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79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 75 Critics What's this?

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4.5

Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 2371 Ratings

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  • Summary: EA announced that a new installment in the Dragon Age series will arrive in the first quarter of 2011.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 55 out of 75
  2. Negative: 1 out of 75
  1. Mar 7, 2011
    100
    The advancements in RPG mechanics would be enough to set it apart, but the real achievement of Dragon Age II is in the story-telling. I could point out the improved combat and graphics till there's blood covering my face, but BioWare is one of the few companies that uses the advanced computing power available to modern game designers to let you actually play a role.
  2. Mar 11, 2011
    90
    Dragon Age 2 is a great RPG for PC and consoles, but it lacks a bit of complexity.
  3. Mar 21, 2011
    89
    If you like your RPGs old-school with plenty of Tolkien and Dungeon Master mixed in with sword wielding warrior women and moody elves, then Dragon Age is for you.
  4. Mar 8, 2011
    83
    It really seems like the biggest mistake is calling it "DA2," as it's just different enough from Dragon Age: Origins to not feel like a sequel, but more like a reboot. The different main character, the faster and more streamlined combat, and the overall structure makes it feel like a fine Dragon Age adventure, but not a direct follow-up to DAO.
  5. Mar 8, 2011
    80
    A flawed, repetitive, and wholly derivative Western RPG, but still manages to be a vast improvement over the original and should greatly please fans of Origins. Fans of Mass Effect may also find enough satisfaction here to hold them over until ME3 releases, but make no mistake: if only one Bioware title is nominated for awards this year, it will not be this one.
  6. 74
    I can honestly say I had hoped for more from Dragon Age II. Considering Bioware have a history of nailing their sequels, I can't help but feel this was handed off to their reserves developers as the big guns work on Mass Effect 3.
  7. Mar 22, 2011
    25
    Defying all expectations, BioWare managed to take one of the most memorable Western RPGs in recent history and completely destroyed everything that made it so good.

See all 75 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Mar 12, 2011
    10
    Dragon Age II is an astoundingly good game. Having now played for around 10 hours I can say with a measured opinion that it has met andDragon Age II is an astoundingly good game. Having now played for around 10 hours I can say with a measured opinion that it has met and surpassed all my expectations. I completed Origins and poured over 112 hours into the game. I am by no means a simple fan boy and would have been bitterly disappointed had I not thought Bioware had put the same level of skill and commitment into the sequel. I have not been disappointed and I fail to see where and why all the user criticism spawns from on this page. I loved Origins and I feel no hesitation in stating that I believe DA2 is a much improved game.
    The pacing is much faster and more exciting, whilst keeping the focus of the narrative throughout - something Origins failed to do at times (there's a Blight going on?).
    The action and fighting dynamics have seriously been improved. Remember people this is the Xbox 360 version we are reviewing and as a console version, it's fighting mechanics have been vastly improved. It's fluid, it's faster and ultimately, it's more exciting. There seems to be a theme arising that people believe it is more like a button basher now. Can I remind you that the sole difference there is that now rather than simply pressing A once and having the character automatically attack, you now do so yourself. I fail to see why this is a negative.
    The story is gripping and the character dynamics and interaction is as superb as it was in the original but with the vast improvement of a fully voiced character. Furthermore, the characters are equally as funny, original and likeable as they were in the original - with the exception of maybe Morrigan (a favourite of mine).
    The graphics are, as expected, a considerable improvement and the scale of Kirkwall is impressive. Another complaint stems from the fact that the majority of the game is played within it's boundaries but this is by no means a bad thing. In fact, it makes perfect sense for the story which is being portrayed.
    Please, if you are considering buying this game, do not be put off by the overtly harsh criticism on this site and do so. If you are a fan of rpgs and most particularly if you enjoyed the first game, I implore you to play this game: you will not regret it.
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  2. Mar 17, 2011
    10
    I loved it. People can hate on Bioware all they want but this game was fantastic. The beginning seemed a bit slow at first, but I don'tI loved it. People can hate on Bioware all they want but this game was fantastic. The beginning seemed a bit slow at first, but I don't believe it could have been any other way. The manner in which the story ramps up the juice first slowly then with greater speed had me questioning my decisions and at one point sitting in shock. This was a great game. Yes it is different, and I applaud Bioware for smashing the mold on a tired old game system that is simply no longer needed in this day and age. This was not DnD, this was not Dragon Age: Origins. This was something new and beautiful. RPG's were never supposed to be about hitting action keys and spending hours on a leveling process. It is about playing a role.

    In Dragon Age: 2 you play the role of Hawke, starting out as just a guy trying to get by, you are inexplicably pulled into a whirlwind of events happening in your new home. The new interface is clean, and the fact that it fades from view when not needed is fantastic. I have loved the programmable controller button concept since Fable 1, and I choose my characters skills to keep me off the radial menu. The potential to either directly control your associates or just let them hang back and do their job was wonderful. I hate pausing a game. As to the story I found it to be intriguing. At first, despite hype I had read since the game was announced, I truly didn't know what was happening. I started to wonder how long I would have to do all these side quests... then BAM something big happens. From that point it just gets bigger. This game literally had me in shock. At least twice I set my controller down and just stared at my giant screen. One time I reloaded just to make sure I had understood what had happened. I was confused that after such a short time I genuinely felt close to a character I had largely ignored. Bravo Bioware!

    This game defies the standard that so many people have begun to believe comprises an RPG. It takes the story and gameplay and merges them into something that begs to be called art. Is it for everyone? Well it should be! There is no excuse with the computational power at our finger tips not to finally advance the genre. This was a bold move and I think one that pays off. Love it or hate it, the game has finally changed. As to the current accusations that Bioware employees tried to inflate the rating here. If that were the case then you would have seen far more positive reviews. How naive to think most companies from game developers to hardware manufacturers do not inflate reviews every chance they get. I am glad in this case for had I not seen the article on another site I would not have realized that so many people, many of which could work for Bioware's competitors had written bad reviews of a game I deeply enjoyed. So here I am. I agree whole heartedly with Avanost that dislike for this game largely stems from an inability to let go of conventions. We gamers are constantly derisive of anyone who "clones" another companies games (one in particular comes to mind in the MMO space) and yet the moment true innovation, skillfully executed hits the shelf we cry foul and crawl back in our familiar box unable to contend with change. I am disappoint in all of you!

    I say cheers Bioware! Now go use that engine for Old Republic 3... I want to smash things with a lightsaber!!!
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  3. Mar 9, 2011
    8
    Comparing Dragon Age 2 to Dragon Age: Origins, it improves some things but also losing some things in the process.

    The combat this time
    Comparing Dragon Age 2 to Dragon Age: Origins, it improves some things but also losing some things in the process.

    The combat this time around is fasted paced and satisfying. However, it does take a step back from the tactical RPG that Dragon Age: Origins was. You can still pause the screen to choose actions but the absence of the Tactical Overhead View just simply baffles me. Why would Bioware remove such a good idea and feature from it's sequel? I have no clue.

    The player character can now speak in conversations, must like Mass Effect. This in my opinion is a good thing because the silent protagonist in Dragon Age: Origins was really awkward and left much of the decisions you did pick in conversations up to you imagination of what was truly said.

    Facial animations are far better but the overall graphics seem lacking in some ways. On the console version I noticed Dragon Age 2 to be alot smoother and less jagged, but seemed less polished. I don't think Bioware was trying to make another Dragon Age: Origins, but was trying to go for something different.
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  4. Mar 12, 2011
    4
    In 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 ofIn 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
  5. May 29, 2011
    3
    I would've given this game a higher review if the apple hadn't fallen so far from the tree. The combat is much improved, as is the artI would've given this game a higher review if the apple hadn't fallen so far from the tree. The combat is much improved, as is the art direction, but in all other aspects the game falls far short of its predecessor.

    Bioware loves to tout its emphasis on "story, story, story." They should know the heart of any story is it's characters, and boy did they miss the boat in DA2. There are only two interesting characters in the game: Anderson and the Arishok, who outshine the rest of the cast by several orders of magnitude. I felt no connection whatsoever to Hawke, and even less to his groupies. Why are these characters following me around again?

    We've all heard it said that the environment can be a character too. In that sense, Kirkwall is as hollow and uninspiring as the rest of the cast. Hardly anyone in the city is worth talking too. Most NPCs are stereotypes of one kind or another, and the setting loses its luster quickly. You see every environment in the game during the first act, and it's recycled for the rest of the game.

    Choices are meaningless for the most part. You can flip flop between personalities without any consequences. I found myself making conversation choices based on which of the two companion skills I'd like to have. Conversations are far less intricate and engaging than they were in DA:O, probably because the characters themselves are so underwhelming.

    Perhaps Bioware expected the more complex subject material and narrative framing to carry the game. It didn't. DA:O, a perfectly boilerplate monomyth fantasy, was infinitely better.

    What a waste!
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  6. May 19, 2011
    1
    This game,simply put,is an absolute train wreck-the lead designer should be fired for this stain on bioware's legacy-dumbed-downThis game,simply put,is an absolute train wreck-the lead designer should be fired for this stain on bioware's legacy-dumbed-down gameplay,awful graphics(is it 2006?)and "quests" that are not only an absolute bore,but feel like work,not fun-and isn't that the point of gaming in the first place?Combat is repetitive,with wave upon wave of drone enemies attacking,again and again ,ad nauseum..(why do they explode,anyway,absolutely ridiculous!) Bottom line,people,be glad i played this abomination,that way only one of us had to suffer..a total waste of time and money, avoid at all costs! i give it 1 point because it boots up. Expand
  7. Jun 15, 2015
    0
    This is one of the worst games I've played. Repeated dungeons/landscapes that made me question whether I'd already played the quest before,This is one of the worst games I've played. Repeated dungeons/landscapes that made me question whether I'd already played the quest before, cliche characters, a story arc containing you to a predetermined outcome, weak, Twlight-ish dialogue that sounds like it's straight from Creative writing Beginners class, and you can't even customize characters' armour, other than for Hawke. I stopped half way and uninstalled it. Dragon Age Origins is superior in every way. Expand

See all 897 User Reviews

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