Dragon Age Disappointment

I was one of the many people a tad disappointed with what Bioware decided to do with Dragon Age 2. Honestly, I don’t think it was unwarranted. Dragon Age: Origins really did leave off on a perfect note to continue on in the next installment. It literally tells you that your Grey Warden’s (assuming they survived) adventures aren’t over. One could suppose that Bioware did hold up with this in the Awakening expansion, but most would probably agree that that was a bit lackluster and not at all what we were expecting.

Nonetheless, even I was and am still exorbitantly excited for the sequel. Ever since discovering Bioware for the first time last year and then gorging myself on their major works (Baldur’s Gate, KOTOR, Jade Empire, Mass Effect) ,I can say with little hesitation that they are a company I trust to make quality games. In the least my response has been more mild than my wife’s. I’d daresay she’s still mourning over the loss of Alistair, who I’m pretty sure supplanted me at one point as the numero uno man in her life. What is it with women and fictional men these days?

Today I downloaded and plowed through the recently released Witch Hunt DLC. Suffice it to say I was excited about it. My favorite of my Grey Wardens, Peepor the human noble, spent much of the game enthralled in a steamy romance with Morrigan. She was one of my favorite characters in the game, and with this DLC I was hopefully at least going to get a little more closure on their relationship.

Unfortunately, while I enjoyed the DLC, I think it was a bit lackluster. Ariane and Finn, your companions for the quest are nowhere near a replacement for any of your original party. I loved the gameplay of Dragon Age but without the character interaction of the main game the experience is significantly lessened. I could have overlooked all of this though, if the final meet up with Morrigan had been at all satisfying. It felt rushed and lacked a fraction of the emotional resonance of her original departure. It was little more than a brief rehash thrown together for the sake of squeezing six more dollars out fans of the game.

That sauid, it did further stoke my excitement for Dragon Age 2. I won’t spoil the ending of the DLC, but I will say that I sincerely doubt this is the last time we’ll see Morrigan. Considering that Flemeth is already concerned to be returning in the sequel, I wouldn’t count it unlikely that their game of mystical cat and mouse may continue as a prominent part of the sequel.
At the same time though, I also felt a bit of loss when I finished Witch Hunt. It made me reflect on how much I enjoyed Origins, and before the details of the sequel were revealed, how much I was looking forward to continuing the same adventure in the sequel . I’m sure Dragon Age 2 will have a great story that I’ll love, but I still think the wiser course would have been to continue with the plot of the first game. Perhaps Bioware just judged it too complicated to integrate all the various origins and other choice factors they would have had to incorporate. That said, it makes me sad to think that it’s over.

Perhaps I just wanted a happy ending for Peepor and Morrigan. More than one last night tainted by blood magic and thoughts of a battle to come. But then Dragon Age was not a black and white game. And who knows, maybe there will be more of the first game incorporated in the sequel than we think. Maybe the second game will blow the first out of the water in every way imaginable. Or maybe the disappointment will linger on and those disgruntled fans still craving more Alistair, Zevran and Morrigan will have to find other outlets to sate their hunger. I hear the game has a ripe fan fiction community.

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2 Responses to Dragon Age Disappointment

  1. Boots says:

    All right…I’m still totally disappointed about not being able to have my same character…but maybe I will consider playing Dragon Age 2. Maybe. Especially if they find a good voice actor for the main character.

  2. Cai says:

    I was just really disappointed in the whole Dragon Age product. It was hailed as the spiritual sucessor to Baldur’s Gate, but it was really just KOTOR in a fantasy setting. There was very little possible character customization and the whole thing just felt generic and limited. The world has very little going on besides “everyone vs. monsters.” Weak.

    And what about that toolset we were promised? Clunky, nearly impossible to install, and so time consuming that there have been only a handfull of community created adventures, and those just a few hours long.

    Baldur’s Gate was a milestone in CRPGS. So was NWN with its amazing toolset. Dragon Age could have been a fusion. A deep, customizable experience with interesting characters and a toolset that allowed users to do even better. Instead, we got a console game ported to PC.

    And now DA2 is dropping even the illusion of being a PC first title. “It mostly sold on consoles” says Bioware. Yes… that’s because you delivered a console game. The success of Blizzard shows that there is still plenty of life in the PC market for a company that generates good games. Even without WoW they were a success from Diablo, Starcraft, Warcraft, et all.

    DA was just a weak effort, and at this point I see little reason to think DA2 will be any different.

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