Dragon Age II, who's playing it? After a very bumpy release, and some scathing review scores, I was very fearful for the game. "Has Bioware finally released a dud!?" was the only question running through my mind. But, my manager had 1 copy of the Bioware Signature Editon left, and because of the rarity alone, I picked it up. After playing maybe an hour, I knew that the critics were being overly harsh.
Okay, and while I hate making this observation, look at Mass Effect and Mass Effect 2. The guns had actual ammunition, the leveling system was simplified drastically, the gameplay felt faster paced, while retaining the fundimentals of the original. Yet, despite the changes, The critics ate ME2 up, and was a critical success. Now the same song and dance is being done with Dragon Age II. The combat is faster, the leveling system is simplified, yet whereas Mass Effect 2 took a step back in how to differentiate your character, DAII gives you a bit more if you think about it. Every ****has atleast 5 sub****s that have about 10 skills to learn in each sub**** Thats about 50% more abilities, both passive and active, to tinker with. And the combat, and all my friends agree, feels like ME2, substituting the guns for swords, bows, and shields. Granted, DAII tends to be a bit button-mashy, but is that really a bad thing in a game like Dragon Age, where you have to swing a sword(s) or nock and release an arrow? Also, much has been said about the tacticle nature of the game being too simple. Well, the tacticle, stop-and-start nature is still there, and still has its benefits. Like having you input a mage to curse an enemy, your rogue to do a backstab, and your warrior to do a shield bash, all with you controlling the battle.
As for the story, this is where I agree for the most part with the critics. Now while the story isn't bad, it's not what most critics are complaining of. This is, as the first trophy/achievement of the game is, "A tale within a tale". Think of it as an episodic story, or a weekly tv show. Yes, it is different from Bioware's previous work, but since when is being different a bad or a negative strike for a company? Especially from a company as reputable as Bioware, who makes hit after hit.
So my question to my friends/gamers. What do you think of Bioware's change of pace?