The lights are on
The minute you start Dragon Age: Origins story, you will be plunged into the start of an unique origin that depends on your character’s race. Each of the 6 origin stories will have an impact on the rest of the story, like your Human Noble can become king/queen, or your Dwarf can become a Paragon of his people.
Each of the major decisions can end completely different from each other, depending on the ending, some people may die, and maybe no one will. Depending on who you put on the throne will alter the ending. Not all of the choices will have as much impact as the next, but even some of the side quests have a result in the end.
The story is about you, one of only two Grey Wardens - a group of skilled warriors that are the only ones that can stop the Blight - must gather and army starting from nothing except a few ancient treaties to different races, with the only other Warden, named Alistair who like you, just joined. Each of the major quests are almost like individual mini stories, but you never loose track of the full story and what you doing. As you go along in the story, different companions join your quest. Although a couple of them are obvious, some are not. If you have no idea who they are, you may accidentally kill one, or not give a second thought to another. Also, this is the only RPG where I actually like the whole party.
This is a pause-and-play RPG on a console. That said, the combat is well done. X is your basic attack, while , /\, and O, along with R2+those buttons serve as 6 special ability short-cuts. This works very well for Warriors and Rouges, but it doesn’t work quite as well for mages. Mages will have dozens of spells before the end, and only having 6 of them for quick use is a little annoying. But, you can still pause the gameplay and select which spell/talent you want to use.
Unfortunately, DA:O gets really easy after about halfway though. Even on nightmare, a well-built Warden will mow though the enemies. That’s about the only compliant I have about the gameplay.
Upgrading is just as fun as you would expect, getting new talents and feeling your Warden become more powerful is thrilling. You’ll get 3 attribute points, 1 talent, and every 3 levels(2 for Rouges) you will get a skill point. Skill points are used for things like making potions, poisons, traps, etc. The gameplay section of DA:O, like the story, is fantastic.
As great as the other parts of DA:O are, the console versions have very lackluster graphics. The PC has great graphics, but I’m not reviewing that version.
Some of the character models look good, mostly your Warden and party, but some of the NPCs look bad. Like the character models, the environments go from good to bad. The citys, especially Orzammar, look good. However, the caves, like the Deep roads are especially lacking.
Very Good Review, thanks for sharing.