Mar 9, 2011I think the number of Bioware reps jumping onto this site to defend this sorry excuse for a game is pathetic. Oh no! People are actually going to discover what horrible dreck DA2 actually is! In all honesty, I have never been so disappointed from when I bought a game, to actually getting home and playing it. This is the worst game Bioware has ever released, and I played Jade Empire. I was so upset I even went back to the store and bought the PC version to see if it was any better......WRONG. In addition to being just as boring as the console version, the PC one was buggy beyond belief! I am never buying a Bioware game again without reading reviews first, and NOT the paid-for "professional" reviews.… Expand
Mar 9, 2011I'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
Mar 12, 2011Oh my... I have never thought I had to write that...
RPGs... I did em all... from the first days with my Commodore Amiga (Bard's Tale, some AD&D RPGs), to PC games (also AD&Ds, Might and Magics, Ultima Underworld, those from Interplay, and all the classic Biowares, and Elder Scrolls Arena, Daggerfall and so on...), so I claim to have a vast knowledge about how RPGs were and how they are now. I found some better, some not so good, but most of them were quite solid RPGs.
It's of course a matter of taste, but to me, RPG means story, interactions and customizing the characters. DAO is already streamlined compared to the Elder Scrolls Universe, but still classic RPG because of all those things that are still possible, and probably one of the best story and especially dialogues (which results in a great overall atmosphere) I have ever seen in an RPG.
Although, even in DAO I miss being able to jump, or to access all those places that can be seen, from that point it's a bit limited, but still acceptable to me as there are other unique features.
Now DA2... I decided to first have a look, so visited a friend, and had a look, and have to say, I won't buy that game. I don't hate it, but I am not into Action-Adventures. Opponents spawning out of nowhere, 2 metres jumps in full armor, no thank you... to me that is more comic style gaming, jump and run even a bit... no, that's not RPG anymore to me.
Flemeth designed like a mixture of Manga and Domina, no, not my taste.
Not being able to equip my party... that is a no go for me in an RPG. I mean, I love to spend hours with so callled unimportant details like trying out clothes, armors, crafting, making potions... whatever. DA2 delivers nothing. A fast paced action game, not bad by itself, but not worthy of being named Dragon Age or even being regarded as its successor.
Some good things still, some nice dialogues, but it feels more like an interactive movie... hey of course not to the extent I had with Dragon's Lair on my good old Amiga... but still, too dictated for me. Everything is kind of chewed before we get it to eat.
I don't hate this game, but I don't think it is wise to distribute it as the successor of DAO, and besides, Bioware to me was a synonym for great RPGs. Now, that does not seem to apply anymore. A pity.
Per se there is nothing wrong in offering variations or different style games within the same universe... other companies did that in the past too, Bethesda had some spin-offs (Elder scrolls series vs Battlespire, Redguard), 3DO had them (Might and Magic series vs Heroes), Origin (Ultima, and then Ultima underworld was different), and some more.
They could have opened a new spin off series, like DA Action Adventures or whatever, then the players can decide for themselves whether to try it out or not, without being fooled with wrong expectations, rising up when hearing the name Dragon Age, or even Dragon Age 2, which implies the continuation of the 1st game.
Dragon Age, to me, stood for RPG, like Elder Scrolls does, different, but great. I don't want to see an action adventure under the Elder Scrolls series label, and I didn't want to see that with DAO.
It happened, and I think they didn't do themselves a favour. For me, this series ended with DAO, and will start again, when they pick up on what they built with DAO. Whether it was Bioware's fault, or EA's, it is an enourmous damage that has been done to Bioware's reputation, in rushing out such a game, and pretending it is the successor of DAO.… Expand
Mar 9, 2011There needs to be some semblance of a filter on user reviews, as this has turned into a cesspit of shear stupidity that ignores the idea of critiquing a game in favor of slack-jawed tantrums of elitism over a game none of these users had a hand in creating. The old guard would favor keeping people away from the genre so they can cling to some ill-conceived notion of entitlement rather than get past a few streamlined aspects of the game and see this title for what it is: good.
Note that I say good, not great. I will agree that the limitations of destination as well as a relatively unclear conversation system hamper the experience. There is a severe disconnect between an option in chat and what is said, and you will find yourself caught off guard by the way your idea is conveyed and the way it is received. This needs to be changed. I will rebut the notion that the graphics are poor, as the vistas that you visit are stunningly well designed and a joy to look at. Those arguing against are simply trolling or idiots. The combat shifting to faster pace rather than the old pause and issue of DA:O is a breath of fresh air. The previous iteration's "combat" was ill designed and created numerous issues based upon clipping, character reaction times, as well as relatively boring mechanics. Players seeking a challenge here would do well to turn the difficulty up and be greeted with combat that is not only frantic, but every bit as nuanced as the previous version. Those complaining about its pace are simply refusing to try a higher level of difficulty. For that I cannot value their opinion as highly on this subject.
Still, there needed to be more locations. The entire world is out there waiting and yet we are restricted to a relatively small area. The microcosm that is Kirkwall can be interesting and exciting at times, but the spirit of discovery that could have been is disappointingly non-existent. It's hard to judge if this is an improvement over the old slow crawl across the map and random meeting with a useless dwarf vendor, so in this regard I can say it was a step forward and back at the same time.
Is this game worth $60? Yes. There are very few titles that can give bang for the buck, but don't let the jaded idiocy of people who cry fowl when a game isn't made the way it was a decade ago scare you. The industry has evolved since then, and the rose tinted glasses only serve to hide the fact that those old RPGs were difficult not out of intentional design, but out of poor balance/craft. This game is not ground-breaking, but a 3.9 is only the result of people using the typically sad and droll fallacy of appealing to the majority to fit in with a perceived "cool crowd" of 40-something RPG vets who refuse to let go of the past.
If this game drives you away, I say good riddance to bad rubbish. You are the crowd that cannot be pleased and the crowd that drives games into the ground. See Final Fantasy? That is the result of your hard work to ensure nothing ever changes. There is a reason the franchise is dying a slow death. You. 8.5/10… Expand
Mar 11, 2011I Can't believe after 6 or so RPG's, BioWare still hasn't seemed to notice there mistake.
In this game, you play as a boring character with the lamest voice ever. The conversations are dull and boring and they make you feel like you want it to be over. Not to mention how bad the voice actors are in this particular title. This game feels like it was funded out of BioWare's pocket money. Dragon Age: Origins had a very bad combat style but a decent storyline nonetheless. This game has a button mash combat style with a lame storyline. The ending sucks. Save your money.… Expand
Mar 11, 2011I've played this all of the way through before writing anything. I've always been a Bioware fan, but seriously, DA2 is disappointing and I cannot see how the bulk of review sites can ignore some its fundamental flaws. Granted I can see how the combat has improved for console platforms, but it's really the rest of the game that leaves me feeling irritated. For instance, the dialogue options and conversation interactions have really been dulled down - I assume this is due to the fact that Hawke is now voice-acted. I would love to sit down and talk with whoever came up with the 'sarcastic' replies for Hawke - he just sounds like an idiot. Taking the character of Isabella as an example - we get it, she is a sex addict - there is no need to constantly remind the player over and over again aside from the obviously intended hit with the younger male audience. There is no connection with the characters, you just don't end up caring what happens to them. The exception to this in my opinion is Merrill, whose dilemmas and underlying story fit in more with what I'd come to expect from Origins. The constant 'cameos' from older characters only reinforce the lack of interest with the supposed main cast of this installment. The story is definitely a lesser scale than origins, which makes me feel quite angry as to the marketing propaganda hinting at some sort of epic ascent to 'power'.
Whilst the combat mechanics are a little more streamlined, as is item and inventory management in general, this doesn't fix the issue of repeated zones, reuse of assets, the low variety of enemies and the incredibly annoying 'walk-into-an-area-and-keep-spawning-stuff' ideology. Perhaps it is my fault for having expectations that were too high, or not checking beforehand that the entire game was essentially going to be set in one relatively bland city with a few outdoor areas which would be reused at periodic intervals as 'years' progress.
I see a lot of the positive reviews being given here with scores of '10'. I just don't see why. Especially the 'OH MY GOD IM LEVEL 7 AND THIS IS AMAZING' - I too was still 'giving it a chance' at that stage hoping that it would open up and improve. Others suggest increasing the difficulty somehow compensates for the bad storyline and being locked into only a few zones just so that you can engage in slightly harder repetitive combat where on occasion people jump randomly from the sky, up from the ground or pop out of nowhere.
I'm not a professional review writer - and I've never posted a review on metacritic before despite being a deidcated PC gamer for well over a decade. I just felt massively let down as a player and as a fan of DA:O that the experience of DA2 was quite simply a let down. Honestly it feels as if they sat down after the Awakening expansion and thought 'lets do that again with a new character and implement some of the ideas we couldn't fit into the scope Awakening - we'll call it Dragon Age 2'.
P.S. Bring back more of the mage schools and spell combos. Why remove them?… Expand
Mar 13, 2011Utter garbage inasmuch as it actually inspired me to signup in order to post my views. This is truly a shame, given the expectations built up with DA:O -- What is hilarious to note is all the major review companies noting `once you get past the..' OR `compare to DA:O this is much worse BUT' and awarding ~80, tbh these look like paid for reviews in order to drive sales. DA2 is awful c.f. DA:O.
END OF LINE.… Expand
Mar 13, 2011Very disappointing. A complete step backwards from DA:O in every respect-- graphics, gameplay, characters and storytelling. This was a rush job, and it shows. I'm saddened that BioWare doesn't think very much of their playerbase to not callously use them as an apparent cash grab by charging inflated prices for a substandard product.
Mar 20, 2011If you liked the nwn series, DA:O or even the witcher you may than i suggest to try the game first before buying. You may prepare for some serious disappointment.
There would be nothing wrong with the game if there were some 'Diablo' letters on the cover, but it is a tremendous disappointment and dumb down if you expect a rich and interesting game.
Its basically pure hack&slash (Diablo Style) with a soso story and some nice characters. The graphic feels cleaner and worse than in DA:O, the combat was streamlinded and quickend, but is esthetically totally unpleasing. Its never elegant, its never eye catching eye candy, i never bothered taking a screenshot, while i have hm ~2k screenshots from the first game.
Now there are some nice additoins. The voice over feels good, and some options like the possibility to give funny answers is an enrichment, espeically if thats what comes first in your mind anway .
But the repetitive dungeons, boring map, boring graphics, missing items, everythin feels like it has a huge stamp on it "MAKE the over 10 MIL copies SELL with just 1/2 year development EA order". That just wont work. It was definately my last Bioware game i ever preordered before reading user reviews. / as such its interesting to see how commercial reviewers join BiowareÂ´s epic fail.
What should they do better: Well stop trying to do a DIABLO clone (knowing that the real diablo would be delayed and thus sniffing blood) - but stick to your theme, stick to what you know best. Deliver a full rich and good - but well yes, costy - RPG environment again. And yes, keep the EA guys away from Product planning.… Expand
Mar 28, 2011This 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
Mar 10, 2011I am surprised by the negative user reviews. Some claim DA:2 is too easy and you just hit X to kill things. Maybe on normal difficulty DA:2 is easier than normal difficulty on DA:O (I don't know since I'm playing on Nightmare), but if you put DA:2 on Nightmare difficulty you will have to play the game with the same tactical approach used in DA:O or you will not last long, believe me. Now the only difference in combat is that you have to hit X repeatedly with the character your controlling instead of the character attacking automatically.
As for the graphics, they don't look any better to me, as the professional reviews claim, but the art style of the graphics is definitely different. However, I like the new art style.
As for the story and character development, I'm not very far along yet, but am liking both the story and characters so far.
And as for it being linear and repeating the same places over and over, this does seem to be true, but this doesn't bother me much.
I am enjoying this game more than DA:O!!!… Expand
Mar 9, 2011I 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.… Expand
Mar 9, 2011Dragon Age II will be recorded as one of the worst blunders in video game history. Bioware somehow managed to take a promising series, and do a Tomb Raider with it. The game visually looks like a mod for Knights of the Old Republic, if that mod were to lower all the games textures and was inspired by minecraft. The writing in this game is exactly what you'd expect an autistic 12 year old farm hand. Gone are the "grey" moral areas, and choices that affect the story. Instead, a dialogue wheel now lets you choose between 3 options, Sissy school girl, comedic relief in b-movie, and complete jerkwad. With such rivieting dialogue options as "Hey, I wunna be a dragon too!" and "Boy, I'm hungry", it's hard not to believe that Bioware is doing a psychological experiment to see how much punishment masochistic fans will put up with. Most of the game takes place in the confines of a single "city". I say "city" loosely, because it is actually nothing more than a collection of buildings, devoid of life. All areas outside of the city and bland and repetitive. Let me be clear on this: EVERY SINGLE OUTDOOR AREA outside of the city consists of a rock wall on one side of the map, and a large, lifeless, poorly textured vista on the other. I've seen 2 year olds that can color better than the job Bioware did with this vista. Dungeons are frequently repeated. Yes, you heard that right, the exact same cave is used over and over and over again. You can no longer equip armor to companions, and the new companions are dull and lifeless. Every voice actor in the game sounds the exact same, and they all sound utterly bored with their jobs. Of course, I needed even comment on the combat to anyone who has played the demo. Bioware decided to strip out all tactical and RPG elements, and instead turn the game into a poor man's Dynasty warriors, complete with waves of spawning powder rangers running at you, while you perform the same over the top animations over and over carrying massive JRPG styled swords. I award this game no points, and may God have mercy on it's soul.â… Expand
Mar 9, 2011Here's the best analogy I can think of to summarize my feeling about Dragon Age II. Imagine you love heavy metal music and this new band released their debut album (Dragon Age: Origins) a couple years ago and it was simply awesome. Heavy, deep, rewarding. You counted down the days in giddy anticipation to their second album (Dragon Age II). You couldn't wait to see how they could possibly improve on the first album, but you knew this band would not disappoint. Finally the day is here and you have the album in hand. You put on your best set of cans, press play, and........find out your favorite band sold out and is now producing "pop" music for the masses. Yes, they may sell more albums, but man, what a bummer. Total sell out.… Expand
Mar 10, 2011Previous game was miles better. This one is just average at best, definitely not worthy of a good score. But I can see EA payed every relevant reviewer to have a descent score on Metacritic, though If you see the user scores It clearly shows the discontent of gamers about DA2, too much hype and all we got was a game where the only descent point is the combat mechanics (just at hard). Even the graphics are really bad. I have a high end PC were I can run Crysis at max at 60fps, but DA2 consumes a ridiculous amount of resources even on medium settings, and it's not like it has state of the art visuals or employs real time physics in every interaction either. I was going to give it a 5 but now. Bioware, banning a gamer and not letting him play the game just because he talked bad about your overlord, EA? That's low, and not just Activision low. See if I ever buy another game from you.… Expand
Mar 11, 2011Its different game. Its not DA:O and i know it. But i really don't enjoy this one. Combat system is ridiculous, inventory is entire garbage. On the other side - graphics and story is good (not great!). EA pushes to many pencils and this game was obviously rushed. And... I don't want play Mass Effect in fantasy world!
Mar 12, 2011I'm a person who very much enjoyed Dragon Age 1, Mass Effect 1 and 2. And RPGs in general.
I hadn't read any reviews or any info really on Dragon Age 2 before impulse buying it in a store. I never thought it could be bad given it's frikkin' Dragon Age by frikkin' Bioware.
After having played it for 8-10 hours it became clear to me that I'm not really having fun. I don't care about the characters, I'm not sure who the bad guys are, the quests just seem unimportant.
So I played for another 3 hours thinking SOON I will be hooked like I had been so many times before by Biowares stories. But I just got more and more disconnected. Running straight to main plot quests, skipping dialogue - something I usually never do.
Now I'm done. 10 hours spent on the game and $70 later. The game is going on a used games market website. If I'm lucky I can get 2/3rds of what I paid for it.
This leaves me worried for my favorite franchise, Mass Effect 3. Lets hope Bioware finds their way again.… Expand
Mar 12, 2011This game is not terrible but it is so wrong it threatens the future for pc RPGs.
It's cheap and dumbed down.
The game mainly consist in following yellow marks on the map, to complete or to take quests, there is no real need to be able to read to play this game.
Combat is not so bad, but the difficulty is. Hard is mainly easy as pie and sometimes it gets stupidly luck based or imbalanced. I've not played much of nightmare because the friendly fire thing is not well thought out and causes rage-quit.
Ambients are copy-pasted so much you actally feel frauded when playing.
Character lack any depth and are not even remotely interesting.
The plot is (spoiler alert) "You are a champion, or you are going to be one, and haters gonna hate you."
Mar 13, 2011This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This game is in a word a disaster. Every aspect of the game is simplified. There is no story whatsoever. You don't get the feeling that you're playing to achieve any goal at all. It's only side stories loosely connected to each other. BioWare SOLD OUT. I'm so furious about it. I can't understand critics high scores. My only explanation is that they ware payed to write good reviews. This is the biggest scam of all time.… Expand
Mar 14, 2011This an extremely sad attempt for an rpg, before continuing i will point out the first obvious flaws in the game. -Reusing the same four maps 500 times.
-Setting the whole game in one city.
-Enemies have a ton of HP and come in waves so the game feels longer.
-Frame narrative to avoid being too descriptive about what happens between large periods of time.
-Half as much dialogue, more passive interaction.
-Millions of stupid side quests that have nothing to do with anything.
-Dull environment bereft of life and matter.
-Inability to customize companions allowed you to skip designing different armor models.
-Collecting hundreds of-- literally, junk items-- to create the illusion of immersion and depth.
-Poor character development, so you hardly care about your companions by the end of the game. -Lack of any substantial choices that have lasting effects.
-Contrived ending, that tells you nothing, and leaves a huge gap for sub-par DLC
-Generic UI showing a lack of creativity and effort.
Thank You to Sharkey1337 from the Bioware forums for pointing this out. This "game" is a sad excuse for a rushed rpg that lacked any standards of innovation and i ask anyone who thinks about playing this game to not do so. At most, rent and DO NOT BUY, YOU WILL HAVE WASTED 60$ IF YOU DO. Dragon Age Origins compared to this is an absolute masterpiece and anyone who was not played it should do so over buying this short pathetic game.… Expand
Mar 19, 2011The 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.… Expand
Mar 16, 2011First of all, just to clear things up, "Avanost" is a Bioware engineer. You see, as long as the critic ratings are positive, Bioware care about their "fans", & their opinions. But when the user reviews are negative, Bioware just dismiss them as an "overreaction". Thats right, we are all far too stupid to play proper RPGs - all we want is dumbed-downed drivel, but we just don't know it!
Mar 11, 2011This game is utter crap, they decided to make a good start (DA:O) into **** by dumbing it down for the console marked, and it may be good business but it sure as hell rubs us computer gamers the wrong way, in the end i think you should just stop making computer games, and stick to the beloved console marked, if this is the piece of **** you want to release.
Mar 9, 2011I've practically lived in this game for the last two days (spring break, don't judge me) and I am very pleased. I liked the last Dragon Age, but the combat was a real chore (especially for Xbox players). I used to play on the easiest difficulty because I just wanted to experience the story without all of the burdensome controls and clunky mechanics. The new combat system is visceral and immediate - much like Jade Empire, if anyone wants a good reference. Interactions are excellent; voice acting, graphics, story-telling are all superb. Unlike the last game, I actively sought each and every side quest I could find simply because almost every one of them guarantees a memorable experience. My two complaints are the lack of choice in the beginning - you HAVE to be a male human - and the framed narrative nonsense. The story is told in chunks, leaving large gaps of missing time in the life of Hawke. The worst part of it is that you are given very little insight into what happens during these breaks of time, and it sorely breaks up the pacing of the narrative. Still, a great improvement to the previous entry (at least for console gamers). I absolutely recommend this game for RPG and action fans alike. I am about 15 hours in after just 2 days; it is that addictive.… Expand
Mar 10, 2011Let me start off by saying I completely and utterly enjoyed the first dragon age, so of course I was plenty hyped for the next incarnation. What I got was an obviously rushed poorly designed shell of a game. I don't think it would have been as bad if I had been informed of the dramatic changes and 180 degree gameplay and story turns. But in all honesty this is a let down. 80% of the game is spent in one place no more traveling around and doing fun stuff, the main enemies from the first game have been completely redesigned and everyone in the universe apparently hasn't noticed. The level design and colors are all plain, boring, and dull. Not too mention the combat is now a button smashing hack and slash, ugh cant explain how hurt and disappointed I am.… Expand
Mar 10, 2011DA:1 was a good game. Sadly, EA and Bioware sold themselves out to some made up focus group to sell games. DA:1, like Balder's Gate, was popular with a group of gamer who make up a decent share of the market. Sure, it's not as large as the Call of Duty crowd, or even the Mass Effect crowd, but they make up for it in loyalty. DA 2 flat out ruins what made the original so good. It's sad enough that there are no improvements, but it's worse that it's a step back. The combat is horrendous and a button masher. The story is just a set up to sell DLC so you can get a real ending. Bioware sold themselves out, trying to grab a bigger market share by forgetting their loyal customer base. Because of this, it's hard to trust them in the future. i'm already concerned about the quality of Mass Effect 3. I'm sorry, I've been a Bioware fan since KOTOR and Neverwinter Nights, but I can no longer support a company that won't support its fan base that allowed them their success. Shame on you guys for ruining a sequel to an above-average game.… Expand
Mar 11, 2011I really enjoyed DA1 but this one i was really dissapointed i didn't care so much , it had no tactics at all i just ran and slaughter everything lol , The storyline was crap as hell , I loved the dialogue in Da1 they pretty much took away everything i liked from DAO , it didn't even feelt like it was a Dragon age games, I think they rushed the game and made the wrong decisions..
Mar 11, 2011Dragon Age II is a cheap, shallow,boring,unpolished,unfinished and repetitive game. It fails to improve on its winning forward and in what appears to be an attempt at commercialization by drastically removing elements of the game that gave DA1it looses what actual prestige it had. Customizing of characters almost non-existent, environments are repetitive and suffer from poor textures, the story is linear with limited choices and endings. Its a great disappointment to say the least. The only thing worse is observing as all of EA's trouble shooting trolls give this game a 10 and make wildly outrageous statements like this being GOTY or BEST RPG EVER. Be wary of such reviews. I'll be conservative and give this travesty of a game a 2.… Expand
Mar 11, 2011New Coke anyone? Our new formula is better than our original (seriously--just have a sip).
Sadly, this could have been avoided. It was a matter of setting expectations and marketing this not as a sequel (as it deviates too far from the original) but as a X X of Dragon Age or Dragon Age Hero X. Although, Dragon Age 2 it's not. Crpg to Arpg in an existing IP wasn't even a risky move--it was foolish.
Bioware has every right to change direction, but this wasn't well coordinated or thought out. I smell EA in the mix ... and hope that the black eye Bioware has now taken will strengthen their resolve in the future. Please stay true, Bioware, please stay true in the end...
Please don't mistake me: The devs are not at fault. It's the fault of everyone on the GTM (go-to-market) team who signed off on this. Fire them. It's a disaster.… Expand
Mar 11, 2011As someone who absolutely loved Dragon Age Origins ( I completed 6 playthroughs and finished Awakenings and most of the DLCs), I am traumatized by how much I dislike Dragon Age 2. They changed things in this game that didn't need fixing in my opinion. Sorry but does anyone else hate the new look of the Dalish Elves as much as me? I can't stand the new look of the Dalish Elves. I don't think they seem more mystical as some people have said but they remind me of the horrible creatures from Avatar. It kills me that they ruined something that was visually pleasing before to something so cartoonish and weird looking. I also don't like the new combat system. It seems like mindless button mashing is all that is required. I also don't like the annoying new levelling up system. I don't feel as strong of emotional attachments to my companions as I did in the first game. I'll still play this game since I've played out Oblivion, Fallout 3 and New Vegas but I am disappointed. I hope Skyrim gives me something better to immerse myself in than this game.… Expand
Mar 12, 2011How did Bioware manage to turn the majesty of DAO into this dingy and myopic little world? The plot is stunted, the Dialogue shallow, and the combat is clearly compromised, and that is without even touching upon the game's myriad bugs! Dumbed down doesn't even begin to describe DA2.
Mar 13, 2011This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Game very disappointed .. .. do not even believe that *it* makes developers NWN. Cool RPG turned into a dull meat grinder. I really, really sorry for the fans DE. Although children from 10 to 14, this game is really like .. Although there since age limit 18 ))… Expand
Mar 13, 2011The Dragon Age franchise has been tossed into the corporate machinery and spat out as a bruised and crippled shell of its former self. The game manages to deliver a thoroughly mediocre and disappointing experience to both RPG and casual gaming fans alike.
The combat could possibly be the largest flaw with the game, however it is but one of many large flaws. Many skills and abilities present in DA: O which made the game an overly tactical, challenging and rewarding experience have been removed in favor of more 'exciting and fast paced' combat. In Dragon Age 2's case 'exciting and fast paced' equates into the mindless ability bashing. Combat now relies heavily upon 'wave' mechanics. Where instead of individual mobs of enemies the player will be bombarded by wave after wave of enemy turning an epic skirmish into a tedious exercise of endurance. Most side quests are trivial and generic which furthermore offer no further insight into the game world and hold little other responsibility other than keeping the player distracted for a few extra hours collecting X number of items..
The visuals have undergone an upheaval, yet surprisingly manages to look worse than its predecessor.
The combat now resembles something out of a Devil May Cry game, rather than the style set in DA:O. The visceral and realistic style of Origins now replaced with an over sensationalized gratuitous flood of warrior aerobatics and bloody explosions. Many Caves, mountains, roads used again and again presumably due to constraints imposed by the soulless suits over in EA pushing for a speedy release and a fast cash-in. Dragon Age: Origins was a modern day throwback to classic RPG games: It incorporated engaging Tactical gameplay , interesting characters and appropriate use of dialog selection and an immersive fantasy setting imbued with a touch of gritty realism to provide a satisfying fantasy experience. Because of this the game was critically acclaimed and sold very well.
Now letâ… Expand
Mar 13, 2011This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. After two playthroughs, I finally pinpointed what it is that ruins DA2. There is just no choice; a bit of a dealbreaker for an RPG! Whatever you do, you'll lose a sibling, your mother will die horribly, the chantry will go boom, the Qunari will attack. You don't roleplay, you simply watch as a character stumbles into various plotpoints. Even on a replay, the very limited dialogue options (angelic, sarcastic, angry) make it hard to change much. You're more of a watcher, not really a participant.
Given that the rest of the game outside of the main plot is spent acting as the world's errand boy, and the world itself is so dull to look at, it's just not much fun overall. There is nothing wrong with the new fighting system, though the enemy-spamming gets very tedious very quickly (as did Origins). There's nothing wrong with the companions or the overall story. It's just... boring, compared to the sense of magnitude Origins invoked. There is no getting away from this.
I truly believe all of its problems lie in the lack of creation time. One year is nowhere near enough to time for a polished product, and lot of the things which made Origins great have been removed. There is an obvious lack of thought in the way locations are reused over and over and, worst of all... across 10 years, people are still standing in the same places and the city doesn't change even slightly. Go to Fenris' mansion, for example, and the same corpse is still lying by the door 7 years on! The bright spark in this game is the way romances are handled. They don't have as much depth as in Origins, since there is not much interaction beforehand, but the developers are to be applauded for making the romances open regardless of gender. I hope more games follow their lead, at least on that score.
But overall, Dragon Age 2 is a disappointment for the genre. I realised this when Isabella kept commenting "I'm bored of this", and I found myself thinking "yeah, me too".… Expand
Mar 22, 2011Refrain from buying this game if you have any expectations. While the game is not a complete disaster when regarded as a standalone game, you will get disappointed if you want to play it because you liked Dragon Age: Origins. Basically it is just a thumbed down, simplified version of its predecessor.
My rating is not only game related, but mostly Biowares fault. While I would give the game a 4-5/10, Biowares extreme failure forces me to make it 1/10. How can a gaming company even dare to censor people opinions about the game in their forums, having workers write ridiculous hymns of praise on metacritic and paying major magazines money to give outrageous scores? Just refrain from buying Bioware products if you can avoid it. Don't support companys with such low ethical standards until they feel the consequences. This is the only way to hurt them for deceiving people in such a shameful, pathetic way. Greedy bastards.
But now to the game, which I played to the end. DA2 had 18 Months of development time, while DA:O took about five years. This manifests throughout the game which looks nice in the beginning, but lacks quality the longer you run around doing mindless, uninnovative quests. The combat system itself is fun at first but gets annoying due to it repetitiveness and unfair spawn system. A typical mission looks like this: Go to a cave, do x, collect y. Encounter enemies which spawn in weird waves that make no sense at all. When you run into the middle of a room you can be sure that enemies spawn right around you and the first thing you have to do in every fight is moving your fragile casters around the place and kite monsters so they don't die. Monsters are killed, many more enemies spawn for an unknown reason (couldn't they just be there from start) right in your casters again. Repeat kiting. Expect this to happen in 95% of all fights. And why do monsters suddenly spawn in hordes when there was not the slightest sign of enemies seconds before the encounter? Challenge in the fights come from unfair mechanics like hordes of monsters spawning in your ranged characters. This was so annoying, I can't put enough emphasis on it. Boss fights suck. On higher difficulties they are next to impossible due to near infinite health rather than intelligent design. You will do the same few button combinations for half an hour if you decide to fight that dragon/random other boss on hard difficulties. Often the result is endless kiting until the boss is finally dead - not worth it. A really sad game mechanic for a hyped 2011 game but probably the only possible outcome for a game which is rushed to make more money from the franchise.
Next annoying thing is the game recycling as you advance through the game. While the main city Kirkwall and 4 locations outside of the city are not too shabby at first, EXPECT TO SEE THEM OVER AND OVER AGAIN THE WHOLE GAME. EXPECT INSIDE LOCATIONS TO BE SEEN DOZENS OF TIMES WITH DIFFERENT ENEMIES. Every house, every dungeon, every cave is used multiple times. Seriously, there is no excuse for this in any way. Next thing are shallow companions inculding a crappy dialogue system. Low friendship/romance options are usually maxed out by pressing the "friendly" or "heart" answer 3-4 times. Clicking through the choices couldn't be simpler and has really nothing to do with role playing. Random pirate **** which offers sex to you the minute you talk to her, eerie looking elves on crack and other rather uninteresting characters you can have fight along your side.
The storyline is another failure, since there is NONE. You flee from darkspawn to Kirkwall and try to become a champion there, which you are later on by collecting generic herbs, fighting some bad boys and rescuing maidens. There is no real mainplot which guides you through the game, generally you don't have a clue what to do next or what happens, since you will start running from one questmarker to another. At a certain point I didn't even bother to read quest texts anymore but rather collected the exp from certain generic, really, really, boring sidequests. This game is tricky though, at first it made me think "Aww.. what a bunch of haters, the game is not too bad. Nice fighting, decent graphics." But then you realize more and more that the hate has a foundation. The foundation is bad game design which can hardly be considered standard in a 2011 AAA+ game. Basically you end up running around in the same textures over and over again, slaying the same models of enemies over and over again as you advance through the three acts in the game. I also did not like the unlogical choices you are forced to make later on, but this is rather my personal taste on the story, which I found really awful.
Do not buy this game if you are searching for a good role-playing game.… Expand
Mar 31, 2011Dragon Age Origins was an excellent game. Dragon Age 2 is a big disappointment for me. Specially because there's no epic feeling at all. Why I have to spend 90% of the game going around Kirkwall doing small "kill this guy", "bring this stuff" missions? I'd like to battle hordes of enemies, be part of an epic story, command an army, lead a desperate mission or kill the king.. I don't know, something EPIC, difficult, impossible for no one but my character and his foes.
But what I got in exchange is... hey, you can be a small smuggler/assassin.. and spend hours and hours of gameplay just moving around this city, doing "no one cares about it" missions.
**** I want to be a hero! That's why I buy a game with "DRAGON" in its cover!… Expand
Apr 16, 2011Let's see, where to start? Dragon Age: Origins was one of my favorite games in a long while. This game is a shell of that game. That's actually an insult to our shell-covered brethren. I would say that the graphics are much improved, but that's kind of a hollow endorsement in that you keep seeing the same graphics over and over and over. There is really no excuse for recycling the same map over and over with some lame obstacle keeping you from exploring the same map you saw five minutes ago. Some say the combat has improved, but I am not one of them. The game teases you by suggesting that you set a tank at the choke point to protect your mage or ranged character, only to then see enemies fall from the sky behind you. You can back up to what looks like a 4 story building and enemies just drop from the sky. Pathetic. Where to go next? Oh yeah, the loot system. I can see this conversation playing out. Some wasted dude in the corner says "Hey, let's make 80% percent of the loot they find worthless". Some equally wasted dude says "Okay, that sounds cool and to top that, let's have them sell their cool looking 3 star weapons with cool names when they pick up plain 4 star weapons with cooler names like"dagger"". Seriously, you couldn't take the time to make all the weapons have names that represented their properties? Once again, pathetic. Okay, and why do enemies explode? That just seems juvenile. This is a mature rated game right? Why appeal to the basest of gaming instincts? Blood everywhere!!! Stupid. I wish I could think of a movie sequel that disappointed as much as this game "sequel" did, but I'm drawing a blank. That's probably because I'm drinking, which I had stopped doing until I tried to finish this game. Actually, in retrospect, Dragon Age:Awakening was a better sequel to DA:O than this game. Did I mention that there is absolutely no story here? A bunch of random fetch quest with no real purpose. And tell me, how do I pick up a random item from a chest and magically know to give it to some random person for, get this, a 1 gold piece reward? Insanely stupid! I rarely use exclamation points by the way. This is the saddest follow-up to a great game that I have ever encountered. I thought Mass Effect 2 was a step down from the original, but it was okay. I hear they are looking at online co-op play for DA3. I fear what we have on the horizon is a "Call of Dragon Effect" where, in an effort to maximize profits, Bioware decides to appeal to the brain-dead co-op button mashers at the expense of those of us who actually like RPGs. I have bought every Bioware game since I started buying games because I trusted them. That ends now.… Expand
Mar 11, 2011Sad to see how far the once great Bioware has fallen. DA2 is a rushed, dumbed down travesty of a game designed to cater to the lowest common denominator of brain-dead console gamers. The mechanics are overly simplistic, the plot and characterisation are bland and the supposed 'dark' side of the game feels like it was driven completely from EA's focus groups. And that's before we even get to the isse of Day 0 paid for DLC.… Expand
Mar 9, 2011After 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)… Expand
Mar 9, 2011After nearly 10hrs of game play I'll start with the "game is a step backwards" statement. Anyone who believes otherwise is a blind fanboy(and yes I really did and do like previous BW titles and was a fanboy). The real problems start when the game moved from a cRPG(dao/a) to a action RPG. Where your PC does lightening fast **** that makes things explode! Well I suppose if you like that, this game is for you. There's serious problems with how bosses are dealt with. First if you attack a boss, they spawn 'friends'. Then as you keep attacking them, they spawn more, and sometimes more! This is the cheap way of making content hard. Sure I can understand having minions, but repeatedly spawning 8 groups of 10 mobs to make something difficult? No dice. The level designs are lack luster(the city itself is pretty). But you're going to revisit the same areas, again, and again, and again. Did I mention going to the same areas again? Maybe not. You will not have party conversations while out and about, nope you must goto their house/building/hideout. The difficulty scaling is messed up, no longer following a core set of rules. If you're waiting for us modders to fix the game? Well who knows, because they have yet to even say if we'll get a toolset. And the original toolset doesn't work in the game, missing assets and all that.
I could carry on with the spell changes, and several other things but there's no real point. I'll say this, if you want to buy the game wait for the super-ultra-deluxe version, where you won't be nickeled and dimed over DLC. And hopefully by then we'll have a toolset, and be able to fix this horrid game.… Expand
Mar 9, 2011this game sux in any way it can. worst console port ever. DA1 was good RPG, not perfect but just good.
DA2 is just step back: bad graphics, bad gameplay, bad story and incredible high requirements.
if u want play good cRPG just stay away from DA2. it's waste of ur time
Mar 9, 2011Yet again a company decides to "improve" their game by removing the complexity and mechanics that made it great in the first place. No longer can you equip your companions with any item you find, you now have set upgrades. The skills have also been dumbed down. Removing or merging skills like trap-making, poison making, etc.
The combat is also a mess. A slight speed up would have done Dragon Age well, but they went extremely too far with it. Animations are jerky, gore is over the top, they've basically turned it into a hack and slash RPG game.
They went away from a lot of what made Dragon Age: Origins great. It's sad that they would insult the people who supported the first game.… Expand
Mar 9, 2011Thanks Bioware for all the shades of brown. It's like there was a giant mystical power in the sky just **** out brown the entire time. Also, great job on all the paid reviews, does it feel good to know that everyone thinks your game is **** Oh wait, you only care about the money and profits you can make. The 2005 graphics mix well with all the brown. The dialogue is also very well written and probably took months to come up the extremely complicated and sophisticated "I want to be a dragon." line.
**** you Bioware.… Expand
Mar 10, 2011As a sequel to DA:O this is a total let down. It is sad that i pre-ordered it at all. I would have never expected this from BioWare.The game itself is a total console port and I couldn't say anything good about it. Everything is just dumbed down, except maybe dialogues. Totally linear story. You could compare it's graphics to Gothic II. I guess I was expecting just too much. It has no similarity to DA:O but if you like action rpg's you might like it and if you loved DA:O, just don't bother..… Expand
Mar 10, 2011I 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
Mar 10, 2011The biggest mistake Bioware made with this game was calling it Dragon Age 2 and not something like Dragon Age: Refugee or Dragon Age Adventures. The game feels like a very disappointing follow-up to Dragon Age Origins.
While they did manage to fix several issues with the origin series it seems in the end their solutions only caused more problems. The game feels closed in with little to no immersion in the environment. A bustling city supposedly packed with thrones of refugees is empty and barren yet manages to feel small at the same time.
Emotional connection to characters within the game is bland at best and you will often find yourself rolling your eyes at the campy writing provided within the game that barely manages to hold your attention long enough to keep going.
Combat while feeling a little bit more engaging than Origins will quickly grow old on you as every fight is thrones of cannon fodder thrown at you that literally appears out of thin air repeatedly during the fight. Leaving little to no room for any kind of strategic fight. This is usually accompanied by one tough enemy in the middle of the fray that you have to try and deal with while fighting wave after wave of "zerging" minions. This isn't just a few fights - it is almost every fight in the game, which is extremely disappointing.
On the plus side inventory management is no longer an issue in this game as all characters besides the main hero/ine is the only character that actually has equipment (aside from weapons and accessories) that you can actually change. While you have limited inventory space you never feel any need to pick up loot off the monsters or treasure chests as generally everything your character already has given to you is several times better.
The game on a whole feels sloppy and lazily made. Empty town and little to no interaction with what NPCS in the game - including your own party members really dumbs down any immersion in the game and constantly ruins any chance of getting into the game. An example of the lack of immersion in this game would be the majority of merchants in the game. You are unable to engage in conversation with them or even haggle on prices. Instead you simply click on a box that opens up the shop, no welcomed greeting, no discussion of their wares, just opening a box and buying what you want or selling the garbage you loot. It just feels lazy and uncaring. Even the icons in the game are recycled and sloppy looking. Health potions have a heart on them and injury kits - which used to be elaborate in DA:O are simply potions with a + sign on them.
It is these little details that show the overall lack of care put into this game. Audio and music in the game also appears to be recycled from the previous game and some sound effects seem to date even further back to early Neverwinter Night days.
If you absolutely have to have this game I suggest waiting a year for the ultimate edition which will be cheap, and contain all the DLC and extra materials you've already missed out on and would end up paying more of your hard earned money for. While the game keeps you mildly entertained - there are better games to spend your money on.… Expand
Mar 11, 2011I wanted to like this game so badly. The character voices are top notch, and their personalities are well developed, but this could not save the game. There is no real story, only about 10 individual areas in the entire game that are constantly revisited, and, on PC, the combat is simply clicking once on an enemy and watching a character perform a five hit combo repeatedly. To be fair, using abilities does add some differentiation to combat, but, playing as a rogue at least, I found that most of the time I would find myself in a situation where all of my abilities were on cool down before the end of every battle. This was usually because each combat encounter seems to drag on to long. Most of the fights pit you against around 15+ enemies, and as soon as the vast majority are dead, reinforcements will literally rain from the sky. I went into this game expecting an RPG with hack and slash elements, what I got was God of War without all the button mashing.… Expand
Mar 11, 2011Just awful. You're trapped in one area for the entire game; with some small excursions. You can barely interact with the characters (a couple times per year), & when you do the responses can tend to be annoying or disjointed. You don't become invested in these characters & if they were to die off, I'd just say, ok whatever. I'm about 30 hours in, I will finish this accursed game one way or another, so far the Artwork is grossly overrated, the dialogue is mostly uninspired, and the hero's goals are twice as insipid as the conversation. Overall I'm bored out of my mind. To be fair the later chapters have picked up a bit, but at this point I can't bring myself to care, and I like being able to fight faster. But WOW, what disappointment.… Expand
Mar 12, 2011You're stuck in Kirkwall not because this is some new and innovated way of telling a story but because Bioware only had a year to pump this thing out. The environments are never altered, even after ten years for this very same reason. Caves, houses, and underground passages are all just one map. Some people were even fooled because you get let into a cave from a different area or because some of the caves have stone doors when they enter. They're just trying to throw your senses off, but if you actually take the time to travel through the whole thing you'll realize it it's the very same cave you were in on multiple occasions. Also, remember at the end of Fable where you have to collect all that money? Wasn't fun, right? Well Bioware uses this same tactic, only they moved it to the beginning of the game, not the end. So you spend a good bit of time running around collecting gold before the storyline even moves forward. Speaking of storyline, this game has no real plot. You're basically just some guy/gal who goes around doing good or bad deeds. In it's predecessor you played as one of the last grey wardens in Ferelden and your goal was to collect all the treaties to gather aid for the battle against the blight. There is no well defined plot in DA2, you're just wandering around completing task. While playing there will come a time when you will ask yourself "what is the point of any of this". I'm giving this a 0 because no one should have to pay 60 dollars for a game that feels like one long DLC. I didn't hate this game because I wasn't a huge fan of the first DA and didn't expect much from this one. However, this fell below my already low expectations. The only positive about this game were the characters, but it's not enough to make this game a worthy title for your game shelf. I'm returning mine as soon as possible and purchasing something worthwhile.… Expand
Mar 12, 2011In a world where there already exists a Mass Effect 1 and 2 why would you buy a third; smaller, shorter, more repetitive and poorer version of it? Dragon Age is a great IP as demonstrated by Origins and DA2 could have been great. Longer and more in-depth quests with greater exploration could have made a mediocre game good; as it is the constant recycling of areas makes the story and characters carry the entire weight of this game and it's them that you will play through it for. Combat is repetitive and needs to either be more strategic or require better talent useage (the cool down times are far to long). Still very well written with solid characters and better than the majority of games out there but if you are looking for a BioWare masterpiece or a worthy successor to Origins; this is not it.… Expand
Mar 12, 2011Dragon 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
Mar 14, 2011Congratulations EA and Bioware! Dragon Age 2 is truly a marvel of modern gaming; no story to get in the way of all that action, no tactics to get in the way of all that hacking... you even reused locations and enemies so we wouldn't get lost or confused. How dear of you! Oh and I promised myself that I wouldn't gush, but I just can't help myself... I love what you've done with the armor/robes- they are still color coded! Some naysayers think that they are all the same and just palette swapped, but I don't believe it, not one word! You also got rid of all those messy RPG bits like speech challenges and an overarching quest, how silly, who would want either of those? Fat nerds, that's who! But don't you worry Bioware, you are on the side of the angels, or in this case the side of ADD afflicted pre-teens, but they are kinda angelic when they are not snorting Ritalin.
So Once again, congratulations are due to EA and Bioware! You've made Dragon Age 2 more accessible for action oriented/casual gamers! Of course in the process you forgot who your real fans were, you know those crazy RPG kids who actually bought DA1 and all those pitiful DLC snippets, but who cares, right? You got our money too! You guys should be proud, seriously...… Expand
Mar 14, 2011Why the lack of interesting and diverse locations? Why one repeating cave and houses over and over again? Why waves of enemies spawning from the ceiling? Why the brutal requirements in DX11 in 5 year old looking game? Why no interesting and surprising puzzles? Why many other things i don't want to even remember? If it wasn't for DA:O and if it wasn't Bioware I would give 7 points but like this i fell it deserves 5 points max.
Btw. I didn't like many things in DA:O (skill system, class imbalances) but it was still a pearl in comparison to this game.
PS: Why so high scores from magazines? Does EA pay that well? It was the same with NFS:Shift and I completely understand people who give 0 points as a defense against so exaggerated ratings.… Expand
Mar 14, 2011The worst sequel i ever played. Perhaps developers planned this game for dumb heads? 3 variants of answers in dialogs, poor armor and weapons arsenal, stupid, oh sorry, idiotic combat system, absolutely predictable story and a lot of other "great" innovations...
Am i sleep or this guys really developed the greatest rpg games in past?
Also, about magazines score - Are U F Kidding? 9/10 - for what? O_o
2.0/10.0 - enough for this "masterpiece"… Expand
Mar 14, 2011the game is very disappointing. The graphics seem dated, the music is ok, the game-play is simplified and poses no challenge at all for experienced rpg gamers. LOTS of the recycled content. it is the same layout for all caverns, almost all houses, and almost everything has the same type of texture applied.
But the City Hub system is the worse, i never seen so many loading screen in my life. initiate quest in district A , goto hub, Loading, do quest in district B, goto hub, Loading, finish quest in district A. This system makes the game a chore. just go play DAO this one is just plain boring.… Expand
Mar 14, 2011This is easily Bioware's worst game to date. Extremely repetitive and grueling combat. A lackluster progression system where you never feel any more powerful. A storyline with no internal consistency to itself or its predecessor and there's zero choices except for choosing whether Hawke is nice, angry or sarcastic. Companions are average at best and terrible at worst. And it's incredibly buggy with cutscenes firing out of order and other strange glitches.
And I say this as someone who has loved Bioware since the days of Baldur's Gate. This is the game that will shake Bioware's reputation amongst fans and consumers, which is more harmful than any number of bad reviews.… Expand
Mar 15, 2011Okay, 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
Mar 16, 2011Poor narrative choices mixed with repetitive gameplay and a good bit of EA chicanery to boot and this game went from being just amazing to disappointing quick. Trying to appeal to everyone, Bioware has become the puppet of EA and I for one thinks it's a shame that such a formerly-great developer couldn't distance itself from the rest of the pack and give us an experience they invested more than just EA's cash into. Sucks for the developers and for the gamers, not for EA, because ultimately we are the one's getting screwed raw here.… Expand
Mar 18, 2011Combat is ridiculous. Animation speed increased to the point that no strike animations are visible. Intended to speed up combat ... which it doesn't, since the increased speed is offset by higher monster hitpoints and swarms of enemies.
also, combat has been "coolified", meaning that every standard attack is the 'Fallout 3' equivalent of 'Bloody Mess', meaning that a killing stab with a dagger causes humans to explode.
unconvincing encounters with different factions ... you somehow are constantly forced to kill potential allies. also swarms of enemies, even if you're just on a evening stroll to the nearest tavern.
also, maps get recycled over and over and over. sure, you're revisiting old locations very very often, but you'll see the exact same dungeon map on up to five DIFFERENT locations!
No, this game is a complete fail in the categories Bioware tried to improve.… Expand
Mar 17, 2011Real dissapointment. The dialogues and side quests itlesf are great. But thats all. Main quest is basically missing (I was not sure what Im trying to achieve in the main plot until like 35hours in the game. Till then the main plot feels like series of random side quests. Where most of them really have nothing to do with game ending). There is so few locations that it is smallest game I played in loong time. Still they managed to put around 40hours of quest into such samll environment. That means you are always fighting at the same locations over and over again. The fights are stereotype with spawning enemies without any logic. It just sents same waves again and again. Boss fight are not interesting at all. The bosses have just bigger size and HP. So you fight it like normal enemy - you just need to spent 15 minutes on it. Resulting in boredom. Considering that the enviromnent is not build for the quests, but the quest are put into generic enviromnent, the atmosphere is really low. It does not matter if you go deal with bandinds, investigate murder, releasing prisoners or dealing with blood mages. It will happen o nthe same generic street (with flegmatic NPCs around) each time. The result feels much more like a datadisk or DLC, than a full game. Its just few small locations with lots of quests thrown into them without any logic.… Expand
Mar 19, 2011First off, this game had potential but somewhere down the line, someone really made some fuc up decision, this game no way a sequel to dao, I feel really sad that bioware has really drop the ball on this game, it's time for Bioware to grow some real balls and tell ea to suk it. Because at this current rate Bioware is going to lose its fan base at a rapid pace if this mickey mouse **** keeps up! Now back to this awful of a game period, this game is so simple that my 2 yr can play, I just hope that's not the market Bioware or Ea are trying to target because if it is they fail miserablely. There is nothing in this game that saids i'm the damn best rpg out there so screw everyone else! They have made some improvements but they over did it with the more i reuse the better the game will be concept. Which fail miserable again. My real gripe is this why mess with a game that could have been a great by trying to make it a action rpg which fail btw look at ff13 a massive falier. In the future, stop EA from messing with what ur company does best Good story, character that u truely love and hate,innovating character design and maps those are ur real strength in making a stellar rpg game. Oh btw, I will never by a game pre-order period from u guys any more what a shame, That u let alot of folks down with this so called sequel that suppose to top DA:O and i swear all the hype behind this title was really misleading and Ea And Bioware should be ashame of themselves Cuz actually i feel cheated cuz i bought a product that did nothing what was suppose to do most of all suppose to be entertaining. All i got was bunch of nonsense that really didn't make any sense.… Expand
Mar 19, 2011As a fan of everything RPG, I fell completely in love with Dragon Age: Origins. A sprawling game filled with memorable characters, an intricate storyline and seemingly limitless customization opportunities, Origins ticked all the right boxes and felt like a concerted effort to breathe new life into a genre that is seemingly falling by the wayside. Even Origins' most glaring flaws could be easily forgiven in light of it's many strengths.
Dragon Age II is a rushed, poorly written and overly-simplified game that has little to nothing in common with it's predecessor. Whilst the immediacy of the reformed combat and the overhauled interface are welcome improvements, the rest of the game seems like a cynical slap in the face to roleplaying game fans everywhere.
The characters are soulless husks saddled with sparse, poorly written dialogue. The environments are claustrophobic, drab, grey and brown boxes with moveable walls and endlessly spawning enemies that are endlessly recycled (think of THAT WAREHOUSE in Mass Effect 1). The dialogue wheel, whilst a positive move, was hampered by the fact that Hawke delivers all of his lines with about as much emotion as dead slug. Couple this with the fact that the ENTIRE of the game takes place within roughly 10 or so areas (sorry, but Hightown Day and Hightown Night or does not exactly satisfy any wanderlust) and you are left with a bland, cynical, soulless game that does nothing but blacken the name of what was shaping up to be an intelligent, well written and refreshing fantasy series.
Must try harder Bioware. You are a lot better than this nightmare of a game...… Expand
Apr 2, 2011Utter betrayal of a loyal fan base. Designed entirely to accommodate a simplistic console community. Origins was a massive success both critically and financially, so why did Bioware suddenly think everything needed to be changed in a sequel. If its not broken don't fix it.
Apr 19, 2011Here lies a perversion of the original Dragon Age. Shedding anything that made it special, leaving it devoid of a soul and presenting the bare-bones minimum for this game to be functional. Repetitiveness lazy level, enemy, and quest design all make for a mediocre game.
Apr 18, 2011When will companies learn that value does not equal labor. Supply and demand is how the economy works. Bioware ruined any interest I had in this game by destroying its value by adding DRM. Someday maybe companies will learn not to treat legitimate customers like criminals. Until that day I will not be playing anymore games with DRM. Especially not ones from Bioware or EA.
Mar 19, 2011What a total disappointment. Much like Mass Effect 2 this game fails to deliver on so many levels. About the only thing I can say I liked about this game was the combat overhaul, but after some time with the game even that became very boring and was added to the long list of cons. This game has been so over-simplified it barely resembles an RPG anymore. You can craft the appearance of your character as in other games of this type, but you are basically just selecting different presets. Guitar Hero and Rock Band had a more robust creation tool. Menus have been lifted straight from Mass Effect 2, and the game setup is identical, this is not a good thing. Your choices for upgrading your character are very limited, there is a difference between making your game more user-friendly and stripping down almost all customization options. Combat is reduced to hack n' slash gameplay and anyone who believes this isn't just another button-masher is diluted. You can pause the action and give commands but you never really need to. Graphics are very bland, textures are low-res and character models are questionable. The only characters who look even remotely cool are certain companions and if you look in the strategy guide you can see that the concept art for these and all other characters was better than the finished product. There are very few locations the game takes place in, an even bigger crime is that every house you enter, every cave you search, every sewer you trudge through is the exact same place as all the ones you ever have or ever will venture into in the game. It really takes away from the immersion when you are told to search for something in a cave or sewer or estate only to realize you've already been there more than once. And no, they aren't telling you that you are having multiple missions in the same locale, they are all different missions in the same recycled location visually, these places are on different parts of the map with different names and are being passed off as a new place, and Bioware is hoping you won't notice. Also there is no exploration, you walk down pre-defined paths with a few deviations here and there with expected loot waiting at the end. This is essentially Final Fantasy 13, Bioware just covered up the linearity a little better. There is no customization for your companions. They always wear the same armor and you can only buy four upgrades for them, all they do is change stats, not appearance. This is really a game all about accessorizing, the most you'll ever toy with in terms of customization is the jewelry you and your companions wear. The DLC was obviously part of the game that was withheld to make extra money for EA and Bioware, visually and story-wise it fits in too well with the rest of the game to be standard DLC. Speaking of story, there really isn't one. The first Dragon Age was so epic, the story of a hero on a quest to save the world. Here you are a refugee out to reclaim your family's name and honor. There isn't even a real villain until Act 3 and that's the end of the game. Just like ME2 this game boils down to being just a checklist. "Make sure you do these things before this time or this will happen to you." As for save-game importing, it has no effect on the story whatsoever. Certain characters show up but seem tacked on and out of place. At one point you meet a character that with the use of the import could have been your created character from the first game, however it ends up just being some generic character that has no impact on the story at all. What's bad is that in this scene you could tell Bioware thought this would be epic and dramatic and it ended up failing on all levels. Romances boil down to the same checklist formula as in ME2 as well as the rest of this game and thus lose all impact and are rendered pointless and too much effort for no real payoff. I don't know how they did it but Bioware even managed to make the Deep Roads unexciting. I also don't understand why Bioware thought the story and characters in the first game were so bad not to continue them, they did the same thing to a lesser extent in ME2. Bioware really needs to stop stripping down their games to reach a broader, less intelligent audience simply to make more money for their new overlords(EA). Once they have alienated all their fans and no longer present any value to them they will be cast aside like EA's other at-one-time golden children(Black Box for example, there are others). I know this will probably be my last trip into the Dragon Age universe, and as soon as I'm through with ME3(I have to finish the series because I'm already so invested in the Commander's story) I won't waste any more of my time with any new Bioware IPs. Oh well, at least I still have Skyrim to look forward to. Also, BEWARE! Bioware posts their own reviews to inflate their game's score, this added to everything listed above is really sad.… Expand
Mar 12, 2011Hay guys, I just thought I would say that DA2 is the greatest game of all time......lol, just kidding, its fail. Bioware rushed the game to milk us idiots, that's the story behind it. Repeated zones, nearly no customization, no rpg elements. Look at the combat, no CC? look at the choices to make in dialog, it MAKES NO DIFFERENCE WHAT YOU CHOSE. Are you gay? well tough, everybody wants your bod and often tried to jump your bones.
I would give the game a 3.0 but all the "greatest game ever" fan boy crap is all lies, so SOME ONE has to balance the games score, imiright?… Expand
Mar 10, 2011Bioware is death for me.
PÃºdrete en el infierno Bioware, cÃ³mo puedes venderte de esta manera? traicionando lo que te ha hecho grande, Dragon Age II es basura. Juego sin emociÃ³n, pasillero, diÃ¡logos estÃ©riles, trama aburrida, sin cÃ¡mara cenital, no vale la pena decir mucho mÃ¡s,
Mar 10, 2011Dragon Age 1, although not the BGII second-coming I was hoping for, offered a close-to-perfect compromise between micro-management of Inventory, Spells and Tactics and hack-and-slash action -- this is what I buy RPGs like this for. Dragon Age 2 takes a different approach: attacking is, for the most part, fire and forget, spell management is limited and inventory is over-simplified. Moreover, the story is convoluded and didn't motivate me to keep playing. Good dialogue and voice acting redeems this game a bit, but nothing can save it from it's pander-to-the-lowest-common-denominator simplicity.
This game is definitely not worth $60, either on PC or console. Either hold out for the bargain bin or until you can find it used, or just pass (you're not missing much).… Expand
Mar 10, 2011Bioware: 1995-2011. RIP.
MuriÃ³ de casualizaciÃ³n aguda, agravada con una fiebre consolera que llevÃ³ a la compaÃ±Ãa de RPG mÃ¡s grande a no saber ni quiÃ©n es. DespreciÃ³ a su antaÃ±o fiel base de usuarios, quienes aguantaron pacientemente sus desplantes hasta que DA2: El Insulto Final dejÃ³ claro que el verdadero sueÃ±o de Bioware es convertirse en uno de tantos aspirantes (eternamente fracasados) a ocupar el trono de la mediocridad en el que se sienta Call of Duty.
Menos mal que nos queda CD Project. Y que esto sirva de advertencia para Bethesda.… Expand
Mar 11, 2011I can only hope this isn't an indication of what to expect with mass effect 3. Reusing level assets multiple times, making dungeons look the same and limiting the map size to a small city and surrounding country side. Also the lack of customization when it comes to the companions in my party. Why did Bioware feel the need to once again streamline one of the best parts of an rpg, gear customization, is beyond me. This does not live up to the expectations I have of a Bioware rpg, this is a huge step back from the quality titles I have come to expect from them.… Expand
Mar 11, 2011-entire game takes place in 1 location, (imagine playing all of DA:O in Denerim without leaving) -re-used environments (you keep going to the same 100% identical dungeon) -you cant speak to your companions (you speak to companions once and then they ignore you) -you cant customize your companions -the companions are awful, boring, 1 dimensional and hideous looking -Filled with bugs (you cant play on "very high detail" setting or the game breaks down)
-gameplay is a joke (you stab people with your knife and they explode into jelly like they got hit by a grenade)
-the game is short (about 20 hours, and you wont want to play again)
-character creation uses same hairstyles, tattoos and resources from DA:O -terrible value, game not worth money, you will feel 100% disappointed
-I want my money back… Expand
Mar 11, 2011It's a big shame to see a studio that was responsible for legendary titles such as Baldur's Gate or Neverwinter Nights releasing such a disgraceful title called Dragon Age 2. Generic combat, annoying cut-scenes with cheesy dialogs, closed maps - where is freedom I ask? I can't believe that major gaming sites rated this game so well. I can only think of sponsoring articles... Game just got released and we have DLC already - laughable. Making money on well-known IP, that's all. It's sad.… Expand
Mar 11, 2011I have always been a fan of Bioware, and always backed it when people would their RPGs boring. I grew up with NWN and absolutely loved KotOR. I enjoyed Mass Effect and the sequel was also pretty good. I thoroughly enjoyed Dragon Age Origins, and Bioware shone in DA's characterisation and storyline. Dragon Age 2 pales in comparison to its predecessor. (Just for the record, this is not a troll post. I've seen that many bioware employees have been accusing people of intentionally rating down DA2.)
There are a couple of improvements, I suppose. The combat's generally a bit higher paced, and I always found DA's combat a little slow. Party members also seem to have a bit more character (in DA, Alistair and Morrigan had some character, while everyone else just seemed to have one theme which they stuck to as stereotypically as possible). The use of less party members means that you don't have people who say they want to help the Warden, but instead sit around in a camp all day everyday. It's also nice to know what effect you speech options will have.
Now to the bad points. The textures on the characters is about the same as on DA, while the textures on everything else is somehow worse than on DAO. I get that texture quality may stagnate between games, but how can it be regressive? The voice acting is much worse and default Hawke's face looked silly. A big thing in RPGs these days is the choices you make. The only choices you get to make in DA2 are who you have sex with and whether the templars do or don't like you. You can't even choose your race. Another annoying thing that DAO didn't have (well there wasn't too much of it) was sidequests that are fetch this, collect that. I would've though the champion has better things to do. There's no continuity between what you did in DAO and what happens in DA2. I freed the mages. They don't need to rebel. And Anders was the only cool character in Awakening, and they ruined him. DAO left on a lot of cliffhangers, and DA2 didn't even mention them. I understand that Bioware is trying to set up a fantasy world of their own, but DA2 added nothing to this.
I'm overlooking EA's and Bioware's treatment of its customers when reviewing DA2.
I've been constantly holding out for a NWN or BG clone, and Bioware's the only company that's gonna make that, but they refuse to go back to their roots, and instead stick with action RPGs where the only thing players ever discuss is who they slept with. I can't really see The Old Republic doing well and if ME3 doesn't do well, I imagine it'll be end of line for Bioware.… Expand
Mar 13, 2011Dragon Age II is very disappointing, If you were an avid fan of the first game and it's expansion and decided to make a perfect run-through of it with the intention of importing it into dragon age II like I did, you will be sorely disappointed.
Nothing that comes from imports has any real affect on anything in Dragon Age II's already dismal storyline. The only thing you can expect to see are cameo appearances from previous acquaintances and tiny references to your exploits no doubt intended to make you feel nostalgic and happy. These feelings quickly fade when you realize you paid $60 however.
The gameplay is very tedious and boring. The only noticeable difference on a casual playthrough between combat in DAII and DA:O is that you now have to mash the Attack button repeatedly instead of pressing it once per target.
There is a new aspect to combat with the advent of cross-class combos, in a casual or normal playthrough you can go the entire game without using one, but in higher difficulty playthroughs the game is practically balanced around taking advantage of these combos, it really feels like they added this feature in an attempt to make the combat seem fresh. What I mean by that is that enemies seem to have a higher amount of health just because they want to make people use cross class combos in the first place and because of that, it feels like just another complication.
If you do not own a 60" HD Flatscreen TV, expect to squint to read the minute font and the minimalistic Interface they decided to use in this game even if you have 20/20 vision. The only aspect of the game that is an exception to this is the chat wheel that pops up when you interact with NPCs at least you know what decisions you are making...
The environments are great until you notice that there are only about 20 in the game,Deep Roads, Cave, and Dungeon environments have about 2 variants and that's it. Those 6 different environments are the same ones they use for every dungeon and cave in the game. The only difference between these environments is that certain passages are either closed or open and loot containers are shuffled around.
Named unique locations feel bland and unchanging. Environments such as the town of Kirkwall (where the games events are centered) don't even change over the course of the 10 years in which this game takes place, aside from superficial things like rearranging loot containers that are placed around said environment. That isn't to say that the people inside Krikwall don't change however, because they do...well the important people do, there are no events that take place in the game that impact the entire city in a noticeable way (until the end anyway, and seeing as it's THE END, you don't get to see how the city changes anyway).
Cutscenes have a tendency to warp the character models causing them to stretch and shrink very rapidly, I can't fathom how something as obvious and disruptive to immersion as this got past bug testing.
The new talent trees aren't really as big an improvement over DA:O's talent trees as they were portrayed to be. They are a small improvement however if only for the fact that it is harder to decide where to spend the point you just earned.
The stories and intimate relationships of your comrades that you can experience are as good as ever, but this one good quality is not enough to raise the average score that quantifies the rest of the game.
The music never really caught my ear but it didn't sound bad either, I don't know whether it is the hallmark of a good or a bad soundtrack if you can listen to it without realizing that you are in fact listening to it in the first place.
I only hope that they take full advantage of all the plots and storylines that they have left open in this game and set themselves up to explain in DA:III when the time comes. DA:II is only a stepping stone in terms of plot, only serving as a build up in events with no real feel of accomplishment or advancement. The story feels stagnant and unimportant to be honest.
We learn next to nothing of Flemeth (aside from the fact that she's still alive despite anything you might have done to her in DAO) and there is no new information or plot points that concern the darkspawn at all. Yeah that's right, nothing new about darkspawn or Flemeth. The problems that Bioware introduces in this title seem trite and unimportant when compared to the first games events.
I feel really sad when I say this, but to me it seems that Bioware has finally decided that it loves money more than the stories that they craft, especially when DLC is available to purchase off the shelf from day one... I mean what the hell is that about? Just include it with the game you sellouts....
My advice? This game is good enough to rent but definitely not worth 60 bucks.… Expand
Mar 13, 2011This game make me fill insulted by the game creators. They dont respect players. They think that players is dumb and would buy only super simple things. And WE are not... anymore. STOP ruining games. Stop make **** only for money. I felt terrible when i played this game... i would rate this -100 if i can. If this is the way games would be... than its over for me. Shame to BW and EA
Mar 14, 2011To already give a conclusion before I even arrive at the meat of this review, Dragon Age II feels incredibly rushed, and is a definite step down from the original, which already was quite mediocre. This unfortunate turn in quality leaves us with a sloppy, uninspired, dumbed down, and generally unlikeable game, which pales in comparison to some of Bioware`s gems.
The combat in DA2 is a huge step back from Dragon Age Origins. The underlying system is the same, but by upping the pace and letting the player control normal attacks directly, combat feels incredibly dumbed down, which becomes rather boring, rather quickly. Successful attacks are met with a slashing sound. The fighting styles between the three classes (warrior, mage, rogue) feel as almost the same, as do different specializations within a class. Difficulty levels are incredibly unstatic, enough to accomodate neither gamers looking for hack `n` slash action, nor for gamers who want full control over their party, and utilizing the pause menu to issue tactical commands for setting up combos.
The tale within a tale narrative structure is kinda interesting at first, but any curiosity you might have quickly dies down, however, as poor storytelling makes you lose any connection to Hawke you may have had at the beginning. There are two issues with the plot devices used in DA2. The first is the timeskip. Between each act of the game, there is a gap in which you do not participate. This makes you feel less engaged at the start of the next act, because whatever new predicament Hawke finds himself in, you were not there to experience it. Moreover, Hawke occasionally meets people that he supposedly met during a timeskip, but you as a player have never met. This really wrenches you out of Hawke's shoes, as you realize that despite controlling Hawke's actions and choices for certain parts of his life, you are ultimately just a spectator.
The second plot device that I have trouble with is something that is common in RPGs. Basically, you have a main objective, but have to do a bunch of other stuff before you can achieve that objective. DA2's side quests are incredibly boring (more on this later), thus making this common RPG plot device much more obvious. After literally spending hours doing side quest after side quest that have no relation to the main plot whatsoever, it's easy to get sidetracked and forget what Hawke's main goal was in the first place.
Finally, conversations in DA2 are a step down from the ones in DAO. The fully written dialogue choices from DAO are done away with. Instead, DA2 uses a dialogue wheel similar to Mass Effect. What this means is that Hawke talks exclusively in one-liners, and that conversations are all short and to the point, presumably so they wouldn`t get in the way of the mind-numbingly boring action. Moreover, all conversation choices are marked with an emotion icon (heart, halo, you get the idea). While potentially useful, what these icons really do is making sure gamers don`t have to think about how to phrase a response. Instead, conversation quickly boils down to choosing the stance you want to take, like in the much better, but also quite rushed, Alpha Protocol. Conversations with random NPCs are gone too. Now, every conversation is with a quest-giver. This makes Kirkwall a horribly lifeless place, as everyone you talk to just wants you to help solve their problems. It also means that no one talks to you about Dragon Age lore in the game. Instead, all lore is obtained through the Codex, and not conversations. This means that people who hate reading on a screen like me aren't able to learn much about the lore of the DA universe. Then again, it wasn`t interesting in the first place, but still.
Dragon Age II is an incredibly messy game, which smothered any potential it had with bugs, missed opportunities, and general laziness. Kirkwall is a lifeless place, Ã¡ la the settlements in Borderlands, while dungeons are reused and reused and reused untill you can literally traverse them with your eyes closed. This, of course fits with the dumbing down of the other elements of DA2. The developers spoke of trying to capture the audience of the Call of Duty series, which is, in my eyes, a grave mistake; firstly because this`ll leave RPG-fans and more serious gamers in the cold, and secondly because COD-fans rather occupy themselves with things like Bulletstorm and sports games, outside of COD.
DA2 could have redeemed itself with other features, like the score, but fails with that too.
My final verdict;
REPLAY VALUE; 1/10
GENERAL FEEL; 1/10
This adds up to around a 1.5, but seeing as things like gameplay are much more important than the score, I have to give this game a 2. Bioware dropped the ball big time with this game, and I look forward to Mass Effect 3 with fear, anticipating a failure of a game, much like Dragon Age 2. (1.0)… Expand
Mar 17, 2011This review contains no spoilers.
Being a Bioware fan and having followed this company since their dawn, I wanted to love this game. I really wanted to love this game. Bioware is a company renowned for their compelling characters, vibrant locations and amazing storytelling. Sadly, this game has none of these things. Remember HK-47? Remember Morte? Remember the Justicar or Darth Revan? The characters in this game are very bland, very boring, third rate LOTR rip offs.
The locations? Well, lets just say that the entirety of this game is played in the same 2 locations. Backgrounds and models are used and rehashed ad nauseam. This entire game feels as if it was very cheaply made, rushed and pointed towards an audience that does not like RPGs or wants them to be "simpler". The combat is half RPG and half Diablo and the end result of that unholy union is something abominable. The game will last you about 6 hours if you play through to the end. Pathetic. The graphics are not as good as Shadow of the Collossus (a game that came out just as the PS2 was ending its commercial life). It is dumbed down terribly. Also, be very aware that Bioware employees are on this site bumping it up. The reviewer "Avanost" has been discovered to be one of these already. "Anything negative you will see about this game is an overreaction of personal preference" eh?! A review is a statement of personal preference. Well done on giving it a ten, though, signifying that you think DA2 is the best that a game can become or ever be.… Expand
Mar 19, 2011I pre-ordered this purely on how much I enjoyed DA:O. Boy do I regret that.
Endlessly repeated landscapes, stuck in a single city, with no motivation, just a bunch of fedex quests and ever repeating spawns of enemies out of thin air.
I miss being able to customize my companions armor. I miss having more than good, snarky & evil conversation choices. I miss the feeling of exploring a whole world. I miss the old Anders, and ser-pounce-a-lot.
The voice-acting is meh; there's no Claudia Black here. The graphics are improved, but so repetitive, it's hard to care.
I've finished Act 1, bored, and unable to work up the motivation to continue. I won't be pre-ordering DA:3. Renting maybe.… Expand
Mar 19, 2011I don't like being lied to. Bioware LIED to us. When people want to buy an RPG they don't buy an ACTION GAME they buy an RPG. Do you understand bioware? We don't like your obvious buyout of game reviews. We don't like having our RPGs turned into Action games. We don't like being told a million times how something is "Epic" and then only lasts "25 hours". RPG PLAYERS DON'T WANT ACTION GAMES!
Mar 19, 2011Dragon Age 2 is not a worthy successor to Dragon Age Origins: The combat while not as bad as expected is overshadowed by awful story, awful character development, one of the most disappointing endings I've seen in a while, and completely pointless inventory system and commerce (torn trousers anybody?). There's no reason to care about anything that happens in this game, the characters are forgettable with the exception of the dwarf Varric and maybe Avelline and the storyline has no clearly defined antagonist and is poorly paced (seriously, where is the beginning, middle and end?). I'm shocked that Hawke had a motivation to get out of bed in the morning when all he has to do all day is pointless fetch quests in the same drab, tired environments with a bunch of people he's supposed to care about.
Garbage, if you must play more Dragon Age - go back and play the first one, faults and all.… Expand
Mar 19, 2011simple.. repetitive and predictable. good bye dragon age.....
now you have a action game masked as rpg. run around the same caves and "dungeons" one time and other let you with the feeling of be playing a bad chinese MMO made to extract you money with micropayments. and probably thats what EA want with the forthcoming dlc,s.
Mar 20, 2011Along with several other people here, I have never written a review or commented on a game before, but I felt the strong need to voice my opinion about DA2. It just isn't a good game at all. How is it possible that the gaming industry critics have given the game such a favorable review?? Surely they are getting paid by EA in some form or another - we already know that at least one bioware employee (name of Avalone I think?) has posted here with a perfect score. That isn't really bad, and I don't mind that so much, but it sure makes me wonder what else EA/bioware is up to. Here's a message to all RPG fans out there wondering whether to buy this game or not... you will be hugely dissapointed if you enjoyed DAO - because all of the things that made DAO great are missing in this game. Trust me when I say this (because I have no hidden agenda), the general consensus of the user reviews is a lot more accurate than the critics reviews. All of the things that you've read about the game from the user reviews (repeatiing dungeons, hack and slash style play, poor dialogue choices, non-immersion, no caring for characters, no sense of being part of a bigger world), it's all true. Stay away from this one - you can find a much better way to spend $60!… Expand
May 1, 2011Faulty 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, 2011Above 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.