Dragon Age II: now more like Mass Effect 2

Discussion in 'General Gaming and Hardware Forum' started by Brother None, Jul 8, 2010.

  1. Sander

    Sander This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Jul 5, 2003
    EA knows this full well. That doesn't mean rushing products is a mistake, though, as EA's primary concern isn't producing quality products, it's making money. A shorter development cycle means less money spent producing the game, so fewer sales needed for the same profits.
     
  2. Ilosar

    Ilosar Vault Fossil

    Apr 20, 2010
    Vault Dweller's review is up on the Codex http://rpgcodex.net/content.php?id=224

    Good review, and I agree with his conclusion (I would have used less strong words maybe). I disagree on the character creation system, however (especially fighters having more flexibility in Origins) and I think the situation with the Arishok was more interesting than he says, but different strokes for different folks. At least most of his comments are consistent with what he thought of Origins.

    Oh, and I myself prefer bosses having lots of HP to you having to guess which spell to use to bring down their invincibility barrier and then right click on them with your fighters to melt their tiny health bar before the spell is re-cast. Again, opinion.
     
  3. LinkPain

    LinkPain Mildly Dipped

    Jan 18, 2011
    Sorry but i wasn't up to date, saw this thing recently on wiki and then checked links.
    Who is the other one? And why would they do the same stupid thing?
    Customer payed for the product and they ban him because he is behaving bad? There should be a heavy fine for that, or the law sucks so bad.
     
  4. Atomkilla

    Atomkilla Hazel Hegemon oTO Orderite

    Dec 26, 2010
    Comparing his Origins review with this one. Man, II really must be very lame...
     
  5. Brother None

    Brother None This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Apr 3, 2003
    Here.

    As for why? Because they're dumb? I don't know. Don't buy the glitch story obviously, but it does seem more like a mistake. I don't know if EA is as dumb or brazen as to think they could actually get away with this.
     
  6. LinkPain

    LinkPain Mildly Dipped

    Jan 18, 2011
    Of course I don't buy it as a glitch story cover up :D
    Even if it was, it's ridiculous for them to wait for him to go public.

    This is why game industry sucks as it is now, when you buy one game and the seller limits you to the point that he controls how you can use it as part of the product which shouldn't exist (having to log on internet to play something that is not MMO and that is YOURS ONLY), because they believe you look like a rude bastard on free internet.

    But this kind of thing destroys DA2 even more, I might not like how the game design went from DA:O, but doing things like these is utterly stupid.
     
  7. Crni Vuk

    Crni Vuk M4A3 Oldfag oTO Orderite

    Nov 25, 2008
    you know something that I really find surprising is how EA always ... gets away with it. They did so much shit over the years. And seriously it is like basically almost everyone is saying "they suck". But they still are in business.
     
  8. LinkPain

    LinkPain Mildly Dipped

    Jan 18, 2011
    I don't know the US laws but I would sue them if I was furious enough.
    They are cashed in so they don't have problem staying in business, the problem they will have is when some serious competition arrives. Then EAs hard earned reputation will come knocking at their sales.
     
  9. Crni Vuk

    Crni Vuk M4A3 Oldfag oTO Orderite

    Nov 25, 2008
    But EA has some competition in the market ... or are they the only company selling and publishing/developing games ?
     
  10. Brother None

    Brother None This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Apr 3, 2003
    EA isn't even the biggest publisher anymore. Their bullshit and bad games already bit them in the ass. They've been in decline for a while. So yeah, there's that. They still make games people want to play, even with all the hate piled on em. But keep it up and you will decline. It's just a slow process, it's not like people boycott them.

    Boycotts are kinda dumb anyway, in my opinion. But that's just me maybe.

    EDIT: ah, naturally, it sold faster than DA:O
     
  11. aenemic

    aenemic Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Jun 4, 2008
    I'm really struggling to finish this game. the story doesn't interest me anymore, it had potential but then fell pretty much flat. still running around in the same areas I did at the start of the game doesn't exactly lend to a feeling of accomplishment and progress. everything is basically same old, nothing new. bosses with a million hp that one-shot my healer isn't exactly a fun challenge, just annoying. and so on.
     
  12. Ilosar

    Ilosar Vault Fossil

    Apr 20, 2010
    So, after a month...
    http://social.bioware.com/forum/Dra...ed/Dragon-Age-2---Week-4-Sales-6983266-1.html info is from VGCHartz, but still gives a decent estimate.

    Barely over one million copies sold across all platforms, far lower than Origins, with numbers steadily decreasing. Kinda expected, really, with the trainwreck of a release they had (no auto-attack on consoles? seriously...). And we know why they bundled with Mass Effect 2.

    Trying to please everyone + rushing a game (1 year and a third to make a 50 hours RPG while changing so much? sigh) = anticipated disaster. I seriously hope it means they will change that for an eventual third game, but the IP will probably be judged non-profitable and simply abandoned.

    I wanted to write a review for a time, but Vault Dweller said it all; good potential wasted by horrible design decisions and developing schedules.
     
  13. Brother None

    Brother None This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Apr 3, 2003
  14. Ilosar

    Ilosar Vault Fossil

    Apr 20, 2010
    Good review, but I disagree with him on several points, starting with the issues pointed out on the last comment (that Durandal fellow), the plot is more complex than he lets on imo.

    Also, character build is much more open in DA2 (despite the confusing decision to restrict weapon and armor selection, doing away with the requirements with a mod leads to tons of fun customization without breaking any balance), allowing you to have a two-handed warrior that can act as a decent tank while sacrificing only a little damage (impossible in Origins since all two-handed talents increased damage) and the way trees function in general means mages have to plan their ability selection rather than pick at random. I do agree that no non-combat skills is bad, however.

    One thing I wanted to point out is how I am starting to be annoyed with the Diablo comparisons and 'action-RPG' terms being thrown around like a death sentence. The game is a poorer RPG than many, but it remains an RPG, it doesn't change label because of it.
     
  15. LinkPain

    LinkPain Mildly Dipped

    Jan 18, 2011
    Well at least on this product the final verdict of 85% is more sane than 95% again.
     
  16. sea

    sea Vault Senior Citizen

    Oct 5, 2009
    Everything I've seen about the combat suggests that it's actually lesser than Diablo II as far as its battle system goes. At least Diablo has enemies with resistances and that can totally wreck your day in a second if you're the wrong class, don't have a party supporting you properly, don't have the right buffs turned on, etc. Unless you're playing Dragon Age II on nightmare, the combat in it is completely frantic and devoid of strategy... just press all your skill buttons indiscriminately, quaff potions, and wait for the battle to end. Hell, even nightmare doesn't really make the combat any better... harder, sure, but plinking away at endless health bars doesn't really make for fun or tactical combat either.

    And no, I'm not holding up Origins' combat as a shining example of brilliance either, but at least it allowed for a lot of options that actually changed how you played the game. As a mage, going between direct damage and buffing/debuffing was a pretty big decision to make, as was experimenting with spell combos and later building your character around that (and the rest of your party for that matter). Arcane Warrior, while overpowered to some degree, completely changed how you played a mage. Warriors were dull in Origins, and rogues were basically just backstabbers and utility mules, but at least they had slightly different play-styles and functions other than "click on an enemy until it's dead." Yes, it was a game of min/maxing, but at least alternate abilities weren't 100% useless, and at least it made sense when your party members were just as integral to the game as your player character, sometimes even more so.

    In Origins, enemies actually had differing abilities that made you rethink how you took them on. Dragons, Ogres etc. had area of effect attacks and whatnot that made certain tactics risky or impossible. Revenants posed a very real threat because they could instantly disable your mage and did a huge amount of damage. Those spiders could bum-rush your party and disable everybody in one shot, meaning that if you weren't careful you'd end up dead very quickly. Enemy mages had to be taken out first or they would cause serious problems, and there were certain skills and tactics dedicated to doing so. In Awakening, there was a fight with two dragons that saw them actually using their skills in combination with one another. In Dragon Age II, all the enemies are basically the same - they either have a ranged or melee attack, and they either have a big health bar or a small health bar. There are some very few exceptions, mostly bosses, but hell, even the former champions, dragons, got turned into nothing more than damage sponges.

    The lack of a zoomed-out camera and enabling/disabling party AI in Dragon Age II also pretty much just guarantees that combat is going to be a spammy mess no matter what you do, because you just do not have the fine control necessary for a tactical combat experience. Remember when Bethesda claimed that third-person perspective was a legitimate play-style in Fallout 3? That's pretty much the equivalent of saying tactics are relevant in Dragon Age II. Yes, "technically" you can do it that way, but the game was definitely not designed around it and there is no incentive to do so unless you want to punish yourself. "Drink potion when health gets low/cast fireball when enemies are standing next to each other" is not tactics, nor is it deep and engaging gameplay.
     
  17. TheWesDude

    TheWesDude Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Feb 25, 2005
  18. LinkPain

    LinkPain Mildly Dipped

    Jan 18, 2011
  19. Ravager69

    Ravager69 Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Dec 21, 2007
    I lost my optimism about the game after I learned how little I can do to change the outcome of the final confrontation or even some quests. Like Merril's and Anders' quest are so shitty, no matter what you do (even outright denying to do the quest), the game forces you to complete it with some nasty consequences, which you cannot avoid no matter what.

    I hoped that by denying Anders help in his quest you can prevent him from [spoiler:fccf800b25]blowing up the Chantry and killing the Grand Cleric, thus allowing for a peaceful ending or something[/spoiler:fccf800b25], but nooooo, everything has to be as planned by the devs. Same with Merril. I told her to stuff that stupid mirror of hers and that I will not help her rebuild it, but somehow I am railroaded into that damn cave where nasty shit with a demon happens. Bleh.

    It's a game good for one playthrough, still. Could be done a lot better, but hell.
     
  20. Ilosar

    Ilosar Vault Fossil

    Apr 20, 2010
    @ sea: Have to disagree somewhat here. Yes, big health bars are definitely a problem (the High Dragon just.won't.die.). But the click-on-until-it-dies? From the exterior it may look like that, but not using ability combos (Cleave/Assault for example, or OP cross-class combos) makes Hard much more of a pain, and is practically a requirement every fight on Nightmare because you can't AoE your way to victory anymore. The longest boss battle is a duel, because no cross-class combos lowers your damage significantly. I began finishing an old save of Origins, and have an easier time at Nightmare than in the sequel at Hard, save for Ser Cauthrien of course

    And as I have said before, I find character builds very good and amongst my favorite in RPGs (I am not a DnD fan at all, to be honest). Very few other games allow a warrior-type class so much utility and flexibility while still keeping it unique from the other 3 classes, far more than in Origins (where warriors were really linear and dull and rogues were squishier warriors with backstab and lockpicking). My only regret is that there is not enough threat management abilities, making fights too chaotic (the stupid wave system doesn't help at all), hell it seems many of those abilities have been passed on to rogues for some reason.

    As for identical enemies, that's wrong on a level and true on another. There are Commander types that buff and heal troops, mages can wipe a whole party if you don't pay attention and those pesky Assassins deal huge (one-shot on Nightmare) damage to squishies if you do not reveal them beforehand via AoE or keep them on the move. On the other hand, yes, fighting demons or spiders or humans is almost identical, hell three unique demon types replace the three unique human enemy types.

    @ Ravager: oh so very true. I somewhat understand the situation with Anders as it is critical to the plot, but stopping Merill while advancing her story should definitely have been possible, at worst just make her leave if you refuse to aid her. At least you can avoid butchering her whole clan, even if the option is pretty obscure.