Well, I was really looking forward hugely for Dragon Age II. But I just couldn't wait till the bought the game to the stores here, (I know those of you in America got the game today didn't you?), and that means at least a few days till it gets here.
Anyway, I got around playing the game last friday, though unfrotunately I haven't got a lot of spare time lately, and at least my initial reactions are mixed.
I admit I never actually read too much into previews, so the lost of the races came as a huge blow to me that I've always enjoyed playing as an Elf Mage in these types of RPGs.
If I had to judge the game from just the intro sequence alone I would say the game is a big improvement over the first game, yeah it feels more action/button mashy, but at least it looks cool. But after that, and although I haven't got very far, it seems they've taken out a lot of depth from the system, and you know Dragon Age Origins wasn't the deepest RPG in the first place, at least not compared to Bioware's own previous work.
That they have downloadable content from day 1 is also lame in my opnion.
I don't know, I'm getting more and more convinced that it just isn't worth purchasing Xbox 360 games unless you have Live.
I have to play the game more to truly get a more accurate opinion on it, but maybe I just hold on purchasing the orignal copy until they came out with the Ultimate, Game of the Year etc. edition, or whatever.
UPDATE : For all of you wanting this game, you should definitely wait for reviews or more info to come out. There's a lot of tinybits I'm really not digging. I really don't think this will live up to the enjoyment I had with the original, which in spite its flaws, I really liked it from the very beginning.
Personally, I don't see why so many people disliked the typical silent protagonist, compared to Hawke, I take my Gray Warden.
Conversations do flow better, but it's more due to the new system than because of the actual speech. They would flow just fine without it.
You know, before it used to be that sequels were supposed to have more. Bigger, better, badder. That's how Baldur's Gate II was compared to the first one.
I was expecting a lot more to what was available in Dragon Age Origins, but instead it seems Bioware is focusing in making their games fancier and more appealing than giving them more content, customization and depth.
So far in the game most of the customizable gear is restricted to the main character. You can't even outfit your companions. Lack of races, now this. The spells and talents at least from the description, don't even have any negative effects on the caster this time around.
If it wasn't clear with Dragon Age Origins, now it's more than evident that Bioware is trying to make their games as appealing as they can be to most everyone.
I didn't mind that Mass Effect 2 was turned into a shooter because even so its one of the best ones around. And in reality most of the stuff outside of the main campaign in the first game was meh. The sequel is without a doubt the better game.
But for Dragon Age II, I was expected more stuff for the dedicated RPG player. I mean, it's not like there's a whole lot of choices around, this was supposed to be it.
GS REVIEW EDIT :
I knew I wasn't alone on my reactions towards the game. GS pretty much hit the nail in the head (in my opinion) about some of the game flaws. It's just not as great as the original, and its instantly noticeable.
It's a good RPG no doubt about it (and lets face it, it's not like there are many great new ones around on consoles), but good sequels should be an improvement, and Dragon Age II just isn't. Dragon Age : Origins, as ugly as it might look, and with its silent protagonist, is the superior game.