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IGN Propagates The Dragon Age Hype Blitz
Preview - posted by Edward_R_Murrow on Tue 31 March 2009, 20:28:57Tags: BioWare; Dragon Age: Origins
As a follow up to the Red Cliffs gameplay footage, IGN has put out a preview of Dragon Age, highlighting some combat mechanics and tactics as well as having some very empty words about the Codex's favorite now adopted into a hype piece.
A seductive sorceress named Morrigan, for instance, and a gigantic armored warrior named Sten who were following you around don't think helping out Redcliff is a good idea. They say so during the actual dialogue sequence, with the camera angle switching focus over to them as they deliver their lines expressing their discontent. It seems many conversations will play out in this way in Dragon Age. If somebody doesn't like what's going on, they'll usually pipe up immediately, putting pressure on you to change your mind.Boring stereotypes bad. BG2 style interactive party good (though some examples would be nice).
The general attitudes of your companions aren't just for looks or making NPC interaction more interesting. Thanks to an approval rating system, you'll have a general idea of how your party members feel about your actions. After any conversation where you make some decision any followers might find agreeable or annoying, you'll see alignment shift notifications pop up onscreen after the sequence is over. These you'll have to pay attention to, as boosting the approval of your friends will, according to BioWare, allow for some better performance during battle, allow you to learn more about the characters, and in some cases unlock extra quests. If your approval rating with someone happens to plummet, there's a chance they'll leave the party outright or, if it's bad enough, turn on you and fight. There'll be warnings if your choices are going to have severely detrimental effects on the party, so party member departures won't be a total surprise.
During battle the types of spells and attacks you unleash can work in conjunction with one another to become more effective. For instance, if you set up a fire trap and earthquake spell in the same place, the ground will shake at it catches on fire and burns for a period of time. Then if you set your warrior, Sten, to resist fire and never get knocked down, accomplished through the use of special abilities, he can walk into the affected zone and beat on whatever attackers happen to enter the area that aren't fatally burned or damaged by the shaking ground.The bold return of environmental interaction, or just BioShock style gimmicks a la zap and whack?
Morrigan can blast forth a cone of cold spell that freezes anything within its area of effect, which has its benefits and drawbacks. The obvious positive effect is it incapacitates what it touches, and if you combine that with a Stone Fist spell you can shatter the target, killing it outright without having to hack away at its life bar. The downside is, assuming you've cranked up the difficulty to a reasonable level, you'll have to be conscious of friendly fire. Freezing and shattering your followers isn't exactly the best idea.
but as far as the role of player choice goes, it seems you don't have to help out the town of Redcliff. If you wanted, you could pass right on by, which would have some kind of effect later on. It seems these types of choices that impact how the world develops will have to be made regularly throughout the game.How vague and uninformative. Examples might be nice, like the Witcher hype. For all we know, it could just be some cosmetic changes or a bonus weapon or two.