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keg in kc
09-21-2008, 12:17 AM
Damn you, BioWare.

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keg in kc
09-21-2008, 12:17 AM
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keg in kc
09-21-2008, 12:18 AM
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keg in kc
09-21-2008, 12:18 AM
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oaklandhater
09-21-2008, 05:02 AM
This game reminds me so much of BG2

Braincase
09-21-2008, 07:17 AM
Tempting...

J Diddy
09-21-2008, 08:07 AM
This game looks ultra bad ass. Kinda like lord of the ringish.

Basileus777
09-21-2008, 11:12 AM
BG2 is one of my favorite games of all time. So I'm really looking forward to Dragon Age.

Its just too bad my current PC won't be able to handle it....

Wa-Z
09-21-2008, 01:10 PM
what system is it on?

keg in kc
09-21-2008, 01:14 PM
what system is it on?PC only.

keg in kc
02-18-2009, 11:50 PM
New trailer:

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keg in kc
02-19-2009, 04:31 AM
Apparently they've decided to release a lot of news finally, must be to offset the delay.

Here's the official origins (sounds pretty cool) as posted on gamespot:Background Counts in Dragon Age (PC) (http://pc.gamespy.com/pc/dragon-age/953918p1.html)

It's class warfare of a different kind.
By Miguel Lopez | Feb. 12, 2009

BioWare announced the six "origin" stories you'll be able to select at Dragon Age's outset today. Think of them sort of like character classes, though, to my understanding at least, they'll influence more how NPCs in the world react to you more than your hard stats. Each will also have its own introduction sequence. The press release issued today describes them all:

Dalish Elf: As one of the last "true elves", you were content to spend your life wandering with your clan... until a chance encounter with a relic of your people's past threatens to tear you away from everything you've known.

City Elf: You have always lived under the heavy thumb of your human overlords, but when a local lord claiming his "privilege" with the bride shatters your wedding day, the simmering racial tensions explode in a rain of vengeance.

Dwarf Commoner: Born casteless in a land where rank is everything, bound as the lackey and thug of a local crime lord, you have spent your life invisible... until chance thrusts you into the spotlight, where you can finally prove whether you will be defined by your actions or your birth.

Dwarf Noble: The favored child of the dwarven king, you proudly take up your first military command... only to learn that the deadly intrigues of dwarven politics pose an even greater danger than that faced on the battlefield.

Mage: Gifted with a power considered a dangerous curse by most, you have spent most of your life secluded in the remote tower of the Circle of Magi to be trained and watched closely by the dreaded templars. Now your final test is upon you -- succeed and prove your strength, fail and you will perish.

Human Noble: Born to wealth and power second only to royalty, you find your training in both diplomacy and war put to the test when your father's castle is betrayed from within on the very night your elder brother is to lead the family's forces to war.

Sounds like the origin stories could make for a cool play on fantasy archetypes, no? I guess the process of transforming plain "fantasy" into the "dark, heroic" kind involves transposing some of the more difficult elements of the human experience onto your elves.

keg in kc
02-19-2009, 04:35 AM
And an q&a from last week on gamespot:Dragon Age: Origins Updated Q&A - Dragons, Character Development, and Adventuring Parties (http://www.gamespot.com/pc/rpg/dragonage/news.html?sid=6204627&om_act=convert&om_clk=picks&tag=picks;title;3)

By Staff, GameSpot
Posted Feb 12, 2009 3:42 pm PT

BioWare executive producer Dan Tudge answers some, but not all, questions about dragons, character development, adventuring parties, and side quests.

The upcoming role-playing game Dragon Age: Origins will be an all-new adventure, but a spiritual follow-up to developer BioWare's classic Baldur's Gate fantasy role-playing series. Like in those games, you'll create an individual character, then venture into a dark fantasy world and recruit additional companions to your side while fighting your battles with the real-time-with-pause system used in games like Baldur's Gate and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. However, the new game will offer in-depth "origin" stories for your character and will take place in an all-new fantasy world crafted by BioWare. This time around, executive producer Dan Tudge offers some tantalizing hints on character development, side quests, and dragons.

GameSpot: For a game named "Dragon Age," we sure haven't seen too many dragons...until now. Tell us about the dragons in the game. Who and what are they? What part will they play in the story?

Dan Tudge: There are different kinds of dragons in the game, ranging in size from large to "I can't believe I'm actually fighting something this huge!" One of the cool features in Dragon Age: Origins is large creature combat, so players can expect some pretty epic battles if a dragon is involved. As for their role in the story, dragons were once worshipped as deities, but "the maker" shackled them under the earth to sleep for all time. The darkspawn, who dwell underground, search for these "old gods," and when they find one, they corrupt the dragon with their taint, transforming it into an archdemon that commands the darkspawn to the surface, unleashing a devastating "blight" on the world. It will be up to you, as one of the last remaining Grey Wardens, to stop it.

GS: We recall from our previous jaunts in BioWare games that fighting dragons wasn't exactly a walk in the park--they were extremely powerful foes that ignored the attacks of simple magic spells and required a great deal of preparation, strategy, and even a bit of luck to overcome. How powerful will the dragons of Dragon Age: Origins be, and if they end up at odds with your character, what kind of prep and strategy will players need to take them on?

DT: I won't lie to you: bringing down a dragon is pretty tough, but if you can do it, the payoff is worth it. Combat is party-based, so you can choose to have some very powerful allies in your party, each with their own unique abilities that you can combine to give yourself some tactical advantages. Some strategies that work well are things like buffing your party at the start of combat (especially your warriors) to make them tougher in battle and also keeping your mages at a safe distance. You'll have to experiment to see what kind of strategy works best for you, but one thing I find useful is the "pause and play" system. The ability to freeze the game and examine the situation from different angles can give you some great ideas on how to shift the odds in your favor.

GS: Now that we've been introduced to some of the characters we'll meet in the game, let's talk about the character classes. For instance, if players are interested in picking up a sword, walking right up to their foes, and beating them senseless, what professions will be available, and how will they differ?

DT: You start the game by picking from one of three base classes: fighter, mage, or rogue. If you're into the melee-focused "beat them senseless" style of play, you'll love playing as a fighter. As you progress, you'll be able to further customize your fighter by choosing which talents to develop (and there are a lot to choose from, many unique to each class). Eventually you'll be able to specialize, and each specialization unlocks new sets of skills. It's a very robust system, allowing you to truly develop your hero the way you want.

GS: For players who prefer to be stealthy and operate from the shadows, what career paths will be available? How will they differ?

DT: You can do some pretty amazing things as a rogue. One tactic I like to use is the rogue's ability to go into a stealth mode that makes him/her pretty much invisible to enemies. Once in stealth mode, I can use another rogue talent of setting traps near some unsuspecting enemies. When I exit stealth mode, the enemies see me and come charging...right into the trap and back to the main party for an ambush. But the rogue has some pretty deadly combat moves too. For example, if you can position your rogue right behind an enemy in combat, you can have him backstab for some devastating damage.

GS: For players who prefer to wiggle their fingers and have sparkly magic thingies come off of their fingers, what career options will be available?

DT: It's not quite time to reveal the different paths a mage can take, but trust me when I say that there are some very unique ways to develop your mage. Don't forget that Dragon Age: Origins is a dark, heroic fantasy, and there are some pretty twisted things you can choose to do with the magic you wield. Magic is one of the deadliest and most powerful elements in the world of Dragon Age, and there are reasons why the templars keep a close watch on mages, but more about that later.

GS: One of the hallmarks of BioWare's party-based games is that no matter what sort of character we create to start the game with, we usually meet complementary "follower" characters to build out our party--for instance, in previous games, if we decided to play a weak, robe-wearing wizard, there was usually a big, strong warrior or two for hire to help us out. How is the cast of Dragon Age kitted out to complement the player's choice of origin story?

DT: There are many interesting people you will meet as you travel through Ferelden, and many will join your party. No matter who you choose to join your party, you can be sure that they will each have their own unique personalities and agendas which will influence how they behave towards you, depending on your choices throughout the game. It's totally up to you who you want to have in your party, and different combinations of certain party members can lead to some very interesting banter, dialogue options, side quests, and even romances.

GS: We know that Dragon Age will continue the BioWare tradition of focusing strongly on an immersive story, and we understand Dragon Age will include many emotionally charged moments. How will the game create these moments? We know, for instance, that BioWare has been using cinematic camera cuts since KOTOR, and strongly emphasizing facial animations on the character models (or "digital actors," as BioWare has referred to them) in Mass Effect. Without spoiling things, tell us about some of the elements that will facilitate storytelling.

DT: There are lots of ways we create those emotionally charged moments; in fact, you get one of those moments right out of the gate with your choice of origin story. Each origin story builds to that one unique moment that defines your personal motivation for becoming a Grey Warden, and it's different in each origin story. Throughout the game, you'll also be faced with lots of tough, moral decisions that are not morally clear (I often call them the "20-minute decisions," because that's how long you end up staring at the computer trying to decide what to do). And of course, there are the characters you'll meet and form some pretty deep relationships with. It's easy to get emotionally attached to these characters, and that's one of the best ways Dragon Age immerses you into the story.

GS: We understand that the idea behind the origin stories is to give different players (who choose different characters) completely different experiences. Given that the origin stories will provide a different starting experience, how does the structure of the rest of the game hold up to replays? How different will the full game be the second time around? How much of the story branches off in different ways to provide a newer experience each time?

DT: I couldn't tell you the exact number of times the story branches in the game, but I can tell you that your experience is going to change from replay to replay depending on so many different factors, including your choice of origin story, race, class, gender, dialogue choices, and even party dynamics, to name just a few. One single play-through alone [will be] a long game, and even then you won't have seen everything in the game, so there is a lot of replay [value] in Dragon Age: Origins. The fans are paying good money for this game, so we want to pack as much bang for their buck into this game as possible.

GS: BioWare games also traditionally have plenty of optional content that players aren't required to complete in order to finish the game but that gives completists lots of things to do, such as side quests and assemble-able objects. About how many hours' worth of side content will Dragon Age offer players? Give us a sense of some of the fun side stuff we'll be able to do.

DT: We're not [revealing] total hours of gameplay...yet. However, there is a lot to see and do in Dragon Age: Origins. It would take me forever to talk about all the side content there is, but one of my favorite things are the things that are revealed depending on how you've developed your relationship with certain party members. If you gain a high enough approval with someone, they could tell you something more personal, and elements of their past may appear in the form of side quests, which in turn may even unlock new abilities for that character.

GS: Finally, is there anything else you'd like to add about Dragon Age's dragons, characters, story, or side content?

DT: Fans who want to get an early insight into the world of Dragon Age should keep their eyes out for the prequel novel, Dragon Age: The Stolen Throne, which will be available March 3. It's written by David Gaider, who is also the lead writer of the game, and it gives a great introduction to the lore and history of Dragon Age, as well as some amazing insight into some of the characters you'll eventually meet in the game.

GS: OK. Thanks, Dan.

cookster50
02-19-2009, 07:07 AM
I'm a RPG fan, this sounds good. When does it come out?

keg in kc
02-19-2009, 04:33 PM
November 3rd is the guestimate.

keg in kc
02-19-2009, 05:42 PM
More from Gamespot, I missed this yesterday:http://www.gamespot.com/pc/rpg/dragonage/news.html?sid=6204394&mode=previews&om_act=convert&om_clk=previews&tag=previews;title;6]Dragon Age: Origins Hands-On Impressions - Hands-On With Combat

By Luke Anderson, GameSpot UK
Posted Feb 9, 2009 4:33 pm PT

BioWare gives us a peek into the medieval world of Dragon Age: Origins, and it looks like there will be a rich, new universe to discover.

EA is showcasing a number of games at its winter event, hosted at its UK office in Guildford, Surrey. The lineup includes The Godfather II, Red Alert: Uprising (the new expansion pack to the just-born strategy sequel), and BioWare's latest project, Dragon Age: Origins, which is heading to the PC, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3 in 2009. The PC version, which is the lead version, was shown off by BioWare's CEO, Dr. Ray Muzyka. Though the game is based in an all-new fantasy setting, Muzyka is touting Dragon Age as a "spiritual successor" to the company's classic Baldur's Gate series, and it looks like fans of fantasy are in for yet another treat.

Muzyka describes Dragon Age as a dark, heroic approach to high fantasy with a "mature, gritty" setting. Throughout the game you'll have to make choices with lasting consequences. From what we were told, the game is also full of racial hostilities between the various factions, including humans, elves, and cursed werewolves, and although there will be romantic relationships, there has been no word yet on whether there will be intimate interracial relationships (such as the now-infamous alien liaisons of Mass Effect).

The mission we looked at, Tower of Ishal Dungeon, takes places early on in the game, after the "origins" section of the game. In addition to potentially branching storylines and multiple endings, Muzyka explained that there will be six distinct origin stories at the beginning of the game, depending on the character you pick. The Tower of Ishal Dungeon mission takes place in the tower of the same name and had us leading a four-character party through several levels of the tower, battling through hordes of orcs before squaring off against a huge and unsavoury ogre--the level's end boss.

Our party consisted of four characters: the circle mage, a female level 5 mage; the tower guard, a male level 6 warrior; Alistair, a male level 5 warrior; and Winter, a female level 5 warrior (who was also the game's origin-related protagonist, of elf descent). We didn't get a chance to thoroughly test all of their strengths and abilities, but each seemed to be equipped with specific unique powers. We were told you can augment non-playable character AI in the game, although this wasn't elaborated on. You'll also be able to customise some of your party members' options, and depending on your preference of play, you can have quite granular control over specific party member settings or sit back and let the AI kick in and command your unselected companions. If you poorly manage your party and subject them to a gruesome death, fear not: Party members slain in battle can be resurrected once your immediate threat has passed; however, they'll suffer a hit to their health and won't be as much help to you as those still in fighting condition.

We were told by a member of BioWare's development team that the familiar "pause and play" mechanic, which appeared in Baldur's Gate and Neverwinter Nights, will give you the choice of playing Dragon Age in real time or queuing up tactical orders for your party members while the game is paused. The camera can also be viewed either behind your character in a cinematic behind-the-shoulder style or high up above your whole party, giving a more strategic overview.

The heads-up display in Dragon Age should be familiar to anyone who has played a role-playing game. There's a map in the top-right corner, party member stats in the top-left corner, and a customisable action bar along the bottom, which you can assign special attacks to. Menus and settings can be accessed at the top middle of the screen. A ring around each character's avatar will show you their HP and stamina/mana levels (for warriors and mages, respectively) as you engage in battle.

As it turns out, our American counterparts also had an opportunity to try out a different battle in the game, with a slightly different party consisting of Alistair, Winter, Morrigan (the shape-changing sorceress), and an elf scout with a mean backstab attack that kicks in any time he can get behind an enemy. They fared decently in a forest battle, taking on a handful of ferocious monsters by engaging them from the front with fighters, while circling to the rear with the rogue for backstabs and constantly pausing the game to use Morrigan's spectacular sorceries, such as cone-shaped frost spells, debuff spells that weaken foes in combat, and healing spells that kept the party in the fight. Baldur's Gate-style careful combat management seems to work quite well in Dragon Age, but as our American colleagues quickly discovered, combat isn't a cakewalk, especially when you have to fight trees that walk. While the standard humanoid foes were easy to polish off, the weakened party eventually fell to the assault of a small group of sneaky moving tree monsters, which were initially disguised as, of all things, a group of trees--though they immediately uprooted themselves as the party approached and pummelled them into oblivion.

The graphics are shaping up well, with impressive cinematic cutscenes filled with interesting characters and polished voice acting helping to set the scene for an epic adventure. The game engine seems pretty robust too, even through the environment we played, which was a mostly dark, atmospheric dungeon with the occasional lit torch. The characters were quite detailed and had some detailed animations when performing special attacks or magic. We cast a few special attacks during play, including the warrior's formidable shield bash move, which is a charging attack that takes a sizable chunk off an enemy's health. In addition to the cinematic visuals, Dragon Age's enchanting, classical score helps to further immerse you in the timeless action and heightens the medieval warfare.

Dragon Age: Origins should appeal to anyone who's a fan of Baldur's Gate, BioWare's previous games, or the fantasy role-playing genre as a whole, and it will be shipping for the PC, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3 in 2009. For more on Dragon Age, check out our previous coverage and check back later as we uncover more of the game, and the Dragon Age universe, over the coming months.

keg in kc
02-19-2009, 05:44 PM
More new video:

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keg in kc
02-19-2009, 05:52 PM
From the above video: I can't tell you exactly how much there is to play in the game...I can confidently say this is the most content we've had in any of our games since, probably, Baldur's Gate 2. And that was a pretty darn big game. There's a lot to be played here, a lot to be experienced."I like the sound of that.

Pants
02-20-2009, 10:49 AM
From the above video: I like the sound of that.

BGII was some seriously fucked up long ass shit. I don't think there has ever been a longer SP game.

Dicky McElephant
02-20-2009, 04:38 PM
I wish they'd make another Champions of Norrath.

Basileus777
02-20-2009, 04:42 PM
Don't go into this game expecting another Baldur's Gate, you'll just be disappointed. They'll never be another RPG with as much content as BG2, it simply isn't feasible anymore.

And do those infernal videos all automatically play for anyone else? It's fucking annoying.

keg in kc
02-20-2009, 05:36 PM
And do those infernal videos all automatically play for anyone else? It's ****ing annoying.They didn't when I originally posted them, I'm not sure why they do now. :shrug:

Taco John
02-20-2009, 06:04 PM
As I recall, BioWare did Knights of the Old Republic.

That's enough for me. I'm in.

keg in kc
05-13-2009, 06:14 PM
Some new reads:

Dragon Age: A Strangely Familiar RPG (http://pc.gamespy.com/pc/dragon-age/981704p1.html)

By Anthony Gallegos | May 11, 2009
Dragon Age mixes old and new to great effect.

Just because something is similar to something that precedes it doesn't mean it can't be good on its own merits. Dragon Age: Origins is case in point. While it takes cues from several games -- both BioWare-developed and not -- it uses them together in such a way that the game feels both new and familiar.

Dragon Age will WoW You

Dragon Age bears a lot of resemblance to World of Warcraft as far as the interface is concerned. Spell abilities are linked to a series of buttons that correspond to the numbers on top of your keyboard, with little images that immediately take me back to Azeroth. But that isn't unintentional, either. The team at BioWare designed the bar this way because they know it works great, and they don't feel the need to reinvent something just to be different, especially when it's already familiar to so many gamers and has proved itself over time. In practice the bar worked great, and I could easily hover my mouse over the abilities to see what they would do.

Enter through Baldur's Gate

While encounters can be played in real time, you'll have to be a robot in order to do so in the boss fights. With a few enemies on-screen, along with your four playable characters, it's easier to just pause the action and queue up commands. This should feel familiar to anyone who's played the old Baldur's Gate PC games, which also allowed you to pause and issue orders to your team. It doesn't break up the action like you'd think, either, and made combat more satisfying for me. There's just something awesome about setting up a series of orders amongst an entire team and then watching it play out like a brief moment in a fantasy action movie. Besides, if nothing else, it makes for an awesome way to capture some really good screenshots.


Choose Wisely

Not that it should surprise you, but Dragon Age takes the dialogue trees we've loved since Knights of the Old Republic and throws them in as well (at this point they are kind of a BioWare standby). Players can choose to be a jerk or take a more diplomatic route with their conversations. And, as in other BioWare games, such choices will have far-reaching consequences (read Miguel's preview for an example). In the battle I fought, for instance, I could just mock my opponent and get to fighting, or I could speak less aggressively and hear more of the story. While my conversation might not ultimately affect the ending of the game, it was a good example of how dialogue choices will change individual player experiences.

Macro Management

While I've played other games such as Dungeon Siege that allowed you to somewhat tailor the AI's abilities to your liking, I've never seen a system as complex as Dragon Age's. Since the player only controls one party member at a time, they are relying on the AI to do their best for the other party members when they aren't in direct control. To assist them the player can either choose from a host of pre-made preferences they want the character to follow -- such as putting an emphasis on healing, or always going after the strongest monster on the screen -- or they can create a custom set of preferences themselves. During my playtime the AI did splendidly, attacking enemies mostly in the way I would have done myself, and healing when appropriate. I'd love to have enough time to customize the macros myself, but the pre-built ones are definitely more than serviceable.

Dragon Age is looking attractive to those who loved the action from Baldur's Gate and Dungeon Siege. Throw in the signature BioWare storytelling and this could be a true spiritual successor to the Baldur's Gate games. Now if I could only see what the console versions are like...

keg in kc
05-13-2009, 06:15 PM
Dragon Age: Origins Updated Combat Impressions (http://www.gamespot.com/pc/rpg/dragonage/news.html?sid=6209374&tag=topslot;thumb;3)

By Randolph Ramsay, GameSpot AU
Posted May 11, 2009 5:34 pm PT

We battle with a pride demon in our latest hands-on with BioWare's upcoming role-playing game.

At EA's recent showcase in London, role-playing game veterans BioWare trotted out the latest build of its much-anticipated Dragon Age: Origins, giving journalists even more hands-on time with the combat mechanics of the game. Although we've previously played around with some early-level battles, BioWare ramped things up this session by showing something from the midpoint of the game. Specifically, we engaged in a magic-heavy fight between some powerful abominations and some seriously kitted-out level 12 characters.

But before we dived in, BioWare lead gameplay designer Mike Laidlaw set the scene for the action in which we were about to partake. The battle takes place roughly halfway through the game, although Laidlaw said that it could come earlier or later depending on the order in which you tackle the game's missions. In this mission, you're charged with taking on the evil mage Uldred, who has taken over the Circle Tower (a sort of mage training academy/stronghold). In Dragon Age's high-fantasy world, mages aren't usually evil types. In fact, they're long-time allies of the Grey Wardens, a special force dedicated to taking on the Blight, a corrupting and dangerous force that is threatening to take over the world of Ferelden with darkspawn. Uldred, seeking to take advantage of the spreading chaos, apparently tried to control a demon to do his bidding, but as is the way with these pesky netherworld inhabitants, his plan backfired and the demon ended up possessing him. Having been turned into a creature known as an abomination, Uldred set about capturing and torturing his fellow mages before turning them into abominations as well.

This battle will take place in a large, open hall in the Circle Tower, and after a brief section of dialogue in which the clearly mad Uldred tried to justify his actions, Laidlaw and a fellow BioWare rep proceeded to demo the battle for us. On the side of the Grey Wardens were four Level 12 characters: three mages and a warrior named Alistair who, according to Laidlaw, was kitted out to act as a typical tank-type class. Once the battle started, Uldred immediately transformed into a large pride demon, a towering monstrosity that had a roughly humanoid shape but with a dragonlike head. As you would expect, this creature packed a mean melee punch, and it was aided by several of Uldred's mage-turned-abomination buddies, who acted as vicious foot soldiers. The action onscreen as guided by the BioWare rep looked quite frenetic, with plenty of spells being thrown around, as well as some fast switching between characters to best take advantage of the situation. After a few minutes, the BioWare rep managed to unleash an ultrapowerful spell--called Storm of the Century--that filled the entire battle arena with a powerful-looking whirlwind that dealt serious damage to the pride demon, eventually putting him down and leaving the Grey Wardens triumphant.

We eventually got to lay our hands on a keyboard and mouse ourselves, and we spent a minute familiarizing ourselves with the game's control scheme before starting the battle with Uldred. You'll get to control a party of four in Dragon Age, with the characters' portraits arranged on the side of the screen. To switch characters, all you need to do is click on the appropriate portrait. Of course, your party members will attack and defend on their own without your direct control, but as with previous BioWare RPGs such as Baldur's Gate, you can pause the action at any time by pressing the space bar. While the game is paused, you can line up commands for each character. Each character's abilities are arrayed as hot slots along the bottom of the screen, although considering that we were new to controlling midlevel characters, plenty of the abilities that we could choose from were mysteries in terms of their effects and how to best use them in battle. And speaking of Baldur's Gate, fans of that revered series will be happy to know that though Dragon Age: Origins can be played from an over-the-shoulder third-person view, players will be able to move the camera above the action, mimicking quite precisely the isometric look of Baldur's Gate (right down to the green circles around your individual party members' feet).

Our time with the game proved to be short-lived and not at all successful; Uldred and his minions made mincemeat out of our team. What we can say from our brief hands-on is that Dragon Age: Origins is definitely heading in the right direction, with the controls feeling quite intuitive, particularly for those who have played BioWare's previous games. Switching the camera angle to the isometric view gave us a strong feeling of nostalgia, and we're sure that many fans of Baldur's Gate will use this as their default view.

After our demo, we spoke with Laidlaw, who said that the game is almost complete, with the team now at the final "bug squashing" stage. Laidlaw said that most of the focus is now on the console versions, particularly on transforming the PC interface into something more controller-friendly for the console versions of the game. Dragon Age: Origins is slated to ship for the PC, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 in late 2009.

keg in kc
05-13-2009, 06:21 PM
rawr

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keg in kc
06-03-2009, 01:41 PM
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Holy shit, that was awesome. We're a long way from Baldur's Gate.

keg in kc
06-03-2009, 02:02 PM
A preview review:E3 2009: Dragon Age: Origins (http://thunderboltgames.com/features/article/e3-2009-dragon-age-origins-feature-for-ps3-xbox-360-pc.html)

PS3, Xbox 360, PC preview by Matt Wadleigh, published on Tuesday 2nd June 2009

When compared to the two other games Bioware is currently at work on, Dragon Age: Origins could get easily overlooked. The storied RPG developers are currently at work on a sequel to 2007’s epic Mass Effect while simultaneously working on one of the largest and most anticipated MMOs currently in development, Star Wars: The Old Repbulic. But their new IP, Dragon Age: Origins, looks poised to become a blockbuster franchise of its own.

In Dragon Age: Origins, players assume the role of a hero of their own design in the Gray Warden, an ancient organization that is periodically tasked with saving the world and all of its inhabitants from a demon and his army of dark spawn. A once-powerful organization, the number of wardens has dwindled as the game begins to just a few remaining protectors. Seeing an opportunity, the arch demon returns with his army of spawn to capitalize on the weakness of the order and to destroy the world.

“You have to defend everything you know and love or else the world will fall,” explained Mike Laidlaw of EA as he began a behind-closed-doors glimpse of the game in action.

That’s a lot of responsibility to be thrown at you after having just sat down.

Laidlaw demonstrated two aspects of the game in our session: the relationships between characters and the slaying of the dragon. Cable news networks are sure to be outraged once they see the intimate physical scenes between the player and their NPC love interests, but Laidlaw assured that “there’s no free love in the game.” Players will have to work for several hours to develop a relationship with an NPC.

As you court the apple of your eye, one of the ways you can gain their affection is by giving them gifts. But unlike in a game like Fable 2 where giving gifts to your mate had little value other than to get them into the sack, there’s practical value in being generous in Dragon Age: Origins. In addition to gaining their affection, if you give the sorcerers in your party a book of spells, she can then gain the abilities that the book contains.

There’s also a dramatic element to the game. After our hero courted and successfully bedded the sorceress, he returned to the rest of his group to find another lover scorned. Our character then had to navigate a minefield, carefully choosing his words and finally having to choose which woman would be his. How you interact with characters also has benefits and consequences: your party’s moral will be affected by how they view you as a leader over the course of the game, though this wasn’t demonstrated during my look at the game. The entire conversation was expertly narrated, which is unsurprising considering how excellent Bioware’s previous voice work has been. This demonstration hopefully offers a glimpse at what promises to be a character interaction system that offers a lot of depth and range.

Following this glimpse of character interaction, we were shown combat against a dragon. It was the first time the team showed a battle pitting the hero against a dragon and it lived up to my expectations. With a user display that’s vaguely reminiscent of World of Warcraft, the combat was fast-paced and frantic. With the click of a button, the player can assume control of any character in their party, allowing you to use each party member to their fullest extent as you battle.

As spells flew and the dragon expelled fire in every direction, I was very pleased to see the frame rate hold up at a consistent rate. The graphics were incredibly rich, with excellent texturing. Individual scales of the dragon could be seen as our hero navigated the chaotic battlefield until he finally was able to mount the back of the beast and slide his sword into the dragon’s neck. The dragon’s death was highlighted with a massive splatter of blood covering everything in sight. A diverse color pallet should allow for very different environments as you plug your way through the game.

From my brief impressions from the demo and after playing a bit of the game, it’s definitely a darker game than most of what Bioware has done in the past. “This is not your father’s fantasy,” said Leo Soskin as he demonstrated aspects of the character creation. “This is dark, gritty, and real.” The team is promising 80 hours of gameplay if you skip the main quest, easily increasing to 100 hours if players complete a plethora of promised side quests. Each character class offers their own origin stories, and since your in-game choices affect the outcome of most scenarios, each play-through should be different from the last.

Dragon Age: Origins promises to be a rich, deep game. My time with it was brief here at the show, but given Bioware’s strong track record of delivering excellent RPGs, I think it’s safe to say that this is going to be a huge hit. Everything seems in place, from an excellent combat system that should appeal to those of all play types to a detailed character relationship system that will hopefully really help move forward a compelling storyline. It’s still a few months away from release, but Dragon Age Origins could very well be one of the most promising games of the show.

KcFanInGA
06-04-2009, 02:52 PM
PC only.

Wrong. Ps3 and 360 will release alongside the pc version. Which is good cause my pc probably wouldn't run it.

keg in kc
06-04-2009, 03:01 PM
Wrong. Ps3 and 360 will release alongside the pc version. Which is good cause my pc probably wouldn't run it.Yeah.

That statement was not wrong when it was posted, however. The game was delayed to add the console ports.

keg in kc
06-04-2009, 10:27 PM
Some articles, in no particular order:E3 2009: Dragon Age: Origins - Sex and the Single Gray Warden (http://pc.ign.com/articles/991/991205p1.html)

BioWare shows off the consequences of sleeping around.
by Jason Ocampo


June 3, 2009 - Dragon Age: Origins remains a game that we really want to play, though the current marketing of the game strikes us as a bit weird, if not awkward. The E3 trailer goes for a rock cinematic feel, blending Nine Inch Nails with cuts of giant battles and a little sexy fun time going on between two of the characters. BioWare really wants people to know that Dragon Age is a very mature and morally complex dark fantasy game, but the trailer makes it come off like a teenager's idea of fantasy.

With that said, we got an updated demo that highlights what BioWare is striving for with Dragon Age. The goal is to create the most morally complex RPG in recent memory, where every decision you make can result in significant repercussions, affecting everything from how a character views (to the point where you may have a teammate try to kill you) to the outcome of the game itself.

The gist of the demo is that you can play with romantic fire. At the player's camp in the game you can have two female romantic interests. There's Leliana, a nice and wholesome redhead of a character with a sultry French accent. And on the outskirts of the camp there's Morrigan, the hot sorceress bad girl. It was explained that in this game, the player had pursued the romance with Leliana, but had experienced some flirting with Morrigan. However, pursuing a romance with the latter was impossible because the individual relationship with that character wasn't strong enough. Each character weighs pretty much everything you do, and you earn positive or negative marks for your actions.

That changes when you finally give Morrigan a book that belonged to her mother; suddenly, she's open to a little hanky panky. Pursuing Morrigan results in a racy cutscene showing the characters getting it on, and then you're kicked back to camp to faith the jealous wrath of Leliana. That creates a decisive moment in the game where you'll basically have to choose which girl you want to stay with. Keep in mind, we were told that getting Morrigan to a point to even consider hanky panky took about 30 hours of investment, so you might want to take some time on this decision.

Then the demo switched to how you retrieved that magic book that belonged to her mother. That's because you took it from her. Morrigan's mother is Flemeth the Witch of the Wild, and apparently mother and daughter don't like each other too much. In fact, Morrigan sends you to kill her. This creates another decision moment, as you can side with Flemeth, Morrigan, or elect to just stay out of this feud altogether.

If you battle Flemeth, she turns into an enormous, fire-breathing dragon. Yeah, good luck with that. It does make for an amazing battle, though. The days of having characters just run up and swing abstractly at one another are over. There are moments when the dragon grabs a character in her jaws, shakes them, and tosses them to the ground. Killing her requires one of your characters to leap atop her head and ride her like a bucking bronco until you can plant your sword in her skull.

BioWare also showed off the Xbox 360 verison of the game for the first time (all the demos to this point have been running on the PC). Obviously, the interface has been tweaked to work with the Xbox 360 controller, but the big news here are the visuals. If you want the best looking version, stick with the PC, as the Xbox 360 version just lacked the razor crisp high-res textures and the sophisticated lighting of the PC game. We're not sure what the PS3 version looks like, as it's still unseen at this point.

Dragon Age ships for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC on October 20

keg in kc
06-04-2009, 10:28 PM
.[url=http://e3.gamespot.com/story/6211024/dragon-age-origins-e3-updated-hands-on]Dragon Age: Origins E3 Updated Hands-On

* News by Laura Parker, GameSpot
* Jun 2, 2009 6:33 pm PT

In this special E3 demo, we get some hands-on time with the console version of Dragon Age: Origins, and we check out its sexier side.

EA has been more than generous with the upcoming BioWare role-playing game Dragon Age: Origins. Since the game was announced late last year, we've been privy to numerous hands-on sessions, covering the game's combat, character development, adventure parties, and even a siege. So it was no surprise that EA has managed to pull a new rabbit out of the hat at this year's E3. In a behind-closed-doors session at EA's booth, Dragon Age: Origins lead designer Mike Laidlaw demoed previously unseen gameplay footage and a short hands-on session on the Xbox 360 that, far from the blood and gore that we've seen before, showed off the game's more romantic side and gave us a chance to test the game's console control scheme for the first time.

As we've learned before, Dragon Age: Origins is a fantasy-themed RPG that sees you take on the role of a Grey Warden to lead the fight on the humans' side against an invading horde of creatures called the Blight. The demo that we were shown was designed to let us in on a couple of secrets: firstly, it's not all about bloodshed; secondly, there are dragons in the game, and you do get to fight them (and ride them for a little bit). We started out at our Grey Warden's party camp, where we were introduced to Leliana, a red-haired, soft-hearted citizen of a lower class who is madly in love with us. It seems that each character that you are allowed to interact with has his or her own personality, which you must work with to build a particular kind of relationship. To tease her, we go over to Morrigan's tent, a young sorceress who likes to flirt. After giving her a gift and acquiring points for your leadership and magic skills, she invites you into her tent. Here you have the option to go in or return to Leliana, who is no doubt watching you with bated breath. This is just one of the many moral decisions that you'll have to make along the way; although these moral decisions are not marked in any way, they become obvious in the dialogue that you have with different characters in the game. If you happen upon a group of thieves, your party will leave the decision of their fate in your hands.

In this case, our Grey Warden decided that he wanted to see what's inside Morrigan's tent. Inside, a cutscene reveals us embracing a near-naked Morrigan, who is moaning and panting. As the two kissed, the game demo cut off, and we were told that we'd have to wait to see the full build to know what happens next (but we can guess). We're told that this scene occurs hours into the game, at a point in which our Grey Warden has put a lot of time and effort into building these relationships with those around him. No doubt it's harder than it looks, but we couldn't help but notice how easy it was to convince Morrigan to sleep with us. After this scene, our Grey Warden heads back out to the campsite, where Leliana has seen everything and demands an explanation. Again, you must make a moral choice: soothe Leliana and agree to be her man, or ditch her and go back to the fiery Morrigan. We chose Leliana, and score game points for relationships and love.

We were then shown a part of the game earlier in time than the first sequence, in which our Grey Warden encountered and fought a dragon. The battle took place in a field of grass where members of our traveling party joined us against the dragon. The dragon, as can be expected, breathed fire and was hard to take down, even with five people using swords, arrows, and magic against it. Given that you can switch to and between up to four members of your party at any one time, our Grey Warden used this opportunity to switch to a sorceress, who is able to shape-shift. Once playing as the sorceress, we turned into a giant spider that was small enough to get beneath the dragon and bite its legs. As this was happening, we switched to our Grey Warden again, who was able to use the sorceress's distraction to jump on the dragon's back and drive a sword through its eye, finally killing it.

After the demo, we had some hands-on time with an early stage of the game on the Xbox 360. This was the first time we've seen this game on a console, so we paid close attention to the control scheme. Our objective in this short session was to find a particular item with another member of our party. We walked through a forest, encountering and collecting items, before coming across a wolf and a cave containing giant spiders in a fight. You can assign six different weapons to your control scheme, pressing the X, Y and B buttons to access them, and A to use them. But the combat here proved very slow. Pressing A near an enemy seemed to do nothing. It was only when we were under heavy attack and standing almost under an enemy that our weapons finally worked. Holding down the left trigger let us switch between weapons, whereas the right trigger brought up the weapons menu, which shows you what weapons you have at your disposal. There is also a stealth mode that you can access if your skill set allows for it by pressing the X button. A is also for using items, and collecting and storing them in your inventory.

Dragon Age: Origins is shaping up to be an impressive and dynamic RPG with loads of combat and character development. We also received confirmation of its release date. It will be out October 20 on the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and PC simultaneously.

keg in kc
06-04-2009, 10:30 PM
..Hands-on: Dragon Age: Origins (http://www.joystiq.com/2009/06/04/hands-on-dragon-age-origins/#continued)

by Ludwig Kietzmann { Jun 4th 2009 at 3:30AM } Featured Story Xbox PlayStation

Despite being set in ye olde fantasy lands of impossibly large swords and questionable female attire, there's something anachronistic about Dragon Age: Origins. An uncomfortable, zealously juvenile spirit seems to permeate the dragon-slaying proceedings, a feeling that seems to linger even after the game's obnoxious marketing has left the room. Paring BioWare's scenes of war and blood and guts with a Marilyn Manson tune is such a strained ploy, it's almost embarrassing.

The thing is, not all of Dragon Age's awkwardness comes from the suits on the upper floor -- sometimes they come from the clothes discarded in front of a romantic campfire. BioWare is really playing up your character's playboy tendencies, chatting up members of his party, plying them with gifts (that have immediate stats and ability benefits) and weighing up his futures with the adorable redhead or the hard-edged sorceress. It's wrapped up in BioWare's traditional dialogue menus (a strange regression from Mass Effect), but approached -- at least in EA's E3 walkthrough -- with the verve of Grey's Anatomy. And you thought leathery-skinned fire breathers were the only things those two had in common.

It all feels a bit crass, as does the game's Conan-ical depiction of combat (see: giant swords swung by even bigger biceps). The forceful, blood-splattered fights are cool, sure, but seem indicative of the game's overall lack of elegance and subtlety -- you know, stuff that you'd expect to see in a BioWare game. And as exciting as the visuals are, they fail to recreate any intensity in the actual battle system, which is a relatively traditional and unremarkable affair if you've played the likes of KOTOR and Baldur's Gate before.

But ... that's okay. It's functional for an RPG, and opens up several interesting tactics to you and your party members (who can be controlled at any point if you think the AI is letting you down). Controlling a shapeshifter seems particularly fun, allowing you to ditch the swords and sorcery for a moment and transform into, oh, a giant spider. Special attacks are easily accessible and switching between weapon and equipment sets is a snap. The controls seem to translate quite well to the console platforms too (we played the Xbox 360 version), with the constant clicking giving way to constant pushing of the A button and, in our case, the right bumper. Healing potions, you see.

Visually, the Xbox 360 version looks rougher around the edges, but manages to preserve the game's moody, age-battered dungeons and energetic battle animations. The facial movements seem to be on par with those found in Mass Effect, even if the voice acting heard during the demo seemed a little uneven.

Uneven seems like the right way to describe Dragon Age: Origins at this stage. There are no major stumbling blocks and there's no reason to think that BioWare won't deliver an intriguing plot to make it all worth it, but it feels bizarre to have such a lukewarm response to one of the studio's games. It seems like a solid, if somewhat adolescent, fantasy RPG, but it feels insufficient in the face of BioWare's previous accomplishments.Didn't seem to work for ludwig.

keg in kc
06-04-2009, 10:31 PM
...E3 2009: Dragon Age: Origins (http://360.kombo.com/article.php?artid=16542)
June 3, 2009 | 6:12 PM PST

by: Kyle Wattenmaker

Outside the door to EA's backroom booth for Dragon Age: Origins sits a resin statue of the arch villain of the game. The dragon is massive, easily dwarfing mere men. Inside the private booth, EA and Bioware presented a game that was even more impressive.

They immediately showed the trailer from the EA press conference the night before; if you haven't seen it, check it out. The blood soaked and Marilyn Manson scored video is one of the best from the whole show.

Afterward, the presenter talked a bit about the criticism that has been laid on Dragon Age thus far. He discussed that it was a fair assumption that the game was all combat and gory ultra-violence. He said that we were about to see a live demo that showed off the potential of the character interactions within the game.

The demo started in an encampment where the party was resting. Our presenter said that this was deep within the game and the characters already had deep and meaningful relationships. One lady has even already fallen in love with the main character. Playing off of this relationship, the player gave a gift to another woman in the party and had sex with her. Post coitus the player returned to the other woman and she presented him with the ultimatum of choosing between the two women.

The presenter told us that relationships between characters have a profound impact on gameplay, which is rather impressive. It can lead to a more or less effective party member in combat, and if a character is dissatisfied enough with your leadership they will leave the party entirely. In extreme cases, disgruntled party members will make an attempt on your life.

We skipped to a combat scene and witnessed a boss fight with a shape-shifting woman who morphs into an imposingly large red dragon. Combat looked extremely similar to other Bioware games with the exception of two things. Your spell casters also have the ability to shape shift, and one morphed into a giant spider and used poison-based abilities to help bring down the dragon. The battle concluded with the main character leaping onto the dragon's neck and finishing the fight by carving a swath of blood from the dragon's head and down its neck.

Our presenter concluded the eye-on demo by saying he had illustrated the game's three core themes of lust, violence, and betrayal. You can get your hands on Bioware's next epic October 20th on 360, PS3 and PC. I also went hands-on with Dragon Age, and you can look for that article later today. Why couldn't I have a last name like Wattenmaker

keg in kc
06-04-2009, 10:33 PM
....E3 Hands-On: There Will Be Dragons In Dragon Age: Origins (http://gamerlimit.com/2009/06/e3-impressions-there-will-be-dragons-in-dragon-age-origins/)

Article by: Christopher Matulich
June 3rd, 2009

Day two here at E3 has revealed some further information on the most anticipated games of 2009, as Valve opened up the day with a “behind closed doors” playable demo of Left 4 Dead 2. Not to be outdone, EA and Bioware continued to show off their new IP and latest venture into the fantasy realm, Dragon Age: Origins. Oh, and there will be dragons in the game, in case you weren’t aware. Hit the jump for outstanding gameplay footage.

As lead designer Mike Laidlaw ushered Gamer Limit into a dark and scary hole in a far off corner of the show floor, we were greeted by a very impressive trailer that showcased the sheer gruesomeness and violence that DA:O will offer. Massive armies preparing for full-scale war stretched across vast landscapes and as they converged, blood began splattering combatants in a way that can simply be described as realistic. This blood did not just disappear after the fighting ended; the character sported blood from his enemies across his face and body, keeping true to the mature themes of the game that Bioware has advertised from the its announcement back in 2004.

As the video played, Blaylock relayed some fresh details about the game, specifically pertaining more to how the plot will unfold. The overall arching story revolves around ancient defenders of the known world, the Grey Wardens, and their struggle to control the inevitable and impending return of The Blight, an event that corrupts one of the Old Gods (dragons) into an Archdemon and brings ruin to the world above. The blight, not to be confused with “The Blight,” is the disease spread by the darkspawn that corrupts all living organisms and changes them into deformed versions of the original selves. The Grey Wardens take it upon themselves to prevent the The Blight from occurring, and have prote

When the trailer ended, Blaylock began a demo of a playable build from the PC that instantly impressed the room. A familiar MMO HUD graced the screen, complete with minimap in the top right corner, hotkeys stretched across the bottom, and menu options centered at the top of the screen. Blaylock dove right into some character development among party members the player will meet across his or her adventure, specifically the romance options a male character will encounter.

By conversing with party members, the characters will build a certain level of trust with the player and can become inspired by him or her, increasing the combat values of said character as player inspiration reaches new heights. The PC demo displayed a romance with the shapeshifting sorceress Morrigan (after numerous flirtation attempts) after appealing to her magical side and giving her a magical artifact as a gift. After finding out that Morrigan’s tent is just a wee bit on the cold side and she could use some company to “keep her warm,” a Mass Effect style sex scene began, accompanied by some classy piano music, which was abruptly ended by Blaylock, stating that some things are “best left as a teaser.”

What I found most interesting, though, was how certain characters acted after your horizontal shuffle with Morrigan. One of the other love interests, Leliana, was found to be completely crushed by your sexcapades down in the cold tent, presumably because Blaylock had fleshed out a romance with both female characters. She gives the player an ultimatum: her or me, in which Blaylock left up to his audience. Realizing that a shapeshifting sorceress held infinite possibilities in the sack, I was first to blurt out to stay with Morrigan. However, in choosing Morrigan, Leliana will lose trust in the player, and if her or any characters disapproval level drops to a certain level, they may leave the player’s party or to the most extreme level, attempt to stop your path by taking up arms against you.

Blaylock continued the demo and showed some plot points that revolve around Morrigan and her mother, Flemeth, the ancient witch of the woods. She has artificially lengthened her life and has been living for centuries. Morrigan has asked the player to confront her mother and finally put an end to her long, drawn out life. Yet, Flemeth has a trick or two up her sleeve, as she turns into one of the most impressive looking dragons I’ve ever seen in a video game. Word do no justice to this battle, take a look at the video from the E3 show floor.

After Blaylock finished showcasing the PC demo, I had a chance to get my hands on a playable demo for the Xbox 360. If you’re familiar with the Diablo clone Sacred II: Fallen Angel, you’ll find a very familiar interface. Abilities are set to the X, Y, and B buttons, while the general action button is mapped to A. You can have up to six abilities mapped, changing sets on the fly with the use of the right trigger.

As I progressed through the dungeon that the demo showcased, I found that combat isn’t exactly as smooth as it seems on the PC version. As you close in on the enemy, you’ll find yourself repeatedly tapping the A button to continue your attack, which didn’t seem very efficient and wasn’t exactly the funnest part of the demo. Yet, I did find myself satisfied enough with the combat, as blood splattered across my face and chest, and appeared “as is” throughout the ensuing cutscene. My demo experience quickly came to an end, but I left the corner room thoroughly impressed.

Look for a simultaneous release of Dragon Age: Origins this October 20th

keg in kc
06-04-2009, 10:35 PM
.....E3 2009: Dragon Age: Origins impressions (http://www.gamingnexus.com/FullNews/E3-2009-Dragon-Age-Origins-impressions/Item12808.aspx)

Posted by: John at 6/4/2009

BioWare doesn’t disappoint when it comes to RPG and Dragon Age: Origins looks to be like another big hit for the RPG studio. EA was showing the game behind closed doors and I got to see how it’s coming along.

You play a member of the Grey Wardens, a group of guardians. The main antagonist is the Arch Demon Dragon and it’s your job to take out the evil forces. The game features a pretty free floating camera with the demo being mostly done over the character’s shoulder.

The demo’s first part showed how choices can affect the game. The main character had two love interests at this point of the game. The sequence showed the main character sleeping with one of the women and then showed how that action caused the other woman to confront you. You can then make a choice on how you want to proceed in dealing with your love triangle. The choices you make will affect more than a small part of the game and this should give you more replayability for the game to try different actions.

It was pretty cool to watch the group battle a dragon though in the demo. One of the attacks the dragon does is snatch a party member in her jaws and shake the warrior around before eventually throwing him down. The action was fast and violent as it seemed the player switch between the characters in the party to take down the dragon. Yes, there’s plenty of blood during battles just like in the trailer.

The demo was brief but showed off how the dialogue worked, which let you make choices at the bottom of the screen. It also showed the ripple effect your actions can have on the game. Finally, the battle was fast with many effects from both the dragon breathing fire and the spells being cast by the party members.

While the demo didn’t go into the features of the game that deeply, I’m still excited by what I saw partly because I’m a fan of BioWare’s RPGs and partly because it feels like Neverwinter Nights which I love. I’m looking forward to get up and close with the game to see how well it plays as it’s being released on October 20th of this year.

KcFanInGA
06-08-2009, 11:08 PM
I NEED this game. Already got it pre-ordered.

keg in kc
08-22-2009, 07:38 AM
November can't come soon enough.


Dragon Age: Origins Updated Hands-On - The Dwarf Commoner's Humble Beginnings (http://www.gamespot.com/pc/rpg/dragonage/news.html?sid=6215995&tag=topslot%3Bthumb%3B2&mode=previews&page=1)

By Andrew Park, GameSpot
Posted Aug 21, 2009 7:07 pm PT

We start a new story with the commoner background for dwarf characters in this upcoming role-playing epic from BioWare.

We've already covered much of the basics of starting a new game in BioWare's upcoming role-playing game Dragon Age: Origins...because we've played through them. If you haven't already, take a look at our previous story covering the origins of the human mage, which also covers the basics of character creation and interface elements--we won't be repeating those here. Instead, we'll jump into the origin story for dwarves who begin their careers as lowly commoners in the streets of Orzammar, the subterranean metropolis. As a dwarf commoner, you can choose to play either as a rogue or as a warrior--there's virtually no difference whatsoever in the experience or gameplay, except that each class has its own skills, and that certain fights seem tougher if you play a rogue who didn't specialize in combat skills. On that note, please be advised that this story contains minor spoilers.

Even though the tall, stony architecture of Orzammar looks impressive in some places, the life of a dwarf commoner isn't pretty. According to the introductory cinematic sequence for this origin, the dwarves have a rigid caste system that forbids dwarves of lower classes to mingle with highfalutin nobles--and your character is at the very bottom of the barrel, a "casteless" character marked with a brand on his or her face that tells the world that you're the most common of commoners.

You begin your adventure being harangued by the local dwarf slumlord Beraht, who has recruited you to do his dirty work while he "encourages" your kindhearted sister Rica to catch the eye of a dwarf noble. Beraht's potentially not-family-friendly scheme is to marry her off into a noble family to give birth to an heir, elevating her, you, and "Uncle" Beraht to noble status. (Interestingly, while mages speak with the prim and proper BioWare British Accent made famous in Knights of the Old Republic, dwarves all speak American/Canadian English--no evidence of a British accent or Scottish brogue in sight.)

Beraht then storms off, reminding you that you have more dirty work to do before the day is done. Before you go, you can chat with your sister to get more insight about your situation and the world of the dwarves--how most of your people remain below ground rather than deal with repugnant, smelly surface dwellers like humans and elves, and how the darkspawn, the game's villainous monsters, have risen from the depths of the earth to claim the lives of most members of the noble and warrior castes, which leaves the nobles desperate for heirs. It also seems that Rica has caught the eye of a potential suitor, but with no promises made on either side, you're better off heading out to Orzammar for some more shady dealings, at least for the time being.

You leave your sister, and immediately meet Leske, a dwarf thief and cohort who also works for Beraht, and who also has the hots for your sister. (In fact, if you create a female dwarf character, he'll actually make a pass at you as well.) After reminding him that his attentions are unwanted, you get the details of your next mission--locating, shaking down, and ultimately killing a smuggler who works for Beraht, but has been skimming lyrium ore (the enchanted metal used to power magic spells and forge enchanted weapons) to sell to illicit parties on the surface.

The common areas in the dwarf city, much like the halls of the mage tower, are full of ambient characters that go on about their business and occasionally have independent conversations that touch on bits of the world's lore, such as the political tension between the current dwarven king and an ambitious dwarven prince. And if you happen to be a rogue, you can also use the profession's free skill point in the stealing skill to relieve some commoners and guards of their coins and healing poultices--the latter of which will prove to be a godsend later on.

When you find the smuggler at the local tavern, you and Leske seat yourself at his table, and can re-enact a classic BioWare conversation quest path of either killing the marked man outright, or letting him go and lying to your boss about doing the job anyway--a quest we've seen in some form in both Baldur's Gate II and also Knights of the Old Republic. We decided to keep things civilized and instead blackmail the smuggler for all the ore he was carrying before cutting him loose, figuring that we'd pocket the proceeds without any questions asked, just as we had in previous BioWare games (and we were wrong, as we'd find out soon enough).

By using "intimidate"-based conversation skills (bolstered by our character's "cunning" statistic, which we boosted when creating our character), we were able to convince the poor sap to part with his ore and skedaddle, and we also convinced a terrified Leske to go along for the ride with a generous 50-50 arrangement. Leske came around and pointed us to a nearby merchant who took the ore off our hands at a reduced price, pointing out that demand for it is poor below ground (dwarves are inherently resistant to magic and cannot be mages, and so have little use for the stuff in its raw form), and moving it to the surface would be difficult. We pocketed the few coins we were able to get and reported in to our crime boss.

Said crime boss and his number one gal, Jarvia (an angry female dwarf who can't seem to say anything without phrasing it as a threat) were waiting at a nearby merchant shop. When we lied about killing off the escaped smuggler, the slumlord didn't exactly buy what we were selling--apparently, one of his cousins was also at the tavern at the time and watched the smuggler get up and walk away. Fortunately, Leske was quick-witted enough to come up with a lie of his own about how we later bumped off traitorous cheat in a back alley, preferring not to make a scene in the tavern.

And fortunately, Beraht actually took the bait, and dispatched us to our next task--rigging the "proving ground" arena battles being held for visiting grey warden Duncan, who was rumored to be in town in search of new recruits to battle the darkspawn (hint, hint). To rig the match, we were instructed to drug the water of one of the arena champions to ensure the victory of a different competitor offering longshot betting odds (on whom Beraht had a pile of coin), and were handed a phony pass to get into the arena area.

Upon entering arena hall, we encountered Duncan himself, whom we greeted on a dare from Leske, and exchanged pleasantries with before the grey warden took his leave. We then paid a visit to our longshot gladiator to check on him, only to find that the mighty warrior was dead drunk. After a brief, "Are you thinking what I'm thinking?" conversation with Leske, we decided to don the warrior's armor and his maces and swords (which fit just fine, even though we were playing a rogue) and masquerade as him, though we also made the decision to not drug the rival gladiator, instead entering the fight as a true test of skill. We pilfered the plastered pugilist's possessions, equipped them, and headed out to the face our first match in another familiar BioWare setup--an arena battle with consecutive one-on-one battles.

Unfortunately, since we were playing a sneaky thief who specialized in speed and trickery, we didn't have a character with a very high strength score, so we were unable to equip the drunken warrior's better weapons. So, we readied a light battle axe and shield for our battles, which began with a tougher-than-expected scrape that we survived only by using some of our purloined healing poultices. The same could be said for our second and third matches, both against determined dwarves looking to prove themselves. By the end of the third match, we were out of healing poultices and ready to beg for mercy, but that was cut short as the inebriated gladiator we were impersonating staggered into the arena, accusing us of being an impostor. Knowing we were caught dead to rights, we removed our helmet, revealing our character's branded face (the mark of a lowly casteless dwarf) to much consternation from the arena crowds and the dwarven arena master--though Duncan, the guest of honor at the proving match, seemed impressed by our performance.

One blackout later, we awoke in a strange cell--apparently, the match results had been renounced and we had been trounced, first by arena guards, and then, by Beraht's men, who had us taken back to the crime boss's lair. Jarvia returned one last time to taunt us before leaving us in the capable hands of a single guard. Fortunately, our rogue character gained an experience level here, which let us take a glimpse at the advanced character classes he'll one day be able to select (assassin, bard, ranger, or duelist). He also had a basic knowledge of the "deft hands" skill and was able to pick the lock on his cell and make a break for his confiscated belongings, equipping himself with his original leather armor and an axe, and making short work of the guard before freeing Leske and sallying forth. Luckily, since we were playing a rogue character, we were able to spot and disarm some of the hidden traps lining the floors.

So began the dungeon hacking portion of the dwarf commoner's origin story. Our party of two made their way through Beraht's cellars, looting any open chests and barrels for a handful of trinkets and fighting small contingents of guards. Rogues begin with a basic skill known as "dirty fighting," which deals no damage, but briefly stuns their target. They can also specialize in dual-weapon talents or archery talents, but must first learn the combat training skill. When creating our character, we preferred to make more of a stealthy burglar character, and weren't as prepared for head-on battles, but we did make liberal use of the rogue's backstab ability, which deals extra damage and is triggered automatically when you properly place a rogue character directly behind your target. By periodically using both our character's, and Leske's, dirty fighting skill to stun other targets, we were able to focus in on our enemies, one by one, keeping the thugs' focus on one party member while the other snuck in as many backstab attacks as possible. (As it happens, we later played through the dwarf commoner origin again as a fighter, and found the battles much easier, especially since we specialized in two-handed weapons, which have powerful and quick-to-recover attacks that can deal unusually large amounts of damage or just send your foes sprawling.)

Finally, we made our way to the boss, who was in the process of putting a price on our heads to two more of his greasy thugs, and saying some less-than-polite things about our sister. We went right into battle but had to retry this fight a few times, since Beraht himself was a tough fellow who seemed immune to being backstabbed, and since we had hardly any health poultices (and since again, we created a relatively wimpy rogue character). With determination and carefully timed applications of the dirty fighting skill to control the other thugs and focus on picking off our enemies one by one, we finally brought the brute down. And we emerged from his hideout victorious...to find the furious dwarf arena master waiting for us with a group of guards, and with Duncan, and with...our sister? Even more curiously, there was no sign of Beraht's second-in-command, the sharp-tongued Jarvia. Hmm.

It was at this point that Duncan made the offer to join him as a grey warden, saving us (just like with the mage origin) from capital punishment for a grave offense. We spoke with Leske (who insisted we take the opportunity) and Rica (who, as it turned out, had begun a storybook romance with her suitor), and received their blessings to join Duncan in his quest. We were on our way out of our origin story to see the rest of the realm of Ferelden. And you'll be able to hear more about origins, and Ferelden, by following GameSpot's ongoing coverage of Dragon Age: Origins. Come back next Friday when we explore more of the game.

keg in kc
08-31-2009, 08:38 AM
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keg in kc
09-18-2009, 06:55 PM
I can't believe this thread is almost a year old. Where the fuck has 2009 gone?!!?!

Anyway, some cool stuff I haven't previously posted:Dragon Age: Origins Updated Hands-On - The Origins of the Human Mage (http://www.gamespot.com/pc/rpg/dragonage/news.html?sid=6215342&mode=previews)

By Andrew Park, GameSpot
Posted Aug 14, 2009 6:16 pm PT

Developer BioWare suggests that Dragon Age: Origins will be a spiritual successor to Baldur's Gate, and we just got our hands on the first few hours of the wizard's origin.

Dragon Age: Origins is an epic fantasy role-playing game that tells a tale of a swords-and-sorcery world at war to stave off an invasion of corrupted monsters. It's also sitting right here on the hard drive of our PC. We started a new game to watch an elaborate cinematic sequence that began with animated pictures on what looked like aged vellum paper--a throwback to the introductory cinematics of Baldur's Gate II. The paintings gave way to a vicious in-engine battle between Duncan--a swordsman who presumably acts as your advisor at least in the early going--and a pair of hideous darkspawn, the monstrous humanoids who are invading the land. By starting a new game, we went straight to the character generation screen to play through an "origin" story. This early-game content begins after you choose a combination of the game's races and classes, which include humans, dwarves, and elves, and basic classes of fighters, mages, and rogues--and from there, you can choose a specific background for that class. We chose the human mage, whose only background is as a student in the mage guild, and away we went. Please note that this article pertains to a hands-on play session with the PC version of the game, and be advised that this article may contain minor story spoilers about the early part of the game.

Starting a new character as a mage will take you through an elaborate creation process that lets you allot statistic points to your character's ability scores. These include strength (which affects your melee attack ability), dexterity (which affects your speed and defense), willpower (which affects your maximum magic pool), magic (which determines how effective your magic spells are), cunning (which affects your stealth abilities), and constitution (which affects your character's overall health). Dragon Age's human mage characters begin their lives with statistics in the 10- to 20-point range, with points primarily clustered in the willpower and magic stats. At the beginning, you can allot five additional points (and with each experience level, three more points). Increasing your attributes to certain levels will not only make your character more powerful, but will also let you access higher-level skills along the game's elaborate personal skill tree. Like the pen-and-paper role-playing systems you might have seen, Dragon Age has a list of miscellaneous personal skills to which you can allot points. These include coercion (which lets you flatter or threaten your way through a conversation), stealing (which lets you pick other characters' pockets), trap-making (which lets you create deadly traps), survival (which helps your character better deal with animals and survive harsher elements), herbalism (the game's version of herb-collecting alchemy), poison-making (which lets you create various types of venom), and combat tactics (which lets you set specific scripts for your party members who aren't in action).

Once you've chosen your skills, as a mage you can choose your character's spell specializations from five different options. These include arcane spells, which appear to be the most stock-standard of the mage's spells (including such selections as arcane bolts, with which you begin the game, and a continuous magical shield); the "primal" line, which includes elemental damaging spells of fire, ice, and lightning; creation, which includes various healing and defensive spells; spirit, which contains spells that pertain to manipulating your own or your enemies' spell power (or "mana"); and entropy, which contains various curses that "de-buff" your foes. We chose to start with the spirit line with the close-range "mind blast" spell that stuns nearby foes, but there are a great variety of different spells here that will let you create either a powerful specialist or a well-rounded generalist. And fans of the Baldur's Gate series will be happy to see analogs to classic tactical magic spells from Baldur's Gate II, such as fireball, grease, and Otiluke's Resilient Sphere. We then moved on to the customization of our character's appearance, which lets you choose different voices, as well as different hair and facial features (or choose from a series of premade looks). After selecting our appearance, we were off and ready to start our adventure, which began with an argument between Irving, the senior wizard at our mage tower, and Gregoir, the angry sergeant who leads the templars that guard the tower. According to the setup, the mages study in seclusion to better learn to use their powers, but they are guarded closely, if not imprisoned, by the templars, who are authorized to cut down any wizards who are corrupted by the Fade--a magical netherworld that people visit when they dream, and from which mages gain their power, but which also houses demons with connections to the darkspawn. There's clearly a great deal of tension between the two parties that's conveyed well in the dialogue and that sets the stage for more political conflicts in the game--as you poke around the mage's tower, you'll even encounter characters engaged in political discussions, such as one group of senior mages who suggest that there are multiple factions of wizards with different ideas on how close mages should live to the world of non-mages.

Politics aside, we dived right into our first task as an apprentice--completing a rite of passage known as "the Harrowing," which requires all stripling mages to enter the Fade. So, in we went, to find a hazy dreamworld where a handful of hostile spectral monsters attacked us so that we could get the hang of the combat system. Like in previous BioWare games, there's an auto-attack feature that lets you attack the nearest targeted enemy, though your other abilities, such as spells, work off a cooldown timer and can be tied to a hotkey bank, similar to the standard abilities you'd expect from a massively multiplayer game. The first enemies we faced weren't much of a challenge--the key characters we met were much more interesting. The first such character was a talking rodent who turned out to be an embittered apprentice mage that later took human form to speak with us. He explained that he, like us, had taken his test but had dallied too long in the Fade, which led the Templars to kill off his physical body, even though his spiritual form in the Fade had gained the ability to change shape. After a brief conversation, he joined us as a companion in the hopes of somehow escaping and suggested he could provide additional insight along the way.

We then continued our test, meeting an ethereal spirit of valor, who was busy forging spectral weapons. When spoken to, the spirit openly questioned our character's courage--a dangerous mistake on his part, since we were equipped with Dragon Age's branching dialogue system, which let us use a willpower-based dialogue option to convince him of our conviction and persuade him to hand us a spectral staff. We also met a slumbering demon of sloth, a talking bear with bloodied jaws who spoke with us without bothering to lift his lazy head. Though the demon absently muttered something about devouring us both, our shape-shifting companion, Mouse, asked the creature to teach him how to change into a bear, and after some practice, Mouse was able to do so. The demon then explained that it was time for him to destroy us, though we were able to talk him down to playing a game of riddles in exchange for our lives.

However, we got the answer to the first riddle wrong, which prompted the monster to attack us. Our shiny new staff and Mouse's bear form helped us barely survive the encounter. In fact, we started feeling like we'd gotten the hang of things at this point and strode boldly toward our final encounter in the Fade, which was a powerful demon who blocked our exit. When we confronted this final creature, it suggested that it had made previous deals with Mouse to betray and devour other apprentices that had come before us, but Mouse stood resolute at our side and we leapt into battle, dispatching the beast with ease and ready to return to the mage tower. Just before leaving, Mouse suggested we could help him an additional time...by lending him our physical body, you know, just for a minute, to help him escape. We saw through the ruse more or less immediately and stated to him that his final favor seemed like it might have been the real test. Mouse agreed, changing shape to an enormous demon as everything faded to black.

When we awoke in the mage tower, we found that we had gained an experience level and three attribute points to spend. We also gained additional slots for spells and skills, and got a glimpse at some of the more-advanced classes that human mages can eventually become, such as shape-shifter (a profession that changes to different animal forms), spirit healer (a healing profession), arcane warrior (a mage/warrior hybrid), and blood mage, a feared class of wizard that uses ghastly death-based magic in battle--though changing to a specialized class will happen long after completing a character's origin. Once we attended to our new skills and abilities, we spoke with a nearby initiate, Jowan to find that we had passed our Harrowing test all right but that Jowan was dissatisfied about not being tested yet himself. We excused ourselves from the conversation to begin searching for senior wizard Irving--who would give us our next instructions--but not before exploring the mage tower first. Running to and fro through the circular tower, level by level, and poking around in the odd armoire or chest (all of which were thankfully unlocked) for healing poultices and mana-restoring powdered lyrium (the most potent magical substance in the realm) seemed very reminiscent of our experiences in the original Neverwinter Nights' initial training hall, though Dragon Age's mage tower actually has ambient characters who start full-on dialogue tree conversations that aren't critical to the story but that contain useful bits of lore to help you understand the world better, such as the aforementioned senior mages and their discussion of mage political factions. After finally finding Irving and meeting up with the grey warden Duncan, whom we escorted to his room, we embarked on the final story-related quest to end our origin story.

Apparently, mages who don't wish to be tested or who (rumor has it) are considered to be a threat to the mages are instead sent to the Rite of Tranquility, which cuts those mages off from the Fade permanently, robbing them not only of their magic powers, but also of their dreams and emotions. Without giving away all the details, we'll say that we were given the opportunity to help our fellow apprentice Jowan, who was suspected of being a blood mage, escape this fate. In order to escape, Jowan must first locate and destroy his phylactery, which is a blood sample taken from all fledgling wizards that will let them be tracked should they "go apostate"--that is, if they escape from the tower and begin illegally practicing wizardry on their own. We opted to help our comrade in his illicit quest, and during the course of it, we traded words and official documents with a creepily "tranquil" storekeeper, slew a pack of spiders for a forgetful elf enchanter, and snuck into the basement of the tower, where clanking armored guardians and ghostly wizards attacked us constantly. Our ragtag adventuring party finally broke into the phylactery room from a back entrance, seizing hold of Jowan's phylactery and encountering a bizarre talking statue occupied by the spirit of a long-dead demigod.

This victory was short-lived. We emerged from the phylactery room right into an antechamber where Irving, Gregoir, and Duncan stood in wait for us, and we were found guilty of any number of magely crimes on the spot. In a fit of desperation, Jowan escaped--further adding to our crimes because he went apostate without a phylactery to track him. Irving also noted that we'd discovered a brand-new magic staff in the basement that was slightly better than any others we'd had before, and though we could have tried to lie our way out of the situation, we decided to simply relinquish the item since we'd been caught red-handed. Nevertheless, while Gregoir was furious, Duncan was impressed by the lengths we were willing to go to help a friend (let's face it, we were only in it for the experience points) and recruited us for the grey wardens--a singular honor, since the wardens typically recruit so few mages into their ranks. We agreed to our new charge to complete our wizardly origin story and couldn't wait to move on to the rest of the game. But that will have to be a tale for another time.

Though we've played through only the first two hours or so of the game, Dragon Age seems like it offers many nostalgic references to Baldur's Gate and Neverwinter Nights and also seems to have an intuitive interface and plenty of bits of hidden lore buried in the game if you care to dig them up. From the looks of things, the branching schools of magic for the mage class will also give you a lot of different ways to approach this profession, either as a full-on wizardly artillery unit who hurls fire and lightning, a tactical supporter who protects allies and hinders enemies, a healer, or some combination of the three. Dragon Age seems like it will have a lot to offer, and we can't wait to bring you more about the game. Stay tuned to GameSpot for our next hands-on update, next week.

keg in kc
09-18-2009, 06:55 PM
I can't believe this thread is almost a year old. Where the fuck has 2009 gone?!!?!

Anyway, some cool stuff I haven't previously posted:Dragon Age: Origins Updated Hands-On - The Origins of the Human Mage (http://www.gamespot.com/pc/rpg/dragonage/news.html?sid=6215342&mode=previews)

By Andrew Park, GameSpot
Posted Aug 14, 2009 6:16 pm PT

Developer BioWare suggests that Dragon Age: Origins will be a spiritual successor to Baldur's Gate, and we just got our hands on the first few hours of the wizard's origin.

Dragon Age: Origins is an epic fantasy role-playing game that tells a tale of a swords-and-sorcery world at war to stave off an invasion of corrupted monsters. It's also sitting right here on the hard drive of our PC. We started a new game to watch an elaborate cinematic sequence that began with animated pictures on what looked like aged vellum paper--a throwback to the introductory cinematics of Baldur's Gate II. The paintings gave way to a vicious in-engine battle between Duncan--a swordsman who presumably acts as your advisor at least in the early going--and a pair of hideous darkspawn, the monstrous humanoids who are invading the land. By starting a new game, we went straight to the character generation screen to play through an "origin" story. This early-game content begins after you choose a combination of the game's races and classes, which include humans, dwarves, and elves, and basic classes of fighters, mages, and rogues--and from there, you can choose a specific background for that class. We chose the human mage, whose only background is as a student in the mage guild, and away we went. Please note that this article pertains to a hands-on play session with the PC version of the game, and be advised that this article may contain minor story spoilers about the early part of the game.

Starting a new character as a mage will take you through an elaborate creation process that lets you allot statistic points to your character's ability scores. These include strength (which affects your melee attack ability), dexterity (which affects your speed and defense), willpower (which affects your maximum magic pool), magic (which determines how effective your magic spells are), cunning (which affects your stealth abilities), and constitution (which affects your character's overall health). Dragon Age's human mage characters begin their lives with statistics in the 10- to 20-point range, with points primarily clustered in the willpower and magic stats. At the beginning, you can allot five additional points (and with each experience level, three more points). Increasing your attributes to certain levels will not only make your character more powerful, but will also let you access higher-level skills along the game's elaborate personal skill tree. Like the pen-and-paper role-playing systems you might have seen, Dragon Age has a list of miscellaneous personal skills to which you can allot points. These include coercion (which lets you flatter or threaten your way through a conversation), stealing (which lets you pick other characters' pockets), trap-making (which lets you create deadly traps), survival (which helps your character better deal with animals and survive harsher elements), herbalism (the game's version of herb-collecting alchemy), poison-making (which lets you create various types of venom), and combat tactics (which lets you set specific scripts for your party members who aren't in action).

Once you've chosen your skills, as a mage you can choose your character's spell specializations from five different options. These include arcane spells, which appear to be the most stock-standard of the mage's spells (including such selections as arcane bolts, with which you begin the game, and a continuous magical shield); the "primal" line, which includes elemental damaging spells of fire, ice, and lightning; creation, which includes various healing and defensive spells; spirit, which contains spells that pertain to manipulating your own or your enemies' spell power (or "mana"); and entropy, which contains various curses that "de-buff" your foes. We chose to start with the spirit line with the close-range "mind blast" spell that stuns nearby foes, but there are a great variety of different spells here that will let you create either a powerful specialist or a well-rounded generalist. And fans of the Baldur's Gate series will be happy to see analogs to classic tactical magic spells from Baldur's Gate II, such as fireball, grease, and Otiluke's Resilient Sphere. We then moved on to the customization of our character's appearance, which lets you choose different voices, as well as different hair and facial features (or choose from a series of premade looks). After selecting our appearance, we were off and ready to start our adventure, which began with an argument between Irving, the senior wizard at our mage tower, and Gregoir, the angry sergeant who leads the templars that guard the tower. According to the setup, the mages study in seclusion to better learn to use their powers, but they are guarded closely, if not imprisoned, by the templars, who are authorized to cut down any wizards who are corrupted by the Fade--a magical netherworld that people visit when they dream, and from which mages gain their power, but which also houses demons with connections to the darkspawn. There's clearly a great deal of tension between the two parties that's conveyed well in the dialogue and that sets the stage for more political conflicts in the game--as you poke around the mage's tower, you'll even encounter characters engaged in political discussions, such as one group of senior mages who suggest that there are multiple factions of wizards with different ideas on how close mages should live to the world of non-mages.

Politics aside, we dived right into our first task as an apprentice--completing a rite of passage known as "the Harrowing," which requires all stripling mages to enter the Fade. So, in we went, to find a hazy dreamworld where a handful of hostile spectral monsters attacked us so that we could get the hang of the combat system. Like in previous BioWare games, there's an auto-attack feature that lets you attack the nearest targeted enemy, though your other abilities, such as spells, work off a cooldown timer and can be tied to a hotkey bank, similar to the standard abilities you'd expect from a massively multiplayer game. The first enemies we faced weren't much of a challenge--the key characters we met were much more interesting. The first such character was a talking rodent who turned out to be an embittered apprentice mage that later took human form to speak with us. He explained that he, like us, had taken his test but had dallied too long in the Fade, which led the Templars to kill off his physical body, even though his spiritual form in the Fade had gained the ability to change shape. After a brief conversation, he joined us as a companion in the hopes of somehow escaping and suggested he could provide additional insight along the way.

We then continued our test, meeting an ethereal spirit of valor, who was busy forging spectral weapons. When spoken to, the spirit openly questioned our character's courage--a dangerous mistake on his part, since we were equipped with Dragon Age's branching dialogue system, which let us use a willpower-based dialogue option to convince him of our conviction and persuade him to hand us a spectral staff. We also met a slumbering demon of sloth, a talking bear with bloodied jaws who spoke with us without bothering to lift his lazy head. Though the demon absently muttered something about devouring us both, our shape-shifting companion, Mouse, asked the creature to teach him how to change into a bear, and after some practice, Mouse was able to do so. The demon then explained that it was time for him to destroy us, though we were able to talk him down to playing a game of riddles in exchange for our lives.

However, we got the answer to the first riddle wrong, which prompted the monster to attack us. Our shiny new staff and Mouse's bear form helped us barely survive the encounter. In fact, we started feeling like we'd gotten the hang of things at this point and strode boldly toward our final encounter in the Fade, which was a powerful demon who blocked our exit. When we confronted this final creature, it suggested that it had made previous deals with Mouse to betray and devour other apprentices that had come before us, but Mouse stood resolute at our side and we leapt into battle, dispatching the beast with ease and ready to return to the mage tower. Just before leaving, Mouse suggested we could help him an additional time...by lending him our physical body, you know, just for a minute, to help him escape. We saw through the ruse more or less immediately and stated to him that his final favor seemed like it might have been the real test. Mouse agreed, changing shape to an enormous demon as everything faded to black.

When we awoke in the mage tower, we found that we had gained an experience level and three attribute points to spend. We also gained additional slots for spells and skills, and got a glimpse at some of the more-advanced classes that human mages can eventually become, such as shape-shifter (a profession that changes to different animal forms), spirit healer (a healing profession), arcane warrior (a mage/warrior hybrid), and blood mage, a feared class of wizard that uses ghastly death-based magic in battle--though changing to a specialized class will happen long after completing a character's origin. Once we attended to our new skills and abilities, we spoke with a nearby initiate, Jowan to find that we had passed our Harrowing test all right but that Jowan was dissatisfied about not being tested yet himself. We excused ourselves from the conversation to begin searching for senior wizard Irving--who would give us our next instructions--but not before exploring the mage tower first. Running to and fro through the circular tower, level by level, and poking around in the odd armoire or chest (all of which were thankfully unlocked) for healing poultices and mana-restoring powdered lyrium (the most potent magical substance in the realm) seemed very reminiscent of our experiences in the original Neverwinter Nights' initial training hall, though Dragon Age's mage tower actually has ambient characters who start full-on dialogue tree conversations that aren't critical to the story but that contain useful bits of lore to help you understand the world better, such as the aforementioned senior mages and their discussion of mage political factions. After finally finding Irving and meeting up with the grey warden Duncan, whom we escorted to his room, we embarked on the final story-related quest to end our origin story.

Apparently, mages who don't wish to be tested or who (rumor has it) are considered to be a threat to the mages are instead sent to the Rite of Tranquility, which cuts those mages off from the Fade permanently, robbing them not only of their magic powers, but also of their dreams and emotions. Without giving away all the details, we'll say that we were given the opportunity to help our fellow apprentice Jowan, who was suspected of being a blood mage, escape this fate. In order to escape, Jowan must first locate and destroy his phylactery, which is a blood sample taken from all fledgling wizards that will let them be tracked should they "go apostate"--that is, if they escape from the tower and begin illegally practicing wizardry on their own. We opted to help our comrade in his illicit quest, and during the course of it, we traded words and official documents with a creepily "tranquil" storekeeper, slew a pack of spiders for a forgetful elf enchanter, and snuck into the basement of the tower, where clanking armored guardians and ghostly wizards attacked us constantly. Our ragtag adventuring party finally broke into the phylactery room from a back entrance, seizing hold of Jowan's phylactery and encountering a bizarre talking statue occupied by the spirit of a long-dead demigod.

This victory was short-lived. We emerged from the phylactery room right into an antechamber where Irving, Gregoir, and Duncan stood in wait for us, and we were found guilty of any number of magely crimes on the spot. In a fit of desperation, Jowan escaped--further adding to our crimes because he went apostate without a phylactery to track him. Irving also noted that we'd discovered a brand-new magic staff in the basement that was slightly better than any others we'd had before, and though we could have tried to lie our way out of the situation, we decided to simply relinquish the item since we'd been caught red-handed. Nevertheless, while Gregoir was furious, Duncan was impressed by the lengths we were willing to go to help a friend (let's face it, we were only in it for the experience points) and recruited us for the grey wardens--a singular honor, since the wardens typically recruit so few mages into their ranks. We agreed to our new charge to complete our wizardly origin story and couldn't wait to move on to the rest of the game. But that will have to be a tale for another time.

Though we've played through only the first two hours or so of the game, Dragon Age seems like it offers many nostalgic references to Baldur's Gate and Neverwinter Nights and also seems to have an intuitive interface and plenty of bits of hidden lore buried in the game if you care to dig them up. From the looks of things, the branching schools of magic for the mage class will also give you a lot of different ways to approach this profession, either as a full-on wizardly artillery unit who hurls fire and lightning, a tactical supporter who protects allies and hinders enemies, a healer, or some combination of the three. Dragon Age seems like it will have a lot to offer, and we can't wait to bring you more about the game. Stay tuned to GameSpot for our next hands-on update, next week.

keg in kc
09-18-2009, 06:58 PM
And more on magic:Dragon Age Updated Preview - Rage of Mages (http://www.gamespot.com/pc/rpg/dragonage/news.html?sid=6228668&tag=topslot;thumb;3&mode=previews)

By Andrew Park, GameSpot
Posted Sep 17, 2009 6:52 pm PT

You say you want to cast magic missiles? You're attacking the darkness? Fine, fine, there's an elf in front of you, and he's going to explain how magic works in Dragon Age.

Dragon Age: Origins is the upcoming fantasy-themed game from our friends at BioWare, a wholly owned subsidiary of Electronic Arts and the Canadian studio responsible for such role-playing games as Baldur's Gate, Neverwinter Nights, and Mass Effect. It's also a game we haven't had a chance to cover very often here on GameSpot, so we're happy to finally have a chance to post a new preview story covering the use of wizardry in the game. In Dragon Age, you can choose to play as a mage class, which starts off with the mage tower origin story that we've covered previously and then leads to a tale of sorcery-powered high adventure and zapping bad guys with nasty zappy spells.

While Dragon Age's list of skills is universal for characters of all professions (including such abilities as conversational coercion, potion-brewing herbalism, thievery, and combat training), the game has a unique set of "talents" for mages. Mage characters have a single line of mage-specific skills that include a basic attack spell, an arcane bolt, an improved ability to zap people using a magic staff, personal shielding magic, and an overall boost to wizardly power. This basic line of skills never seems like a bad choice to spend talent points in as you gain experience levels, except that there are four other talent lines (or "schools of magic," if you prefer) with plenty of other interesting and useful spell abilities that are worth exploring.

The four additional talent trees for mages are primal (elemental damage spells); creation (healing and protective magics); spirit (which focuses on countermagics and controlling enchantments); and entropy (which focuses on hindering magics). Primal, for instance, includes four different talent lines for fire, ice, lightning, and earth, each of which has four levels of abilities, including the classic fireball, lightning bolt, and cone-of-cold spells you may remember from BioWare's previous Dungeons & Dragons-based games. However, the primal talent group also includes certain spell abilities with combinatorial effects. For instance, the most powerful talent in the earth line, petrify, briefly turns an enemy to stone and makes that enemy vulnerable to instant death by shattering if attacked with a concussive spell, such as the earth line's stonefist spell. As it turns out, certain spells from the ice talent line can also freeze enemies solid, rendering them similarly vulnerable to being shattered. The primal line also contains two different weapon enhancements for all characters in your party; the fire line causes weapons to deal fire-based damage; and the ice line causes weapons to deal cold-based damage. The remaining spells in the primal talent lines are generally powerful damage-dealers with large radii that can also damage your teammates if they get in the line of fire. Careful micromanagement (or combinatorial strategies, discussed later) is crucial in using these talents, lest you blast your own party to smithereens.

The creation line of talents is a straightforward set of healing and protection (or "buffing") spell abilities, including on-the-spot healing and over-time regeneration, and full-party regeneration, as well as offensive and defensive team boosts and the Dragon Age version of "haste"--which makes you and your team attack more quickly but drains away your character's energy. The creation line also includes a set of "glyph" spells that affect a small chunk of territory with various magical properties, including defensive skills like canceling magic or increasing your teammates' defenses, and offensive glyphs that can repel or paralyze enemies that stumble into the radius. Finally, the creation talents also include a miscellaneous line of spell abilities that enhance endurance regeneration and include a precious few attack spells, including an "insect swarm" spell that continuously damages its target, and a "grease" spell, which, just like in Baldur's Gate and Neverwinter Nights, causes an area of ground to be covered with a slippery grease that hinders movement. However, in Dragon Age, an area affected by the grease spell can also be set alight by fire spells, burning up any enemies or friendlies in the area.

The spirit line of spells also contains four sets of talents, each with four abilities. The spirit line is focused more on canceling magic and draining "mana" (magic energy) from your foes, though it also has some powerful attack spells. Among others, spirit includes a line of talents to protect against or dispel hostile magic; a line of talents that interferes with your enemies' mana and limits their ability to cast spells of their own; and a line of talents that deals with death by magic and replenishes spent energy from corpses, animates fallen enemy corpses as allies, and includes a "walking bomb" effect that causes an enemy under effects of the spell to explode if killed, damaging everyone in the radius. The spirit line also has a psionics-based set of talents that lets casters enhance their parties' weapons, psychically blast a single foe, encase a single target in a protective bubble (similar to Baldur's Gate II's Otiluke's Resilient Sphere), and contain an enemy in a cage of crushing force that will also shatter any frozen or petrified foes. The spirit line seems to be the most subtle of all the mage's talent trees, and from what we've played of the early game, it won't necessarily be needed to dispatch the enemies you encounter at first.

Finally, the entropy line of talents includes a series of debilitating spell abilities, including a set of talents that weakens or paralyzes foes; a set of "hexes" that curse any enemies in range with a specific affliction; and a set of nightmare-based abilities that can freeze enemies in their tracks and that includes powerful analogues to Baldur's Gate II's sleep, horror, and chaos spells, which immobilize enemies in slumber, cripple them with fear, and completely confuse them into performing random acts, respectively. As it happens, sleeping enemies who are then targeted by a horror spell suffer maddening nightmares that deal severe damage to them, instantly killing most weaker foes. The entropy talent line also has a set of death-magic-based spell abilities that drain an enemy's health or summon a damaging noxious cloud to hang over an area, not unlike the classic cloudkill and acid fog spells of Baldur's Gate II.

Each of these talent groups has powerful, useful abilities, but it seems that BioWare didn't intend for players to fully specialize in any individual one, and in some cases, except possibly creation (which will set you up as a solid combat healer with good protection spells, a minor hindrance spell, and a single damaging spell), you'll actually limit your mage's overall ability if you focus on only one school. Considering that you won't be able to take every single spell talent in the entire game in a single play-through, you'll most likely want to do some experimenting, then think about focusing in a certain direction. In addition, since several spell abilities have combinatorial effects with other spells or other professions' talents, it pays to start thinking and get strategic.

For instance, properly specialized mages are excellent at controlling individual enemies as well as crowds, using such talents as the spirit line's force field or primal's petrify to remove a single enemy from play, while using other talents such as entropy's sleep, horror, and paralysis spells, or creation's glyphs of repulsions and paralysis to render groups of enemies helpless. This kind of strategy seems useful not only to stop an enemy charge, but also to divide and conquer--when facing a paralyzed battalion of enemies, you and your troops can pick off and eliminate choice targets one by one. In addition, fighters who are specialized in two-handed weapons can learn the "indomitable" warrior talent, which makes them immune to talents and spell abilities that would otherwise knock them off their feet, so concussive spell talents like earthquake and glyph of repulsion are a great setup for a party packing two-handed weapons, since the fighters can rush right into the area of effect, immune to the magic, and begin hacking away at the monsters lying on their backs.

Alternately, proper talent selection can make your mage a strong support character that softens up tough bosses for your fighters. Abilities such as the entropy line's hex spells and creation's glyphs can reduce these formidable foes' resistances to damage; the spirit line's talents can eliminate any boss character's protective magics or drain them away; and both primal and spirit have weapon-enhancing spells that can help you deal additional damage. The spirit line's walking bomb talent (and its upgraded version, virulent walking bomb, which spreads the effect of making foes explode when they die to any nearby foes) works especially well against large groups or bosses with smaller minion critters. And of course, when fighting powerful bosses, it's important to keep your team up and running with the creation line's various healing and buff spells.

Another very viable way to specialize a mage in Dragon Age is to focus on controlling territory on the battlefield by first entrapping enemies and then bombarding them. (If you've used the web spell followed by area-damage spells such as cloudkill in Baldur's Gate II, you'll know what we're talking about.) Several of the mage's different talent lines have large-radius abilities that can incapacitate your enemies--the creation line's grease spell and glyphs of repulsion and paralysis, and the entropy line's mass paralysis and sleep spells--and nearly all of the primal line's ice spells can make sure a group of enemies in a certain area either get stuck or are forced to move extremely slowly. From here, you can have your party's archers either feather your enemies with arrows or start bombarding them with magic. Dragon Age has several high-end bombardment spell abilities, such as the primal line's high-end fire-based inferno or cold-based blizzard and the entropy line's high-end death cloud.

But be advised that snag-and-slag isn't as easy as it was in previous BioWare games, since many incapacitating spells can affect only enemies within a certain distance from where you're casting them, though you can at least lay down the glyph spells off in the distance and then lure your foes into them. Also, be advised that even though magic is extremely powerful in Dragon Age and casting spells really does get results, it isn't the rapid-fire experience it was in BioWare's previous fantasy games. As we've mentioned in our previous coverage, the way Dragon Age's spell abilities work is much closer to how magic spells work in a massively multiplayer game such as World of Warcraft. Your mage has a set amount of mana in a bar that gets expended with each cast of a spell, and several spell abilities are modal--that is, they are toggled on or off and provide a persistent effect, such as enhancing your party's weapons--at the cost of constantly draining mana. Also, every time a spell is cast, it has a cooldown time that completely restricts you from spitting it out again, and the most powerful, high-end spell abilities in the game generally have the longest cooldown times. Finally, all of the most powerful combat damage spells (inferno, blizzard, and so on) deal "friendly fire" damage to nearby teammates, so you have to take great care to line up spells carefully without zapping your teammates, and this can be a lot more challenging than it might seem, since most enemies, if not incapacitated, will make every effort to sprint out of range.

That's our in-depth look at the different talent trees available for the mages and at some of the higher-end strategies you can use in Dragon Age: Origins. Stay tuned to GameSpot for any additional updates--considering how little we've covered of this game so far, there may indeed be lots more to come.

Der Flöprer
09-18-2009, 07:25 PM
http://www.gamestop.com/gs/gscinema/default.aspx?gscRef=true&gscID=dragonageorig_trailer5

KcFanInGA
09-18-2009, 10:16 PM
Mage class sounds awesome, but I can't resist playing as the swordsman. This may be one of the few games I play through more than once, the origin stories alone guarantee a ton of replay value IMHO. Raise your hand if you have this preordered.

Der Flöprer
09-18-2009, 10:18 PM
Mage class sounds awesome, but I can't resist playing as the swordsman. This may be one of the few games I play through more than once, the origin stories alone guarantee a ton of replay value IMHO. Raise your hand if you have this preordered.

I never preorder anything. I did once, and didn't get the game for 2 weeks after it released. Never again. I've never been unable to find a new release.

keg in kc
10-06-2009, 04:47 PM
Really cool video, especially towards the end when they show what an area looked like built with the NWN engine and what it looks like in DA:O

<embed src='http://media.gamespy.com/spy/flashvideo/ev.swf' flashvars='object_ID=682217&downloadURL=http://xbox360movies.ign.com/xbox360/video/article/103/1031683/dragonage_trl_living_world_100509_flvlowwide.flv&allownetworking="all"' type='application/x-shockwave-flash' width='433' height='360'></embed>

Der Flöprer
10-06-2009, 09:15 PM
:drool: That game has the potential to be the G.O.A.T

I really hope they did it right.

Basileus777
10-06-2009, 09:19 PM
EA needs to get this game on Steam so I can pre-order it. Considering the digital version get the Warden's Keep DLC for free, I'm not getting it at retail.

KcFanInGA
10-06-2009, 09:29 PM
I am seriously thinking of getting the collector's edition. I usually don't bite on those, but BioWare's artwork on this game is stunning. Day one buy for me on this one.

Der Flöprer
10-06-2009, 09:31 PM
I am seriously thinking of getting the collector's edition. I usually don't bite on those, but BioWare's artwork on this game is stunning. Day one buy for me on this one.

This.

Der Flöprer
10-06-2009, 09:33 PM
:deevee: Why was I thinking this game came out in like 2 weeks?

Basileus777
10-06-2009, 09:38 PM
:deevee: Why was I thinking this game came out in like 2 weeks?

Because it was, then they delayed it two weeks until the beginning of November.

jidar
10-06-2009, 10:02 PM
This game is going to own so hard.

Baldur's Gate series are the greatest RPGs ever (suck it final fantasy fanboys) and Bioware can do no wrong. I can't wait.

jidar
10-06-2009, 10:17 PM
One more thing, there is a novel that serves as a lead-in to the story-line for Dragon Age

http://www.amazon.com/Dragon-Age-Stolen-David-Gaider/dp/0765324083/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1254885293&sr=1-1

Bioware did this with Mass Effect as well and I think it worked. The first Mass Effect novel wasn't the greatest (the second is far far better), but it did serve to set the tone and give some feel for the world for the upcoming game and I enjoyed it.
I hope the Dragon Age novel works as well.

Otter
10-07-2009, 10:35 AM
Take! Out! The! Casters! First!

:cuss:

Kclee
10-12-2009, 06:38 PM
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keg in kc
10-13-2009, 09:55 PM
That was pretty sweet.

keg in kc
10-22-2009, 09:12 AM
Just saw a demo on gamestop, and the bioware dude doing the talking said the game is 60-120 hours long, depending on how many of the side-quests you do. Good news.

keg in kc
10-22-2009, 09:22 AM
Apparently there've been early reviews for a couple weeks now, and they're glowing, to say the least. First up is game informer:Dragon Age Origins (http://gameinformer.com/games/dragon_age_origins/b/pc/archive/2009/10/05/review.aspx)

BioWare’s Return To Classic Form Does Not Disappoint

by Joe Juba on October 05, 2009 at 12:05 PM

Before BioWare amassed a following among console gamers with games like Knights of the Old Republic, Jade Empire, and Mass Effect, the developer already had a significant fanbase. These gamers loved the studio for its work on the PC series Baldur’s Gate and Neverwinter Nights – tactical, story-driven RPGs with an emphasis on party mechanics. No developer did that style of game better in those days, and Dragon Age: Origins proves that BioWare isn’t giving up the crown. Dragon Age brilliantly combines the genre’s old-school conventions with a few modern twists to create one of the most addictive and expansive RPGs of its kind.

Attempting to summarize the experience of Dragon Age in a few paragraphs is almost ridiculous given the depth of the game’s content. Six distinct openings depending on your character (each lasting a couple hours), cool specializations for each class, plenty of tactical variety, and a vast array of sidequests keep you immersed in the world as time flies by. The central narrative arc and the characters involved serve the setting well, but don’t deviate far from expectations. On the other hand, the subplots have some great hooks that I won’t spoil here – though I will say that the mages’ tower is awesome. A speed demon could blow through the main story in 40 hours, but thorough players can expect about 70.

While some time is spent exploring and conversing, the biggest thrills in Dragon Age are found in combat. This is no breezy hack ‘n slash affair; the best encounters feel like puzzles, forcing you to use your resources wisely and make calculated decisions on the path to victory. Which enemy poses the largest threat? How do you stem the tide of oncoming skeletons? Can your tank stand in the middle of your mage’s electrical storm long enough to take down the ogre? Your answers to these questions change depending on your party members and their skills, leaving some space for experimentation. Almost every fight can kill you if you aren’t focused, but the satisfaction of standing in the midst of your slaughtered foes after a well-fought battle makes it all worthwhile.

Even with a wealth of tactical options and party combinations, you’ll rarely get bogged down thanks to the excellent ally AI system. Fans of Final Fantasy XII’s gambits will feel right at home with the concept, which allows you to manage and prioritize your party’s actions based on battle conditions. You can micromanage your spellcasters with a pause-and-play approach and leave your fighters on autopilot, which keeps combat flowing smoothly without sacrificing its sharp tactical edge.

In addition to capturing the joy of battle, Dragon Age also provides an engrossing backdrop for the action. Even more than Mass Effect, the nation of Ferelden feels like a fully realized setting with its own history, conflicts, and power groups. This is one of the main reasons the game is so addicting; completing quests isn’t just about grinding experience and amassing loot – it actually feels like you have an impact on the world.

In the middle of reviewing Dragon Age, I had a couple vacation days scheduled. During my long out-of-state weekend, the game was constantly popping into my mind – how I could have won a fight differently, or how I might spend my next few talent points. As soon as my flight landed back in Minneapolis, I didn’t even fight the urge; I drove straight into the office and spent an entire Sunday night in front of the computer fighting darkspawn and saving Ferelden. The number of titles that can foster this level of dedication and obsession are few, and Dragon Age: Origins is among the best of them.

Score: 9.00

* Concept:A masterful return to the sub-genre that gave BioWare its beginning
* Graphics:The visuals are impressive, though not exactly top-of-the-line. The artistic design conveys the ancient fantasy setting well
* Sound:Lots of quality voice acting and an atmospheric soundtrack. Thankfully, none of the crappy metal from the trailers made the final cut
* Playability:Fussy camera angles can slow you down in battle, and inventory management is a minor pain. Otherwise, the interface works incredibly well
* Entertainment:I want to play this game again right now
* Replay: High

keg in kc
10-22-2009, 09:35 AM
Hands-on from eurogamer (http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/dragon-age-origins-hands-on_6?page=1):Say what you like about BioWare - the Canadian RPG specialists always did think big, and they've never thought bigger than they are right now. While the Austin-based offshoot prepares the company's maiden foray into MMOs with the huge Star Wars: The Old Republic, home base is about to make not one but two monster releases - Mass Effect 2 in January, and Dragon Age: Origins next month.

Given the popularity of Mass Effect the former's something of a home run, but there's much more riding on Dragon Age. Having spent a good six years exploring science-fiction, kung fu, SEGA mascots and console-led development, BioWare is returning to neglected roots with Dragon Age - PC-centric, trad fantasy roots, which drew on Dungeons & Dragons to grow Baldur's Gate and Neverwinter Nights.

The scale of Dragon Age's ambition dwarfs those games, however, as BioWare debuts a new fantasy universe and RPG ruleset that are all its own work, and that will in time form the foundations of much more than this one game. One immense game, which estimates put at something between 50 and 100 hours in length depending how much of it you want to see, and many more if you want to explore the permutations of its narrative in multiple play-throughs. Then there's the unprecedented two-year plan for DLC releases which will extend Origins' lifespan (and, no doubt, help pay for its epic development).

It's an important game, then; we got an indication how important (and how big) when publisher EA started distributing a complete PC review version to press months before its release. That never happens. We've already had plenty of time to sink our teeth into it, and bring you this run-down of how it all fits together ahead of our review in the coming weeks.

Character creation you may already be familiar with; PC players had a chance to download the character creator for free last week, a naked promotional exercise that will nevertheless save you a good hour or two once the game arrives on 6th November, because there's plenty to think about.

The class choice, at least, is simple: three basic and familiar archetypes, warrior, rogue and mage. Choice comes later, when you get a chance to learn one of four specialisations at level 7, and another at level 14. These are interesting and powerful variations - examples include the anti-caster Templar for warriors, druid-like Shapeshifter mage and the marriage of the Bard's party-buffing with the close-combat skills of the rogue.

Acquiring these specialisations isn't necessarily straightforward - even the phone-book-sized guide provided by EA with the review copy is evasive, calling the process "difficult". Some can be taught by party companions if they like you enough, others bought as manuals from certain traders... The rest, we have no idea, but it will probably depend on certain questing and story decisions you make.

You're hardly stuck in a rut, though, as customisation within your class occurs straight away. You get all your spells and abilities from talent trees, with points awarded at the start and every level, so character development is a purely personal choice throughout. Warriors and rogues choose a blend of weapon and class skills while mages choose from four schools of magic, and these give you a loose framework within which to define a role.

You also have non-combat skills that encompass crafting and the like. Then there are your character's core six core stats, which you can also shape yourself at the start and every level, being sure to bear in mind that unlocking certain talents depends on a stat requirement. It's a good RPG system - complex relationships and plenty of flexibility, but built on a simple foundation. Exactly as it should be. If you have no interest in it, both the player character and party companions can be set to auto-level-up along preset paths.

Your other principal choice at the start - your character's background - is a narrative one. This will dictate which of the six origin stories you play through before your character joins the elite Grey Wardens and begins the fight against Dragon Age's antagonists, the Darkspawn, in earnest. Each of these short stories (an hour or two in length apiece) puts BioWare's new fantasy universe in a different context. Several have political undertones; the downtrodden City Elves rebelling against their human overlords, for example, or the struggle of the Magi to exist under the tight control of the devout Templars. It's worth playing through some or all of these to get a feel for this entirely new, and surprisingly detailed, fantasy lore.

After your origin, you're ushered through a linear prologue (itself a good few hours long), which sees your character inducted into the Grey Wardens, introduces two key companions - the mysterious witch Morrigan, and faithful Warden Alistair - and which covers, via a brief dungeon, your role in a key battle against the Darkspawn. Treachery leads to defeat, the Wardens are decimated, and your character and Alistair set about picking up the pieces and rallying the fight against the Darkspawn in the troubled land of Ferelden. It's only at this point that the real Dragon Age: Origins begins, the game opening out into four major quests and a plethora of side-quests, all of which can be attempted in any order you like.

In gameplay if not dramatic terms, then, Dragon Age is a slow-burner. Throughout the origins and the prologue, combat happens in brief bursts, while storytelling happens in great spools of meandering, branching conversation as the world, the plot, the forces at work and the principal characters are mapped out in loquacious detail. It's not until you get stuck into your first major quest that you will spend as much time fighting as you spend talking, and by then you could be a dozen hours or more into the game. You will also have spent much of your time fighting accompanied by bit-part-players rather than the long-term party companions, interaction with whom - both on and off the battlefield - defines the game.

When it does eventually reveal itself in full, Dragon Age proves to be a flexible RPG that accommodates a wide range of playing styles. Baldur's Gate veterans will be happy pulling the camera back to a top-down view, pausing the action with the space bar and micro-managing the party's actions and placement in a quasi-turn-based mode. World of Warcraft players might prefer to zoom in close, let AI take care of party behaviour and punch out skills in real time, flicking between characters for variety. It's perfectly possible to smash through the game in this way on easy mode (the difficulty can be adjusted at any time) without ever hitting pause or needing to think, but even the normal setting is a significant step up that will require the occasional moment of reflection.

Or you could choose to do this reflection in advance - if that's not an oxymoron - by using Tactics. Tactics are a smart lift from, of all things, Final Fantasy XII. They are a version of that game's Gambits, a brilliant system of programmable rules for party behaviour that had the potential to revolutionise the single-player party RPG, but that we'd given up hope of ever seeing again after Square Enix dropped it. Happily, BioWare has had the good sense to revive it.

Using Tactics, you can tell a party member to always attack the target of the player-controlled character, for example, or always assist the healer if it's attacked, or use a certain skill on enemies with less than 25 per cent health, or always heal party members with less than 50 per cent health. You can also choose to stick with that character's presets, or use one of a handful of standardised setups, or expand either of those by investing in extra Tactic slots. Or ignore the system altogether. It stops short of FFXII's extreme automation - you must always maintain control of one character - but still, with a good, hand-crafted Tactics setup it's possible to play Dragon Age: Origins entirely in real-time, even on higher difficulty settings.

What Origins doesn't share with FFXII is that sense of a large, contiguous over-world populated with wandering monsters, MMO-style. This game is defined by events, not places, and the locations are relatively contained, with travel between them happening on a small, windowed world map. Sometimes random or plot events happen on the road, and once you're in the game proper, you can jump to the party camp to use the trader and talk to your companions.

There's no doubt that events in the game's main storyline can take a dramatic turn depending on your choices in conversation. At the end of the Broken Circle quest line I chose to play first, there was a decision that would lead to either the Mages or the Templars joining the Grey Wardens, which might also alienate an important party member. But there isn't much fluidity to these instances, and most of the time you sense that you're talking your way down a guided path with occasional forks in the road.

However, companion interaction is more variable and more subtle. Some companions the game forces on you, but most will join your party or not depending on choices you make - and they could well leave, if you suggest it, or if they disapprove of you enough. Their approval rating is influenced by giving them gifts, but also by how much interest you show in them in conversation, whether you say the right things, and whether you make decisions they like. Approval can also give them a gameplay buff, and a combination of approval and gameplay and conversational choices can allow you to strike up a romance, get them in bed, or unlock a personal quest. Alistair and Morrigan in particular play an important role in the game's story, so how you handle them will shape how your game develops.

Dragon Age: Origins is certainly pure, distilled BioWare, and it doesn't seem the developer has lost anything by shrugging off its ties with D&D, or had its understanding of classic fantasy adventuring clouded by a few years of Sonic and spaceships. As an RPG, it's engrossing, easy to grasp, and moulds itself to how you want to play it (as long as that includes a willingness to invest time in its characters, story and the wider setting of a new fantasy world that, it must be said, struggles to assert a strong identity - there doesn't seem to be much new about it).

It's also beautifully presented, with a superb interface, crisp graphics, and a stable, smooth and scalable engine. If only all PC games were this well sorted this far in advance of release - or even at the point of release, come to that. For once, the tables are turned, and the question mark hangs over the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions that we haven't seen yet (aside from one brief glimpse) and that, to be honest, we find difficult to imagine. Perhaps that's no more than an indication of how perfectly this version has been tailored to its format; it feels like the consummate, traditional PC RPG. BioWare has come home.

Otter
10-22-2009, 09:37 AM
I was listening to a podcast over the weekend where it mentioned that the character generator was released by BioWare. If you're interested in starting to make your uber-noober just do a search on "Dragon Age Character Generator" and should be pretty easy to find.

keg in kc
10-22-2009, 09:37 AM
And excerpts from PC Gamer UK, who gave it a 94%, apparently a pretty high score for them:"Thus begins Dragon age, one of the most enormous and astonishing of games. It's an unashamed high-fantasy RPG, rooted in the most traditional soil, yet set in a highly original world."

"This is not a game that can be simply explained. How does it begin? It begins in six completely different ways, and each of these can be met with a wildly different approach."

"Whether you play as a human, elf or dwarf, a rogue, warrior or mage, a noble or a commoner, Dragon Age requires a smart use of your wits and weapons"

"You can approach combat in a couple of ways, depending upon your personal preferences and the difficulty to which you've set the game. In theory, setting it to easy should let you fight in real-time, where you select opponents and issue instructions from a row of tiled attacks, spells and special items familiar to any MMO player, as the fight happens."

"As you and your party level up, at levels 7 and 14 you get a point to spend on a sub-specialism that opens up new talent trees. A warrior, for instance, can choose to be a berserker or champion, among others. A mage might opt for shapeshifting., allowing her to morph into an animal during battle. A superbly useful talent for a rogue is ranger, which allows you to call an animal to join your party."

"Humans are the dominant race in Ferelden. Dominant in some extremely unpleasant ways. Until a few hundred years ago elves were the slaves of humans. In theory they have been freed, but those who live in cities remain second-class citizens, forced to live in slums, either begging or finding menial work in human houses. A small number of elves broke away to live in the Dales, these "dalish" elves are attempting to recover their lost culture. Bitter and vengeful, they kill all humans who wander into their territory. The dwarves live in the Frostback Mountains. Mages are feared and loathed by all. Your first two hours playing as a human noble will have almost nothing in common with those of a dwarf commoner or Dalish elf. While you're taught the basics of combat, and introduced to party mechanics, the rest is unique."

"Whether you play as a male or female, there are various characters with whom you can fall in love. However this isn't a genderless universe, and a gay relationship will be recognised as such."

"The ending, which is different depending upon how you've played, manages to deliver on the anticipation built up, surprising you with new twists, and creating an appropriate sense of scale."

The reviewer took 80 hours (over the course of 2 months playing it) to complete it with a first playthrough. He goes on to say:

"This is the most enormously detailed game world I've experienced, its history stretching back thousands of years, its cultures vivid, beautiful and flawed, the battles enormous, the humour superb. Roleplaying games now have a great deal to live up to."

"Verdict
A truly astonishing game. Vast, vivid and microscopically detailed. Dragon Age is the RPG of the decade "

94/100

keg in kc
10-22-2009, 09:38 AM
I was listening to a podcast over the weekend where it mentioned that the character generator was released by BioWare. If you're interested in starting to make your uber-noober just do a search on "Dragon Age Character Generator" and should be pretty easy to find.Yeah, I just ran across it on steam a few minutes ago.

I actually had a hard time deciding where to pre-order it from, because every friggin vendor had different special items. Ended up going with d2d for some reason.

Pants
10-22-2009, 12:10 PM
:whackit:

I wonder what kind of rig you'll need to run it on highest settings? I can't decide whether I want the 360 version for comfort or the PC version for all the mods later....

kaplin42
10-22-2009, 02:20 PM
I didnt see it mentioned, so if it was, I apologize for the repost.

But if you have not seen it yet, go to http://dragonage.bioware.com/sacred_ashes.html (http://dragonage.bioware.com/sacred_ashes.html) put in a DoB and then watch the Sacred Ashes video.

Nov. 3rd cannot get here soon enough.

Basileus777
11-01-2009, 03:33 PM
I've got the game pre-loaded and sitting on my hard drive. Only two long days before I can play it.

keg in kc
11-01-2009, 05:38 PM
I've got the game pre-loaded and sitting on my hard drive. Only two long days before I can play it.I'm still waiting for direct2drive to fix whatever "engineering" problem they're having. People are apparently pissed, but I figure what's the point. Not like it's going to make a difference whether I load it today or tomorrow; still can't play it until Tuesday either way.

Kraus
11-01-2009, 05:53 PM
So they are going to have DLC available on Day 1? I don't understand why they can't just include it on the disc.

I wonder if this was EA's marketing department's idea. Seems like BS to me.

Basileus777
11-01-2009, 05:59 PM
So they are going to have DLC available on Day 1? I don't understand why they can't just include it on the disc.

I wonder if this was EA's marketing department's idea. Seems like BS to me.

It has more to do with how the development cycle for the game went. The DLC was made by a separate team and was finished after the content was locked down for the game.

keg in kc
11-01-2009, 06:40 PM
So they are going to have DLC available on Day 1? I don't understand why they can't just include it on the disc.

I wonder if this was EA's marketing department's idea. Seems like BS to me.The digital deluxe edition includes the DLC, total price was $65, which is the same I'd pay for any other CE.

Basileus777
11-01-2009, 07:07 PM
The digital deluxe edition includes the DLC, total price was $65, which is the same I'd pay for any other CE.

I got it for $55 on Steam, thanks to Valve listing the wrong price during the first day it was up.

cookster50
11-01-2009, 07:13 PM
It's been a long time since I ever bought a game the first day it came out, but I might have to finally make the plunge. BTW, favorite game of all time, Betrayal at Krondor FTW!!!

keg in kc
11-02-2009, 10:45 PM
Only 12 or 14 hours to go now. Arrrgh.

Basileus777
11-02-2009, 10:50 PM
Only 12 or 14 hours to go now. Arrrgh.

I hear you. At least D2D unlocks a few hours before Steam does. I have to wait till 3 pm EST.

keg in kc
11-02-2009, 10:55 PM
I hear you. At least D2D unlocks a few hours before Steam does. I have to wait till 3 pm EST.Yeah, I think it'll unlock at noon for me.

My download was also only 7.9 GB.

But you did pay less.

Redrum_69
11-03-2009, 09:34 AM
The game is badass, been playing it since last night. going on nine hours now. SHould have the game beat by next week.

Der Flöprer
11-03-2009, 12:09 PM
THE TIME IS NIGH!!!!

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 12:11 PM
I'm installing it as we speak.

In other news, Gamespot US gave it a 9.5 (http://www.gamespot.com/pc/rpg/dragonage/review.html?tag=topslot;thumb;1).

When was the last time you felt totally lost in a fantasy gameworld? When was the last time you played a game with such a well-crafted and enjoyable story that you knew you’d remember it for a long, long time? Dragon Age: Origins is that kind of game, so rich and involving that you are powerless to resist its wiles and whims, so touching and triumphant that your mind and heart will be moved. In the fictional land of Ferelden, you meet memorable characters and fight for a cause you believe in, and it's this backdrop that makes developer BioWare's newest role-playing game so extraordinary. Dragon Age is more than a well-crafted story, however: It's a lengthy, intricate, and thoroughly entertaining adventure that's easy to fall in love with.

Dicky McElephant
11-03-2009, 12:16 PM
This is only for the PC? Gay.

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 12:21 PM
This is only for the PC? Gay.No, it's also on PS3 and 360. Although apparently the PC version is the best in terms of quality.

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 12:45 PM
Their social network must be getting slammed. I can't even log on to activate my bonus items.

Basileus777
11-03-2009, 01:55 PM
The registration process is fucked up right now. None of the codes Steam gave me work.

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 01:59 PM
The registration process is ****ed up right now. None of the codes Steam gave me work.I had the same problem. I disabled all my security (turned off avast! and windows firewall), restarted the game (so I was logged in...) and then did the registration shit until it finally clicked. Just finished downloading the stone prisoner and warden's keep not 5 minutes ago, so it is possible to get through.

Der Flöprer
11-03-2009, 02:01 PM
I picked up my copy for PS3 but unfortunately I'm stuck at work for another 4 hours. :deevee:

Basileus777
11-03-2009, 02:02 PM
I had the same problem. I disabled all my security (turned off avast! and windows firewall), restarted the game (so I was logged in...) and then did the registration shit until it finally clicked. Just finished downloading the stone prisoner and warden's keep not 5 minutes ago, so it is possible to get through.

Yeah, it's downloading now. The social site said my codes were wrong, but when I restarted the game, it was all available for download.

QuikSsurfer
11-03-2009, 02:45 PM
About an hour in and I'm really enjoying it so far. I can see myself sinking many hours into this.

:sigh: off to work

kaplin42
11-03-2009, 03:10 PM
whats the link to the social site please?

Frazod
11-03-2009, 03:50 PM
My copy's waiting for me at the local GameStop.

allen_kcCard
11-03-2009, 03:58 PM
Call me an a-hole, but I wonder how long before it will be out on torrents.

Would gladly support the game makers on games I really get into, but the extremely limited amount of time I can put into games these days doesn't make for me being able to shell out the cash. I kind of miss it though, to tell the truth....last game I bought was WoW and I love the feeling of getting a new game that I'm really looking forward to out of the box and going through the manual and stuff later after I just dive in head first for a while.

My son is 7 now and really getting into computers, albeit right now he is still doing little kiddie games on the internet. Hopefully soon I can get enough cash to setup a new rig for him and get mine updated so we can get some games that we can have fun with together.

Mr. Laz
11-03-2009, 04:03 PM
This is only for the PC? Gay.

PC > console

Pants
11-03-2009, 04:16 PM
Call me an a-hole, but I wonder how long before it will be out on torrents.

Would gladly support the game makers on games I really get into, but the extremely limited amount of time I can put into games these days doesn't make for me being able to shell out the cash. I kind of miss it though, to tell the truth....last game I bought was WoW and I love the feeling of getting a new game that I'm really looking forward to out of the box and going through the manual and stuff later after I just dive in head first for a while.

My son is 7 now and really getting into computers, albeit right now he is still doing little kiddie games on the internet. Hopefully soon I can get enough cash to setup a new rig for him and get mine updated so we can get some games that we can have fun with together.

It's probably out there by now, man.

I will never steal from Bioware though, this is def. a purchase for me. I'm still debating which version to get though.

Mr. Laz
11-03-2009, 04:18 PM
Call me an a-hole, but I wonder how long before it will be out on torrents.

Would gladly support the game makers on games I really get into, but the extremely limited amount of time I can put into games these days doesn't make for me being able to shell out the cash. I kind of miss it though, to tell the truth....last game I bought was WoW and I love the feeling of getting a new game that I'm really looking forward to out of the box and going through the manual and stuff later after I just dive in head first for a while.

My son is 7 now and really getting into computers, albeit right now he is still doing little kiddie games on the internet. Hopefully soon I can get enough cash to setup a new rig for him and get mine updated so we can get some games that we can have fun with together.
I believe this is more of an online game as well so downloading it won't give you the full effect.

Mr. Laz
11-03-2009, 04:19 PM
I believe this is more of an online game as well so downloading it won't give you the full effect.
sorry ... i'm completely wrong.

it's a single player type game.

oaklandhater
11-03-2009, 04:21 PM
It's probably out there by now, man.

I will never steal from Bioware though, this is def. a purchase for me. I'm still debating which version to get though.

Same here im a Bioware Fanboy they will allways have my support that being said I got the pc game early from Kmart on friday.

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 04:28 PM
This game is amazing.

Frazod
11-03-2009, 04:29 PM
This game is amazing.

What platform did you get?

allen_kcCard
11-03-2009, 04:34 PM
Yeah, BioWare and Blizzard are two that I enjoy supporting, but...selfish me would rather get the game anyway I can than not get a chance to experience them at all until they are old enough to be obsolete.

Fish
11-03-2009, 04:35 PM
I might just go buy this tonight. Think it will be in stock around town?

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 04:36 PM
What platform did you get?PC, I don't own any consoles.

It looks like it might be the deepest game I've played since BG 1/2. All kinds of stuff so far, like random character conversations you can listen in on, intricate ingame journal entries. And I'm still working through the mage origin story, maybe 90 minutes in.

The camera takes some getting used to, but it sort of seems like the stuff I liked about Elder Scrolls combined with the stuff I liked about the Witcher, all done by BioWare.

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 04:38 PM
I believe this is more of an online game as well so downloading it won't give you the full effect.It's single player, but I'm actually logged into my EA account while I play it. All the dlc is unlocked through keys you enter on their website, you can upload character profiles, keep track of your achievements (not sure what they are yet, haven't unlocked any). All stuff you don't need, of course, and I'm sure pirates will eventually hack all of it, if they haven't already.

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 04:46 PM
It looks like there are 87 achievements. I've unlocked 2 so far.

Pants
11-03-2009, 04:47 PM
It's single player, but I'm actually logged into my EA account while I play it. All the dlc is unlocked through keys you enter on their website, you can upload character profiles, keep track of your achievements (not sure what they are yet, haven't unlocked any). All stuff you don't need, of course, and I'm sure pirates will eventually hack all of it, if they haven't already.

Keg, how's she running on your rig? Nice and smooth?

Frazod
11-03-2009, 04:53 PM
PC, I don't own any consoles.

It looks like it might be the deepest game I've played since BG 1/2. All kinds of stuff so far, like random character conversations you can listen in on, intricate ingame journal entries. And I'm still working through the mage origin story, maybe 90 minutes in.

The camera takes some getting used to, but it sort of seems like the stuff I liked about Elder Scrolls combined with the stuff I liked about the Witcher, all done by BioWare.

I've been having computer issues for a couple of months now - my IT friend keeps fucking with it and can't figure out what's wrong, but the bottom line is I'm using my wife's shitty laptop at home now, so I'm pretty much stuck with the 360 or Wii right now. :grr:

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 04:57 PM
Running great so far. Nice looking game:

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 04:59 PM
I've been having computer issues for a couple of months now - my IT friend keeps ****ing with it and can't figure out what's wrong, but the bottom line is I'm using my wife's shitty laptop at home now, so I'm pretty much stuck with the 360 or Wii right now. :grr:Unfortunately, from what I've read so far, the 360 version is probably the worst one in terms of visuals.

Redrum_69
11-03-2009, 05:09 PM
I just got level 17, set the difficuly on Nightmare.

The game isnt that difficult if you are a seasoned RPGer...those who arent should stick to normal or hardcore.

Basileus777
11-03-2009, 05:11 PM
I just got level 17, set the difficuly on Nightmare.

The game isnt that difficult if you are a seasoned RPGer...those who arent should stick to normal or hardcore.

Are you playing it on a console? The console versions are easier.

Pants
11-03-2009, 05:19 PM
Running great so far. Nice looking game:

Good deal, thanks for great info. I guess I'll be playing it the way it was meant.

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 05:21 PM
I did my test mage run-through on normal. I'm going to restart later with my real mage on nightmare, I'll let you know how bad it is (or isn't).

The tactical system is really cool, by the way. You can really exercise a lot of control over your npcs, like saying "use a potion when under x health" or "cast this spell in this situation" although being an old BG player, I still like to directly control my groups.

cookster50
11-03-2009, 05:23 PM
Almost pre-ordered through direct2drive, but when I tried to pay with either paypal or credit card, it was declined and I had to open a support ticket. After thinking about it for a few minutes, I realized I don't want to be spending money at a place that forces me to open a freaking ticket and wait until a convenient time for said company to contact me. Give me a stinking phone number, especially to purchase the freaking game. So, I cancelled. Now I'll probably wait until after I finish Fallout3 before I buy this.

Mr. Laz
11-03-2009, 05:24 PM
looks tasty

Arcane Warrior

Among the ancient elves, there were mages who trained their magical arts to augment their martial prowess. They channeled magical power through their weapons and bodies, becoming terrors on the battlefield. Most consider these skills lost forever, but they may still linger in forgotten corners of the world. Arcane warriors may learn to use their magic score to satisfy the strength requirement to equip higher-level weapons and armor.

The arcane warrior is one of four specializations available to a mage at levels 7 and 14. After acquiring the specialization, the character will gain access to four new talents and be granted +1 dexterity and +5 attack.

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 05:24 PM
Almost pre-ordered through direct2drive, but when I tried to pay with either paypal or credit card, it was declined and I had to open a support ticket. After thinking about it for a few minutes, I realized I don't want to be spending money at a place that forces me to open a freaking ticket and wait until a convenient time for said company to contact me. Give me a stinking phone number, especially to purchase the freaking game. So, I cancelled. Now I'll probably wait until after I finish Fallout3 before I buy this.I had the same issue, they contacted me in about two days to authorize my CC (I'd tried ordering very late on a saturday). Of course, it wasn't a big deal since this was weeks before the game was released...

Basileus777
11-03-2009, 05:25 PM
I did my test mage run-through on normal. I'm going to restart later with my real mage on nightmare, I'll let you know how bad it is (or isn't).

You can change the difficulty at any time.

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 05:26 PM
looks tasty

Arcane Warrior

Among the ancient elves, there were mages who trained their magical arts to augment their martial prowess. They channeled magical power through their weapons and bodies, becoming terrors on the battlefield. Most consider these skills lost forever, but they may still linger in forgotten corners of the world. Arcane warriors may learn to use their magic score to satisfy the strength requirement to equip higher-level weapons and armor.

The arcane warrior is one of four specializations available to a mage at levels 7 and 14. After acquiring the specialization, the character will gain access to four new talents and be granted +1 dexterity and +5 attack.That does sound cool.

I better get my ass off my pc and get some work done. It's national novel writing month, and I'm already a couple thousand words behind. :cuss:

I don't see me sleeping much this week.

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 05:27 PM
You can change the difficulty at any time.I'm making a new mage, doesn't have anything to do with the difficulty settings, has more to do with understanding how things work a little better after playing an hour or two, how I want to spend my initial points and so on.

I'm notorious for restarting games over and over until I find my sweet spot.

kaplin42
11-03-2009, 05:56 PM
I'm making a new mage, doesn't have anything to do with the difficulty settings, has more to do with understanding how things work a little better after playing an hour or two, how I want to spend my initial points and so on.

I'm notorious for restarting games over and over until I find my sweet spot.

LOL, I do the exact same thing. Play for a few hours get the feel of how it is supposed to work, and then go back and do it the right way.

It's the min/maxer in me i guess.

Mr. Laz
11-03-2009, 06:01 PM
That does sound cool.

I better get my ass off my pc and get some work done. It's national novel writing month, and I'm already a couple thousand words behind. :cuss:

I don't see me sleeping much this week.

4 arcane warrior skills

<table border="0" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" width="100%"><tbody><tr height="50" valign="middle"><td align="left" width="40">http://www.gamebanshee.com/dragonageorigins/talents/images/fadeshroud.png </td> <td class="gb13bold" align="left" width="100%">Fade Shroud</td> </tr> </tbody></table> <table border="0" cellpadding="2" cellspacing="0" width="100%"><tbody><tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Class(es): Mage</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Category: Arcane Warrior</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Type: Passive</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Previous Talent: Shimmering Shield (http://www.gamebanshee.com/cgi-bin/search/banshee_search.pl?_cgifunction=Search&_layout=DAO_Talents_Page&DAO_Talents.talentname=%22Shimmering%20Shield%22)</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Requires: Level 16</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Friendly Fire: No</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb12" align="left">
The arcane warrior now only partly exists in the physical realm while Combat Magic is active. Spanning the gap between the real world and the Fade grants a bonus to mana regeneration and a chance to avoid attacks.</td></tr></tbody></table>

<table border="0" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" width="100%"><tbody><tr height="50" valign="middle"><td align="left" width="40">http://www.gamebanshee.com/dragonageorigins/talents/images/shimmeringshield.png </td> <td class="gb13bold" align="left" width="100%">Shimmering Shield</td> </tr> </tbody></table> <table border="0" cellpadding="2" cellspacing="0" width="100%"><tbody><tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Class(es): Mage</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Category: Arcane Warrior</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Type: Sustained</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Upkeep: 40</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Fatigue: 5%</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Cooldown: 30 seconds</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Previous Talent: Aura of Might (http://www.gamebanshee.com/cgi-bin/search/banshee_search.pl?_cgifunction=Search&_layout=DAO_Talents_Page&DAO_Talents.talentname=%22Aura%20of%20Might%22)</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Successive Talent: Fade Shroud (http://www.gamebanshee.com/cgi-bin/search/banshee_search.pl?_cgifunction=Search&_layout=DAO_Talents_Page&DAO_Talents.talentname=%22Fade%20Shroud%22)</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Requires: Level 14</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Friendly Fire: No</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb12" align="left">
The arcane warrior is surrounded by a shimmering shield of energy that blocks most damage and grants large bonuses to armor and all resistances. When active, however, the Shimmering Shield consumes mana rapidly.</td></tr></tbody></table>

<table border="0" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" width="100%"><tbody><tr height="50" valign="middle"><td align="left" width="40">http://www.gamebanshee.com/dragonageorigins/talents/images/combatmagic.png </td> <td class="gb13bold" align="left" width="100%">Combat Magic</td> </tr> </tbody></table> <table border="0" cellpadding="2" cellspacing="0" width="100%"><tbody><tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Class(es): Mage</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Category: Arcane Warrior</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Type: Sustained</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Upkeep: 50</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Fatigue: 50%</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Cooldown: 10 seconds</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Successive Talent: Aura of Might (http://www.gamebanshee.com/cgi-bin/search/banshee_search.pl?_cgifunction=Search&_layout=DAO_Talents_Page&DAO_Talents.talentname=%22Aura%20of%20Might%22)</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Requires: Level 7</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Friendly Fire: No</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb12" align="left">
While this mode is active, the arcane warrior channels magic inward, trading increased fatigue for an attack bonus and the ability to use spellpower to determine combat damage. Aura of Might and Fade Shroud improve the effects. Additionally, regardless of whether the mode is active, an arcane warrior who has learned this spell may use the magic attribute to satisfy the strength requirement to equip higher-level weapons or armor.</td></tr></tbody></table>

<table border="0" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" width="100%"><tbody><tr height="50" valign="middle"><td align="left" width="40">http://www.gamebanshee.com/dragonageorigins/talents/images/auraofmight.png </td> <td class="gb13bold" align="left" width="100%">Aura of Might</td> </tr> </tbody></table> <table border="0" cellpadding="2" cellspacing="0" height="215" width="508"><tbody><tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Class(es): Mage</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Category: Arcane Warrior</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Type: Passive</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Previous Talent: Combat Magic (http://www.gamebanshee.com/cgi-bin/search/banshee_search.pl?_cgifunction=Search&_layout=DAO_Talents_Page&DAO_Talents.talentname=%22Combat%20Magic%22)</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Successive Talent: Shimmering Shield (http://www.gamebanshee.com/cgi-bin/search/banshee_search.pl?_cgifunction=Search&_layout=DAO_Talents_Page&DAO_Talents.talentname=%22Shimmering%20Shield%22)</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Requires: Level 12</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Friendly Fire: No</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb12" align="left">
The arcane warrior’s prowess with Combat Magic grows, granting additional bonuses to attack, defense, and damage while in that mode.
</td></tr></tbody></table>

Der Flöprer
11-03-2009, 06:09 PM
PBJ PBJ PBJ PBJ PBJ

Installing, bitches!!! I haven't been this excited over a video game since Assassins Creed, and that wasn't a let down for me. I expect this to be epic!!!

Mr. Laz
11-03-2009, 06:10 PM
"... no cross-class skills ..."





:deevee:

Der Flöprer
11-03-2009, 06:15 PM
AND IT BEGINS................

Mr. Laz
11-03-2009, 06:39 PM
crap ... looks like all elemental AOE spells are friendly fire damage. :(

Pants
11-03-2009, 06:42 PM
crap ... looks like all elemental AOE spells are friendly fire damage. :(

The way it should be, IMO. Although, there's usually a difficulty level where it's not, weird...

Mr. Laz
11-03-2009, 06:44 PM
The way it should be, IMO. Although, there's usually a difficulty level where it's not, weird...
it makes the primal mage class almost worthless

it gets one initial shot before it turns into a support class. :shake:

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 06:45 PM
The way it should be, IMO. Although, there's usually a difficulty level where it's not, weird...Easy has no friendly fire.

That was my first challenge on my initial playthrough, learning to organize my party so I could cast the fire cone spell without torching my groupies. LMAO

I'm eagerly awaiting the opportunity to cast grease and then set it on fire!

Mr. Laz
11-03-2009, 06:53 PM
Archer looks like it might have some crowd control options depending on the damage rate. no friendly and hits AOE.



<table border="0" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" width="100%"><tbody><tr height="50" valign="middle"><td align="left" width="40">http://www.gamebanshee.com/dragonageorigins/talents/images/scattershot.png </td> <td class="gb13bold" align="left" width="100%">Scattershot</td> </tr> </tbody></table> <table border="0" cellpadding="2" cellspacing="0" width="100%"><tbody><tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Class(es): Rogue, Warrior</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Category: Archery</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Type: Activated</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Range: Very Long</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Activation: 49</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Cooldown: 40 seconds</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Previous Talent: Suppressing Fire (http://www.gamebanshee.com/cgi-bin/search/banshee_search.pl?_cgifunction=Search&_layout=DAO_Talents_Page&DAO_Talents.talentname=%22Suppressing%20Fire%22)</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Requires: 27 Dexterity, Master Combat Training</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb11" align="left">Friendly Fire: No</td></tr> <tr valign="middle"><td class="gb12" align="left">
The archer fires a single arrow that automatically hits, stunning the target and dealing normal damage. The arrow then shatters, hitting all nearby enemies with the same effect.</td></tr></tbody></table>

Basileus777
11-03-2009, 07:11 PM
it makes the primal mage class almost worthless

it gets one initial shot before it turns into a support class. :shake:

AOE effect spells seem pretty nasty so far. Fireball + grease has been very effective when set up properly.

Mr. Laz
11-03-2009, 07:13 PM
AOE effect spells seem pretty nasty so far. Fireball + grease has been very effective when set up properly.
cool ... i have know idea what the damage scale is yet.

what about archer, do they do any real damage?

anyone try shapeshifter stuff yet?

Mr. Laz
11-03-2009, 08:52 PM
I feel a Human>Rogue>Dual Weapon>Duelest character in my future.

QuikSsurfer
11-03-2009, 10:01 PM
Unfortunately, from what I've read so far, the 360 version is probably the worst one in terms of visuals.

Wat?

360 and PS3 versions look very similar.

PS3 is having some minor framerate issues - as per a few posters on neogaf have said.

Of course neither will look as good as the PC version.... but they certainly don't look bad...

keg in kc
11-03-2009, 10:49 PM
Wat?

360 and PS3 versions look very similar.

PS3 is having some minor framerate issues - as per a few posters on neogaf have said.

Of course neither will look as good as the PC version.... but they certainly don't look bad...I'm just going by the reviews I've read. I'm playing on PC, so I don't really have a horse in that argument.

Fish
11-04-2009, 09:07 AM
So I picked it up yesterday. Don't laugh, but this is the first PC game I've actually bought since Diablo 1.

Very cool so far. Seems like a medieval KOTOR. But that's not really a bad thing. Some of the dialogues have definitely taken me by surprise. I'm excited to think of the different storyline's for the other character classes. My lowly dwarf hasn't had quite the appeal yet that I expected. I've always been a smash and basher in these types of games, but I might have to try a mage for a runthrough.

Very fun though. Got stuck at a giant blue horned demon last night before I gave up. Gonna kick his ass today....

Der Flöprer
11-04-2009, 09:10 AM
Any Gray Wardens in the house?

Fish
11-04-2009, 09:22 AM
Any Gray Wardens in the house?

Word.

Redrum_69
11-04-2009, 09:24 AM
Yes.

Only advice to give without spoilers is that you would be advised to search the whole map. Pay attention to trees. Always look for extra loot after each fight.

My first character was a dwarf dual wielder.

The dialogue between your party after you have "chosen the path" during the conversations is hilarious.

Other than that, I may end up buying it down the line, but right now I'm glad I just rented it, having been burned on Brutal Legend and Borderlands.

Mr. Laz
11-04-2009, 10:16 AM
Dwarf > Weapon and Shield > Templar = Good Tank/Mage killer

scorpio
11-04-2009, 10:19 AM
I'm at work, going through withdrawls

Mr. Laz
11-04-2009, 10:42 AM
http://www.fileplanet.com/206215/200000/fileinfo/Dragon-Age:-Origins%E2%80%94Character-Creator

QuikSsurfer
11-04-2009, 11:05 AM
Any Gray Wardens in the house?

Yo what up?

QuikSsurfer
11-04-2009, 11:09 AM
6 hours in and
I just took care of the ogre that stood between me and the beacon.. tough fucker. The CGI battlescene that took place afterwards was pretty awesome

Anyone got the hound on their squad?

Basileus777
11-04-2009, 11:17 AM
6 hours in and
I just took care of the ogre that stood between me and the beacon.. tough fucker. The CGI battlescene that took place afterwards was pretty awesome

Anyone got the hound on their squad?

That Ogre was pretty tough, he killed everyone but my mage. I managed to kill by kiting him around and freezing him with winter's grasp and grease.

I got the hound, but I took him out for Leliana. I figured I needed a rogue to unlocks chests.

QuikSsurfer
11-04-2009, 11:20 AM
That Ogre was pretty tough, he killed everyone but my mage. I managed to kill by kiting him around and freezing him with winter's grasp and grease.

I got the hound, but I took him out for Leliana. I figured I needed a rogue to unlocks chests.

Pretty lame how you need a Rogue to unlock chests --- where is my mage's knock spells?

Der Flöprer
11-04-2009, 11:30 AM
6 hours in and
I just took care of the ogre that stood between me and the beacon.. tough fucker. The CGI battlescene that took place afterwards was pretty awesome

Anyone got the hound on their squad?

That Ogre was pretty tough, he killed everyone but my mage. I managed to kill by kiting him around and freezing him with winter's grasp and grease.

I got the hound, but I took him out for Leliana. I figured I needed a rogue to unlocks chests.

Pretty lame how you need a Rogue to unlock chests --- where is my mage's knock spells?

Looks like we're all on the same story line. I stopped last night in the village to the north. I was actually unhappy to that point because one of the things I love about RPG's is the wide openness to the games. Free to roam around and do what you please with side quests and such. That finally happened after the battle.

I love the choices you make in conversations and quests. It looks like you could literally replay through the game and go about 100 different directions. This is shaping up to be epic.

salame
11-04-2009, 12:24 PM
So how is it everyone?
Worth a buy?

Redrum_69
11-04-2009, 12:30 PM
Worth a rental.

QuikSsurfer
11-04-2009, 12:54 PM
So how is it everyone?
Worth a buy?

If you like RPGs - it is a buy

KCChiefsMan
11-04-2009, 03:09 PM
so based on the reviews it's way better for the PC?

Der Flöprer
11-04-2009, 03:33 PM
so based on the reviews it's way better for the PC?

I haven't seen it on the PC, but I love it on PS3.

Fish
11-04-2009, 03:34 PM
6 hours in and
I just took care of the ogre that stood between me and the beacon.. tough ****er. The CGI battlescene that took place afterwards was pretty awesome

Anyone got the hound on their squad?

I defeated the ogre over lunch. But didn't see any hound. I went on to Lovington(sp?) town afterward and got a new member named Sten. I seriously pissed off some priestess woman in the process, which in turn pissed of Alistair. I guess it's wrong to threaten a priestess in her temple?? Ohh well.

I'm having trouble being nice overall. But Morrigan and I get along well. I'm totally hooking up with her.

keg in kc
11-04-2009, 03:41 PM
That ogre put a beating on me the first time. We're talking Monty Python footstomp. All four guys down without hitting him for jack. Finally decided it was time to equip some of those potions I've been collecting. LMAO

Basileus777
11-04-2009, 03:44 PM
so based on the reviews it's way better for the PC?

If your PC can run them, games are always better on the PC. In this case you get better graphics, better framerate, a better interface, and the ability to play it zoomed out in isometric mode. It's also $10 cheaper.

Mr. Laz
11-04-2009, 03:53 PM
That ogre put a beating on me the first time. We're talking Monty Python footstomp. All four guys down without hitting him for jack. Finally decided it was time to equip some of those potions I've been collecting. LMAO
I almost always hoard potions like gold and then never end up even using them. dunno why. :)

Pants
11-04-2009, 03:55 PM
I almost always hoard potions like gold and then never end up even using them. dunno why. :)

Just in case, right?

Mr. Laz
11-04-2009, 04:00 PM
Just in case, right?
I guess it's my heartland upbringing ... gotta save for a raining day.

QuikSsurfer
11-04-2009, 04:22 PM
I defeated the ogre over lunch. But didn't see any hound. I went on to Lovington(sp?) town afterward and got a new member named Sten. I seriously pissed off some priestess woman in the process, which in turn pissed of Alistair. I guess it's wrong to threaten a priestess in her temple?? Ohh well.

I'm having trouble being nice overall. But Morrigan and I get along well. I'm totally hooking up with her.

ROFL

Same. I always have this problem when playing these types of games. Negative karma consumes me.
The dog comes in if you helped his original owner find a special flower to help him (the dog) recover.
I pissed off the same priestess :) -- she was babbling about me donating to the church and I laughed in her face... I miss the option for "time to shut you up" from Mass Effect, where you would then knock the NPC the fuck out.

Pants
11-04-2009, 04:30 PM
ROFL

Same. I always have this problem when playing these types of games. Negative karma consumes me.
The dog comes in if you helped his original owner find a special flower to help him (the dog) recover.
I pissed off the same priestess :) -- she was babbling about me donating to the church and I laughed in her face... I miss the option for "time to shut you up" from Mass Effect, where you would then knock the NPC the **** out.

Oh man, I'm the opposite. I can never enjoy the game as an evil character.

kaplin42
11-04-2009, 04:36 PM
A very important question for you guys.

As per the FAQ for the game

5.08 Will there be zombie kittens in the game?

You never know. Keep your eyes open.


Is there Zombie Kittens? This could be the deciding factor on how epic this game is.

Mr. Laz
11-04-2009, 04:37 PM
Oh man, I'm the opposite. I can never enjoy the game as an evil character.
same here ... in fact being evil comes so unnaturally that i have to force myself to do enough bad things to maintain a neutral type character. Usually i find one uber evil thing to do several times so i can go back to my "good" nature. ROFL

Pants
11-04-2009, 04:42 PM
same here ... in fact being evil comes so unnaturally that i have to force myself to do enough bad things to maintain a neutral type character. Usually i find one uber evil thing to do several times so i can go back to my "good" nature. ROFL

I know man, I'm thinking to myself "It's just a game, don't be such a f*g" but I just can't help but feel wrong. Whatever.

Der Flöprer
11-04-2009, 04:58 PM
LMAO You fuckin homos. At least that's what I always say to myself when I play Mr. Niceguy on a game. ROFL

Pants
11-04-2009, 05:23 PM
LMAO You ****in homos. At least that's what I always say to myself when I play Mr. Niceguy on a game. ROFL

:cuss:

keg in kc
11-04-2009, 06:05 PM
I almost always hoard potions like gold and then never end up even using them. dunno why. :)Probably for the same reason I don't level my characters right away, and just leave them with basic skills while hoarding their attribute and skill points.

Retardation. LMAO

KCChiefsMan
11-04-2009, 07:06 PM
If your PC can run them, games are always better on the PC. In this case you get better graphics, better framerate, a better interface, and the ability to play it zoomed out in isometric mode. It's also $10 cheaper.

ya I can run it with optimal settings. But my computer chair and leaning over to play a game can be uncomfortable. I like to lounge and lay back on my recliner when I game. That's probably why I can't get into the MMO's that I've tried playing. I'm not going to spend $100's to get a better PC gaming desk/chair setup either to make it more comfortable to play.

Fish
11-04-2009, 07:07 PM
Probably for the same reason I don't level my characters right away, and just leave them with basic skills while hoarding their attribute and skill points.

Retardation. LMAO

Well that strategy did give you a hell of an advantage in KOTOR. Use all the points after you became Jedi instead of wasting them on lower class shit.

Mr. Laz
11-04-2009, 07:21 PM
Probably for the same reason I don't level my characters right away, and just leave them with basic skills while hoarding their attribute and skill points.

Retardation. LMAO
fear of commitment
regret anxiety

so afraid that you will pick a skill that turns out to suck you just refuse to pick until you know exactly what's gonna happen.


I do the same thing ROFL

QuikSsurfer
11-04-2009, 10:54 PM
Oh man, I'm the opposite. I can never enjoy the game as an evil character.

It can really pay off.
For instance
The prisoner you first see in the hanging cage has a key to a chest that may be useful. you can bullshit around and do a few tedious tasks for him or you can kill him (he's gonna die anyway - not much for a chance of appeal), take the key, and then tell the watching guard that a grey warden doesn't have to explain himself or his actions. BOOM mother fucker!

KcFanInGA
11-05-2009, 12:43 PM
Loving this on the ps3, I'm about five hours in with a dwarf warrior, though that number is gonna jump this weekend. I do wish you could que up commands like in Kotor, but alas. Great story, graphics are smooth on the ps3 (haven't played other versions). Pommel Strike to the face FTW! I'm only level 3, looking forward to many hours and many playthroughs, which I don't usually do. But the origin story was so good, I want to play the other ones. And I usually play the good guy, but I'm going for a mix of gruff yet somewhat sympathetic depending on the situation. I am a dwarf, after all. Can't wait to crawl up a nimble elf and show her my battleaxe.

Frazod
11-05-2009, 02:20 PM
same here ... in fact being evil comes so unnaturally that i have to force myself to do enough bad things to maintain a neutral type character. Usually i find one uber evil thing to do several times so i can go back to my "good" nature. ROFL

You beakers should come by evil naturally.... :)

For me, it depends on my mood, and how evil evil actually gets. The evil ending of Jade Empire was like eating puppies alive evil - it was really disturbing. But sometimes just being twisted really appeals to me. I've been replaying Fable 2 as an evil bastard, and some of the stuff you can do in that as a bad guy are awesome. I married a girl from Oakfield, nailed her once and then got her to follow me to the temple in Rookridge, where I promptly sacrified her to the dark gods for brownie points and cash. Excellent! :evil:

As for Dragon Age, I'm digging it. Typical Bio Ware game, and you can't go wrong with that.

Fish
11-05-2009, 04:32 PM
Man... fuck those Shades.... they're kicking my ass....

QuikSsurfer
11-05-2009, 04:48 PM
Man... fuck those Shades.... they're kicking my ass....

Haven't encountered any "shades" yet, i dont' think.

How did you guys handle the demon possessed boy in Redcliffe? I persuaded his mother that killing the boy would be the best way to guarantee the demon be gone... she changed her mind at the last moment and I had to select the option "knock the mother out and kill the child - quickly"...
I'm mostly behaving this way because I want to tap Morrigan and she seems to like it when I misbehave..

keg in kc
11-05-2009, 07:07 PM
I'm about to restart my mage and eventual Arcane Warrior. Fiddling around in the Fade last night, I was shocked to find the most amazingly powerful spells in the spirit line. Namely Force Field and Crushing Prison.

I was playing around with creating a future Blood Mage and experimented with the Entropy school a little, as well, and threw in another wacky Spirit spell, Walking Bomb. Hilarious explosion of blood, although you've really got to coordinate your allies at Nightmare level, because it'll take them out almost as effectively as a Fire Ball. And Animate Dead is at the end of that tree, got to try that out someday.

I really like the idea of having an anti-hero Blood Mage that heals himself with Drain Life and Death Magic, and replenishes his mana with Death Syphon, all whilest doing all his other Blood Mage-y things.

I was digging around in the achievements earlier and damn it's going to take forever to finish them. Shit like learning ALL the spells in a school on your main character (it didn't say across playthroughs, either, like some of the achievements say, so I'm reading it to mean on a single play, which means you'd need 4 different specialized mages :eek: ). Good grief. Ditto for rogue and warrior. And one of them is finishing all the romance options in the game, which would mean you'd have to get your gay on a couple of times, as I recall (I think there's a female-female and a male-male).

The achievements are pretty crazy, going to take a long, long time to get through them.

Basileus777
11-05-2009, 07:19 PM
Man Shale is a beast. I subbed out Allistair for Shale, and so far he's proven to be a much more effective tank. Even against bosses he just doesn't die in stoneheart mode.

keg in kc
11-05-2009, 07:23 PM
The back and forth between Alistair and Morrigan is enough to keep them both in the group on my initial playthrough. Those two have me laughing my ass off about half the time.

Plus Morrigan is just hot. And not because of what she looks like - Claudia Black's voice does funny things to me.

Frazod
11-05-2009, 07:30 PM
I started as a mage, but I think I might restart as a rogue.

Basileus777
11-05-2009, 07:40 PM
I've found controlling a Mage or Rogue much more interesting than controlling a warrior. I'm going to want to play through other origins, but with the number of warrior NPC's available, playing as a warrior doesn't look that appealing.

Mr. Laz
11-05-2009, 07:51 PM
can you control the level up of the NPC characters after they join your group?

keg in kc
11-05-2009, 07:54 PM
can you control the level up of the NPC characters after they join your group?Yes.

Frazod
11-05-2009, 07:58 PM
Does the game get to a point where you have the same pool of NPCs to draw on, like other Bio Ware games?

keg in kc
11-05-2009, 08:07 PM
Does the game get to a point where you have the same pool of NPCs to draw on, like other Bio Ware games?Yes. 8 or 9 I think. I've only encountered 5 of them so far. They're your typical mix of good and bad so everybody has enough options to build a group regardless of their morality.

Your NPCs can, I think, leave, if you do things they really don't like. I know of at least one situation that I won't spoil.

I like the setup in this game, there's no halo-topped goody-two-shoes or moustache-twirling evil meters to fill up. And your companions like or don't like you based on what you do and say when they're there to see it.

My challenge right now is to woo and keep morrigan happy as a loyal mage of the circle. It's not an easy dance, she's all anti-hero "I want power!" but I'm interested in seeing how it plays out. And then eventually I'll see if I can't corrupt leliana in a similar manner with an evil character of my own. :evil:

Frazod
11-06-2009, 12:02 AM
I definitely like playing the pissed-off dwarven rogue better. This game rules.

:wayne: Bio Ware :wayne:

Basileus777
11-06-2009, 01:25 AM
<!-- / icon and title --> <!-- message --> The battle system in this game really does come down to managing threat/aggro. Once you get the abilities/learn how to do that, the game really isn't that difficult on hard (so far). Because of this, it almost feels like cheating to use Shale since he's such an awesome tank. The stoneheart branch of skills is just ridiculous.

keg in kc
11-06-2009, 03:29 AM
I'm enjoying playing as a mage on nightmare. It's probably going to seem like a cakewalk on any other classes.

Although there's certain things I had a bit of trouble with on my initial run-through. Any really big groups (more than 5) were tough, Ogre fights were always sort of hit-or-miss, and revanants just brutalized me (although several of those fights also fell into the 'really big groups' category.

This may be my favorite bioware game. Which is really saying something. We'll see what I think once I get through the entire game.

Pants
11-06-2009, 09:51 AM
Yes. 8 or 9 I think. I've only encountered 5 of them so far. They're your typical mix of good and bad so everybody has enough options to build a group regardless of their morality.

Your NPCs can, I think, leave, if you do things they really don't like. I know of at least one situation that I won't spoil.

I like the setup in this game, there's no halo-topped goody-two-shoes or moustache-twirling evil meters to fill up. And your companions like or don't like you based on what you do and say when they're there to see it.

My challenge right now is to woo and keep morrigan happy as a loyal mage of the circle. It's not an easy dance, she's all anti-hero "I want power!" but I'm interested in seeing how it plays out. And then eventually I'll see if I can't corrupt leliana in a similar manner with an evil character of my own. :evil:

Sounds a lot like NW2.

Delano
11-06-2009, 10:00 AM
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v258/DobleDollars/house-do-want_thumbnail.jpg

kaplin42
11-06-2009, 12:22 PM
Question for you guys using the PC version.

Does it require the disc to run? I ask, not cause i want to do something shady, but I want to get it this weekend, and both my GF and I would like to play it, but I don't want to have to buy two copys for the same house.

Pants
11-06-2009, 12:27 PM
Question for you guys using the PC version.

Does it require the disc to run? I ask, not cause i want to do something shady, but I want to get it this weekend, and both my GF and I would like to play it, but I don't want to have to buy two copys for the same house.

All PC games require a disc to play or a unique account if you get it through D2D (like Steam). You can easily get a no-CD crack, though, to solve that issue.

scorpio
11-06-2009, 02:09 PM
http://art.penny-arcade.com/photos/704358679_ayGHY-L.jpg

QuikSsurfer
11-06-2009, 02:30 PM
http://art.penny-arcade.com/photos/704358679_ayGHY-L.jpg

ROFL
you run into that guy like 2 hours into the game.. Funny way to sell DLC

kaplin42
11-06-2009, 02:35 PM
how many of you have bought the DLC? does it affect the game not to get it? Is it worth it? and finally, how much is it?

Sully
11-06-2009, 03:09 PM
First game like this I've ever played. Addictive, though I'm not quote sure what I'm doing half the time.

Frazod
11-06-2009, 04:14 PM
First game like this I've ever played. Addictive, though I'm not quote sure what I'm doing half the time.

Well, if you like this, try:

Mass Effect
Jade Empire
Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic

All very similar games with strong stories, interesting characters and different outcomes depending on how you play.

Der Flöprer
11-06-2009, 05:50 PM
I have an assassin on me, and I'm getting annihilated by them over and over. It's starting to piss me off.

Mr. Laz
11-06-2009, 06:27 PM
First game like this I've ever played. Addictive, though I'm not quote sure what I'm doing half the time.
don't hurry the learning process ... just enjoy it.

I think the most (game) fun i've ever had was finding my way the first time in Baldur's gate. Just wander and learn and have a good time. There is plenty of time to refine your technique. You can replay the whole game and really get into specifics.

Mr. Laz
11-06-2009, 06:41 PM
Game Installed ....


PBJ PBJ

Mr. Laz
11-06-2009, 06:45 PM
I'm torn between a Elven Shapeshifter for the fun value or a Human Rogue duel-wielder duelist for sheer killing ability. :deevee::deevee:








:)

Frazod
11-06-2009, 07:24 PM
Here's a word of advice - save frequently. Or pay more attention to what looks like a small group of enemies. :banghead:

Mr. Laz
11-06-2009, 08:42 PM
Harrowing ... pfft


*yawn*



:fire:

keg in kc
11-06-2009, 11:46 PM
Here's a word of advice - save frequently. Or pay more attention to what looks like a small group of enemies. :banghead:I go by the 'play a mage and learn cone of cold a.s.a.p.' philosophy myself.

I'm actually all the way to Lothering on my new playthrough, and haven't had a single toon killed (on nightmare). Okay, I may have, ah, reloaded a couple of times to keep this streak (hi there Tower of Ishal Ogre) but it's so much easier now that I know what I'm doing. Not that it's easy. There's a lot of strategic pulling going on, and the ogre fight was a half hour of kiting him around until the timer was up on cone of cold. LMAO

Actually unlocked an achievement for finishing Ostagar without the main character dying. I think I'm up to 8 now.

keg in kc
11-07-2009, 08:40 AM
So I found something new this morning. There's a flash version of the game called Dragon Age: Journeys online, and finishing achievements in that game unlocks in-game items for the real game. (Seriously)

http://www.dragonagejourneys.com/

I finished the first chapter (all there is) this morning in about 3 hours and got 3 in-game items for Dragon Age: Origins, all of which seem like they'll be pretty useful for the early- to mid-level game:

Embri's Many Pockets, a belt that gives +5% to cold, electricity, fire, nature and spirit damage resistance.

Helm of the Deep, a helm that gives +2 constitution and +10 to mental/physical resistances

and my personal favorite, the Amulet of the War Mage, an amulet that provides +5% to cold, electricity, fire, nature and spirit damage.


Helm looks really cool, took a couple screenshots of it on Alistair:

KcMizzou
11-07-2009, 10:55 AM
Well, I resisted as long as I could. I'm installing my copy now.

keg in kc
11-07-2009, 11:01 AM
Well, I resisted as long as I could. I'm installing my copy now.See you sometime in 2010, bud. LMAO

Mr. Laz
11-07-2009, 11:11 AM
Anyone find a way to get more Tilt on the wide camera angle?

zoom all the way in and you look forward but pull out and you're almost looking straight down. :(

Fish
11-07-2009, 11:31 AM
The camera angles can be a real pain in the ass.... In a few battle scenes I somehow locked the camera at a horrible horrible angle and couldn't see shit. Or the camera would pan away from my character spontaneously.

Hating the camera hard...

Mr. Laz
11-07-2009, 01:34 PM
Walking Bomb + run you ass off = FTW!!!!!!!!!!!!



:D

Der Flöprer
11-07-2009, 02:06 PM
Walking bomb is easily my favorite spell. The explosion is to die for!!!!!

groan.........................

Mr. Laz
11-07-2009, 02:29 PM
why doesn't anyone notice when you run around in just your undies?


:p

Mr. Laz
11-07-2009, 02:30 PM
Walking bomb is easily my favorite spell. The explosion is to die for!!!!!

groan.........................
so far i like it ... i hope it scales up nicely.


btw it's also dangerous because usually by the time they blow they are standing right next to you.


friendly fire teh suxors

keg in kc
11-07-2009, 03:18 PM
So far on this run through, I've done 25k total damage with my primal mage, but only 205 friendly fire damage. I've gotten really good at setting my people up to keep them out of the line of fire. But it seems to be getting more difficult to do; there's tougher fights now than there were earlier in the game, although I'm only level 8.

I just killed my first dragon. She was pretty tough. She flew down and my initial thought was the "oh wow, a dragon! didn't expect that here. hmm, she's kind of small, maybe this won't be too bad." 5 seconds later my entire group was dead. Moral of the story: when you're level 8 playing on Nightmare, never, ever think "maybe this won't be too bad" when you see a dragon.

So after the reload I kited her through a bunch of ruins (my entire group kiting and swapping off damage) for about, I don't know, 10 minutes. Down she went, but it was a close thing.

Not going to post a pic or talk about where or anything, don't want to spoil the surprise for anybody.


Edit: holy cow, I just looted said dragon's hoard and...holy cow.

KcMizzou
11-07-2009, 06:03 PM
This game is right up my alley. Love it so far.

KcMizzou
11-07-2009, 06:13 PM
Anyone else had issues with the sound being glitchy in spots? (Usually when the NPC's are speaking)

Mr. Laz
11-07-2009, 06:16 PM
This game is right up my alley. Love it so far.

I've heard that Mizzou guys love it up their alley.

http://blogs.mycentraljersey.com/channelsurfing/files/2009/01/dice.jpg


:D

Der Flöprer
11-07-2009, 06:16 PM
Anyone else had issues with the sound being glitchy in spots? (Usually when the NPC's are speaking)

Yeah. That happened to me for the first time last night. NPC characters and they're opening sentence or two are muted. Pretty fucked up really.

keg in kc
11-07-2009, 06:18 PM
I saw (or heard) that sound glitch during the mage origin story (the only one I've done so far), I haven't noticed it in the wider game.

KcMizzou
11-07-2009, 06:22 PM
I've heard that Mizzou guys love it up their alley.



:DHeheh... I knew someone would have something to say about that.

keg in kc
11-07-2009, 06:36 PM
I finally got myself trained for Arcane Warrior. It's so cool to be able to light stuff on fire in chainmail!

Basileus777
11-07-2009, 06:59 PM
Both Arcane Warrior and Shapeshifter seem kind of pointless from a gameplay perspective. There isn't much point to gimping yourself as a mage in return for being a warrior with no combat skills or an animal that can't cast spells. The mage specializations abilities aren't really all that useful outside of the first two spirit healer spells.

Mr. Laz
11-07-2009, 07:36 PM
Both Arcane Warrior and Shapeshifter seem kind of pointless from a gameplay perspective. There isn't much point to gimping yourself as a mage in return for being a warrior with no combat skills or an animal that can't cast spells. The mage specializations abilities aren't really all that useful outside of the first two spirit healer spells.

b,bu,buh,but it's so cool to turn into a spider and bite someone in da azz!!

keg in kc
11-07-2009, 08:05 PM
If the last hour is any indication, you're not gimped at all as an arcane warrior. At least I haven't been. Now, I haven't tried running with Combat Magic active, but I am curious to see how effective it is with Aura of Might and Fade Shroud. Needless to say it's going to be quite a while before I gain the levels for that.

'course, I took it primarily for roleplay reasons. This mage was always going to be the arcane warrior and the next is a shapeshifting blood mage. I doubt I'll ever do spirit healer.

I think what the specializations are really for is a different route to traditional d&d classes. You can create a cleric with arcane warrior, spirit healer and a mix of the creation and spirit spell trees, or a druid with some combination of arcane warrior, shapeshifter and spirit healer and the creation spell tree. Necromancer would be blood mage, entropy and a little bit of spirit (for animate dead).

Just a way to add some depth to a 3-class game, although those three classes are all obviously pretty flexible even without specialization...

keg in kc
11-07-2009, 08:36 PM
This game is just blowing me away.

So, apparently rogues can detect and disarm traps by default. I was just in the absolute coolest dungeon setup of traps I've ever seen in a game. Leliana (who'd never detected a trap prior to setting foot in this room; I didn't even know she could without the trap skill) started going nuts about traps everywhere and ended up disarming FIFTEEN in one room. I activated one by accident and it was freaking awesome, the way they had fire criss-crossing around the place:

Fish
11-08-2009, 10:57 AM
why doesn't anyone notice when you run around in just your undies?


:p

For me, other than combat situations, Morrigan is in her panties....

Mr. Laz
11-08-2009, 11:13 AM
For me, other than combat situations, Morrigan is in her panties....
hehe ... i almost always choose female when developing a character if there isn't a talent difference.

why would i want to look at a dude all the time if i can look at a cartoon chick instead. :)



I was hoping someone would say "put on some clothes!" or something. ROFL

Frazod
11-08-2009, 12:18 PM
BTW, I sincerely hope whoever thought up that goddamn endless shapeshifting maze dream sequence thing is getting anally abused with a jackhammer right now. :grr:

Mr. Laz
11-08-2009, 07:42 PM
http://img1.tvloop.com/img/showpics/72/9d/l3653435c0000_1_10650.jpg

keg in kc
11-08-2009, 09:40 PM
hehe ... i almost always choose female when developing a character if there isn't a talent difference.

why would i want to look at a dude all the time if i can look at a cartoon chick instead. :)



I was hoping someone would say "put on some clothes!" or something. ROFLI read a study a while back on MMO gamers masquerading as females, and the consensus was that gender confusion and/or latent homosexuality is at the core of it.

NTTAWWT.






J/K :D

keg in kc
11-08-2009, 09:46 PM
BTW, I sincerely hope whoever thought up that goddamn endless shapeshifting maze dream sequence thing is getting anally abused with a jackhammer right now. :grr:Saving the mage tower from the blood mages? Or does the Fade pop up again somewhere? I love that part in the mage tower, I'm there right now.

That's the only part of the game so far where I've had to cheat and turn the settings down from nightmare. Just for one fight. On the Templar level of the tower, where the desire demon has enraptured the templar. On Nightmare, I couldn't last 3 seconds in that fight. Wasn't even able to get a spell off before the templar stunned the entire group with smite and then she hit everybody with a bunch of mind shit and then cold spells. It was insane. I tried everything, hitting them with cone of cold, casting earthquake to knock them all down, hitting her with force field. None of it worked. I think the longest I ever lasted was 2-3 minutes, I killed all the skeletons, but couldn't kill the templar and desire demon. She broke out of both frozen and the force field too quickly.

keg in kc
11-08-2009, 09:53 PM
You guys checked out your online profiles? Characters and achievements are uploaded while you play (big brother likes videogames, apparently). Here's mine. (http://social.bioware.com/playerprofile.php?game=dragonage1_pc&nid=2262592726&lang_id=1)

QuikSsurfer
11-08-2009, 11:59 PM
BTW, I sincerely hope whoever thought up that goddamn endless shapeshifting maze dream sequence thing is getting anally abused with a jackhammer right now. :grr:

This.

Basileus777
11-09-2009, 01:22 AM
You guys checked out your online profiles? Characters and achievements are uploaded while you play (big brother likes videogames, apparently). Here's mine. (http://social.bioware.com/playerprofile.php?game=dragonage1_pc&nid=2262592726&lang_id=1)

That takes forever to update. It has my character where he was on Friday.

keg in kc
11-09-2009, 03:40 AM
That takes forever to update. It has my character where he was on Friday.Mine seems to be updating a lot faster than that. Usually a few minutes behind where I am. The weird thing is that it keeps bringing back a character I deleted days ago. Doesn't even exist on my pc, deleted all the files and everything, but he keeps popping up there every day, and then I delete him on the site, and then he's there the next day. But it's got my guy at level 11 and in the Blood Dragon Armor now, which is right where he is.

Mr. Laz
11-09-2009, 10:44 AM
I read a study a while back on MMO gamers masquerading as females, and the consensus was that gender confusion and/or latent homosexuality is at the core of it.

NTTAWWT.

J/K :D

:cuss:





alright ... that was pretty good. :)

Basileus777
11-09-2009, 04:19 PM
Those using the PC version might want to use this semi-official hotfix.

http://dragonage.gulbsoft.org/doku.php/hotfix/dexterity_hotfix_101

It makes archery more effective, and fixes a bug that made DEX not give damage bonuses when using daggers.

Fish
11-09-2009, 04:21 PM
Those using the PC version might want to use this semi-official hotfix.

http://dragonage.gulbsoft.org/doku.php/hotfix/dexterity_hotfix_101

It makes archery more effective, and fixes a bug that made DEX not give damage bonuses when using daggers.

Also note...

\\Installing this hotfix will cause a steep increase in difficulty (http://dragonage.gulbsoft.org/doku.php/hotfix/difficulty) by almost a full level for any encounters that include multiple archers. If you are having trouble with easy or normal difficulty, stay away from this hotfix until we have updated it to offset these effects.

Frazod
11-09-2009, 04:27 PM
how many of you have bought the DLC? does it affect the game not to get it? Is it worth it? and finally, how much is it?

I downloaded and played through it - it was worth it, IMO. Interesting storyline. You come out of it with a pretty kick ass suit of armor for one of your fighters, and afterward there are merchants there with good rates/items and a storage locker for party stuff.

Word of warning, though - make sure you have a rogue with you with level 4 lockpicking ability. There is one chest you can't open without it, and after you leave initially, when you return you cannot reenter the building it's located in. :grr:

Mr. Laz
11-09-2009, 05:10 PM
just got my ass kicked by a bunch of huge honkin spiders. :eek:





btw anyone know if there's some way to get out of the spider web trap thingie?

kaplin42
11-09-2009, 06:02 PM
I downloaded and played through it - it was worth it, IMO. Interesting storyline. You come out of it with a pretty kick ass suit of armor for one of your fighters, and afterward there are merchants there with good rates/items and a storage locker for party stuff.

Word of warning, though - make sure you have a rogue with you with level 4 lockpicking ability. There is one chest you can't open without it, and after you leave initially, when you return you cannot reenter the building it's located in. :grr:

Thanks for the feed back. I am so excited im getting the game this weekend.

how much was the DLC btw?

Frazod
11-09-2009, 06:57 PM
Thanks for the feed back. I am so excited im getting the game this weekend.

how much was the DLC btw?600 points, IIRC.

Mr. Laz
11-09-2009, 07:01 PM
If you get the DLC stuff do you have to start your character over?

Der Flöprer
11-09-2009, 07:12 PM
If you get the DLC stuff do you have to start your character over?

I downloaded the quest for Shale after reading about it here. I didn't have to start over. It just added it to my list.

Basileus777
11-09-2009, 07:34 PM
If you get the DLC stuff do you have to start your character over?

No, any items/quests will just be added to your current game.

keg in kc
11-09-2009, 08:04 PM
I downloaded and played through it - it was worth it, IMO. Interesting storyline. You come out of it with a pretty kick ass suit of armor for one of your fighters, and afterward there are merchants there with good rates/items and a storage locker for party stuff.I was so glad to get that chest last night. Talk about a life saver. I'm walking around with 110 bag slots (I think 120 is the limit, read that somewhere, so I've got to find one more pack) and was lucky if I could free up 30 or 40 of those before heading into a dungeon. I hate having to decide what to destroy when I loot something good.

I'm curious to see just how high level I'll be able to get. I'm a half a bar from level 12, and I'm told I've only explored 25% of the world and finished 21% of the game in my character log. That's through Ostagar, Lothering, the Brecilian Forest, the Mage Tower and the Warden's Keep. So that's leaves the golem dlc, Redcliffe, Orzammar and Denerim on the map and then whatever optional or quest-related areas unlock. It looks like I'm closer to halfway finished, map-wise, and I was under the impression that 20-22 is about as high as you'd get by the end. But maybe not. We'll see.

Taken me 35 hours to get this far, on Nightmare level, and doing everything I could find quest-wise.

Basileus777
11-09-2009, 08:27 PM
I'm at 38% and I'm not done yet. I'm pretty sure that it is tied to achievements, because it went up after I completed some other origins.

keg in kc
11-09-2009, 08:40 PM
I'm at 38% and I'm not done yet. I'm pretty sure that it is tied to achievements, because it went up after I completed some other origins.I do believe you're right. I just completed the zevran romance (on a guy, that was not fun, but it's tied to an achievement :doh!: and now I never have to do it again) and now it says 22% complete.

Morrigan's hilarious. I have her at 88% approval and she giggles when I talk to her. ROFL

I tried killing Flemeth earlier.

Bad idea.

KcMizzou
11-09-2009, 11:45 PM
Shale's a bad mother.

keg in kc
11-09-2009, 11:56 PM
Shale's a bad mother.I'm getting him right now, although I'm not going to use him on this play-through.

Bit of an update on how Arcane Warrior is working out:

Right now I'm level 12, wearing the full set of Blood Dragon Armor. With Rock Armor and Arcane Shield running (but no Combat Magic), I have 45 armor and 61 defense. On a mage. I'm on nightmare difficulty, and having no trouble handling groups of 3 darkspawn in Honnleath, archers and melee both, by myself, and I'd expect I could handle more. They don't hit me for very much so I don't even need to freeze them with cone of cold, although it's faster when I use it. Don't even need the rest of the group.

I kinda like it so far.

I've started exploring the entropy spell tree on Morrigan, and that's some fun stuff, too. I just put an entire mob of darkspawn to sleep, and then cast Waking Nightmare on them. Had a blast watching them attack each other. LMAO

QuikSsurfer
11-10-2009, 12:01 AM
I'm getting him right now, although I'm not going to use him on this play-through.

Bit of an update on how Arcane Warrior is working out:

Right now I'm level 12, wearing the full set of Blood Dragon Armor. With Rock Armor and Arcane Shield running (but no Combat Magic), I have 45 armor and 61 defense. On a mage. I'm on nightmare difficulty, and having no trouble handling groups of 3 darkspawn in Honnleath, archers and melee both, by myself, and I'd expect I could handle more. They don't hit me for very much so I don't even need to freeze them with cone of cold, although it's faster when I use it. Don't even need the rest of the group.

I kinda like it so far.

I've started exploring the entropy spell tree on Morrigan, and that's some fun stuff, too. I just put an entire mob of darkspawn to sleep, and then cast Waking Nightmare on them. Had a blast watching them attack each other. LMAO

I'm playing on normal (360 version) and I've died countless times... I think I have my party's tactics setup well but I still get destroyed the first 4 or 5 times on the bosses (the sloth demon, uldred)...
Nearly level 12

keg in kc
11-10-2009, 12:09 AM
I don't use tactics, I micromanage.

I've been using kind of a weird strategy: I don't have a healer in my group unless I'm forced to have one (i.e. wynne with uldred). What I did was give morrigan cone of cold and force field, which means that she and my character can both freeze entire groups and take bosses out of fights to kill minions, etc. Or on the really bad bosses, it gives me a backup forcefield to use if somebody's getting pummeled or if the boss resists one.

It's been pretty effective. I've reloaded a few times on boss fights, but that's not because my group was wiping, only because one of my characters died in the fight. So far they all have just 1 injury, and that's the one they get in the camp near the rhyming oak, which you can't avoid unless you walk in there solo (which I should have done :( ). I'm trying to make it as far through the game as I can without anybody dying in a fight, as far as my saved game is concerned.

Stupid OCD thing.

The only fights I couldn't handle to this point were Flemeth (not even close, going to wait several levels) and the desire demon on the templar level of the mage tower.

Maybe the best weapon I have for fighting groups is cone of cold and then having Alistair and Leliana shatter them with shield pummel and critical shot/arrow of slaying.

Leliana actually critted for 127 on an arrow of slaying last night, which was by far the most damage any of my characters have managed so far.

QuikSsurfer
11-10-2009, 12:20 AM
I don't use tactics, I micromanage.

I've been using kind of a weird strategy: I don't have a healer in my group unless I'm forced to have one (i.e. wynne with uldred). What I did was give morrigan cone of cold and force field, which means that she and my character can both freeze entire groups and take bosses out of fights to kill minions, etc. Or on the really bad bosses, it gives me a backup forcefield to use if somebody's getting pummeled or if the boss resists one.

It's been pretty effective. I've reloaded a few times on boss fights, but that's not because my group was wiping, only because one of my characters died in the fight. So far they all have just 1 injury, and that's the one they get in the camp near the rhyming oak, which you can't avoid unless you walk in there solo (which I should have done :( ). I'm trying to make it as far through the game as I can without anybody dying in a fight, as far as my saved game is concerned.

Stupid OCD thing.

The only fights I couldn't handle to this point were Flemeth (not even close, going to wait several levels) and the desire demon on the templar level of the mage tower.

Maybe the best weapon I have for fighting groups is cone of cold and then having Alistair and Leliana shatter them with shield pummel and critical shot/arrow of slaying.

Leliana actually critted for 127 on an arrow of slaying last night, which was by far the most damage any of my characters have managed so far.

I didn't fight Flemeth.... is this later in the game?
I have stuck with Alistar, Morrigan, and Zevran.. I didn't know who Wynne was after reading a few posts here.. I looked her up on the official site and
I remembered killing the hell outta her and her following before going into the nightmare fad world.. How does she compare to Morrigan? not sexually

KcMizzou
11-10-2009, 12:24 AM
I didn't fight Flemeth.... is this later in the game?
I have stuck with Alistar, Morrigan, and Zevran.. I didn't know who Wynne was after reading a few posts here.. I looked her up on the official site and
I remembered killing the hell outta her and her following before going into the nightmare fad world.. How does she compare to Morrigan? not sexuallyLMAO

keg in kc
11-10-2009, 12:31 AM
I didn't fight Flemeth.... is this later in the game?
I have stuck with Alistar, Morrigan, and Zevran.. I didn't know who Wynne was after reading a few posts here.. I looked her up on the official site and
I remembered killing the hell outta her and her following before going into the nightmare fad world.. How does she compare to Morrigan? not sexuallyAs far as fighting Flemeth goes It's based on reputation. If you get your rep high enough with morrigan (over 50) she'll open a dialogue with you about finding a grimoire Flemeth lost, that might be in the mage tower. If you picked up everything there, you probably have it already. It starts a quest line that can end with fighting Flemeth.

She's pretty wicked when she decides to fight. Flemeth I mean.Wynne is okay. She's not someone you can get to hang around if you're not playing on a 'good' side of the line. The biggest issue I had with her is that when I picked her up, she was level 10 and all her skill points went into combat tactics. So she has like 15 tactics slots or something crazy. Which I guess would be good for somebody who lets the party ai do all the work.

She also learned a lot more of the healing line spells than I'd have given to her. If you have a group that needs a healer she's great, but I prefer to have some firepower to go with it, and the only offensive spells she has right now are the knockdown on the rock line (forget what it's called - not a bad spell) and earthquake. Nothing else that I remember. Just that and a bajillion healing spells.

Morrigan's a real badass compared to her IMO. Plus it's friggin Claudia Black.

I think Wynne would be better on a future run-through if I went to the mage tower straight out of Ostagar instead of doing the elf forest first, but I wanted to unlock Arcane Warrior...

But if I could get to her earlier, at level 7 or 8, I could hopefully build her to be a little more useful on the attack side of the line.

I'm really itching to start my blood mage now. I think I might take Arcane Warrior again with it. And take the Power of Blood line at the Warden's Keep (which I did not on my current character; wouldn't fit his character). I think that could be one wicked mage, with his ability to regain mana from his own blood and regain health from enemies.

QuikSsurfer
11-10-2009, 12:37 AM
Morrigan will still have sex with you if you kill her mother?
I already gave her the item from the Mage tower.. I convinced her to kiss me, open mouth, for a reward.

keg in kc
11-10-2009, 12:38 AM
Morrigan had sex with me a long time before she asked me to kill her mother. Just have to get her over 50 rep. I think I have her close to 90 now.

She actually gave me a ring to wear once I got past 75. Morrigan. Seriously.