Posts Tagged ‘Dragon Age 2’

The RPG Scrollbars: Roles We Take, Roles We Choose

Not for the first time, I’ve spent quite a while recently pondering the nature of roles – more specifically, mechanical role versus narrative role. When we think of RPGs, what we’re usually thinking of is the latter. You play the role of the Hero, but in a universe that’s typically designed to let you define that however you like. I’m not saying that’s a bad thing, but there’s a key difference between that and stepping into the shoes of someone more specific. Geralt in The Witcher 3 for instance is – spoiler alert – a Witcher. Every encounter revolves around that, every system involves it, every decision has, whether it’s by your choice or Geralt bringing it up, a mercenary element that reinforces that asking for money in exchange for your services is expected and not, as is often the case, the first step towards douchery and getting the Evil ending.

I’ve also been playing a lot of Hearthstone. The two things are linked.

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The RPG Scrollbars: Time And Seasons In RPGs

The times change, and we change with the times. Or in the case of RPGs, not. I’ve always felt this a bit of a shame, especially in games like World of Warcraft, where your character is officially hanging around long enough to see the leaves fall off the trees and the snow to cover up the capital cities. That’s why I was quite keen on both Fallout 4 taking the time to redecorate Diamond City a little for at least Halloween and Christmas, and last week, to see a mod take the next step and give the Commonwealth a makeover for all seasons in a way that nobody’s really tried since Lords of Midnight 3 way back in the 90s. Whole minutes of fun with the system clock there!

But then as now, it’s hard not to start wondering how time could be given its due as more than the fire in which bad movies turn out to be even worse than they initially seemed. Maybe it could be our friend too, and in so many interesting ways.

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The RPG Scrollbars: The Lost Magic Of Magic

Given a choice, I almost always play as a mage. Swords? Pah. Divine magic? Save it for Sunday School. Give me control over the elements, the power to reshape the very building blocks of the universe according to my every whim, and if at all possible, a cool hat. It’s an easy fantasy to indulge in almost any RPG out there.

I just wish it was a more satisfying one.

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S.EXE: Dragon Age II And The Long Road

same

I usually discover the best stories about games over a quiet drink with a friend. This week I am residing in the Isle of Wight, working with the artist Howard Hardiman, author of The Lengths. The Lengths is, amongst other things, an exploration of the world of male gay escorts based on real conversations with sex workers; illustrations and dialogue of the feelings and life of someone who lives to please other people. I found myself in The Mess asking Howard which games he liked that expressed something about the relationships between people. This will contain spoilers for Dragon Age II.

Howard explained to me that Aveline’s crush on a coworker in Dragon Age II almost broke his heart. So we went back home to play The Long Road.

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No Reused Levels: Details Of Dragon Age 3 Emerge

So they SAY.

Rumours are flying that Dragon Age 3 might be something more like the sequel to Dragon Age we’ve been hoping for. After Dragon Age 2 came out feeling more like a side-project, BioWare have dropped some hefty hints that they’re looking to redress much of that in an unannounced third game for the series. At a PAX East panel, as spotted by Eurogamer and recorded by Gamespot, Dragon Age developers discussed what a hypothetical game might contain, were it to exist, which it currently doesn’t, but obviously does. It’s to be a far more varied game, with new locales, and decisions that carry over from previous games.

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Dragon Age 2: Legacy DLC Footage

This dude just wants to be friends, I reckon.
Ooh, EA have announced that Dragon Age 2’s first big bit of story-driven DLC is nearing. Legacy, which features Hawke going into a Grey Warden prison to deal with a particularly unpleasant darkspawn nasty, is going to arrive on 26th of July. Needless to say, magicks which imprisoned the unpleasantness have worn out, because magic sort of “goes off” if you leave it in a dark dungeon for too long, and Hawke will have to deal with the consequences. Will it be any good? How much will it cost? I don’t know, but one of our sinister agents has seen Legacy and talked to the team behind it, so we’ll have more on that stuff soon.

In the meantime, you can watch the trailer, beloooooooow.
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But! Dragon Age May Be Back On Track

Run, Hawke! Run from all the thousands of men who hate you!

EA may not have given Battlefield fans the answer they wanted to hear, but meanwhile, back in the kingdom of Ferelden, things might be looking a little rosier. Eurogamer had a chat with EA bigwig Frank Gibeau about the reception to Dragon Age 2. He was careful not to actually slag off the game or its makers, but he did imply that the negative feedback has very much been taken on board.
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The Dragon Age 2 Demo Is Out Today


Still nothing unlocked on the Dragon Age 2 demo page, but the demo is apparently out later today. We’ll keep this post updated, so please put links in comments once it’s live so we can get some mirrors and stuff. That said, I don’t know whether the mirrors will count towards Bioware’s one million downloads challenge, in which they’ve offered to unlock some in-game items if that figure is reached. Perhaps that’s just downloads from the official page? Hmm.

Anyway, keep eyes peeled for incoming, people!

Dragon Age’s Hawke Is Three Champions

At RPS we get choose between being Blogger, Snogger, or Dogger.
So, after having too many options for creating a character in Dragon Age: Origins, we are now down to just three options for the Hawke character chap in Dragon Age 2, II, Two. He can be a mage! (DUDES GET MAGICKED TO DEATH!) He can be a rogue! (DUDES GET STABBED TO DEATH!) He can be a warrior! (DUDES GET UH MORE STABBED I GUESS!) You decide.

Watch it, below.
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Dragon Age 2 DRM Is Different


This forum post on the Bioware forums has detailed how the Dragon Age 2 DRM will work. The Steam version will use Steam, and nothing else. For the retail version there is no limit to install, no disc check, and are online checks, which mean that only five PCs can be used to play a single version of the game within a 24-hour period. While this game can also be played offline, you will need to “check in” after a number of days to keep playing.

The way things are going will mean that the retail version will end up being cheaper, but the digital version will be more convenient…

Dragon Space 2 Armour in Dead Age 2

I can't wait to get Darkspore add-ons from Populous.

When it was announced that there would be Dragon Age armour in Mass Effect 2, it may have gone crashing through the fourth wall like a confused rhinoceros, but at least the two games came from the same developer. It’s bemusing to try to fathom how the two universes might cross over, but we got over it. But for Dragon Age 2 you’ll be able to unlock unique armour if you also have, er, Dead Space 2. Buh-huh?

There’s a trailer explaining all this below.

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Dragon Age 2 Wants You Back

There’s been a tangy whiff of “hmm” around Dragon Age 2 amongst the PC faithful, with the game apparently headed in something of a press all the buttons kill all the monsters press them kill them press them kill them direction we perhaps hadn’t expected from our beloved tactics’n’conversation opus. Turns out that perhaps we’ve got the wrong impression, though.

Now, while this video makes the bewildering mistake of primarily consisting of a chattering man filmed in near-darkness, it also very deliberately seeks to demonstrate that pause’n’play tactical combat remains present and correct in the PC version of the game. Read the rest of this entry »

Fantasy Star: Dragon Age 2 Wobblecam

Thanks to some tricksy Russians operating out of the Igromir Game Expo,there’s now in-game footage of Dragon Age 2 doing the rounds. You can watch it below. It’s the same level I played at the GamesCom expo that made me very nervous indeed, and is (I think) the opening of the game. Click on through for a little bit of dialogue, a little bit of cutscenery and a whole lot of combat.
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Dragon Age 2 Rising To Power

KERRRRRRRRRRRRRR-CHOP!

How are we all feeling about Dragon Age 2? Quintin wasn’t too impressed when he played it at this year’s GamesCom, but me – with no experience of the game – I’m determinedly optimistic. I mean, it’s not like BioWare messes up very often. However, if picking my ideal Dragon Age sequel, I wouldn’t have it be more action orientated. Quite the opposite. They spent a decade developing that world’s lore, and exploring it, interacting with it, learning from it: that’s my motivation. Hitting it doesn’t quite grab me in the same way. Still, it’s not out for another six months, and I’ve not even seen it running, so I’m just wildly guessing. To become more informed on the matter there’s a new trailer below, that shows some glimpses of in-game footage.

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Dragon Age 2 Trailer, Screens Now Too

Hello!
UPDATE: Three new screens below, click for full image.

I’ve posted the Dragon Age 2 CGI trailer from EA’s press conference below, via PCG. It features some fancy fighting, and doubtless at least half a dozen other clues about the full game. DA2 is out March 8th for the North Americans and March 11th for the Europeans.
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GI Visit Bioware, Spy Some Dragon Age 2


This video (below) from Game Informer’s visit to Bioware is clearly grossly unrepresentative of what the finished game is going to be like, but it does contain lots of chatter from the devs, and a brief glimpse of a battle going on in the new game engine. Not looking particularly finished, but it’s there nonetheless. It also demonstrates that games really are made by guys sat at desks, and not by cackling EA money-bots in a city of darkness in the caves beneath California.
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Dragon Age: Bioware’s Smashiest Hit Ever*

Just as a follow-up to Jim’s post earlier, it’s worth pointing out a Bioware comment from last week in which they revealed that Dragon Age: Origins was their most successful game ever. Which makes it doubly weird that they’re trying to make Dragon Age 2 more like the Mass Effects. The first one, at least, was a less successful project.

*As of last November. Mass Effect 2 probably did okay too.
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The Mass-Effectification of Dragon Age 2


Why change a winning formula? That’s what I was left wondering after discovering that, on the one hand, Dragon Age sold better than any Bioware game ever as of November, and on the other, that the formula is changing dramatically for Dragon Age 2. It’s worth noting that the PC version isn’t changing as much as the console versions of the game. We will apparently retain “strategic combat”, which is a good news, while console chums will be “playing to their strengths” with more actiony combat mechanics. Conversation will also now be handled via Mass Effect’s wheel system. The biggest change, however, is that Dragon Age 2 will be getting its own equivalent of Shepard, with player character options reduced to the male of female versions of “Hawke” (pictured? I think). Bioware confirmed on their forums that you will have to play a human.

Hell, I enjoyed Mass Effect 2, but you have to wonder why Dragon Age was so successful in the first place. Not because it was copying its less successful sibling, that’s for sure. I enjoy almost all of Bioware’s work, but I think boiling one game down to another just makes gaming a less interesting place. Diversity is important.