Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Dragon Age Inquisition - first part

The idea of a story and character driven epic fantasy game is hugely appealing and daunting all at the same time. I decided that I was going to dive in and see everything that Dragon Age Inquisition had to offer and to abandon any ideas of playing the previous two games first - just let all that history and lore be part of my learning this latest Bioware extravaganza.


Ok, no spoilers here at all, just some of the choices and fun things I have experienced thus far. Character creation was lots of fun, making my dwarf with his super moustache with the intent to be a Tempest Dwarf get-into-the-thick-of-things and lead-from-the'front kind of hero. I tried quite a bunch of looks for myself trying to match the voices provided as well - which was already awesome!


Venturing out into the world, it is a pretty pretty place with the swaying trees, the skittish wildlife, the rolling ocean, the people chatting, the warm sun streaming through the windows, the rain falling, the crunchy snow and the gloomy caverns. My screenshots don't convey how immersive the world is really and being a single player game the changes that happen in the course of the adventure are permanent - actions and choices matter.





One of the chief reasons for me in playing the game is the hugely rich world which is completely overflowing with histories, factions, theology, historical figures, legends, creatures, notable people geography, beliefs, magical theory and plenty of politics. Layered over this are the characters which we interact with as part of the game, some can join your adventures directly others you talk to often. All these characters are interesting in some way, representing a viewpoint in the world, contrasting in their perspective or offering a new set of quests etc. Then there is the main story itself, this is a game where we are the protagonist in a big sweeping story and that is a fun thing to be an active participant in.





So my Inquisitor is level 11 and has his Tempest specialisation now - lots of damage output from me that's for sure. While I really should swap my party around much more to get all the character interactions, my loyalty is too high and I almost always can be seen with Cassandra, Vivienne and Solas in tow.
I will just mention a few other things before winding up this up. I find it awkward (not using a controller) that I have to run everywhere, this makes me look a bit loony in small rooms racing up to talk to people. There are plenty of elements out in the wilderness (maybe because of shared assets) that look as though the game wants me to find a way up a particular mountain but I just cant get up there! The problem of wondering if any of the main NPCs have new dialog choices means running around to them all lots of the time and basically having a tiny meaningless conversation with each of them regularly.




The game is spectacular in many ways and I am loving the long conversations with fellow players about the game and the different approaches or choices. The scope of creating the vast library of conversations and actual spoken dialog is remarkable. So far, highly recommended if you like a deep world of character driven stories, now to play some more...

ps. the horse riding is wonderful!!

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