Sunday, January 10th, 2010 by Nick Maunders
Happy 2010 everyone! First of all apologies for not writing anything for a month but I’ve had a broken wrist so it has been difficult to do anything. To start off the new year I’m going to be reviewing Dragon Age: Origins, if any of you are fans of the RPG category you really should consider checking this game out.
The game was released in November last year on the PC, PS3 and Xbox 360. If any of you have played “The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion” it is quite easy to relate this game with it. Both games are in the role-playing category and they both are brilliant. Dragon Age: Origins main plot is you becoming a Grey Warden, who are the “protectors” of Ferelden. You then engage the main enemies of the game “The Darkspawn” which is the name suggests are hideous creatures.
The game begins with you choosing your character. You can pick which class you want, which race you want, which gender you want, which origin story you want and of course you can customise nearly every detail of you from your hair to your eyes. Starting with classes you have three choices, Warrior; Mage or Rogue. The three races which you can pick are: Human; Elf or a Dwarf. Each of these choices has an effect on the origin story you can pick. There are 6 origin stories in total. If you are an elf you have a choice of two stories. if you are a dwarf you have a choice of 2 stories whereas if you are a human you get a choice of 1 story. However there is one story solely for a mage regardless which race you picked.
Basically the origin story acts as a mini tutorial for you, so you can learn the ropes of the game. After this all stories are linked to the main game where you start battling the Darkspawn. Much like “Oblivion” this game focuses a lot on attributes and skills. You choose how strong you are, how easy it is for you to block incoming hits etc. There are a few skills which you can learn such as Survival, Combat Training, Herbalism, Trap-Making and Poison- Making.
However unlike “Oblivion” the game also focuses on talents which your character can learn. These depend on the class you picked. So for example if you picked the Warrior class you can learn a talent called “Taunt” which increases the hostility of enemies around you. If you’re a Mage you can learn a talent called “Lightning” which speaks for itself, whereas if you’re a Rogue you could learn a talent “Stealth” etc. Each class also has 4 specialisations. These specialisations can be very beneficial if you decide to use them. You can learn 1 specialisation when you are level 8 and another when you are level 12. For a Warrior the specialisations are: Champion, Templar, Berserker and Reaver. If you are a Mage there is a choice of Arcane Warrior, Blood Mage, Shapeshifter and Spirit Healer. If you picked a Dwarf as your class you have a choice of Assassin, Bard, Duelist and Ranger.
Another important feature in this game is the buddy system. As you progress in the game you meet new people who join you in your quest. Each companion has their own personal quest if you get to know them an you can equip party members with weapons and armour which suits them. You can also select tactics for each party member. Do you hate it when archers and killing you? Well simply set a tactic for one of your companions to automatically target an enemy who is in attacking you with a ranged attack.
When comparing this game to Oblivion it would seem that whereas both games are very good Dragon Age: Origins is a bit more complicated. For example Oblivion has far less talents and attributes settings and when you attack in Oblivion you can only do one or two type of attacks. In Dragon Age: Origins however there are loads of talents and skills and you can do loads of attacks from flurries, to death blows etc.
The game can be complicated but by the time you’ve finished the origin story you should have a greater understanding of the game/. I would give this game 95%.