics to it, just keep on mashing buttons, eventually you'll make it... I tried Nightmare but i spent more time fighting the camera than the enemies so i went back to hard;
    - You don't run out of reagents for potions/runes/bombs.... All you need to do is find the ingredient (on that same map you already went to dozens of times before but this time on a different quest) and you'll be able to brew everything you want (as long as you have the coin);
    Now, for the good points:
    + Some companions have nice stories;
    + There are alot of quests but since you keep going to the same places over and over again they just feel boring;
    + Some dragon fights;
    + Good use for gold, + A lot of books to read and some interesting stuff in the codex;
    + Qunari leader;
    + You press a button and something awesome happens... (Kidding on this one)
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  15. Mar 10, 2011
    5
    I have to say that all in all, I didn't like this game. I am a big fan of the first one but this neither looks or feels like the first at all. Although the graphics are better, I dislike the art style. The game seems to run a little smoother but I don't like the way it's played. I can see why the critics gave this a high score. Even though no one seems to really like all of theI have to say that all in all, I didn't like this game. I am a big fan of the first one but this neither looks or feels like the first at all. Although the graphics are better, I dislike the art style. The game seems to run a little smoother but I don't like the way it's played. I can see why the critics gave this a high score. Even though no one seems to really like all of the changes and omissions in this game, according to how the critics review it, it had to receive a high score. They only rate the game on graphics, sound, gameplay, presentation and lasting appeal. 4 out of five worked so it had to have a high score even though none of this is liked. Critics don't really give their opinion on games. They review it according to these factors because everyone has a different opinion. My opinion is, this game is bad. I don't like the art style, the street fighter like animations for the characters, or the button mashing. I don't like not being able to create my own character. The first time I played this game, I immediately turned it off and wrote a letter to bioware letting them know how they let me down. I've tried several times to play this game but I just can't take it. After 10 minutes or so my thumb is hurting and I am too bored to continue. That's pretty bad in my opinion considering how much I love fantasy rpg's. I have to recommend passing this game up. I honestly don't see how anyone could get any enjoyment out of this game other than the huge breast the female characters are sporting. And that's the only reason this game got a 5! Expand
  16. Jul 7, 2011
    6
    I cant understand how gamers can rate this game a 9 or 10 at the same time why are they rating is a big fat 0?
    Im my honest opinion I give this game a 6/10.
    In short, everything is inferior than Origins except for a little touch of Combat and little pinch of Side quests.
  17. Mar 24, 2011
    6
    Playing Dragon Age 2 was a very mediocre experience... The companions are flat and 2 dimensional. There is only a handful of maps that you will visit over and over to ad nauseum. The most disappointing aspect of the game is: other than a couple of lines in the epilogue, the ending plays out the same no matter your choices. Overall, a very disappointing effort by Bioware.
  18. Mar 15, 2011
    5
    bioware should be ashamed as a gaming company and being for realesing this u cant go from da to this what has happened i completed game in 38 hours as warrior bearing in mind ive owned every bioware game ever made i was so dissapionted i sold game refusing to keep in my collection i will now buy mass effect 3 to finish the trilogy and thats it i think bioware has down themselves a lot ofbioware should be ashamed as a gaming company and being for realesing this u cant go from da to this what has happened i completed game in 38 hours as warrior bearing in mind ive owned every bioware game ever made i was so dissapionted i sold game refusing to keep in my collection i will now buy mass effect 3 to finish the trilogy and thats it i think bioware has down themselves a lot of untold damage by realesing this trash i rate the game a five this in my opinion is generous i dont know what game the reviewers have been playing on its a ugly world when so reviews are honest edge. Expand
  19. Apr 7, 2011
    5
    Take a great RPG, turn it into a decent hack'n'slash with pretty visuals. I loved DA2 at first. from the first combat sequence I was pretty hooked. 40 hours later it was over, with me not gasping, not in amazement at this epic story, but gasping at how bad it actually was. For the first 25-30 hours I was enjoying it a lot, but the rest was more of a "well I made it this far, might as wellTake a great RPG, turn it into a decent hack'n'slash with pretty visuals. I loved DA2 at first. from the first combat sequence I was pretty hooked. 40 hours later it was over, with me not gasping, not in amazement at this epic story, but gasping at how bad it actually was. For the first 25-30 hours I was enjoying it a lot, but the rest was more of a "well I made it this far, might as well finish it" feeling instead of playing because I couldn't wait to see what was next. Your decisions have no impact really. The story does not flow. It is kinda like watching the first half of a Batman movie, then replacing the last half with Tron...it makes about that much sense. Fortunately, I can play a game with a bad story and enjoy it just fine, if the rest of the game is great.

    So much gear to upgrade for you and your party! I love it...oh wait, I can't really upgrade my party? And I wore most of the same gear from about the 10th hour until the end? Well, so much for that part.

    So many spells to cast! Wait what? Everything has a long cooldown, so I can only use it once, maybe twice, in a battle? Well, so much for that part.

    So many ways to progress in this open RPG! Uh-oh, what's this? Everything is about as linear as you can get? Well, so much for that part.

    So I give it a 5. If you are one who believes the story is awesome, play a mage, and all of the inconsistencies will present themselves, especially for a blood mage. I go with a 5 because of the amount of fun I had in the first half of the game. I kept thinking ok this game is gonna open up, but once I realized I would see the same locations over and over and over again and follow a strict story line with a few side quests, it became no more fun.
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  20. Mar 14, 2011
    5
    I didn't think Dragon Age II would be this bad. But if you look back on DA:O. It's nothing like it's predecessor. They tried to make it too much like ME2 and it didn't work. You have many conversation options that lead to 1 outcome. This is not an RPG. It's a conversation simulator with the majority of battles being auto attacks. The maps are dull, and boring, not to mentioned there's onlyI didn't think Dragon Age II would be this bad. But if you look back on DA:O. It's nothing like it's predecessor. They tried to make it too much like ME2 and it didn't work. You have many conversation options that lead to 1 outcome. This is not an RPG. It's a conversation simulator with the majority of battles being auto attacks. The maps are dull, and boring, not to mentioned there's only about 5 different maps used OVER and OVER.

    It's getting a 5 due to the half assing of Bioware.

    Their current attitude towards reviews doesn't help this review at all either.
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  21. Dec 13, 2011
    5
    This game just didn't feel like dragon age, the story was just a series of side quests and then some longer (but not by much ) story quests. The combat system was OK but i preferred the original. I would rate this game lower but i played this game all the way through and did pretty much all the side quests possible that i could find, which lately i haven't managed to do with new gamesThis game just didn't feel like dragon age, the story was just a series of side quests and then some longer (but not by much ) story quests. The combat system was OK but i preferred the original. I would rate this game lower but i played this game all the way through and did pretty much all the side quests possible that i could find, which lately i haven't managed to do with new games these days. after finishing the main story i felt cheated, especially as the choices you make don't really affect the outcome at all. It will be worth it if you can pick it up cheap, but don't expect the game to live up to the originals glory. Expand
  22. Aug 23, 2011
    6
    This game was graphically superb. That said most other aspects of the game where disappointing when you compare it to dragon age origins. I played the game on normal level without spending any money on weapons and armour and managed to complete it, this should not be the case and it shows just how much the game has been dummed down. The most frustrating part of the game for me was theThis game was graphically superb. That said most other aspects of the game where disappointing when you compare it to dragon age origins. I played the game on normal level without spending any money on weapons and armour and managed to complete it, this should not be the case and it shows just how much the game has been dummed down. The most frustrating part of the game for me was the constant regurgitation of environments and more importantly the hack n slash combat system, at points i couldnt see who i was fighting it was just iq of 20 button pressing. All in all I think bioware rushed this product and that can be clearly seen in the end result. Not the rpg I was expecting. Expand
  23. T-A
    Jun 18, 2011
    6
    Dragon Age II diverges considerably from Dragon Age I. Leaving behind the pause-and-play strategy, Dragon Age II is more action and less RPG. I can understand the change, since the narrative progressed smoothly. The overall challenge drops though. I could button-mash my way through a hoard of monsters in Dragon Age II whereas I had to shape my battle plan carefully in the first game.Dragon Age II diverges considerably from Dragon Age I. Leaving behind the pause-and-play strategy, Dragon Age II is more action and less RPG. I can understand the change, since the narrative progressed smoothly. The overall challenge drops though. I could button-mash my way through a hoard of monsters in Dragon Age II whereas I had to shape my battle plan carefully in the first game. Further, I was not happy with the lack of impact my choices had on the overall plot. Set events were going to unfold no matter what. The dialogue wheel helped move conversations along quickly, but statements were really tied to one of three categories: Benevolent, Charming or Humorous, and Assertive. Constraints to character choice and reduced strategy are somewhat disappointing. After I stopped comparing it to the first game, Dragon Age II was a fun experience but not one that I intend to revisit again. Expand
  24. Jul 28, 2011
    5
    A bland Role- Playing game with boring maps, same caves, same dungeons, linear maps, and everything takes place in one city. The story is average and the dialogue is very predictable. I recommend you not to buy this game as this is one of the worst Bioware game , or I are say worst Role-Playing Game. I hope Bioware won't mess up with Dragon Age 3 or Mass Effect 3, because I expect highA bland Role- Playing game with boring maps, same caves, same dungeons, linear maps, and everything takes place in one city. The story is average and the dialogue is very predictable. I recommend you not to buy this game as this is one of the worst Bioware game , or I are say worst Role-Playing Game. I hope Bioware won't mess up with Dragon Age 3 or Mass Effect 3, because I expect high standards for their games. Expand
  25. Jul 20, 2011
    6
    The gameplay, combat and user interface is better than the first game, but the characters and story aren't as compelling. And who took all the funny away from Anders? I had fun, just not as much as I should have. My expectations were too high. I loved the first Dragon Age, and was slightly disappointed in this one. I want to see how the story ends, but I'm definitely going to wait untilThe gameplay, combat and user interface is better than the first game, but the characters and story aren't as compelling. And who took all the funny away from Anders? I had fun, just not as much as I should have. My expectations were too high. I loved the first Dragon Age, and was slightly disappointed in this one. I want to see how the story ends, but I'm definitely going to wait until I've seen a lot of reviews before buying a third one lest I waste my money. Expand
  26. Aug 27, 2011
    5
    Dragon Age 2 is not a horrible game by any means, it's just a completely underwhelming sequel to one of the better RPGs in the last decade. It's quite obvious that development time was cut short - I don't mind the combat mechanics that much; but the mob respawn; the no overhead strategic view; the complete lack of customization for companions; the linear story line; the lack of dialogDragon Age 2 is not a horrible game by any means, it's just a completely underwhelming sequel to one of the better RPGs in the last decade. It's quite obvious that development time was cut short - I don't mind the combat mechanics that much; but the mob respawn; the no overhead strategic view; the complete lack of customization for companions; the linear story line; the lack of dialog choices; the lack of character development and lastly the lack of effect the main character has in terms of shaping the world around him that the game is not an RPG. Now Hawk Age is a fine game if it is taken out of the context of being a sequel to a pretty tactical and thoughtfully enjoyable RPG DA: O but keeping in mind that we fans of the original Dragon Age Franchise bought this game based on the DA: O we do feel cheated. This is an RPG with no replay value. Which isn't good considering I played DA: O 4 different times; I'm not sure what Bioware hoped to achieve with this game - but it was a grand failure. Hopefully they take note and don't mislead us again. One final note Critic Reviews are complexly out of sorts - I'm wondering if most of them even played the game. They might be on EA payroll or just based their reviews on just a few hours of game play; instead of figuring out that those few hours would be recycled through out the game and none of your choices will actually make any sort of difference to the final outcome. It's truly sad and I can understand my fellow games giving this game lower scores then the game deserves but I guess people want to warn other potential buyers of Dragon Age 2 not to expect a sequel as promised by Bioware. Expand
  27. Sep 25, 2011
    6
    This game had potential to be an amazing rpg considering it was made by one of the greatest gaming companies ever: Bioware. But Bioware really dropped the ball with Dragon Age II. First of all the story is very average and is just nothing compared to the first Dragon Age game and I just could not really get into it because it really got kind of boring. As far as the characters go than IThis game had potential to be an amazing rpg considering it was made by one of the greatest gaming companies ever: Bioware. But Bioware really dropped the ball with Dragon Age II. First of all the story is very average and is just nothing compared to the first Dragon Age game and I just could not really get into it because it really got kind of boring. As far as the characters go than I just could not get myself to care for most of them because most of them seemed so heartless and boring which is a massive disappointment considering Bioware actually knows how to tell a great story in a video game and create very good and in depth characters, something which they do not do right in this game. The graphics I think have improved from Dragon Age Origins but not by much, the characters and environments look somewhat more detailed. But there are a lot of framerate issues I have not played the PC or the PS3 versions so I don't know about them but there way to many framerate issues on the 360 specially during the conversation cutscenes. The game's sidequests can also get repetitive and dull really fast. And in the game's main quest the same environments and dungeons are recycled over an over again that it feels like we are fighting in the same areas all the time and once again its gets very repetitive. On top of that unlike its predecessor Origins this games take place in only one town instead of taking place in a whole continent. The partner A.I is almost useless on high difficulties and they die way to quickly and are slow in performing their commands. The enemy A.I just rely on high numbers and ganging up on you rather than being competitive that is a problem on higher difficulties enemies should not gang up on you and increase in number they should be more competitive which is once again something this game does not do right. Having said all that Combat is more simpler and more easy to get used to compared to the first game it feels like a Hack and Slash on low difficulties unless you are playing as a Mage but all in all I found the combat better than its prequel. The weapons are armor you get in the game are good and are fun to use but sadly you cannot make you partner A.I put on the armor whenever you want them to they will infact put them on themselves at particular points in the game that just takes away your ability to customize your team mates the way you want to. However I must say that the dialogue wheel from the Mass Effect series has been put to good use and while dialogue despite not being as great as it could have been it still delivered well. The voice acting and music unsurprisingly are very good and always suit the environments and the situations. In the end I must say that as a big fan of Bioware and their RPGs Dragon Age II is a massive letdown, it can still be a fun game at times but Bioware is capable of much better. It is clear that the game is incomplete because EA made Bioware rush its production. Lets hope they fix up the problems brought up by all the people about this game and revive the franchise with Dragon Age III. 6/10. Expand
  28. Mar 19, 2011
    5
    The new combat system gives more feeling to the fighting but can bit repetitive in the end. The biggest flaw in the game is the story IMO. If i want to see 3 different political stories i open my tv and turn on the news. And all tho the small quest to get money works in the beginning it gets really boring after that.. come one not 1 good longer fantasy quest? Just quest that take 15 min toThe new combat system gives more feeling to the fighting but can bit repetitive in the end. The biggest flaw in the game is the story IMO. If i want to see 3 different political stories i open my tv and turn on the news. And all tho the small quest to get money works in the beginning it gets really boring after that.. come one not 1 good longer fantasy quest? Just quest that take 15 min to do x 100. I like Dragon age 1 style more. 3 Long stories where u can get into the story better. But the game still does have lots of good things like good characters and some nice quest lines. I started to like the game most, just before the end.. finally something is happening. then comes the credits... Funny enough the game has more loot than DA1 but now only main character can use armors. others can still use weapons tho. but they all have armor that u can upgrade but not change.

    IMO Good characters and good story telling saves this, but i really would like to see more fantasy themed stories not some political fights over same city in 3 different times. Come one 3 same quest with different people on other sides? cheap.
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  29. Apr 15, 2011
    5
    Much worse than the previous game. Besides, this game will make you homophobic. Really, despite the fact that I am tolerant. A lot of members of sexual minorities in the game. In the story there is no epic and the whole game is boring. Side quests just sad.
  30. Mar 12, 2011
    5
    Dragon Age 2 is praiseworthy in many areas but fails utterly at what should have been its core strength. Compared to DA:O the game falls far short of what it should have been. Rather than being an integral part of the story and a catalyst, the hero is swept along by events totally beyond their control and has little impact on these events. There are bright spots. Some of the storiesDragon Age 2 is praiseworthy in many areas but fails utterly at what should have been its core strength. Compared to DA:O the game falls far short of what it should have been. Rather than being an integral part of the story and a catalyst, the hero is swept along by events totally beyond their control and has little impact on these events. There are bright spots. Some of the stories are well written and well portrayed, but for the most part your choices are all bad. Inter-party relationships are superficial and both the companions and villains are one dimensionally fanatical. For the most part, all the companions are either unlikable or uninspired. More than half of them would stab you in the back if necessary. Even our beloved Alistair in a brief cameo sounds trite and shallow, as if he is a well paid actor in a equal he wants to get over quickly. If you are looking for an action RPG, this is a title you will enjoy. If you are looking for more of DA:O, you will be sorely disappointed. Expand
  31. May 27, 2011
    6
    I was very disappointed to purchase this game. The fighting improved from the first but otherwise this game was a step down from Dragon Age 1. The entire game takes place in a small area that reuses scenes instead of custom making them for each quest. I liked the ability to summon your hound but was very disappointed that you could not customize equipment for each of the NPC's. Many ofI was very disappointed to purchase this game. The fighting improved from the first but otherwise this game was a step down from Dragon Age 1. The entire game takes place in a small area that reuses scenes instead of custom making them for each quest. I liked the ability to summon your hound but was very disappointed that you could not customize equipment for each of the NPC's. Many of the achievements were obscure or tedious and the NPC's were not compelling. I hope Bioware changes the format before DragonAge 3. Either way, I will not be purchasing the next game on opening day. Expand
  32. Mar 14, 2011
    5
    in Short, if you enjoyed dragon age origins you may not enjoy this at all... if your new to the franchise and haven't been exposed to the rich cannon or experience the sweeping grand scale of the original then you may very well enjoy this game... New combat system is good, Narattive is good, Environments are excessively overused. if your going to set a game in a city it would be a goodin Short, if you enjoyed dragon age origins you may not enjoy this at all... if your new to the franchise and haven't been exposed to the rich cannon or experience the sweeping grand scale of the original then you may very well enjoy this game... New combat system is good, Narattive is good, Environments are excessively overused. if your going to set a game in a city it would be a good idea to create a large and engaging environment that feels alive and dynamic.. not a sterile shoebox with no soul Expand
  33. Mar 17, 2011
    5
    With the reputation that Bioware built in the past years, I really wonder whether Bioware is actually satisfied with the performance they delivered and if they would ever be honest about it. Its not about the combat, which in some ways I found satisfying and enjoying despite its less tactical. Its not about the simplification of the RPG system. The worst thing in my opinion is theWith the reputation that Bioware built in the past years, I really wonder whether Bioware is actually satisfied with the performance they delivered and if they would ever be honest about it. Its not about the combat, which in some ways I found satisfying and enjoying despite its less tactical. Its not about the simplification of the RPG system. The worst thing in my opinion is the lifelessness of the story, the characters, the environments. Bioware games stood for epic and immersive storylines, atmosferic environments, deep and evolving charachters and overall...choice. That is gone with DA2. No epic beginning of the story that leaves you wondering where this is all going. The first 8 hours you spend time to try to 'get into the city' jumping from the same locations to the same locations and worse, a lot of 'different' environments are exactly the same. Not just in textures or anything, but EXACTLY the same map with the only difference is that sometimes certain areas of the map are not accessible by a locked door. Compared to ME 1&2, DA:O, KOTOR etc, Bioware should be ashamed of themselves. If this is the new direction Bioware is taking, I am already worried about their future games. I already bought this one blindly like everyone else being negative about the game, but their next game I will consider with greater care. Sorry Bioware, next time better I hope Expand
  34. Mar 17, 2011
    5
    I`m big fan or RPG games, hell big fan of Bioware but come on, OK from the start visual really great
    but who play RPG games for great visual, we play for story, making our character more and more better with next level, going trough lots of mission to get that perfect item, so at the end of the game we can see how our perfection look like. Fighting well big zero click this and yeee this
    I`m big fan or RPG games, hell big fan of Bioware but come on, OK from the start visual really great
    but who play RPG games for great visual, we play for story, making our character more and more better with next level, going trough lots of mission to get that perfect item, so at the end of the game we can see how our perfection look like. Fighting well big zero click this and yeee this explode click that and wow another explosion, story well i can dig it but this is part 2, the story should have been much better come on i have finish 5 time allover ahead Dragon age origins and now i`m level 11 and still trying to find good reason for play(damn how a great commercial and reputation can make you feel stupid for paying 50 euro). Skills really you can chose what ever you want, trust me i`t going to look great when you click to use it and there it end it`s value , inventory well i like how they handled resource but that is it if you want to upgrade armor of your companion you need to look out trough all town just sad. Items also i don`t see some great innovation there, if you liked first dragon age this one is going to be huge disappointment, really how it get that great critic review i don`t know, this is what it is a mediocrity game with nothing special, and please guys from game industry enough of DLC and promo item that we need to pay, make it free or don`t make it at all
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  35. Mar 20, 2011
    5
    First of all: in my 20 years of C-RPG experience I've never written a game review before because I've never felt the need for it (by the way: apologies for my bad English, I'm not a native speaker). With Drageon Age 2 I believe a worrying tendency emerges I have to adress: short development periods (18 month for DA2), incomplete game world and story, simplistic gameplay to broaden theFirst of all: in my 20 years of C-RPG experience I've never written a game review before because I've never felt the need for it (by the way: apologies for my bad English, I'm not a native speaker). With Drageon Age 2 I believe a worrying tendency emerges I have to adress: short development periods (18 month for DA2), incomplete game world and story, simplistic gameplay to broaden the audience, demanding full prize while preparing DLCs that shall fill in the remaining gaps. Bioware was once regarded as "the bringer of rain" after a drought in the genre of RPGs (for the PC). But now they could play the opposite role: if they are the most prominent agents of the genre (besides Bethesda) and their games are setting trends, then other companies will follow their example, if they haven't already. To be more detailed I'll point out aspects that annoyed me the most: Game World:
    - The most insolent re-use in an state-of-the-art RPG I've seen so far: dozens of times you walk through levels which are IDENTICAL, and I mean identical. Every corner, texture, modell, architecture, lighting etc. are exactly the same, just with another label (for example "cave xyz" instead of "cave abc").
    - The main game world consists of just 15 to 20 small or very small locations in a city (small means an area which takes 20 seconds to 60 seconds to cross, very small means a simple flat)
    - There are no (more or less) diversified regions like snowy mountains, deserts, jungle, forest, real dungeons, castles, other towns etc., just this one city and three outer regions that are not noteworthy
    - The few existing places look sterile and somehow empty although there are a few people standing around, but they are just copies doing nothing. There are no animals, no interesting props, no interesting architecture, no waving foliage, no sounds of wind, loud chatter etc.
    - Most of the levels are extremely tubular: just one way, no possibility for exploration. If you use such level design, you should use it for thrilling script events like in COD to propell the storytelling, but that's not the case for DA2. A proper game world would have been to expensive...

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

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

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

    Dramaturgy:
    - The backgrounds and dialogues preceding and following missions are of high quality, BUT what about a larger conflict, to what end am I killing hordes of idiots? Is there any greater inner or outer threat than a killer whom the player seeks to kill? The Qunari are a threat, for twenty minutes of gameplay. Templar and Magicians don't like each other and there's a fight, but that's it. No threat and no thread. Calling Hawke "Champion" is an exaggeration to cover that he hasn't achieved much. The whole game is "unepic" and seems to be a chapter of an epic game.
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  36. Mar 20, 2011
    5
    Before playing Dragon Age 2 Bioware could do no wrong in my eyes.Even merging with EA ,i hoped they could be working towards a dungeon & dragon style mmorpg which truely could take Blizzards bored customer base.
    Looking at the previous titles it was clear that Bioware have very talented people working for them which i got the impression looked at what their fans had to say.
    Thats what
    Before playing Dragon Age 2 Bioware could do no wrong in my eyes.Even merging with EA ,i hoped they could be working towards a dungeon & dragon style mmorpg which truely could take Blizzards bored customer base.
    Looking at the previous titles it was clear that Bioware have very talented people working for them which i got the impression looked at what their fans had to say.
    Thats what makes this game release totally unforgivable in my eyes. The characters lack dept, the fight mechanics are terrible, be it a hack & slasher or rpg ,its just wrong. The world is small, barren & uninteresting, i found myself rushing through areas rather than enjoying the game.The game truely lacks any story, ive seen better on first person shooters.

    Perhaps Bioware have their people spread too thin with mass effect 3 and star wars on the horizon, that been said i cant help but dread to see what these major titles will turn out like.
    I hope bioware will learn a lesson from this rather than just faking reviews.
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  37. Apr 19, 2011
    5
    First RPG from Bioware that can be humbly summarised as a mediocrity or even below. While it still shows us that the team has decent writers and artists, a lack of strong design leadership and quality is something we did't see in Bioware RPG's before. It's a linear adventure with watered story and, to some extent, fun to banter with characters, so-so combat and.. that's it. Dragon Age 2First RPG from Bioware that can be humbly summarised as a mediocrity or even below. While it still shows us that the team has decent writers and artists, a lack of strong design leadership and quality is something we did't see in Bioware RPG's before. It's a linear adventure with watered story and, to some extent, fun to banter with characters, so-so combat and.. that's it. Dragon Age 2 lacks freedom of choice (one we have is actually a masterfuly done illusion, which waves if you try to replay game second time), exploration; to some extend, character customisation; puzzles; it does't give player any tactical challenges. Dragon Age 2 also laughs at many DA:O aspects and characters, beating any decentness from them with black emo stick, and fails to deliver long, gripping dialogues. Overall, one can have some fun with this game, but it's almost painful experience to begin with. This game does't worth it's 60$, and makes you sorry and sad for yourself, your time and money after. Expand
  38. Apr 25, 2011
    6
    Very bad game... It´s not Dragon Age it´s "Dragon Effect" (but worst). It no have the essence of the firts game... bad of work EA and Bioware... In the game, your decisions are useless...you cant change nothing in the world, all the facts happen without your help...your partners are lineal, they aren´t charming like in origins...is a step back inVery bad game... It´s not Dragon Age it´s "Dragon Effect" (but worst). It no have the essence of the firts game... bad of work EA and Bioware... In the game, your decisions are useless...you cant change nothing in the world, all the facts happen without your help...your partners are lineal, they aren´t charming like in origins...is a step back in rol´s game... (sorry for my english...im spanish...) Expand
  39. May 17, 2011
    5
    Run off the mill RPG-Lite action adventure.Bland quests alot of reused content and hack and slash combat all amount to a shadow of DA:Origins.More like a HBO programme than an RPG.
  40. Mar 11, 2011
    5
    I loved DA:O and some people would probably consider me to be a BioWare fanboy. I have spent countless hours with their previous games. DA2 however.....is just a money milking mediocre game! I honestly can't believe that they released this crap. It's like pissing in your pants. Keeping you warm for a moment but hurts you in the longer run. Booooo!
  41. Mar 14, 2011
    5
    I see a lot of 10's here from BioWare employees that are trying to increase the metascore. I've played this game and it's middle-of-the-road. Not amazing, not terrible. I'm sick of reviews done by developers to try inflating their ratings. The graphics and game play were good but I really liked DA:O much more.
  42. Apr 8, 2011
    5
    I like role-playing games. I do not by-and-large like any other genre. I do not like action games nor FPS. And the ability to role-play is the main think I look for in a game. And though I do enjoy aspects of action/combat, story, moral choices it is the ability to play out the role of my character in the world he/she is placed based on what I believe the character might do is veryI like role-playing games. I do not by-and-large like any other genre. I do not like action games nor FPS. And the ability to role-play is the main think I look for in a game. And though I do enjoy aspects of action/combat, story, moral choices it is the ability to play out the role of my character in the world he/she is placed based on what I believe the character might do is very important to me. With that said, losing the abilities to lie, intimidate, persuade people lessons my ability to play out interesting role-playing scenerios within the world as does the greatly limited npc interactions. A major part of rpgs that I enjoy is the non-quest non combat interactions with the environment (i.e. conversations etc). Expand
  43. Mar 13, 2012
    7
    This game really gets a bum rap as far as games go, and the reason for it is two fold.

    1) The gaming media has so skewed the ratings system that most people think anything less than a 9 or a 10 is positively awful. This is a belief shared by big publishing houses, and by developers also. It has rendered the ratings system useless; and is, I believe, responsible in part for the negative
    This game really gets a bum rap as far as games go, and the reason for it is two fold.

    1) The gaming media has so skewed the ratings system that most people think anything less than a 9 or a 10 is positively awful. This is a belief shared by big publishing houses, and by developers also. It has rendered the ratings system useless; and is, I believe, responsible in part for the negative overreaction to this game as evidenced by the inaccurate and unfair Zero's, One's, and Two's.

    2) Bioware's Marketing Department is really really bad. They gave a distinct impression to the fan base about what Dragon Age "2" was going to be like, and then what was delivered was quite different. Which explains much of the backlash.

    Granted none of this was helped by the extremely short development cycle that resulted in a game that feels incomplete and has a really crappy, bland, and boring ending.

    In spite of this however I still feel like a lot of the really low user reviews are unfair, because IMO the game is decent.
    The engine runs much more smoothly, and is much more stable than in Dragon Age Origins. The Character based textures are much cleaner, and much prettier. The dialogue, and interpersonal interactions with NPC companions are much deeper and more emotive than in Dragon Age Origins. And the overall story arc is coherent and mostly complete, even if it ends a little abruptly, and crappily with SuperEvilNinja!Meredith.

    Claims that the combat has been dumbed down to flashy hack'n'slash mechanics are untrue. Combat runs almost exactly the same as in DAO. The differences are mostly cosmetic, with faster animations, a lack of "finishing" moves, and the missing isometric camera.
    Or are different in the execution/presentation of the combat scenes - example: The Parachuting from the Sky Heavily Armoured Waves of enemies, or occasional cut scene "finishing" move.
    Tactics work the same, and talents (although streamlined) work the same. The guts, the actual mechanics of combat are exactly the same.

    If DA2 were an exam, it would get a solid and respectable B IMO (with DAO getting an A).
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  44. Mar 9, 2011
    5
    1. Rogue Archer is useless. The NPC dude is much better and it's almost impossible to run from mobs with two rogues and one mage. I had to cheese every single engagement. I hope you get a warrior if you keep playing because ****
    The worst thing: The difficulty on insane is not from tactical depth. All you need is luck and button-mashing (and running around in circles, if your party
    1. Rogue Archer is useless. The NPC dude is much better and it's almost impossible to run from mobs with two rogues and one mage. I had to cheese every single engagement. I hope you get a warrior if you keep playing because ****
    The worst thing: The difficulty on insane is not from tactical depth. All you need is luck and button-mashing (and running around in circles, if your party sucks).

    At least I can spec the Dwarf to be melee if I want my character to be ranged.
    Oh wait I can't. That's right, **** your RPG-ism. You play like we want.


    2. The gameplay has nothing to do with tactical RPG. Your only real option is when to press the ability buttons.
    Tactical placement of characters, stealth, backstab etc. doesn't mean **** All you need to do is press the button since _everything_ is an ability now.
    I don't even see what I could be doing differently. There are a few battles where you can chokepoint enemies in doorframes, otherwise there is little to do tactically.
    It feels like half of the elements of BG2 combat are missing. In BG2 I usually ended up planning hard engagements, leading different enemies into traps I set earlier, buying specific items and buffs just for that engagement. DA2 is so far away from that complexity. DA:O wasn't perfect, but it was at least a bit closer.
    Rogue used to be about using a few things like stealing, positioning and stealth. Now it's just like beeing a mage - a Rogue mage.

    Also, I hate the amount of enemies. The screen is littered with em and any amount of tacticality that remained is pretty much an efford in futility. Most mobs should have been about the size of your party, but with interesting foes. I don't even particulary analyze what enemies I am fighting, I am doing the same charade over and over again.
    Miles and miles away from previous RPGs.


    3. You never get to plan ahead anyway, since ALL enemies just drop on you literally. This is the worst thing ever and I can't grasp how they thought this would be a good idea.
    It's almost like Mass Effect 2 now. "Oh look an empty room. Welp, ambush. How surprising"
    Preparation doesn't get you any further. I also haven't used any potions or buffs yet previous to engagements. Maybe it was too early in the game for that though.

    4. Camera angle.. whatever. Isometric view wouldn't have salvaged the gameplay.

    5. Everything feels so restricting. You have almost no choice in what your character does and how he looks etc. Inventory has become more or less obsolete. It doesn't even feel like an RPG in that sense.
    For some reason the character creation process and the initial RPG immersiveness has - for me- never felt so disappointing in any PC RPG.
    It feels like a movie.
    Everytime. Cutscene. Go somewhere, enemies appear out of thin air, second wave, cutscene. Repeat. Every.. single .. time.
    Immersion level is very low. If you care about those things.

    6. Graphics are fine, voice acting is nice etc.

    7. Art style is ****ed. The ****ing Dalish elves look like cartoon characters. This has bothered me the most. It's like an anime. I expect this will be even worse later on. Not that the gameworld is completely unattractive. It just feels like EVERY SINGLE THING they changed is worse than in DA:O.
    I HAVE to use that dwarf with the cyberpunk Machine gun in an high fantasy RPG? Yeah thanks, totally works for me. **** you.

    8. You can interact even less with the gameworld. In the spirit of dumbing it down this is not too surprising. But there is so little loot, so little to pick up or see or get.
    You just don't get the feeling the enemies are actually carrying weapons or whatever.
    It feels like you get a generic reward, instead of actually "going through their stuff for useful ****".
    Feels wrong.

    9. The interface is **** I don't even know why, but it annoys me hugely. Probably because back in the day the interface symbolized a backback or inventory or a spellbook or whatever. Now it's literally a list of computer buttons. Just like the loot is not actual loot, but a computer-given reward. Also feels wrong.



    With a decent story I could see myself buying this for 10â
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  45. Mar 27, 2011
    6
    Being a Massive fan of Origins I was excited immensely for DA2. While the plot in general doesnt at all disappoint, in fact Bioware know how to add suspense, the simple fact this game is rushed shows over and over again. Bugs (some game breaking), reuse of the same areas, glitches and clipping show how unpolished the game is. Dumbing down on inventory, loot and and simplifying manyBeing a Massive fan of Origins I was excited immensely for DA2. While the plot in general doesnt at all disappoint, in fact Bioware know how to add suspense, the simple fact this game is rushed shows over and over again. Bugs (some game breaking), reuse of the same areas, glitches and clipping show how unpolished the game is. Dumbing down on inventory, loot and and simplifying many things also shows this game was about sales rather then vastly improving the original game. Having said that its still a fun game and Bioware were very mature in including homosexual romances. Something it was nice to see introduced. However the romances in general seemed stale at times compared to Origins. The combat is vastly improved and it shows. However im on my second play now and I discovered how repetitive things can get (not just with same old level aesthetics) but the fact there is no randomness in the enemies you encounter. Its all scripted. But the vastness of choices available and the different ways of doing things means theres plenty of replay value. It may be rushed replaying though as you just want to get it done. Overall, many improvements that are good are overshadowed by its vast amount of flaws, which came as the game was rushed. Expand
  46. Jun 2, 2011
    5
    Dumbed down RPG, with so-so story , 1 cave and 1 coast combat maps. Console-like, PC unfriendly UI made me rage hard. That is until I saw Witcher 2 implementation which is a new LOW.

    Bottom line, although DA2 is action oriented like TW2, and although having a weaker story and MUCH weaker graphics, DA2 is couple of milestones ahead FUN and GAMEPLAY wise.
  47. Mar 15, 2011
    5
    I get what Bioware was trying to do here. I really do, it's just too bad that they didn't achieve it. Dragon Age 2 isn't a bad game by any means. Where as it's predecessor was a large and sprawling epic that was rough around the edges on PC, and struggled mightily on consoles, Dragon Age 2 is a small and focused story that excels on consoles and feels OK on PC.
    Dumbed down. It's the phrase
    I get what Bioware was trying to do here. I really do, it's just too bad that they didn't achieve it. Dragon Age 2 isn't a bad game by any means. Where as it's predecessor was a large and sprawling epic that was rough around the edges on PC, and struggled mightily on consoles, Dragon Age 2 is a small and focused story that excels on consoles and feels OK on PC.
    Dumbed down. It's the phrase that RPG fans use when a game cuts the fat and gets straight to the point. Gone are all the small min/maxing numbers, replaced by one big number and simply increases over time. Gone is your ability to deck out your party with gear. Streamlined is the word that developers use to justify cutting that fat, they've made it easier! They've made is a better version of what you loved before, while getting rid of what stood in the way of it becoming mass market.
    Dragon Age 2 is both of these. Where your party is concerned, it's streamlined. Yes, gone is the min maxing, gone is the gear switching. There are upgrades, but they feel spoon fed and linear compared to the the customization you had in Origins. Honestly though, it doesn't seem all that bad. The biggest gripe I have with it is that when you get gear that's for a class your Hawke isn't, then it's just junk, instead of being a useful piece for a party member.
    Combat too is streamlined. Now hang on a second, almost every review here says that the combat has been dumbed down to a hack 'n slash. Well guess what, they're right, except for when you bring in the difficulty. On casual, normal, and even hard difficulties the game is mostly hack 'n slash, fast, bloody, satisfying combat geared toward the console crowd, and it's wonderful. To PC users however, it's a snooze fest. The combat isn't action packed or strategic, it's downright boring. That's why there's nightmare difficulty. Bioware says hard difficulty is there for this reason too, but even that's too easy. Nightmare adds Origins friendly fire, hard hitting monsters, difficult situations which require thought and strategy. I agree that those things should be there throughout the whole game, but I get that this is the "mass market" version of Dragon Age. While it's not default, the strategy and planning of Origins is there....it's just on the hardest setting.
    No, I'd say most of the game play is as Bioware says, "Streamlined". Where the game gets dumbed down, is the story, character, party interaction, and environments. Let's begin with the story. You're Hawke, your family is forced to leave Lothering during the Blight and you wind up in Kirkwall. That's pretty much it for 2/3rds of the game. There's is no "Save the world" epic here, Bioware has attempted to create a complex city state that brims with politics, greed, and many different factions vying to be heard. Unfortunately, without even the slightest breath of an antagonist it comes off as a series of side stories and jumbled fetch quests. You'll do them because they're in your quest journal but there's nothing there to propel you forward. The worst part about it is that most of those side quest are well written and genuinely good. They do a great job of telling you what Kirkwall as a city is like, they'd be great as part of a bigger whole that moves the city forward instead of just telling you what it is.
    Next up is the character of Hawke. Here again the game splits between dumbed down and streamlined. Having a voiced character is great, and Hawke is a great character compared to the mute Warden in DA:Origins. The issue comes when you compare the choices the Warden had against the one's that Hawke has. The Warden could respond to characters with a plethora of shades of gray. Hawke generally get's a Diplomatic, Sarcastic, and Bold answer. That's pretty much it. While you could generally say that it's ok, just get the tone right because in your head you're basically thinking the same thing, the problem is that while that might be true, half the fun comes from trying to say the right thing amongst all the shades of grey. The system is streamlined, to the point of being dumbed down.
    Lastly in the dumbed down category are the environments. Technically they're much more detailed and beautiful compared to the ones in Origins, but again Bioware seems to be two headed here. They might be better looking, and therefore higher quality, but there just so few of them. This is one argument where I'd go with quantity over quality. For most of the game you're restricted to the city of Kirkwall, which is quite large and expansive. There are also a few areas outside of the city which help to flesh out the "city state" feel to the whole thing. The main issue comes when you go into any dungeon, the map may tell you that there are say 14 dungeons in the whole thing. You'll salivate to get in there, then you suddenly realize that they're all the same dungeon with different areas closed off and sometimes flipped backwards.
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  48. Mar 15, 2011
    6
    If you want my personal opinion the game is pretty broken. At the very front I could barely handle it on hard, but two hours later with a few more abilities I'm on Nightmare because hard is unbearably easy. What kind of difficulty curve is that? The AI are unbelievably stupid when it comes to friendly fire, I'm lucky if Varric doesn't set me on fire with the burst shot ability with theIf you want my personal opinion the game is pretty broken. At the very front I could barely handle it on hard, but two hours later with a few more abilities I'm on Nightmare because hard is unbearably easy. What kind of difficulty curve is that? The AI are unbelievably stupid when it comes to friendly fire, I'm lucky if Varric doesn't set me on fire with the burst shot ability with the default tactical set. When I tell my companions to hold position because I want them positioned a certain way and combat starts about 50% of the time the current action (under their portrait) flickers rapidly between two abilities (indicating an infinite loop) which is really an unforgivable glitch (it mostly occurs when there is a doorway between them and the enemy), what did they expect nobody would use that feature? These two major problems combined with the lack of auto-attack on consoles (which Bioware officially stated was a mistake, that option was supposed to be there) and the shamelessly recycled environments, really leaves a bad taste in my mouth. Did I mention the lack of any sort of antagonist? I'm well over 12 hours in and there is no antagonist outside of whatever happens to be the enemy in my current sidequest.

    If you absolutely must buy this game, wait for the inevitable (and likely not too far off) price drop, or borrow it from a friend. It doesn't deserve a 4.2, but it is certainly not up to Bioware's standards, also, did you know that at least one of their employees has post a 10/10 review here posing as a consumer? (that's not my opinion, it's a news story) NOT COOL BIOWARE.
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  49. Mar 17, 2011
    6
    It's not a bad game but definitely no RPG, not to speak of a Dragon Age... The story also is far less dramatic and interesting than in DAO. Damn those casuals :(
  50. Nov 17, 2011
    5
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This game didn't meet my expectations and failed miserably on some fronts.
    I don't understand how people can rate it 9 or 8.
    I gave this game a fair 4 for the following reasons.

    The Positives:
    1;The Non-Linear plot of the game keeps you interested in this game to the very end. I used to take different decisions at a save point just to see how the story unfolded in each case.
    I finished the game as "Male Warrior",then beat it again with a "Male Mage".The point here is that the game doesn't end once beaten but there is a possibility to explore the game in 6 different classes/genders each having substantial effect on the story-line.
    2;Then the choice to choose your character's Gender and class in the beginning of the game is something which is unique and deserves praise.
    3;The graphics are just "fine".
    4;The XP system is quite good.

    The Negatives:
    1;The game has very few main quests which are actually a part of the story.a good chunk of quests are wasted on "Deep Roads Expedition" as a means to raise money for the expedition. They should have had more main quests which would gradually unfold the story and keep the Gamers interested not just the side quests which are meant for gaining XP,money,Amulets,Junk e.t.c
    The side quests are a liability.
    2;Even on "Nightmare" difficulty level,the battles seem too easy.
    3;i personally felt that the "Warrior" and "Rogue" class had very few good moves as compared to the "Mage" class.

    ***The worst part is that the "Negatives" overshadow the "Positives" of this game.***

    This game did all that was needed to defame it successor DA:Origins which was the "Game Of The Year" and succeeded. The success of sequel should not be expected to come from the reputation of the prequel.The "Dragon Age" name carries a distinct weight and importance but this game leaves you disappointed. I am very disappointed with this game and i don't think i'll be following "The Dragon Age" franchise in future.
    Bioware truly didn't deliver what was expected of them.
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  51. Feb 28, 2012
    7
    Certainly a mixed bag, Dragon Age 2 gets a lot of unfair criticism in among the well landed blows. Coming out only 16 months after 2009's Dragon Age: Origins, the follow up feels rushed and unpolished. The new more action oriented combat system, while pacier than its predecessors pedestrian fighting, also lacks some of the tactical planning, and could have done with more development. WorseCertainly a mixed bag, Dragon Age 2 gets a lot of unfair criticism in among the well landed blows. Coming out only 16 months after 2009's Dragon Age: Origins, the follow up feels rushed and unpolished. The new more action oriented combat system, while pacier than its predecessors pedestrian fighting, also lacks some of the tactical planning, and could have done with more development. Worse is the repeated use of the same maps over and over, which makes the exploration feel repetitive. However, despite the quick turnaround the story does not suffer much for it. Eschewing the epic battle against all odds of the previous game (and many other game narratives), DA2 is a character study of the (male or female) protagonists Hawke and his or her friends and family, told over 7 to 10 years, in 3 main acts. Fully voiced (using the same kind of dialogue wheel system from Mass Effect) and well written and acted, there are many subtle and clever subplots and arcs woven through the main narrative, mostly involving a cast of well developed characters all with back stories ranging from intriguing to powerful. BioWare have at least tried something different with the storyline, and while it does get a little restrictive towards the end, it is mostly successful. If it had had a few more months to solidify the story, and polish up the gameplay and environments, it could have as much improved over the original as Mass Effect 2 was to Mass Effect. However, the gameplay problems, while disappointing, are by no means terrible, and the game is still an entertaining experience for 30-40 hours or so. That hate this game gets is certainly extremely excessive, and it should not deter BioWare in trying out different types of story to tell. Expand
  52. Dec 12, 2012
    7
    There is allot wrong with this game. It feels like it was rushed and released far to quickly. The repeated environments and rather poorly rendered character models (aside from Isabella) are proof of this. HOWEVER, production SNAFUs aside, the game is pretty good. I loved the almost all the characters (I just love Merrill to bits!) Story is really dark and really focuses on the Templars vsThere is allot wrong with this game. It feels like it was rushed and released far to quickly. The repeated environments and rather poorly rendered character models (aside from Isabella) are proof of this. HOWEVER, production SNAFUs aside, the game is pretty good. I loved the almost all the characters (I just love Merrill to bits!) Story is really dark and really focuses on the Templars vs Mages theme. A really clever comparison to the church vs free thinking of the dark ages (but I'm sure the average gamer didn't notice this.) Overall: A good really good game with a great story and solid combat mechanics, but it should have left in production for at least a further 6 months. This is what happens when you rush. A shame. Expand
  53. CPB
    Mar 15, 2011
    7
    Okay, this is coming from someone who beat the game, and all in all it's not that bad. The combat feels better, the characters are like-able, and SOME of the choices in the game are compelling and make you think. Now for the negative. The graphics are below average, hawke sounds like a english **** the environments by the second act are just recycled, and most of the choices feelOkay, this is coming from someone who beat the game, and all in all it's not that bad. The combat feels better, the characters are like-able, and SOME of the choices in the game are compelling and make you think. Now for the negative. The graphics are below average, hawke sounds like a english **** the environments by the second act are just recycled, and most of the choices feel unimportant and lead to the same conclusion. So it's a good game but pales in comparison to the original. Expand
  54. Mar 9, 2011
    5
    I always believe that a game should be played in entirety before being judged. I would still stand by that belief if said game inspired me to continue.

    The word 'improvement' has been thrown around like confetti at a New Years party since we first heard of the sequel early last year. Does it live up to the promise? Yes, no and maybe so. There a improvements on some fronts but it seems to
    I always believe that a game should be played in entirety before being judged. I would still stand by that belief if said game inspired me to continue.

    The word 'improvement' has been thrown around like confetti at a New Years party since we first heard of the sequel early last year. Does it live up to the promise? Yes, no and maybe so. There a improvements on some fronts but it seems to be at a cost of other aspects that made the first (in my mind) as good as it was and in essence put us all back at square one.

    I'm only 10 hours or so into the game (as that's all I can manage to bear playing at the moment) the lingering doubts I had from the demo, are slowly making its way to me at full force. The improvements are rare and meager to wow anyone, small minor details here and there so far, can not redeem its glaringly obvious faults. The loss of immersion is a big blow. The bigger insult is the loss of being able to forge a character you want. Even though i have full control of Hawke, I feel as though I know as much about him as I did about a random guard in DA:O. Being a gamer fond of a challenge I found myself constantly checking, double checking and in my immense annoyance, triple checking whether or not I had it tuned to the correct difficulty setting. I did, Nightmare mode and I felt like I was playing on a mode designed for a 5-year-old. The PC version seems to be a lame attempt at a port of the console versions, as I found through playing the game briefly on my roommate's PS3 that it played nicer. The classic smash until it dies games, hasn't died a horrible death it seems.

    It's a game that has snippets for all type of gamers and that sort of combination of gamer types (all seemingly unfinished) molded into one may not appeal to the masses. I'm still on neutral territory as I haven't played enough to know for sure if I should hate and trade the game at the quickest moment, for now I'm hoping for the best. My roommate is chugging the game down pretty fast, again, not for everyone but maybe a small few may find appeal to it.

    My earlier suspicion as to why the Signature Edition wasn't priced more than the standard copy has been confirmed. Nothing like freebies to win a gamer's heart, no Bioware? At the moment, I feel like it has sorely backfired on you.
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  55. Mar 12, 2011
    7
    Expectations are a b*tch. They have to be filtered out when trying to give some sort of a review...well at least to a point. A sentiment, not many users ( on metacritic anyway ) seem to share. I finished DA:O 6 times ( 4x on hard and twice on nightmare )... needless to say I love that game and I'm already thinking about the approach I'll take in the next playthrough.

    But now DA2 was
    Expectations are a b*tch. They have to be filtered out when trying to give some sort of a review...well at least to a point. A sentiment, not many users ( on metacritic anyway ) seem to share. I finished DA:O 6 times ( 4x on hard and twice on nightmare )... needless to say I love that game and I'm already thinking about the approach I'll take in the next playthrough.

    But now DA2 was released and yes...the first 2hours of playing this long-awaited game, really disappointed me. I think that's when some people alt-tabbed to their browser, went on this site and had to let off some steam. The strange thing is, although things don't really get better as the game goes on, I still had fun with the game ( and I'm still having fun with it now ). But the moment my destined-to-be spirit healer pulls off moves like "the last airbender" I new that this won't live up to my expectations. Here are my cons: - Menu/Icon-Design really doesnt hold a candle to the beautiful art we saw in Dragon Age:origins....it looks like its been designed for a tron-movie-tie-in game
    - although Combat now looks much fancier, it's also much quicker, hence too chaotic at times and with top view removed it can be hard to keep track of everything thats happening
    - Enemies spawn into the battlefield, so you cant really tell how long a fight will go
    - Looting has lost a lot of its charm and restrictions concerning the equipment of your party members really takes away from the fun
    - the crafting system doesn't deserve the name
    - the skill trees and the associated restrictions are not to my taste - the gift mechanic has been changed dramatically, to the point of no recognition
    - it would also have been nice to see what the scale is on the friendship/rivalry bar, so that I know wtf 10 points in either direct are worth ( but I'm nitpicking, and I shall be the cop who stops it...erm me )
    - and yes: Carver is a douche ;)

    pros:
    - everything that reminds me of DA:O


    I was also a fan of Mass Effect. And in the beginning, I was disappointed in ME2 aswell. Mainly due to the ( severe ) dumbing down of the skill-system ( which wasnt the most complex to begin with ). But ME2 provided some new gameplay features, great graphics, much improved action and once more a great epic story with diverse characters, making it, in the end a superior successor. DA2 fails to deliver anything new to justify the "dumbing-down" ( or streamlining, as the industry would like to brand it ) making it inferior to its predecessor.

    But even DA 0.5 is still good game, and certainly better ( if not by much ) then most recent rpgs ( fable 4, Ego Draconis, TwoWorlds II ). It's DEFINATELY NOT A 4
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  56. Mar 10, 2011
    7
    Possibly the worst decision bioware could make after making DA:O which is much superior to this button mashing pseudo arpg. I want my money back. Why is bioware try to ripoff people by developing a sequel that is a sequel in name. This has nothing to do with DA:O except the setting and even that has been bastardized to the point of being unrecognizable.
  57. Mar 18, 2011
    5
    The game lost the emotion factor, and, if it is a continuation of Dragon Age: Origins, it should not be said by the producers that the total change on game play and looks should not be considered. It is very frustrating to wait for a RPG that you expected to look like DAO, but improved, and to receive a Mass Effect like product not just because of the conversation factor. Itâ
  58. Apr 6, 2011
    5
    It is trimmed down, dumbed down ,consolised version of previous game, the story falls flat on its face and is not at all entertaining. It is better to avoid this game
  59. Mar 14, 2011
    5
    As a stand alone game, Dragon Age 2 is a passable and entertaining game. Nothing fancy or groundbreaking, but entertaining non the less. It's when compared to Dragon Age: Origins that things start to go south.

    First, the stand alone review: The caves, houses and locations in the City of Kirkwall - the location of the majority of the game - are constantly recycled. Does that location look
    As a stand alone game, Dragon Age 2 is a passable and entertaining game. Nothing fancy or groundbreaking, but entertaining non the less. It's when compared to Dragon Age: Origins that things start to go south.

    First, the stand alone review:

    The caves, houses and locations in the City of Kirkwall - the location of the majority of the game - are constantly recycled. Does that location look familiar? It probably is, because even though the missions change, the locations quite often don't. You'll find yourself slogging through a location you visited half an hour ago. Sometimes, the game spices things up and you start of where you left the location during your previous visit.

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

    As for the storyline, following Hawke's rise from refugee to champion is a novel idea and has merrit, but the story's lack of a clear goal and sense of urgency makes it lack a soul. As a result side-quests feel like filler and of no import.


    DA 2 is ntertaining, but with flaws and would've scored a 7. DA 2 only becomes a '4' (see my user score) when you compare it to Dragon Age: Origins. Origins had a compelling storyline, fleshed out locations, entertaining characters you could bond to, a clear goal to work towards and tactical combat. Now there is one thing that truly vexes me, the impact of my Warder from Origins in DAII. There is none, merely comments on his past actions which is a far cry from Mass Effect 2, where the choices made in ME 1 had strong consequences.

    Why Bioware took such a radical approach to a very much acclaimed game as Dragon Age Origin is beyond me.
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  60. Mar 14, 2011
    6
    Going to try my best to be constructive here. Dragon Age II is a merely decent game, which had the potential to be quite memorable. It squandered this potential by lukewarm storytelling, an inconsistently entertaining cast of NPCs and--most importantly--repetitive and exhausting level design.

    The narrative quality is difficult to justify, relatively unoriginal and draws from the
    Going to try my best to be constructive here. Dragon Age II is a merely decent game, which had the potential to be quite memorable. It squandered this potential by lukewarm storytelling, an inconsistently entertaining cast of NPCs and--most importantly--repetitive and exhausting level design.

    The narrative quality is difficult to justify, relatively unoriginal and draws from the stereotypes of RPGs: Joining caravan expeditions or running around town performing quests for whoever seems in need of aid. The side quests are endless and of varying quality, requiring you to return over and over again to the same locations, effectively robbing the game of a sense of discovery and novelty. Eventually, Kirkwall and its surrounding environment becomes so familiar as to be ignored, blending into the background as you run from questgiver to questgiver. While the idea of a game that takes place in one vicinity over the span of several years is an interesting one, it's also nothing new. Assassin's Creed 2 had Venice and Florence--large, sprawling and beautiful. Dragon Age 2 has Kirkwall: Cramped, small, lacking character and very angular.

    I'm also ambivalent toward the quality of NPCs/Party Members. Bioware has built a reputation of writing increasingly convincing and interesting characters, a reputation which was justified in Dragon Age: Origins and Mass Effect 2, both of which provided a robust and well-developed cast of interesting characters. Dragon Age 2 does have its share of nuanced and compelling characters--Varric and Merril come to mind, but other characters seem either totally devoid of purpose (Fenris, who broods stereotypically and seems to have no real reason to be with Hawke at all) or function as walking plot devices (Anders.)

    Some critics have pointed out that Dragon Age 2 is a short game. This is largely true, but brevity sometimes suits a game. Mass Effect 2 lasted just shy of thirty hours for me, but they were thirty hours in which no time was wasted; the pacing and storytelling were brisk and consistently exciting. This is not the case with Dragon Age 2.

    Dragon Age 2 lasted just about 25 hours for me. I played the game on Normal and finished very nearly every quest I found. The game suffers from a boring first act which establishes nearly nothing about your characters or your situation, and then begins to improve in the second act. Seemingly disparate events come together in a cohesive storyline. The narrative begins to make sense. This is the second act, or the "Rising Action."

    But just as this second act begins to envelop me in its increasingly thickening plot, and just as I begin to feel engrossed--it ends. There is no "climax" and no "denouement." Just as the plot begins to get interesting, the story takes a sudden, abrupt and very artificial turn, hurries along toward its conclusion with thirty minutes of gameplay and two relatively dull boss fights. And then it ends. There is no conclusion, no denouement, no catharsis. No news of what happens to Hawke or her companions. Overall, it feels as if I've been sold 25 hours from a 50 hour game.

    I've been trying to provide an honest critique of the game so far, but it is not without its strengths. Admittedly, combat is much more polished now, with every class and build interesting and engaging. The dialogue system has become much more organic, focusing less on morality (there is no Paragon/Renegade spectrum) and more on personality (Hawke can respond with a number of different attitudes--peacefully, aggressively, flippantly, flirtatiously, etc.) The game seems to keep track of these choices to form an aggregate personality for Hawke, and this is something I found rather enjoyable.

    Nonetheless, this is a game for which I had to make excuses. I was having fun despite--not because--of the game. Kirkwall is a far cry from the breathtaking vistas of Ostagar or the crowded metropolis of Denerim or the panoply of alien worlds in Mass Effect. The narrative is abrupt, unsatisfying and leaves a feeling of dissatisfaction owing to a lack of closure. This is a perfectly average RPG which accomplishes nothing truly special in terms of character design, level design or plot. Bioware has shown itself capable of doing so much better.
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  61. Mar 14, 2011
    6
    The story/RPG elements & mechanisms of DA:O were near perfect and the combat was in need of updating. In DA2, the opposite has occurred. The combat is good and the story/RPG elements & mechanisms are in need of updating. The Game Informer review was actually SPOT ON in regards to my views of DA2. I was glad it mentioned that the story felt like a bunch of side quests wrangled together andThe story/RPG elements & mechanisms of DA:O were near perfect and the combat was in need of updating. In DA2, the opposite has occurred. The combat is good and the story/RPG elements & mechanisms are in need of updating. The Game Informer review was actually SPOT ON in regards to my views of DA2. I was glad it mentioned that the story felt like a bunch of side quests wrangled together and was not up to Bioware's usual high standards.

    It feels nothing like an RPG and more like an interactive movie where you are watching this character Hawke achieve his destiny. There is a huge uproar over the poor quality of this game, and rightfully so.
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  62. Apr 19, 2011
    6
    I'm more of an Action-RPG fan than a straight up RPG fan so I was more forgiving with this title. I understand a lot of people's frustration with this game but regardless, this game is enjoyable. The gameplay is more action this time around but I like that. What I don't like is the horrible story. I won't spoil anything but when you get to the end of the game it FEELS as if that's theI'm more of an Action-RPG fan than a straight up RPG fan so I was more forgiving with this title. I understand a lot of people's frustration with this game but regardless, this game is enjoyable. The gameplay is more action this time around but I like that. What I don't like is the horrible story. I won't spoil anything but when you get to the end of the game it FEELS as if that's the mid-point of the game. But no, it's a cliffhanger for a sequel or an expansion. Dragon Age 2 is not a bad game. But I care about story and when the beginning is so well done you find yourself faced with a piece of crap at the end. I can't really recommend this game to hardcore RPG or Bioware fans. If you like Action-RPG's I'd say give this a rent or buy it when it's cheap. Expand
  63. Apr 14, 2011
    5
    Short review: Game is ok, not as good as the first one. Too many recycled environments, uninspired missions and combat. Best part of the game are still the companions and their conversations.
  64. Mar 12, 2011
    7
    OK, I'm not through yet but there are several points i just dont like at all, compared to the first one (PC, what else?). First, the camera controls in combat. No more Birds eye view on the PC? What? Even early in the game the fights take quite some room, I loose overview all the time.
    Second, the fact that i can't put armor on my Party members... What? I know they tried to go more in the
    OK, I'm not through yet but there are several points i just dont like at all, compared to the first one (PC, what else?). First, the camera controls in combat. No more Birds eye view on the PC? What? Even early in the game the fights take quite some room, I loose overview all the time.
    Second, the fact that i can't put armor on my Party members... What? I know they tried to go more in the direction of Mass Effect (which I LOVE!), but this isn't an RPG anymore, it's become an Action-RPG without ANY Micro-Management (it even Tells you what weapon is best for which Party member). I just don't have to think for myself any more. (I'm gonna play some dwarf fortress tonight to keep my brain oiled...)
    Third, Friendly Fire only on Nightmare? Whaaat? This Feature adds so much to the strategic depth and "realism". But I'll never play in Nightmare, since I don't want to try every fight a 100 times... It worked in the first game, why change this?
    All in all it seems like a very much dumbed down version of the first game (of course they want to reach a broader audience, but isnt that what Mass Effect is for???) You know there are not only kids playing this game. And for an RPG-Fan who LOVED the first one, this is quite a disapointment.
    I really like the Story, Graphics, Characters, Settings and so on. Quite a good rating since its still a lot of fun. but the first one got a 10, hands down!
    And if there wasnt the first game, i'd probably like it more. I just have to ignore the fact that this ist the successor to Dragon Age: Origins...
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  65. Mar 24, 2011
    7
    I feel if they had marketed this game as something other than Dragon age 2 ( Perhaps a dragon age Tale) the reviews would have been better. People who loved the first one expected it to play like the first one and were justly disappointed.
  66. Mar 12, 2011
    7
    My real score should be more like a 7.5. Basically, the user score of this game currently reflects a feeling by the gaming community that EA has neutered its flagship IP by Bioware to appeal to a wider user base. The truth is where it usually is, somewhere between the two extremes. There is no doubt that Dragon Age has been simplified and streamlined. If you loved Dragon Age for itsMy real score should be more like a 7.5. Basically, the user score of this game currently reflects a feeling by the gaming community that EA has neutered its flagship IP by Bioware to appeal to a wider user base. The truth is where it usually is, somewhere between the two extremes. There is no doubt that Dragon Age has been simplified and streamlined. If you loved Dragon Age for its tactical and sometimes frustrating battles, this game may seem like a waste of time. But as a standalone product disregarding Dragon Age: Origins (as this game's story mostly does), it is still a fantastic action game. The battles often feel visceral and direct, but the difficulty can change dramatically. One group of enemies will be taken down with little or no effort, while other battles (especially ones with far too many archers) will whittle down your party's health. The PC version suffers especially harshly, as you often find yourself clicking wildly as your character darts around trying to find the enemy. The story is also changed dramatically from the first game, focusing on what are essentially small vignettes. This form of storytelling gives us a terrific sense for Kirkwall and its culture, but has the effect of removing some of the narrative heft of the story. There is no Archdemon, and in fact there is no one compelling antagonist. The move is a bold one for a developer to make, but here I think Bioware mostly succeeds. The characters here feel multi-faceted and compelling. They also feel more distinct from one another. I read on here one reviewer claimed the graphics managed to be worse than Dragon Age: Origins. This was simply not so on the PC version, where textures were crisp and characters seemed to be modeled more realistically. However, Kirkwall could have been given more personality. After hours spent navigating Kirkwall, it can become a drag to constantly seek out mission goals in the same locations around the city. Also, the addition of more shops in the market districts means you can spend a lot of time looking for the right vendor. You can easily forget whether that armorer was located in Hightown or Lowtown, and some kind of list of available shops would have been helpful. If you see someone telling you Dragon Age is terrible, they probably haven't given it the consideration it is due as a long, varied experience. In an age when gamers complain about companies dipping too many times into the same pool, I am a little surprised to see so many complain that Dragon Age II is too different. If you think that simplicity means stupidity, you are probably not the target audience for this game. However, if you can give these features due consideration, you will probably find that there are benefits and drawbacks to the newly streamlined Dragon Age. Expand
  67. Mar 15, 2011
    6
    This game is a major departure from the BioWare RPG formula. Open-world gameplay has been replaced with linearity; tactical, strategic combat with a wide array of options has been turned into a poorly-executed action game. The things that made me love Baldur's Gate 2 and adore Dragon age are gone.

    Some flaws with this game: the skill tree. What the hell was BioWare thinking? It's
    This game is a major departure from the BioWare RPG formula. Open-world gameplay has been replaced with linearity; tactical, strategic combat with a wide array of options has been turned into a poorly-executed action game. The things that made me love Baldur's Gate 2 and adore Dragon age are gone.

    Some flaws with this game: the skill tree. What the hell was BioWare thinking? It's terrible. It is terribly designed, terrible to look at it, it isn't easy to understand, and also it is quite limited. I enjoy depth in my character development. I enjoy carefully looking through possible skills and feats to tweak my character just right. But here, it's super-dumbed-down and I don't like it.

    Linearity: a role-playing game on rails is half a role-playing game. Sure, you can walk around a zone and interact here first or there first, but generally, the feeling of being in a big living world is gone. BioWare games have never been on par in this respect with games like the Elder Scrolls, so I don't expect full open worlds. But I do expect more than what was delivered here.

    DA2 as an Action Game: Falls flat on its face. If you are going to make an action game, go whole hog. Make it so timing and positioning matter. Make it so your weapons matter in terms of reach and attacks. Make it like Demon's Souls. Otherwise, make the game play like an RPG. Finally -- it's obvious this game lacked love. Oblivion was released in 2006 and the sequel is coming out in late 2011. DA:0 was released in 2009 and its sequel is barely two years later. Which game do you think has more fleshed out content? Better mechanics? A better, more lovingly-crafted world? They should have taken their time here and produced something that we expected. Instead, we got a kind of watered-down mess that alienates me and people like me -- the true BioWare fans. Sorry BioWare, but this is your first miss in my opinion.
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  68. Mar 15, 2011
    7
    Is DA2 a bad game? No.
    Is DA2 a bad game by Bioware standards? Definitely.
    Currently Bioware seems to become a true EA Games drone, by wanting to release a game every year at the cost of quality. It is mostly the Bioware fans that are seriously pissed off at them, and are giving all the bad scores. People who don't care much about RPG's but much rather prefer action-oriented games like
    Is DA2 a bad game? No.
    Is DA2 a bad game by Bioware standards? Definitely.

    Currently Bioware seems to become a true EA Games drone, by wanting to release a game every year at the cost of quality. It is mostly the Bioware fans that are seriously pissed off at them, and are giving all the bad scores. People who don't care much about RPG's but much rather prefer action-oriented games like Call of Duty are the ones giving the high scores.

    Lets focus on the good parts first. The combat *looks* great, the companions are interesting, the graphics are pretty decent, the lore is still awesome to read, and the story while less epic than in DA:O, is still written very well. By industry standards, this is a very decent game.

    Sadly, there are also bad parts I need to mention. Like previously mentioned, the combat *looks* great, but when looking deeper at it, you'll notice it's actually pretty bland. Almost each encounter has waves of enemies (kill first group, 2nd group spawns, etc), and while interesting at first, it's overused.
    Speaking of overusing, if you have seen one cave / villa / sewer, you've seen them all. This is the biggest evidence of Bioware focussing on quantity over quality. They don't even give you a different minimap, certain passages are just blocked off.
    They've also reduced a lot of customization, with the excuse of 'streamlining' it. You can't even change your companions' outfit. But here's a newsflash Bioware: RPG fans LOVE customization. Sure, our companions may not always look great then, but this makes upgrading their outfits to more powerful ones even more satisfying.
    The biggest part of the quests you'll do are simple find and drop off quests, without even specific dialogue. You won't feel much of a connection to anyone or anything but some of your companions. Dialogue shouldn't feel like a bother, hence you should have the ability to skip it. But a total lack of it only makes us feel less involved. This goes so far that you don't even buy wares from merchants themselves, but from boxes next to them. BANG, and the immersion's gone.

    In conclusion: DA2 isn't bad, hell it's sometimes pretty good even. For the industry standard. But it's far, far away from the Bioware standard.
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  69. Mar 15, 2011
    6
    In short: It is the worst Bioware title I have ever played - yet I enjoyed it more than most other games I have played during the last 3 years. --- The main story is good but way shorter than Origins - the distractions = "side-quests" are so plentiful that they can be annoying. The maps are all recycled to death and main characters sometimes break the feeling by behaving very odd. --- TheIn short: It is the worst Bioware title I have ever played - yet I enjoyed it more than most other games I have played during the last 3 years. --- The main story is good but way shorter than Origins - the distractions = "side-quests" are so plentiful that they can be annoying. The maps are all recycled to death and main characters sometimes break the feeling by behaving very odd. --- The graphics are good but the DX11 engine is unfinished and seems to stutter for NVIDIA and ATI users alike on the very same dialogues. The texture work is worse than the Origins Community textures. --- The combat is not RPG-like and the auto-attack doesn't work properly on PC: Player controlled melee classes do not follow a target that moved away or got knocked down. --- I suggest waiting for a price drop before buying this extensive piece of interactive storytelling. Expand
  70. Mar 15, 2011
    7
    The game is fun to play, loading times and graphics are significantly better than the previous game. Inventory and item management have been streamlined. Battles feel more visceral, similar to KOTR. Voice acting was superb and some of the companion stories were truly memorable. However, as mentioned before the scope of the game is more narrow, confined to a single town and the story isThe game is fun to play, loading times and graphics are significantly better than the previous game. Inventory and item management have been streamlined. Battles feel more visceral, similar to KOTR. Voice acting was superb and some of the companion stories were truly memorable. However, as mentioned before the scope of the game is more narrow, confined to a single town and the story is more linear. Additionally, it's difficult to choose companions that complement your skill set. For instance, there were only 2 choices for healers in this game, and only 1 after Act 1. A lot of the areas were also recycled. I didn't have a problem with this but I can understand why other gamers might be upset. Some of the boss fights seemed overextended and a little reliant on button mashing and potion drinking. I also didn't really see much benefit for building up various resistances, ie fire, electric, or cold resistances, in the game. I am not sure if I met an enemy that even dealt electrical damage. Expand
  71. Mar 15, 2011
    5
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Being a huge fan of previous Bioware RPGs, I could barely contain my excitement for the release of Dragon Age 2. I mean a sequel to the epic Dragon Age: Origins was bound to be great... but unfortunately DA2 turned out to be a huge disappointment. It is a rushed product marketed to be as great as other Bioware RPGs where in actual fact falls far short of standards set by it's previous titles. The new combat system had some great animations and feels fast and dynamic but in actual fact became a boring ordeal of enemies appearing from all sides, materialising from thin air, in waves to make the fights seem difficult. There was no thought on how to balance the fighting to make it meaningful, so instead the monsters you encounter just have lots of hit points. Whereas a players health stays relatively constant, most monsters(some monsters have low hp which just die in aoe and dont contribute much to a battle) have 10 times 20 times if not 100 times the health of our characters (some monsters have low hp which just die if coughed on and are not worth mentioning anyway), to compensate this high amount of hp the player's skills can do obscene amounts of damage with special attacks and combinations leaving normal attacks rather redundant against boss level monsters. The dungeons where you go exploring are filled with the same monsters over and over, Rest assured to see spiders, undead, abominations, bandits in predictable waves. The dungeons you explore superimpose on top of each other and are used over and over again with changes in where chests and loot appear. Many many doors are not interactable with until certain quests are opened then you need to visit again at a later stage to explore the same area, this happens way too much (oh there is a cave here, thats handy cause i didnt see it when i didnt have the quest). The Game has many other shortcomings but i think i have already vented enough frustration. Buying dragon age 2 is like buying a car without paint and doors, you have to pay more later to get downloaded content which should be have been included, i can seriously say i probably had more fun playing dragon age facebook than dragon age 2.

    Not included in this review Linear Story Line
    Main Character talks (doesnt add much to the game, at least it doesnt say what you select)
    Targeted to a broader market, possibly little children would enjoy this game if the character dialogues could be censored (full of sexual innuendo and some nasty words)
    Lack of customisation to character Chests and traps progressing too quickly compared to attribute gains (couldnt open most locked chests)
    Cities feel empty, unable to interact with most npcs, no pickpocketing
    As a stand alone game DA2 scores 6-7 maybe...
    compared to its predecessors 0-1
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  72. Mar 16, 2011
    7
    It isn't a bad game. It's a good game. Really. I liked it but I don't love it. The combat is improved over DA:O's slow combat but now its too fast and ridiculous (exploding bodies). The graphics are great but character customization is limited (can't change companion armor), the character creator is virtually the same as DA:O. The story is good and the companions are great. But theIt isn't a bad game. It's a good game. Really. I liked it but I don't love it. The combat is improved over DA:O's slow combat but now its too fast and ridiculous (exploding bodies). The graphics are great but character customization is limited (can't change companion armor), the character creator is virtually the same as DA:O. The story is good and the companions are great. But the romances and the process of getting to know your fellow companions seems disjointed. It a fun game on its own merits but not as good as DA:O Expand
  73. Mar 17, 2011
    6
    The question you need to ask yourself when you're playing Dragon Age 2 is what you're actually comparing it to. Are you comparing it to Dragon Age 1 and deciding if you liked the first game better? Or are you looking at it on its own and thinking if it makes a good RPG? Perhaps an even more important question is: what do you expect out of a modern RPG and is Dragon Age 2 even an RPGThe question you need to ask yourself when you're playing Dragon Age 2 is what you're actually comparing it to. Are you comparing it to Dragon Age 1 and deciding if you liked the first game better? Or are you looking at it on its own and thinking if it makes a good RPG? Perhaps an even more important question is: what do you expect out of a modern RPG and is Dragon Age 2 even an RPG anymore?

    The disparity between the critic and user reviews leads me to think that most users are just bashing DA2 because they liked DA1 better. That's fine, but the grades being given are just exaggerated. Dragon Age 2 is an average game, but it's not TERRIBLE, and it doesn't deserve an average score of 4 out of 10.

    This doesn't mean I don't have major problems with Dragon Age 2, however. When I first heard that Dragon Age 2's art director thought that Dragon Age 1 lacked an definitive style, I was puzzled. I didn't think that Dragon Age 1 was "too brown" and I didn't think it was bland, and I didn't think I was "lost in Middle-Earth." I thought I was in a FANTASY game, and the universe's art direction screamed fantasy to me. I also loved the characters, loved the choice of races and designs, and I loved the storyline. It was my favorite fantasy RPG in a long, long time.

    I miss a lot about Dragon Age 1 when I play DA2. I miss the variety and depth of the origin stories. I miss the old darkspawn designs. I miss fully equipping my teammates. I miss Morrigan and Alistair. I miss the LESS stylized character models (oh how I HATE the way the new elves look...). Ironically, it seems as they dialed up the flash of the art, they dialed down the depth of the characters. It wasn't enough to have Qunari be large...now they have to have giant horns. It wasn't enough to have elves to be slightly lithe...now they have to have the big-eyes, small-mouth of manga characters. Most of all, I miss the CHEER of the first game. The breezy banter of Alistair, Morrigan, Zevran, Sten, Leliana, Shale -- even the dog are gone. Humor seems to have been largely replaced with heavily stylized doom and gloom. Everything is over the top, saturated, overblown, overexposed.

    So why am I saying that Dragon Age 2 isn't THAT bad? Because, all things considered, the characters are still somewhat memorable, the story isn't half-bad and the game is still somewhat fun. The problem is that people are expecting this to be an RPG in the mold of Dragon Age 1 -- which is it not. DA2 is really more of an action game with RPG touches at this point. Perhaps if this had been a game by another name, it would be more forgivable for some reviewers. But it's hard to just strictly on its merits when the memories of its classic ancestor are so fresh in our heads. Perhaps down the road Bioware have a little bit more appreciation for the universe they created, and, more importantly, for what gamers really enjoyed about that universe.

    + Not half bad for an action game with RPG elements
    - It's more Sean Lennon than John Lennon
    = 6/10
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  74. Mar 25, 2011
    7
    First off, loved DA: Origins and admit to being initially disappointed in this sequel. However, as others have already said, taken on it's own merits it is actually a good game. It's only in comparison to the original that it suffers. There are a couple of things which I feel are very poor, such as the re-use of areas with parts blocked off, and the carry object to person quests which hadFirst off, loved DA: Origins and admit to being initially disappointed in this sequel. However, as others have already said, taken on it's own merits it is actually a good game. It's only in comparison to the original that it suffers. There are a couple of things which I feel are very poor, such as the re-use of areas with parts blocked off, and the carry object to person quests which had no real sense to them without being related to a conversation.
    I believe part of the perceived lack of depth could also be because we aren't newly discovering this world as in DA:O (despite taking it's inspiration from Tolkien it did have either unique or interesting twists), and so we are familiar with many things that this storyline requires (mages and their predisposition to a case of the abominations, darkspawn and the blight, the chantry/templar/mage relationship etc although the last one was fleshed out a bit more).
    There were some excellent and disturbing plot points, the companions were good (though no-one as memorable as Shale, Morrigan or Leliana - with the possible exception of Varric), the combat was good though not great (and exploding bodies was a bit daft).
    For this to be a much better game only a few things would have needed to be added
    1.) More companion content, including more conversations between companions, and personally I would prefer the ability to kit out their armour
    2.) More areas to explore, and definitely more distinct art and design
    3.) A bigger game, possibly more and longer sidequests that would increase replayability.

    I really have to disagree with all of the zero ratings, most of these state that they are in response to some of the overly hyped critic reviews but it gives an unfair picture of what is a good but flawed game.
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  75. Mar 31, 2011
    7
    On it's own Dragon Age 2 is a good game, not a great game or an epic game mind you, but a good game. Good: The combat system is streamlined and simplified (a blessing for console players but a curse for PC gamers). Good/Excellent/Serviceable- voice acting. The visual style is excellent, with excellent facial expressions and interesting and varied character designs (from the buxom isabella,On it's own Dragon Age 2 is a good game, not a great game or an epic game mind you, but a good game. Good: The combat system is streamlined and simplified (a blessing for console players but a curse for PC gamers). Good/Excellent/Serviceable- voice acting. The visual style is excellent, with excellent facial expressions and interesting and varied character designs (from the buxom isabella, small thin flat chested elves, tall horned qunari, short stout dwarves). The quest locator system is awesome, just awesome. I also appreciated the fast travel abilities. The load times after I installed it on my HD was quick, i loved it. Visually it's not a bad looking game. The interface is much easier to navigate. Bad- A roleplaying game lives and dies by its story and its level designs. This is where DA2 dies a hard death. The pacing of the story is a disjointed mess. There is no flow. The epic storyline is absent here, A story, should have an arc, a climax, and a conclusion but the climax is so abrupt and conclusion so unsatisfying that it takes away what should be dramatic moments of the game. The level design is actually good, so what detracts from it then? It is reused to such a degree that you will begin to dread having to slog through the same cityscapes, soulless buildings types, dungeons, and outdoor environments. This kills the replay value for me. I swear by the end of the game I had the perverse wish that I could cast mega apocalypse just so I would never have to suffer through one more stupid repetitive level.

    This game is a good game, but usually I associate bioware games with the height of excellent. This game I associate with the height of mediocrity. By all means...buy the game....when the price drops and its a remastered edition with DLC bundled in it but don't buy brand new. Not worth it.
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  76. Mar 13, 2011
    6
    Do not believe all the negative hype around this game, and don't believe all the 0 scores on Metacritic. I find it hard to believe that some of the negative reviewers have even played the game. DA:2 is not as good as DA:O, but it is still an engrossing RPG with dozens of hours of gameplay. There was a huge negative hype machine in the RPG community before this game was released, and thisDo not believe all the negative hype around this game, and don't believe all the 0 scores on Metacritic. I find it hard to believe that some of the negative reviewers have even played the game. DA:2 is not as good as DA:O, but it is still an engrossing RPG with dozens of hours of gameplay. There was a huge negative hype machine in the RPG community before this game was released, and this is painting all of their reviews in a hugely biased way. A classic example of nerd rage. If this wasn't such a high profile game the reviews would be much more positive, instead the RPG community is using this game as an excuse to rip EA and Bioware apart. And in the process, they are trashing a game that is mediocre at worst. Expand
  77. Mar 13, 2011
    6
    Heres a Realistic review from someone who played the game on mostly nightmare/hard difficulty so didn't suffer from the 'button mashing' hack and slash crap people claim it to be, but it simply isn't .

    The Dialog is somewhat drastically dumbed down from the first, you can only be a goodie goodie, a clown who doesn't take **** anything serious, or an ass, there is no in between like the
    Heres a Realistic review from someone who played the game on mostly nightmare/hard difficulty so didn't suffer from the 'button mashing' hack and slash crap people claim it to be, but it simply isn't .

    The Dialog is somewhat drastically dumbed down from the first, you can only be a goodie goodie, a clown who doesn't take **** anything serious, or an ass, there is no in between like the first, i.e. it adopted mass effects slightly less than interesting dialog system bioware seem to love so much.

    The combat on hard and nightmare is NOT a hack and slash, on nightmare EVERY single encounter has to be micro managed or you will die, on hard all minor encounters can be done with minor micro management but all bosses require full micro management again, the combat is much improved to DAO, its far less sluggish and much more fluid so its a definite plus, DAO itself was just a tedious slow hack and slash on normal/easy anyways so to claim different is stupid.

    The plot is quite a bit weaker than the previous one, there doesn't seem to be much of an overall plot to the story and it seems second rate from what I would compare to most Bioware games and this looses it major points in my book, for the most part it was very generic and sometimes boring and predictable.

    The inventory system is dumbed down as in its mostly only about your character now, but honestly thats personal preference, I liked it much more than I disliked it, as it removed a lot of the tediousness from DAO.

    Graphically, in some cases its improved upon over the original, in others its just bad, the constant reuse of the same bland generic 'block' city really made it get tedious at some points and they reuse the same 20 or so areas over and over and over and over and over, until your eyes feel like they are bleeding.

    Its not a horrible game, I did however enjoy origins more, but the combat in this was definatly an improvement, just it is a total hack and slash on normal/easy no other way to put it, if you want a true tactical RPG experiance you have to play Nightmare/Hard.

    I give it a 6/10, some improvement, a lot of dis improvement from the original in other area's of gameplay.
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  78. Mar 9, 2011
    7
    I've played over 20 hours on this game and I realized I didn't truly appreciate it until I changed the difficulty to 'hard'. The combat on normal is wayyyyy too easy and you will very quickly become bored. 'Hard' and 'Nightmare' actually require the tactics that DA:O did. The graphics look fine to me and I'm still enjoying it, but I'm disappointed that I cannot change most of the armorI've played over 20 hours on this game and I realized I didn't truly appreciate it until I changed the difficulty to 'hard'. The combat on normal is wayyyyy too easy and you will very quickly become bored. 'Hard' and 'Nightmare' actually require the tactics that DA:O did. The graphics look fine to me and I'm still enjoying it, but I'm disappointed that I cannot change most of the armor on my companions. Picking character skills is a blast in this game, but you won't need them unless you play on hard or nightmare. Expand
  79. Mar 17, 2011
    7
    I've almost arrived at the end of my Dragon Age 2 journey and I feel the need to weigh in a bit early to help boost the game back from its undeservedly low user score.

    At its core, Dragon Age 2 is yet another finely made Bioware title with all of the great atmosphere, storytelling, and characters that their previous titles have had. This time around, we're getting a far more focussed
    I've almost arrived at the end of my Dragon Age 2 journey and I feel the need to weigh in a bit early to help boost the game back from its undeservedly low user score.

    At its core, Dragon Age 2 is yet another finely made Bioware title with all of the great atmosphere, storytelling, and characters that their previous titles have had. This time around, we're getting a far more focussed slice of the world. Your character is important to the city of Kirkwall, but you get the sense that far grander events are playing out elsewhere in the world. I for one like this departure; it made me feel like I had a big role to play in one small region, but wouldn't be shifting the destiny of the continent. The game is also quite a bit more policial in nature. Still, while I love Kirkwall and the new art style throughout the game, there are major downsides. The limitations of staying in one city become apparent long before the end of the game and the environments get terribly repetitive.

    As far as gameplay is concerned, you'll be diving into a mix of Origins and Mass Effect. I played Origins on PC and enjoyed its more classic top-down rpg controls, but I'm playing DA2 on xbox and I think this new control scheme is excellent as well. If you take the time to dig into it, they haven't left much out from the new controls. The command wheel lets you issue most of the same commands you could in Origins, and then lets you participate a lot more viscerally once you launch the attack. The streamlined inventory works great too, and I can't remember anything from Origins that I find myself missing terribly in DA2. However, it isn't all good news. The exploding gore and corpses get pretty silly, and larger battles can get a bit too hectic for the third person controls. It would also be nice to have more control over outfitting my party.

    As I write this, the user score sits at 4.3, largely because a vocal minority of fans clearly don't understand how to objectively use a 0-10 scale. This game deserves far better than that. You don't slam something with a 1 or 0 out of 10 because it disappoints you or departs from your expectations, you slam something with a 0 if it's broken, awful to play, or of insultingly poor craftsmanship. This game is NONE of those things. Dragon Age 2 is far from being the best Bioware has done, and their Mass Effect titles pull off action gameplay a lot better, but it still stands above many other releases this year. I just hope they learn a lesson or two and make Dragon Age 3 the best one yet!
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  80. Apr 4, 2011
    7
    While I had my issues with this game, I feel like all they did was go the route that Mass Effect 2 did with streamlining, cutting fat, and focusing on character stories more than a main story. Strangely enough though, because this game did it, people are out in droves to give it an unfair 0 rating. I mean really? is that not the same crap you blame critics for when it comes to the gameWhile I had my issues with this game, I feel like all they did was go the route that Mass Effect 2 did with streamlining, cutting fat, and focusing on character stories more than a main story. Strangely enough though, because this game did it, people are out in droves to give it an unfair 0 rating. I mean really? is that not the same crap you blame critics for when it comes to the game being overrated, you turn around and severely underrate it? So why are the user reviews of ME 2 so high when for the most part they went the same route with DA 2? I don't get it, this is a solid game that does nothing special but yet does not deserve the self-serving terrible review a lot of you have given it. At least rent it and try for yourself. Expand
  81. Jun 29, 2011
    7
    This game is a step backwards from DA:O, while i like the new combat system and graphics have been improved, the rest of the game feels uninspired. They stripped custumizaton for all your companions, so 70% of objects you pick up are junk, and sell very cheap by the way, good items are incredibly expensive, so by the time you buy them the game is almos over. Your companions are no whereThis game is a step backwards from DA:O, while i like the new combat system and graphics have been improved, the rest of the game feels uninspired. They stripped custumizaton for all your companions, so 70% of objects you pick up are junk, and sell very cheap by the way, good items are incredibly expensive, so by the time you buy them the game is almos over. Your companions are no where near as interesting as in DA:O. It no longer matters if you play as a good or a bad guy because the story plays the same way with little consequence. to sum up: Graphics 7, Sound 7, Story 6, Gameplay 8, Replay value 8 Expand
  82. Mar 16, 2011
    7
    DA II isn't that bad, it's just not moving the game forward since DA Origins. It doesn't deserve a really bad score, I was just hoping for an improvement from the previous.
  83. May 18, 2011
    5
    The only saving grace of this game is the storytelling. Every feature of the original game was scaled down or removed. I literally am not able to name one aspect of the original game that they made deeper or more involving. This has 'rush job' written all over it, a real disappointment for me personally since I loved the original so dearly.
  84. Mar 12, 2011
    7
    Everything is great in this game!!!Meet the Best Rpg for teen years Dragon age 2!!! I love this game!! I complete the game already and i want more play it.i want more adventures,i want more dlc which tell us about Hawke s fate)))dont listen people who give negative review its all flashmob
  85. Mar 16, 2011
    7
    Not bad. Excellent screenplay and characters, good music and graphic. Boring gameplay, poor roleplay system (if compare with DAO). But the Story is brilliant. This is an interactive book.
  86. Mar 13, 2011
    7
    Not nearly as bad as these reviews would have you believe but disappointing none the less. Combat is much more fluid than DA:O, and the graphics are marginally better. But that's about it as far as improvements go. The story isn't really about Hawke. It's about Kirkwall and its people, making for a more personal story. However, it lacks the scope of its predecessor and what I do in theNot nearly as bad as these reviews would have you believe but disappointing none the less. Combat is much more fluid than DA:O, and the graphics are marginally better. But that's about it as far as improvements go. The story isn't really about Hawke. It's about Kirkwall and its people, making for a more personal story. However, it lacks the scope of its predecessor and what I do in the game doesn't feel as significant as in DA:O. The writing is still of a high standard overall but the dialog wheel makes conversations much more confined and clunky. Kirkwall feels empty and fails to construct its own identity, something Rockstar games do very well. The lack of customization for teammates also hurts the game. In spite of all this, I enjoyed myself and I will replay it. It just wasn't the game it could have been. Expand
  87. Mar 21, 2011
    7
    This game is deeply flawed, yet I've played it for so many hours and really do enjoy it. First, the problems. There are some major glitches, especially on the Wayward Son mission. You are best to save often if you don't want to lose hours of play like I did. Second, the DA2 guys packed a lot of story in here, but didn't pack in a lot of maps so, sorry to say it does get a bit repetitive.This game is deeply flawed, yet I've played it for so many hours and really do enjoy it. First, the problems. There are some major glitches, especially on the Wayward Son mission. You are best to save often if you don't want to lose hours of play like I did. Second, the DA2 guys packed a lot of story in here, but didn't pack in a lot of maps so, sorry to say it does get a bit repetitive. I'm glad they didn't skimp on story. I guess I'd rather have to keep going back to the same caves and beaches than have less story, but it can get stale. The voice acting was much improved over the first DA2 and the main character is a far better voice actor than the scrubs they got to do Mass Effect. Game play and graphics are also much improved over DA1, though they did dumb it down so people who don't like collecting herbs or enchanting weapons can still have fun with it. At the end of the day this is a solid game that's provided me with hours of enjoyment. It's not another Oblivion, sadly I don't think we'll ever see that again, and it's not even another Mass Effect or KOTOR. It is however a pretty fun game for fans of the genre who don't mind frequent saves and a glitch here or there. Expand
  88. Mar 19, 2011
    7
    I found the game enjoyable, though it didn't have the same epic scope that Origins did.

    Story: The main story overall didn't have much continuity other then your character, Hawke was the one responsible for solving each 'years' crisis. Your companions have better story arcs. The ending was a letdown to me, after 40 hours of game play their wasn't much resolution, no end game wrap up of
    I found the game enjoyable, though it didn't have the same epic scope that Origins did.

    Story: The main story overall didn't have much continuity other then your character, Hawke was the one responsible for solving each 'years' crisis. Your companions have better story arcs. The ending was a letdown to me, after 40 hours of game play their wasn't much resolution, no end game wrap up of the events Hawke had set in motion or how each of his companions fared. It felt hollow and open ended for the obligatory sequel.

    Graphics: The biggest thing people who played Origins will notice is character design has changed a lot, and its quite jarring when you run into NPCs that made appearances in Origins/Awakening that look nothing like they did before. However, once you get past all the retcons of art design the game itself is rather well designed, though some reused textures from Origins for clothes don't show as much polish as the new armor and clothes. The scenery is lovely though.

    Combat: I actually liked the increased pace of combat and the cross-class combos were pretty fun to pull off. My main gripe about combat is the 'waves' of enemies, where you'd kill the first group of enemies and then a second and sometimes third group would materialize out of thin air. Towards the end of the game having to kill 30 enemies every fight just made things drag on and I got a bit tired of all the mindless slaughter.

    I don't regret buying this game and it did hold my attention for 40 hours and probably more in subsequent play throughs. I consider any game that I play for more then 20 hours a success. It's not the best Bioware game I've played but when stacked up against other fantasy games it can hold its weight.
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  89. Mar 20, 2011
    7
    As a Bioware fan girl i will try to make as much of an unbiased review i can do for this game. I'm not blind to it's flaw. But dont want to bash it rediculously for some of the scandals on the game reviews.
    Even if some of the features of Dragon Age Origins return, this is not the same game at all, for the good and the bad. We return to Thedas the same universe and we still are playing a
    As a Bioware fan girl i will try to make as much of an unbiased review i can do for this game. I'm not blind to it's flaw. But dont want to bash it rediculously for some of the scandals on the game reviews.
    Even if some of the features of Dragon Age Origins return, this is not the same game at all, for the good and the bad. We return to Thedas the same universe and we still are playing a tactical RPG like the first one, who let you customise the enemies tactics (Richards that's not an unfinished feature, it's necesseries with all the customisations possibles, and it allow to to addapt the tactics to your liking).
    .
    I wills tart out with the bads
    Less customisation than the first one, It's no longer possible to play an elf or a dwarf.
    Recicled environements
    Lack of environement variety
    straight lined missions

    On the good side
    The story is nice and very personal a good change of the epics stories
    The voice acting is excellent as usual on a Bioware titles and the dialogue well work well in the game
    Uge improvement on the graphical side (the art style have changed a lot trought and you like it or you dont)
    Good replayability with lot of things who can change in the game plays

    It's not as good as the original but still a good game
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  90. Apr 24, 2011
    7
    I think a lot of the criticism of the game has been overly focused on the combat. The combat certainly has its issues, but the real problem the game is its complete lack of pacing or plot. Origins was an epic adventure where your choices actually mattered. This game doesn't even provide the illusion of choice, as its painfully obvious that the game will rail-road you as it sees fit. ThisI think a lot of the criticism of the game has been overly focused on the combat. The combat certainly has its issues, but the real problem the game is its complete lack of pacing or plot. Origins was an epic adventure where your choices actually mattered. This game doesn't even provide the illusion of choice, as its painfully obvious that the game will rail-road you as it sees fit. This would be acceptable if the game had a decent story, but with the exception of a few interesting side quests, it really doesn't. Character motivation is often non-existent and their decisions often make no sense. The plot is painfully predictable.

    The three acts are basically unrelated. I admire what Bioware tried to do with the 7-year plot span, but it required a sense of change that wasn't present.

    My other gripe is that the game only provides about 10 hours of content, and then pads it out with recycled environments and fetch quests. I think almost everyone would agree this is a big problem.

    I'm giving the game a seven because the companions were mostly excellent. I didn't care for Merrill, because I felt her side-stories had no rationale, but most people seem to like her too. Otherwise, there are much better RPG's out there, many of them by bioware. Try one of those.
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  91. Mar 17, 2011
    7
    Sin duda alguna, una entrega muy inferior en relación a Origins, con muchos puntos flojos. Su único punto fuerte es que los combates contra bosses siguen teniendo "algo de estrategia", y otras pequeñas cosas sin mucha importancia. Esta entrega ha sido especialmente enfocada a todos los públicos, dejando de banda a los fieles seguidoresSin duda alguna, una entrega muy inferior en relación a Origins, con muchos puntos flojos. Su único punto fuerte es que los combates contra bosses siguen teniendo "algo de estrategia", y otras pequeñas cosas sin mucha importancia. Esta entrega ha sido especialmente enfocada a todos los públicos, dejando de banda a los fieles seguidores del rol. Personajes poco complejos, historia confusa, simplificaciones... un despropósito en si. BioWare solo tenía mejorar un poco Origins para hacer un gran juego. Expand
  92. Mar 15, 2011
    7
    If you are looking for a LONG game and enjoy RPGs then this is like you. At times, it plays more like a 'Choose your own Adventure' book (yeah, I am that old) and wasn't terribly thrilled with the sexual ambiguity of the game, but it was entertaining. Between the long periods of video, choose what you will say, comes the hack and slash which was a bit repetitive at times. Not horriblyIf you are looking for a LONG game and enjoy RPGs then this is like you. At times, it plays more like a 'Choose your own Adventure' book (yeah, I am that old) and wasn't terribly thrilled with the sexual ambiguity of the game, but it was entertaining. Between the long periods of video, choose what you will say, comes the hack and slash which was a bit repetitive at times. Not horribly challenging but kept me busy. Expand
  93. Mar 16, 2011
    6
    Sadly Bioware seems to have succumbed to possible pressure from EA to quickly produce a sequel to DA:O. This is reflected in many aspects of the game and most importantly in the environment and story. The environments are static and because you spend the whole game in the same city you will visit the same places hundreds of times.

    The story misses a clear drive and remains vague
    Sadly Bioware seems to have succumbed to possible pressure from EA to quickly produce a sequel to DA:O. This is reflected in many aspects of the game and most importantly in the environment and story. The environments are static and because you spend the whole game in the same city you will visit the same places hundreds of times.

    The story misses a clear drive and remains vague throughout the whole game. In the end I had the feeling my decisions did not have any 'real' impact on the conclusion of the story (if there even is one). Certain things that happened simply did not make sense to me. Furthermore the ending leaves a lot of questions unanswered. This is not necessarily a bad thing but it reminded me of the ending of KotOR 2, which is definitely not a good thing.

    A final sign of hasty production of this game is perhaps the removal of certain features from the first game. One of these is that you can no longer choose what armor your companions wear, making most of the armor useless since you can only wear armor suited for your own class. Perhaps Bioware had to remove this feature because they did not have the time to adapt the armor for different character models?

    In the end I had some fun with DA II (the fighting is great although it is quite easy) but it left me thinking "Was that all?". You can do better than this Bioware!
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  94. Mar 29, 2011
    7
    Dragon Age 2 was a Good game, However it had many flaws in it which keeps it from receiving a better score from me. DA:O was a game that was almost the perfect RPG but it too had flaws as in a slow combat system and shotty graphics for the 360. While DA 2 Fixed the slow combat system it went away from the core of what made DA:O a great game. For it didn't have varied areas and you wereDragon Age 2 was a Good game, However it had many flaws in it which keeps it from receiving a better score from me. DA:O was a game that was almost the perfect RPG but it too had flaws as in a slow combat system and shotty graphics for the 360. While DA 2 Fixed the slow combat system it went away from the core of what made DA:O a great game. For it didn't have varied areas and you were stuck in one city the entire game. While the story and the side quests were amazing, but the areas were just used over and over again and after awhile you just started to get bored of doing the same thing over and over. The only saving grace for this was the combat system was fluid and the story was amazing.

    I can only imagine that if Bioware kept this game in development for another 6months it would have produced a much better game. As it stands sadly while the game was fun it just wasn't as impressive as DA:O was with it's epic feel of adventure, and settings. DA2 had a better story and combat system however it just fell down on variety and the feel of epic. Cause really I'll never forget going into the Deep Roads and the mage tower in the first game, The experience these places produced were one of a kind.
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  95. Apr 15, 2011
    7
    This may be a step down from origins but its still a good game and there are some improvements. Most of the beginning of the game you are doing boring quest that have you going from one place to the other then the other then the other... But once you get further into the game it gets more enjoyable. There are some unexpected moments along the way. The customization from the first game wasThis may be a step down from origins but its still a good game and there are some improvements. Most of the beginning of the game you are doing boring quest that have you going from one place to the other then the other then the other... But once you get further into the game it gets more enjoyable. There are some unexpected moments along the way. The customization from the first game was mostly taken away seeing how your character is picked for you but you can pick his/her face and that about it besides armor and weapons. Dont get me wrong i still like this game but the first one was better. Expand
  96. Apr 20, 2011
    7
    Not as good as "Dragon age: Origins" but not bad. I find it good that the combats are now more action-packed. The story is interesting but not as epic as it was in Origin. What i really hated was the copy-paste levels. In every Chapter the levels were the same. I am a little bit disapointed but nonetheless it is a good game.
  97. Apr 22, 2011
    7
    I've been a fan of Bioware since KOTOR, but I am the first to admit that with Dragon Age 2, they dropped the ball. Big time. The product of one year of lazy and extremely rushed development, this game remains good compared to other videogames on the market, but as per Bioware standards, it is truly mediocre. The sequel to the masterful Dragon Age Origins falls (very short) in every domainI've been a fan of Bioware since KOTOR, but I am the first to admit that with Dragon Age 2, they dropped the ball. Big time. The product of one year of lazy and extremely rushed development, this game remains good compared to other videogames on the market, but as per Bioware standards, it is truly mediocre. The sequel to the masterful Dragon Age Origins falls (very short) in every domain but the graphics. The levels are re-used ad nauseum, the characters are boring and unlikable (the worst thing that can happen to an RPG), the story is a deconstructed mess, the fighting is more dynamic but less deep... Overall, the game is a severe failure and a huge step back. Expand
  98. May 18, 2011
    7
    It's a Great Game, but ya they could have done better, but still a good buy for PC, I like that the main character can talk, gives more life to your character, the story so far for is great, my favourite character is the dwarf Varric, he is a good Narrator, gives more flavour for the Story...
  99. Mar 11, 2011
    7
    I went into Dragon Age II with high hopes, only to be crushed summarily upon realizing that the Auto-Attack feature had not been implemented as promised, and that the importation system was supposedly broken. Much like Hawke's rise to power, however, my feelings towards the game grew steadily until I found myself staring wide-eyed at the game's climax. I'll start with graphical details,I went into Dragon Age II with high hopes, only to be crushed summarily upon realizing that the Auto-Attack feature had not been implemented as promised, and that the importation system was supposedly broken. Much like Hawke's rise to power, however, my feelings towards the game grew steadily until I found myself staring wide-eyed at the game's climax. I'll start with graphical details, though. Playing on 1080i, the graphics are a moderate improvement over those of Origins. That said, they could be better. There are a few minor clipping issues, and if you pay attention, you can definitely tell that you're playing a video game. Graphically, this is no Mass Effect. However, from an artistic standpoint, the game is impressive, to say the least. Thedesian art is shown over Varric's voiceovers, providing an experience that genuinely immerses you in the world. Furthermore, breathtaking environments outside of Kirkwall can leave you forgetting your quest at times. There are complaints of several technical issues. Most notably is the lack of an Auto-Attack feature. Chris Priestly has promised a patch that will include the feature, but until then, players are committed to button mashing in order to attack. Fans of Origins, I don't have to tell you how much of a nightmare this can be. There have also been reports of the import feature not working. However, as I haven't encountered said glitch, I won't fault the game for it. From a gameplay standpoint, the game has seen noticeable improvements (with the exception of the Auto-Attack issue). Choosing an action now sets that action immediately into motion. No longer do you have to shuffle around enemies or wait for them to stop running from you. Furthermore, ranged characters like archers and mages can now hold their own (to a degree) in close-quarters combat. However, you can no longer customize the armor of your party members, other than accessories. While this has the sense of a lack of control, it does make every party member stand out as unique. The story is drastically different from that of Origins. Where Origins was a high fantasy epic involving the defeat of Thedas' greatest known evil, Dragon Age II is a personal story that slowly builds purpose. The developers were mostly correct when they said that there's no primary antagonist. The game is divided into several acts, with the final two each having their own enemies. After a slow climb, the game reaches a world-shattering climax in its final act, with the opportunity to change Thedas much more than your Warden ever did. Unfortunately, the story to that point is almost totally devoid of the embracing feel of Origins. Additionally, the denouement is short and unfulfilling, and you find yourself hoping for an expansion that will offer some closure. Ultimately, Dragon Age II comes off as a strong game that just barely missed its mark. It hits a high point towards the end, but the journey there often feels cold and uninviting in comparison with the enthralling world of Origins. The graphics, while improved, still don't meet the standards set by many games recently released. Gameplay has seen several improvements, but in an effort to streamline, the developers were perhaps a bit too ambitious for their own good. In short, Dragon Age II is worth playing, but you shouldn't shelf the original just yet. Expand
Metascore
79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 75 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 55 out of 75
  2. Negative: 1 out of 75
  1. Aug 3, 2011
    85
    I'll give Bioware points for trying to do something different in their world, but they really did have it right the first time in terms of character building and the scope of the story.
  2. May 1, 2011
    75
    Faulty game mechanics and disappointing maps, combat scenarios and storyline direction aside, Dragon Age II still has a surprising amount of intrigue hidden beneath the blemishes. The depth of character relationships, as well as the complex nature of the world of the Dragon Age franchise are a savior to a game that would otherwise forever be remembered by its mistakes.
  3. Apr 22, 2011
    90
    Above all, it seems like Dragon Age II is an experiment. If you're a fan of the first game and expect a direct continuation, either in story or mechanics, you'll be disappointed. If you're not willing to put up with some rough edges and some mechanics that don't quite work as intended, you'll end up having a hard time. But if you're going for a game that has some of the best storytelling in RPGs in a while, or you're looking for a BioWare RPG to tide yourself over until Mass Effect 3, you won't do much better right now than Dragon Age II.