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Dragon Age II Previews
Preview - posted by VentilatorOfDoom on Mon 15 November 2010, 11:53:38Tags: BioWare; Dragon Age II
Dragon Age II, a game that according to Lead Designer Mike Laidlaw is being designed with the needs of physically or mentally disabled gamers in mind, receives the preview treatment at G4TV.
The action, while still offering players the option to micro-manage their strategy, was considerably more fluid and action-oriented than in the previous game, requiring less pause-and-play for those who simply want to map their abilities and mash a few buttons.
The most impressive effect we saw during the battle was a rain of fire that plummeted from the sky down onto our flaming opponents. Playing as a Rogue proved to be a faster, more strategic experience than our last encounter with the game in which we played a sword-wielding knight. In this go-around, we dodged and slashed our way through the encounter with a pair of duel blades, peppering in a series of ranged attacks and commanding our team to engage with their crossbows, magic and broadswords.
Mike certainly deserves recognition for his benevolent efforts to enable even the one-handed to happily button-mash through the game while at the same time making sure that those intimidated by numbas n shit will have a proper guidance as well, two-star armorz is betta than one-star armorz, nom sayin'?
Additionally we have a hands-on preview over at Videogamer.
In essence, BioWare has attempted to repeat what it pulled off with Mass Effect 2. Commander Shepherd's first outing was a sci-fi RPG with lots of shooting; his second was more or less a third-person shooter with lots of RPG mechanics bolted on; and now BioWare is aiming for a similar transition with Dragon Age II. Though Dragon Age: Origins was very much a hardcore Western RPG, this sequel feels like it's taken a step closer towards the door marked "Hack and Slash".
The pace of combat appears a lot quicker, for starters, and while Origins seemed to place a lot of emphasis on carefully queuing up a chain of attacks - zooming the view out to get an overview of the battle on the PC version - here the natural tendency is to get up in the enemy's face. The third-person camera loiters just behind your avatar's back, willing you to run up and give the nearest enemy a kicking. And so you do - hammering on one face button to dish out basic melee swipes, and then using the other three to use class abilities. The latter operate on a cooldown basis, and their colour-coded indicators are one of the few intrusions on an otherwise clutter-free HUD.
How much of a "hardcore western RPG" Dragon Age was is certainly up to debate, however, Dragon Age 2 will fix most problems the original had by enabling you to hammer your button in the most hardcore way imaginable.
After the last foe has been cut to the ground, there's a chance to catch up with Isabella for a quick chat. I'm happy to report that Dragon Age 2 retains the first game's habit of soaking its cast in buckets of gore, allowing for some amusingly odd-looking post-fight chats. Isabella's face and heaving cleavage are covered in blood, but she doesn't seem to mind: her purring words of thanks suggest that she's more than happy with the day's outcome, and before long she's dropping not-so-subtle hints about letting Hawke delve into her furry dungeon. For all Dragon Age 2's revisions, it seems that some things never change.
Delve into her furry dungeon. GOTY material, best RPG since Mass Effect 2.