Apr 10, 20119This game, the storyline, the quests and the characters are all fantastic! In particular interactions between party members as you walk around really bring them to life! The combat animations and sound effects are perfect, defeating hordes of weak enemies has never felt so satisfying for me, you can really feel the force behind your attacks!
The only reason this doesn't get a perfect ten is because of the lack of 'heroic stats' that was present in DA:Orgins, which kept track of the damage dealt, received, strongest enemy defeated etc. for all your characters. If that could at some point be modded in, this would be one of my favourite games ever!… Expand
Apr 28, 20119It has been really hard to actually come up with my full opinion of this game. It wasn't until I had a chance to play it on both the xbox 360 and computer that I finally had it down. All together I won't be saying anything revolutionary: Just as there are elements of DA2 that improved upon elements of DA:O, it also seems to have deviated in some areas that made DA:O great.
1) Combat-In this area, what system you are playing it on has a huge impact, just like Origins. From the console player's perspective, I greatly enjoyed combat. It felt more fast pace than before. From the PC perspective, there is a definite issue, as one of the greatest parts of Origins was the tactical slant fights took. You can still do a lot of tactical maneuvers in DA2, but it is strained, and mildly unneeded in everything but the hardest playing difficulties. So in my opinion combat succeeds in the console format but definitely falters a little on the computer.
2) Story - In this area, I think the game did great. While Origins showed us the slightly more stereotypical apocalyptic setting, DA2 does something different, showing the after effects and repercussions of such an event. Characters felt more unique and alive, something I didn't think possible as I loved the characters of DA:O. While the story itself was more confined, at all times you do get a sense of a greater impact from your actions, which I believe will cause people to keep returning to this game when further installments in the series come out, something I didn't get from DA:O. 3) Graphics and Sound - I loved the soundtrack, being of fan of Inon Zur. The graphics were also very good, and I enjoyed the cosmetic changes made to Darkspawn, and even to returning characters in the game like Isabella. My greatest complaint about the game comes in here thou. Map design was horrible in comparison to DA:O, being incredibly linear, and having all of 3 or 4 unique dungeon designs. Things got fairly stale when you realize that you have been to the same dungeon 30 or so times.
All in all, I did love the game, and it did more things right than wrong in my opinion. Some fans of DA:O will undoubtedly find faults with the game, just as the same fans may greatly enjoy the ride.… Expand
Jul 10, 20119I'll start by saying Origins was an absolute gem of hardcore tactical RPG design. Dragon Age 2 however, is a different gem. It's combat is far quicker and fluid while still having a healthy dose of strategy. Naysayers will have you believe this is a betrayal of what Dragon Age is, but its just a different style of game. If your one of the people who didn't click with Origins, this new title is almost certain to appeal to you.
The fluidity of the combat translates well to the pacey storyline and easily likable characters. The main acts of the story are rather short but the memorable side quests and companion quests will keep your playthrough above 40 hours at least. Your cohorts themselves are very distinguished in personality and appearance as well. Out of the entire party, Varric stands as one my most beloved in the franchise so far. The static approval system has been replaced by a much more dynamic friendship/rivalry system. Gaining an ally's complete loyalty is very rewarding as it opens up new facets of their personality as well as granting a decent stat boost. Hawke's 10 year rise from refugee to champion is an emotional tale, full of suspense and political intrigue. The climax had my head spinning with anticipation for Dragon Age 3. The character Hawke is very well acted as well. Nicholos Boulton and Jo Wyatt put very emotive performances behind whichever personality you decide to give your Hawke. By the final act, you will have laughed, felt deep heartache, given immense power and political sway the city of Kirkwall, and decided the outcome of many morally straining events.
Inventory management has seen a face lift. While you can buy upgrades for your companions armor and attack power and equip accessories, their clothing remains untouchable. Some of their outfits do change and evolve throughout the 10 years of the story however, while some will only change unless your in a romance with them. The only outfit you have complete control over is the player characters. Class weapon types have been altered as well. Warrior's can only use a weapon and shield combo or heft two handed weapons while dual wielding has been restricted to rogues. Mages can carry bladed staffs that do decent melee damage as well. The classes themselves are also nicely varied. Warriors are satisfying tanks who will appeal to the hack-n-slash fan in all of us. While rogues will satisfy a player looking to exert more control of the battlefield by say targeting a dangerous mage, stealthing past its guards and unleashing a devastating single target combo. Mages complete the party by having some very epic spells for dealing death from afar and supporting you during tougher enemy and boss encounters. Crushing prison comes to mind as a personal favorite.
Leveling has been revamped as well. You still gain three points every level but you'll be spending some of them on different attributes. Both a warriors strength and constitution must be improved to wear high end armors while wielding their deadliest weapons only requires high strength. Rogues must only increase cunning by 10 every time to improve lock picking and dexterity for access to top tier weapons but both dexterity and cunning must be improved to don their best armors. For a mage to have access to the best robes they must buff their magic and willpower and better staves will require better magic. There are no truly new specializations but picking skills has moved away from skill tree's and are now skill webs. Each skill is now connected to a category such as Warmonger, Subterfuge, Arcane, etc. Each companion also has a unique skill web you must unlock by gaining either their friendship or rivalry. Overall, I'm pleased with the updated art style, save for one thing, the Darkspawn. Their look is not what I would expect pure all encompassing darkness to be. In Origins, they were the stuff of nightmares, disgusting and unnerving. They remind me of pale faced crack addicts this time around, which makes me very thankful for their limited role in this installment.
My only real gripes with Dragon Age 2 are mainly the limited inventory for your companions gear and some reused dungeon maps. Buying new clothing and armor for your party would be nice but overall I believe its a very small negative in light of the games many other pluses. As for the reused maps, I was so absorbed into the world and story I didn't even start to notice until about 30 hours in. Even then, the maps are still much easier to understand then they were in Origins anyway.
This is a different way of experiencing the world of Thedas and it's not going to be for everyone. Especially die hard fans of the PC version of Dragon Age: Origins. Still, this is an excellent experience that should not be overlooked and certainly lives up to Bioware's excellent pedigree. There is always room for improvement and I for one, cannot wait for Dragon Age 3.… Expand
Aug 9, 20119While disappointed by Dragon Age II in some aspects it is till a solid game that contains the Bioware touch. I'm shocked how many diehard Bioware fans claim that they'll never purchase another Bioware game because of this. My score is inflated because so many others on here are terribly deflated. The number of 0s is astonishing considering what a 0 game would really be like.
Sharp graphics, quick load times, accessible interface, and an intriguing storyline that is unique in the way it tells a story of one person over time, in the same place. I loved that aspect although I understand why some might not. As for the criticism of the dungeons being too repetitive, I agree but this seems far more minor to me than many argue. Why is it so important for the map to be different in those dungeons when they all look so familiar in other games anyhow? In short, I loved this game despite it not living up to the quality of the predecessor.… Expand
Sep 30, 20119I did enjoy Da:0 alot. It was truely a joy playing a new rpg in Bioware class and style with a new universe that was both intriguing and dark. As such I did fast favor Da:0 over my old Bioware favorite Mass effect , and while proberly most people sat playing ME2 at launch, I was still stuck playing multiple playthroughs through Ferelden, not touching ME2 until about 3 months ago after I finished my third playthough of Dragon age 2. I would say now that while Mass effect 1, 2, and DA:O are all terrific games with a quality not touched by any other roleplaying game serie I know of, DA:2 is for me the pinnacle of Bioware rpgs, a stepping stone to something even better. Let me explain: DA:2 is in many ways a different game then DA:O. It has a new dialogue system loaned by Mass effect, a reworked skill system,a new faster phaced fighting system making it into something more of a action game, and a simplication in roleplaying stats as itemization
and stats. The later, something of the same as ME -> ME2, giving your compainons finalized gear and outfits, not giving you much of a choice customizing anything else then your own characther. While this might seem boring at first and missed, I couldnt in the end really see how it made the game any far less enjoyable. What makes Bioware game shine as much as they do are in my opinion mostly based on how great the compainons are. These characthers that follow you on your quests have always been greatly well done, always making me have more fun being stuck in conversations then actuall fighting in any Bioware game. Having these characthers having unique unchangable looks doesnt really bother me, instead for me it adds to the flavor, making each characther even more unique and unforgetting. I could go with having the option changing their gear, but as the game plays on, it really isnt that all missed. Going back to the compainions conversations and personalies, there is another great change in the dialoge system. Gone is the multiple text choices and in goes the wheel from Mass effect, giving you more pre defined and hinted choices. You always know when you are charming or intemitating, or joking, or being rude or being nice, or being persuaive. You can pretty much look at the icons for each dialoge choice and click it instead of looking at what your characther is actually saying in words. This is for me a big change from DA:O and not something always in my liking. I miss having conversations without a already known outcome. I miss saying something and not really be prepared where the conversation is going. The ME wheel is nice yes, but I really would like something more to DA:O. There is also the problem with about all the conversations being pre decided. Whatever choices you do you always end up with the same outcome in most cases, and this is in my opinion one of DA:2s biggest flaws, which stretches it self even to the games story. Before going into that I would like to finalize that the conversations in DA:2 are still great, well written and entertaining. They could just been less pre decided and defined.
Going to the game story, its great. Its something of a rise to power story ( which I think is even a catch phrase done by Bioware for the game ), making out how your characther goes from being a nobody to a well respected hero. Its a bit Mass Effect the first over it, and while it may not be as epic or glorious as the first Dragon age's fight against the blight, it is good in its own way. It has all the exitement, twists , characthers and fantasy gory thats needed for a great story in this type of game, and it gets the job done. As with the conversations I do feel at times as whatever I do, Im always being pushed in the same direction. To say that no rpg is linear is false, but its abit to much in DA2, as I can feel my choices always makes me end up all the same. While its understandable that there is a story and I have to keep myself within it, I would like the illusion atleast that my own choices does make a difference, not just a gimmick. If I do run around and scream at whatever person I see, looking for the first best fight, I do not want to end up at the same exact place with the same exact conversation outcomes as if I workship the very ground the npcs are standing at, charming them with words and avoiding conflict at all cost. It was done in DA:O, it should be as well done in DA:2. Going quickly over the other changes, the combat is remade into a faster and more action like experience. I dont find it easier ( actually playing at hardest difficultiy, I have found myself pausing alot more in DA:2 then I ever did in DA:O ) but more fun and innovatie then DA:O was. The skill system is the best I seen in any rpg yet, beside I do miss the crafting abilities being skills. In a summary DA:2 is a sequal with alot of changes going on and not all of them in favor. But it is still quality and a great game that should be played by everyone. Done believe the hate, play it.… Expand
Oct 24, 201110First, DO NOT LITSEN TO THOSE WHO HATE IT. Here's why: many of those who have written negatively about this game see it as merely the next step from Origins. While it did, they wanted it to step right, when it stepped left.
The game does seem to detract from the concepts that made it so popular with a particular gaming crowd. More specifically, this is the crowd that seems to swarm the internet with their opinions. They expected a game based around old time RPG concepts, as a contrast to the trend of RPGs gaining a greater variety of concepts in cinema, action, and others in recent years. They were, to their dismay, wrong.
Dragon Age 2 wields a strong assortment of new concepts for the modern age. Not all work, but they all build on the fundamental basis that made the first Dragon Age what it was. The gameplay is faster paced, and the cinematic experience is better, and the dialogue system is the best in the business by a bit. Built around a unique and interesting story, the game does feel like it was rushed. The large amount of repeated environments will make this obvious. It can be seen elsewhere, and hurts a number of aspects of the game. This, not on any reasonable level, does not make this game bad. Dragon Age 2 is a fun experience if you enjoy taking a chance on a unique action RPG. Don't expect to find an older styled RPGed, though. Also don't expect it to be great. Too high expectations can kill the experience and magnify what should be negligible flaws. I'd suggest that anyone who is remotely interested to try it at least through demo, though copies seem to be going for cheap after the internet backlash,… Expand
Nov 8, 20119Surely this isn't a better game then the first part. But still it doesn't deserve all the negative score that it's getting now. Problem with this game is that they have flattened out a few of the RPG elements which shouldn't have been flattened out. Second; I don't get why they have repeating dungeon's. That is a big mistake. My last negative point would be the enemies just spawning next to you. That seems really silly.
So what is so great about this game? The story is just great. It's refreshing not to see some "hero needs to safe the world" story we are all getting used to. It's about a city with (and I dare to say) realistic problems. There is poverty, violence and discrimination. All problems that you are getting involved in and need to solve. The play through I had with this game lasted for 50 hours and those were 50 hours well spend. Simply love it and I hope there will be part 3 soon.… Expand
Nov 11, 20119I really enjoyed the Kirkwall atmosphere and i believe the reason i like the game is why traditional RPG enthusiasts diss it. THe game attempts to merge more with the ME2 style of RPG's and i don't think that is a bad thing. The story is solid, Some missions are dumb and the impact of other peoples decisions screws with the choices you would want to make. I guess thats how real life is but the dice shouldn't be loaded as much when it comes to the decisions.
Some of the companions are extremely well done and intrigue you greatly, however if you are committed to a Romantic relationship with one character early on you may not pay as much interest to characters that come along later in the game. Also the amount of grief that is thrown at Hawk is not really fair..Its one emotional body blow after another, and you can't do much about most of the situations.… Expand
Nov 17, 201110Dragon Age 2 delivers the same classic RPG elements we have come to love from earlier BioWare titles, now with a hint of heavier, more fluent combat that pleases both old and new players alike. The stunning environments of Kirkwall and the surrounding lands never seize to amaze me, while some might be partially reused they still do bother the experience. In conclusion Dragon Age 2 is a full fledged gaming experience for true RPG fans.… Expand
Nov 20, 20119I never had one bad thing to say about DA2. I loved every minute of it. I've seen a lot of complaints about the re-use of caves and dungeons and what-not, but that doesn't bother me a bit. Graphics don't bother me a bit either. I do believe the graphics have improved from Origins, but in no way does graphics make a game. For me it's story and characters, and I loved both aspects in this game. I've bought all DLC so far, and I can't wait to see what happens in DA3.… Expand
Feb 24, 201210I was expecting something akin to Mass Effect in Medieval times. The only reason I bought it was because I had finished ME1 and ME2. I had not played Origins yet. In the end I found it fantastic, I had come to love a handful of the characters and grew especially attached to my style of playing, bring up the difficulty and you actually have use some strategy to win. No doubt they tried to cut costs with environments. I loved it so much I bought Dragon Age Origins Ultimate edition, which was much more pure RPG. In the end if you've played Mass Effect you should get this game… Expand
Jan 25, 20139Quite possibly my favourite Bioware RPG of all time. The framed narrative, the measured pace of the development of Kirkwall as you interact with it and the room it provides your NPC companions to grow in all cannot be recommended enough. Yes it has a few problems with the end narrative being pretty firmly on rails, and re-use of environments so if you think these things are going to be a problems I will see the game is not for you. Likewise if coming to it from an endless Dungeon Crawling D&D background, and just want to play more of the endless brownfest of Dragon Age:Origins then this sequel is set to disappoint. If However you are more of a Story based gamer, who has always felt that Bioware sells itself short on the NPC and narrative side of things prepare for a much improved and suprisingly enjoyable game.
In a nutshell if your favourite tabletop RPG is D&D 3.5 stick with DA:Origins, if it is Exalted play Dragon Age 2.… Expand
May 12, 20139After hearing opinions and reading reviews, I'm convinced most people who despise this game do it for one reason only it is not Dragon Age: Origins. They try to justify their hatred for the game by blowing minimal flaws out of proportion. Here is my opinion.
Dragon Age 2 has amazing combat. It is all subjective, and many would prefer the MMO-reminiscent auto attacking and occasional move selecting layout, but I highly prefer this more engaging, action-RPG "button mashing" style. The attribute trees have been cleaned up, the 3 classes now all have defined options and roles.
The characters in this game are not shallow. I do get tired of listening to them all whine about their pasts and their personalities, but just because they are annoying does not mean they are weak. Most notably, Anders and Isabela have extreme character development depending on how your relationship with them is.
And, yes, just to get it out of the way, the game has flaws. They overuse dungeons like there is no tomorrow, the NPCs eyes are unreasonably bright, the overall graphics are lackluster (but highly improved from Origins,) everyone has the same outfits and looks the same, the story is arguably weaker (depending on your tastes, I thought it was weaker,) and of course we were all led to believe Flemeth would play an important role in the beginning but she never showed up after the first act.
The flaws are existent, but they are not deal breakers and they are not the meat-and-bones of the game. The combat is strong, the story is solid and the characters aren't a bunch of walking cliches. This is a GOOD game, it's just not Origins.… Expand
May 1, 201175Faulty 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.
Apr 22, 201190Above 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.