Dragon Age Awakening Interview
Interview - posted by VentilatorOfDoom
on Wed 10 March 2010, 10:28:23
; Dragon Age
The guys at Gamebanshee forwarded a couple of questions to DA lead designer Ferret Baudoin regarding the Awakening of Dragon Age.
GB: What should we expect when starting a new character in Orlais? Is there an "origin" section that's only playable by new characters? If so, how does it compare in terms of size and scope to the original origins in the base game?
Ferret: The new Orlesian Grey Warden isn’t an origin like we had, well, in Origins. It’s a background option that adds color to your experience playing through Awakening. Since the invading Orlesian Empire were only thrown out of Ferelden a few decades ago, the memories of occupation and Orlesian cruelty are very fresh. Unsurprisingly, some people will react quite differently to the new Orlesian that is not only the Warden Commander of Ferelden, but also the arl of Amaranthine – a landed noble of a good chunk of the kingdom.
GB: By the time a character reaches level 20 in the base game, there really aren't any desirable talents left to choose from. How do you intend to keep things fresh and ensure that we have plenty of appealing advancement options when the level cap is raised even further? How many more spells and other talents are you implementing in the expansion? Will these fall under the existing talent trees (Archery, Entropy, Two-Handed, etc.) or will we be seeing additional talent categories for each class? Care to give us an example or two?
Ferret: When we extended the level cap in Awakening (from 25 to 35) we also added a ton of new spells and abilities. There’s over 50 new ones to choose from, so there’s more new high level talents than you can get with one character. There’s two basic type of talents we’ve added – the talents that support our new specializations and those which are available to the core classes. The ones that give more goodies to the core classes fall into existing talent trees. Each type of weapon combat has another talent chain added to it. So two handed weapons, weapon and shield, dual wield, and archery all have four new abilities apiece. Mages get two new spell chains, as well. You have to be high level to pick up the new talents, but they’re often more potent than anything you’ve seen before.
An example of a warrior ability is “Peon’s Plight”. This ability allows a warrior to outright kill any one normal or critter level enemy, or deal a lot of damage to anyone else. This allows warriors to really change the tide of many battles. For example, if you start a fight and you see a non-elite Hurlock emissary in the back ranks – just bull rush him and lop off his head in one fell swoop. Conan would be proud.
Another awesome ability that both warriors and rogues can pick up is “Accuracy”. It’s a modal ability for archers that once activated increases the effectiveness of all of your ranged combat stats. The difference is immediate and noticeable. If you get the entire Archery ability chain it feels like Legolas has got your back.
Spotted at: GB
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