As we approach the release of Mass Effect 3, I’ve been seeing more and more about Bioware and its supposed decline in recent years. The first games in each series, Mass Effect and Dragon Age: Origins, were throwbacks to another era of gaming that focused heavily on the details of building your characters abilities. As for gameplay, ME was a third-person cover shooter with an emphasis on character decisions (within a rather confined morality system), story development, and exploration. Dragon Age: Origins was a third-person fantasy adventure RPG focusing on broadly defined character decisions and story development. Now, none of these things inherently make a game bad; both Mass Effect games have been in this roughly same format and I enjoy both greatly. When looking at sequels to beloved games, we all need to be more mindful of what we expect. Developer BioWare and publisher Electronic Arts have released four new screenshots from their upcoming open-ended role-playing title, Dragon Age Inquisition.
Dragon Age Inquisition is an upcoming action role-playing game developed by BioWare and published by Electronic Arts. Furthermore, tactical view also returns for all five platforms in Dragon Age Inquisition, whereas before it was exclusive to PC in Dragon Age: Origins, and which was removed in Dragon Age II.
Concept Artist Matt Rhodes has posted some of the concept art and illustrations that he created for Dragon Age: Inquisition. Huh, the flat anime (albeit well-drawn anime) dropped into 3-D environments approach to concept art is something I’ve never seen before. Not too long ago we wrote a feature which celebrated the way that PC games have moved forward in the last few years, but playing Dragon Age: Origins the first thing we find we have to do is question that idea. On the other hand though, in an age where technology has allowed developers to start really exploring the idea of cinematic storytelling, Dragon Age feels a bit out of sync and out of date. Part of the problem a€“ a significant part a€“ is that, for all its excellence and ability, Bioware is reusing a lot of ideas and materials when it comes to Dragon Age: Origins. This isna€™t a totally bad thing a€“ being able to compare any title to any of the above games should be considered A Good Thing a€“ but ita€™s slightly disappointing. The story is simply that a demon army has appeared on the border and is invading fast and you are one of the last members of the Grey Wardens; a group charged with defending civilisation from the most dire threats. The world at large suffers from similar problems as, without the D&D universe to support them, Bioware has taken a chance to create an entirely new setting. Most of this talk originates from dissatisfaction with the latest entries from the Mass Effect and Dragon Age series. Both games feature various powers, skills and passive attributes the player could invest in to make his character exactly as he wanted. Skills were organized in lines four across and the earlier skill had to be obtained before you could get the later skills.
This game really tried to balance the interactive story with the shooter action part and did a pretty good job. Combat involved selecting a target, hitting a single button to auto-attack, and then strategically using your skills to take out enemies. The developer is planning on fusing elements of both earlier games in the series, Dragon Age Origins and Dragon Age II, into the creation of Dragon Age Inquisition.

Dragon Age Inquisition launches on November 18th in North America and November 21st in Europe, on the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and PC. The game has always been pitched as a successor to Baldura€™s Gate after all and therea€™s a lot to be said for those classic fantasy tropes of the unstoppable hordes and the semi-secret society predestined to be led by their youngest member.
The presentation and drawn out introductions feel a touch tired and you need to sink a significant number of hours into the game before you can find something that isna€™t utterly predictable. Many of the characters feel too-familiar and safe when they are introduced, their personal plights and problems proving fairly run of the mill. Bioware crafts some truly excellent RPGs and Dragon Age is no exception, but we were kind of hoping to have moved past the days of stiffly delivered monologues and sidequests to retrieve family heirlooms. Ita€™s up to you to unite the various factions and issue a counterassault and, while it definitely comes into its own once youa€™ve got properly stuck in, ita€™s slow going to accomplish that. Unfortunately, it too feels mostly unremarkable and uninspired a€“ a carbon copy of Tolkien, with some name changes. If youa€™ve not played all of Biowarea€™s backcatalogue then Dragon Age will feel very fresh and interesting. I feel this decline is vastly overstated, even if I’ve not been the most adamant fan of some of Bioware’s recent work. Most skills stood alone, not really upgraded or improved by the later skills in their line, just replaced. Paragon, Renegade, and neutral made for interesting choices, but the game didn’t change all that much depending on what you chose. DA:O stressed the interactive story, giving several options for your character’s background. Combat was less about strategy and more about hitting the enemy until it died and skills often just added extra damage without needing to think about why you’re using it. The box said “Dragon Age” but what I got was a poorly executed fantasy version of Mass Effect. Too little change and a franchise will stagnate; too much and it will not be recognizable as a sequel.
The game will feature larger environments with much more opportunity for exploration. BioWare has confirmed that multiple playable races are returning, both male and female. He has also worked on video game titles such as Jade Empire, Mass Effect, Mass Effect 2, Mass Effect 3 and Dragon Age II. Therea€™s something in these stories which speaks to us through ageless ambition and a sense of drama. The finer details of each ally and enemy eventually come into finer focus, like most of the plot, but therea€™s a significant portion of Dragon Agea€™s core that feels like an amalgamated re-run of KOTOR, Mass Effect, Jade Empire and Baldura€™s Gate. Bioware has juggled things around and tried to keep things fresh by subverting the usual stereotypes in places a€“ but, again, it has used these tricks before. Even if you have played all the previous games then ita€™s still the same high-quality writing that Bioware has always delivered a€“ but ita€™s a notable caveat for those of you coming to Dragon Age: Origins expecting a hugely compelling epic from the off. As you will see, I thoroughly enjoyed the changes made to Mass Effect 2 but was decidedly less enthused with the results of Dragon Age 2. This was seen by many fans as a “dumbing down” of the games in order to appeal to a wider audience.

These backstories gave different characters different motivations and worldviews throughout the game. Your character is always the same core person with the same history and same trials to come. I think DA2 could have been a decently well-liked game if it would have marketed itself as a hack-and-slash RPG spinoff of the Dragon Age universe instead of a sequel to Origins.
We should all encourage change; we should love that redundancies were eliminated and unnecessary excess has been cut out.
The Elves for example are, rather than the high and mighty race youa€™d expect to find in a fantasy setting, the oppressed minority whoa€™ve only been recently allowed to have a voice in the empire. While Origins does get there eventually, it does take a long while before the game really gets going.
When discussing this topic, it is important to have an understanding of what these games really are at the core. Both games retained approximately the same number of skills but many were isolated by class, unlike in the originals. Plenty of franchises have had at least moderate success by making a game outside the primary genre of the main series, like Halo Wars or Burnout Crash. Additionally, Qunari are also playable for the first time. However, combat is expected to differ somewhat from its direct predecessor, and focus more on a player’s ability to prepare, position, and form a cohesive team with his or her party members, requiring fewer repetitive finger strikes but better thinking like the first installment. There are a few large decisions that involve characters living or dying, but you get to choose the outcome right then and prior interactions don’t factor in. Conversation and decision-making fell into a very black-and-white morality system that lost all the nuance the DA:O had. Then we could have seen a successor that stayed true to the core values that made DA:O so enjoyable. Sure, I like the idea of the Electronics line in ME that grants increased shields and the Overload ability and how they complement each other, but of course I want more shields when I level up. ME2 sticks to the same formula and makes huge refinements to the combat system that result in a more enjoyable gunfighting experience.
So I can spend a couple hours in super-annoying dreamland or skip that by killing some kid? You fight all the same people, for all the same reasons, and at the same point in the story every time you play through the game, regardless of the decisions you have made.
Some of your decisions could even make your companions leave your party permanently if they disagreed with your actions. Sometimes you would have the opportunity to lose or keep a companion, but always at a scripted point in the game and always for the same specific reason.
In ME2, they all happen behind the scenes as you level, leaving your points for more interesting things. At the end, you always fight the Archdemon, but decisions you have made will greatly affect the aftermath of the fight.

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