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Dragon Age I just finished Dragon Age Origins and some parts of it werent awfull

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Thac0

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For a bit of context, if you cruise the more shallow waters of RPG discussions you will see DAO being lauded as the last good hardcore rpg before the decline. The obsession with this game goes so far that it is sacrosanct on more casual sites and insulting it draws a reaction akin to insulting a Troika game here.

So I decided to see what the buzz is all about. I bought the game and started a run, and dropped it after two hours. Years later I decided to give it a second try and dropped it again after 1 hour. Now years later again I am on my third try with the game and I actually completed it!

Now discussions on why DAO is shit are plentyfull here, and I totally agree with them. Its a step down from the old games and quite boring at parts. As such I will focus on what DAO did right for me and allowed me to get to the ending.

The structure was quite pleasant. You get backstabbed and betrayed, and now you have nothing but a useless title. You need to venture towards four factions (Mages, Elves, Humans, Dwarves) and call for their help with your title. They will deny you since they are in their own conflict and send you to resolve that before they follow you against the archdemon. The neat thing here is that you can choose to resolve each of those conflicts usually in two ways, and the final army that joins you differes depending on your solutions. When you then call the armies at the finale of the game there are gameplay consequences to your choices. That was pretty cool

The structure of the factions themselves is also enjoyable. Every faction starts you in their hub town where all the merchants are and where most quests start. You run around, trade stuff and accept every quests and hear some dialogue and worldbuilding of various quality levels. Then you venture into one big dungeon that is attached to each hub town.

Those dungeons vary wildly in quality. Sometimes there are interesting riddles, enemy encounter design where at least an ounce of thought has went into, compelling sidestories and generally a fun experience. That was the elves and the magicians sidequest for me.
Sometimes its just hours and hours of retarded hallways where the game throws uncountable hordes of braindead enemies at you without ever changing up the enemy types. That was the dwarves. Had I started with that area I would have quit the game a third time and this time for good.

But the game leaves you the opportunity to tackle those areas in any order. This adds a lot of enjoyablity to the system, which is otherwise quite formulaic. However this advantage comes with the cancer of level scaling. There were some harsh immersion breaks for me when in the final fight of the game I was oneshotting mooks which had quadruple the health in the last army recruitment dungeon.

Mages are fun. Apart from having the most interesting lore and storyline they also have the most varied skillsets and bring the bit of tactical depth to the game that it has. I used three mages on my run, the MC, Morrigan and Brynne. All of them played very differently from each other, my MC was an Enchantment type Magician coupled with Ice spells he used a mixture of healing, control and damage. Morrigan was a pure debuffer who also used lightning spells while Brynne was a pure buff character with earth magic. Mage vs Bossfights are very fun in DAO, better than in the Infnity Engine games in fact (although it is the only thing where DAO is better than them). In BG and IWD bossfights often boil down to you having a buffed up party that can shred the boss in second if his magical defenses are down. So your mages just spam countermagic hoping to make that happen while the boss tries to oneshot your dudes. In DAO its a tug and pull, with the boss being tanky enough to survive a few minutes and throw some challenge on you that isnt save or suck.

With this I am at the end of positive things to say about this game. I didnt particularily care for the characters or story, I have read much better in other games. Combat against trash mob, itemisation and C&C was generally shit. Dialogue was never above average. And from a technical standpoint its a piece of shit, crashes constantly. It crashed on me during the victory celebration lol, good thing I spam F5 all the time.

But overall the game surprised me. It isnt awfull to the point of being unplayable like some other modern rpgs.
Id give it a 5/10 after finishing it, more than I would have given it before. About the same quality level as Pillars of Eternity which I never finished to this day, but less dragged out so you can actually get through it.
 
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Robber Baron

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DAO with all DLC, expansion and mods is one of the best videogames related experiences I ever had in my life.

Is any of it worth it? Is skipped all DLCs available as I usually do for old games. I looked at what is in there and how they are received and none seemed to be better than the base game.

If you didnt like the base game there's no reason to bother with DLC
 
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Thac0

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DAO with all DLC, expansion and mods is one of the best videogames related experiences I ever had in my life.

Is any of it worth it? Is skipped all DLCs available as I usually do for old games. I looked at what is in there and how they are received and none seemed to be better than the base game.

If you didnt like the base game there's no reason to bother with DLC

My scale is a bit harsher than the usual "7 means the game is bad, 8 is default" from modern gaming "journalists". Didnt like starts at 4/10.
But yeah if none of the DLC are at least somewhat better than the basegame I wont bother. I am not on an rpg shortage and steam sale starts in a few days.
 

Wunderbar

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DAO with all DLC, expansion and mods is one of the best videogames related experiences I ever had in my life.

Is any of it worth it? Is skipped all DLCs available as I usually do for old games. I looked at what is in there and how they are received and none seemed to be better than the base game.
Awakening is good, Stone prisoner is ok (but it was integrated into the base game).
Rest of them are rubbish.
 
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Thac0

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Deep Roads was easily the worst part of the game. If someone was to make a Directors Cut of the game and just took out 50% of the dungeons and fights in Orzammar and trimmed all the dungeons everywhere a bit, the game could become a 6-7/10 for me.
Especially since the Deep Roads reuse every encounter type 5 times. Velociraptors spawn behind you, when you turn around to engage them a pack spawns ahead of you aswell and flanks you. Happens at every bridge and corner down there.
An enemy runs from you, when you follow them they alert a new pack and spiders spawn behind you. A good 3 times.
 

RK47

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Dead State Divinity: Original Sin
In Dragon Age 2 every encounter is deep roads :lol:
 

Darth Canoli

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Awakening is good, Stone prisoner is ok (but it was integrated into the base game).
Rest of them are rubbish.

DLC are not worth replaying the game if you didn't like it that much but they're a must for a first playthrough, shale (the golem) really adds to the experience.

I'm not sure about the extra modules/campaigns though since i didn't get past the first 10 minutes, the infinite respawn gets old real quick.
 

Jvegi

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It's 8-/10. The worst thing about it is the trash combat, other things are either good,fine or harmless.
 
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DalekFlay

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It's 8-/10. The worst thing about is is the trash combat, other things are either good,fine or harmless.

Pretty much my stance. The Bioware writing/structure is what it is, I neither love it nor hate it. The combat I find pretty good when it's a well designed encounter. Problem is many (most?) encounters are trash mob bullshit. Still... the lore is good, the questing relatively average, the exploration okay. At the time it came out almost every game was an Xbox piece of shit, so DA:O being "okay" made it game of the year. It's lost a lot of that credit in the incline era, but it's still the same "okay" it was then.
 
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Thac0

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you will see DAO being lauded as the last good hardcore rpg before the decline.

Not really mate, it came out in 2009 in the middle of the Dark ages of CRPGs (Witcher, Mass Effect, Bioshock, etc.)

I was talking more about places like rpgwatch, reddit, resetera, gamefaqs whatever. Noone ever stated that opinion here.
For me the dark ages started 2004 with WoW and truly ended in 2018 with Kingmaker, but I guess everyone takes different years for that.
 

Eastwood

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Had the game any interesting mods? I remember it being way too easy since all your party members auto generated HP after each fight.

Also, wasn't Awakening a full blown expansion pack rather than just a DLC?

There are a few mods that aim to make the game more challenging by improving enemy AI and rebalancing (Advanced Tactics and Combat Tweaks).
I would also highly recommend installing the various bugfix mods (or Qwinns overhaul), as vanilla is quite buggy.
Regarding custom content the modding scene in this game is pretty lackluster. There is apparently a mod that adds additional classes and specializations, but I have not tried it.

While the game has some flaws (MMO like fetch quests, consolized menus and some boring dungeons), overall I really enjoyed DAO. It has interesting non-clicheed world building, compelling characters and great tactical combat. Also the origins system is really cool and I wished more games would do something like that.
 

TemplarGR

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It was trash. Dragon age origins is almost as overrated as Oblivion was. Almost. Oblivion was trashier. But it was a close call.
 

JarlFrank

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It's a decent enough game that I enjoyed back when I played it... for the most part.

But the sheer amount of filler trash combat wore me out so much that I felt tired and drained at the end of it. I don't think I will ever re-play this. When I think back to Dragon Age, the one thing that comes to mind is how much of a drag all that filler was.
 
Vatnik Wumao
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DAO with all DLC, expansion and mods is one of the best videogames related experiences I ever had in my life.

Is any of it worth it? Is skipped all DLCs available as I usually do for old games. I looked at what is in there and how they are received and none seemed to be better than the base game.
Awakening is good, Stone prisoner is ok (but it was integrated into the base game).
Rest of them are rubbish.
Eh, Return to Ostagar and Warden's Keep also expanded upon the lore of the game quite nicely. Not groundbreaking or anything, but worth playing nonetheless. Also, if you do play the former, you should bring along either Alistair or Loghain.
 

overly excitable young man

Guest
It's basically the same shit as the IE games but because it doesn't have dnd setting (just like PoE) it gets trashed hard around here from those bigoted dndfags that hate tb combat and have never even heard of kotc.
And compared to BGs or Icewind Dales i am not completely turned off from replaying it sometime in the future.
It was pretty much ok. Not good but ok.

Edit: Also Morrigan is the best waifu.
 

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