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HOLY SHIT PEOPLE, IT'S NOT BAD ENOUGH WE'RE GETTING AN UTENA EXHIBITION RIGHT NOW

THEY. ARE. MAKING. A. NEW. MUSICAL. NEXT. YEAR. START LOSING YOUR SHIT RIGHT NOW

#26 | Back to Top10-21-2013 07:36:57 PM

Yasha
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Yeah, that's pretty much exactly it. The many different choices in DA:O offered you the chance to pick what best suited your personality, where Hawke gives you the choice of "angry Hawke", "nice Hawke", or "snarky Hawke". It's fun watching Hawke do stuff, don't get me wrong, but it's not at all like being able to choose what I would do from a wide range of reactions, some of which offer the same content (eg: sympathy) in different ways (awkward, smooth, obviously fake). Or at least that was how it felt to me.


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#27 | Back to Top10-22-2013 12:10:12 AM

Ashnod
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Yasha wrote:

Yeah, that's pretty much exactly it. The many different choices in DA:O offered you the chance to pick what best suited your personality, where Hawke gives you the choice of "angry Hawke", "nice Hawke", or "snarky Hawke". It's fun watching Hawke do stuff, don't get me wrong, but it's not at all like being able to choose what I would do from a wide range of reactions, some of which offer the same content (eg: sympathy) in different ways (awkward, smooth, obviously fake). Or at least that was how it felt to me.

I could be wrong, but I don't think there were that many true conversation options for the Warden, and many of them that appeared to be different still had a character respond in the same way as if you chose a different option.

I haven't felt restricted as Hawke except in one or two places, but I had that problem with the Warden as well. Especially in places where the plot is going to move forward regardless; BioWare isn't always the greatest at giving you varied responses then.

Last edited by Ashnod (10-22-2013 12:13:07 AM)


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#28 | Back to Top10-22-2013 12:16:03 AM

Quixim
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Ashnod, out of curiosity, what did you dislike about Awakenings? I feel like it did a pretty good job of adding a bit more interesting stuff, and setting up for DA2 with Anders and more mention of the mages.

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#29 | Back to Top10-22-2013 12:37:46 AM

Ashnod
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Quixim wrote:

Ashnod, out of curiosity, what did you dislike about Awakenings? I feel like it did a pretty good job of adding a bit more interesting stuff, and setting up for DA2 with Anders and more mention of the mages.

It would probably be easier to name the things I did like about it. But I'll give it a go, anyway.

I hated everything about the plot with the Mother and the Architect. Everything. There's nothing salvageable from it for me. It should all be scrapped.

I didn't care for any of the new companions aside from Sigrun.

I hated the fact that the epilogue of Origins is completely ignored if your Warden had a love interest. I was fairly miffed that Leliana's only involvement was a letter saying that she couldn't be joining me at Vigil's keep.

I hate the fact that if you do the plots in a particular order you cannot do Sigrun's or Valenna's Joining Ritual, since speaking to the Seneschal immediately begins the end game.

I hate the concept of Justice inhabiting a dead Warden's body. I'd rather him just end up in Anders from the get go than try to explain why there's an animated corpse moving about that's not a mindless undead. I hate that the Justice spirit inherits the memories of the dead Warden, and feels compelled to act on them.

That's enough for starters.

Last edited by Ashnod (10-22-2013 12:48:06 AM)


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#30 | Back to Top10-22-2013 03:18:38 AM

Yasha
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Ashnod wrote:

I could be wrong, but I don't think there were that many true conversation options for the Warden, and many of them that appeared to be different still had a character respond in the same way as if you chose a different option.

I haven't felt restricted as Hawke except in one or two places, but I had that problem with the Warden as well. Especially in places where the plot is going to move forward regardless; BioWare isn't always the greatest at giving you varied responses then.

Hm. I recall quite a few places that hit more than three conversation choices, especially in the romance sections.  And it's not really about the effect on the game itself, whether it made a mechanics difference, a story difference, or had no effect at all. It was that I wasn't choosing the way I wanted to see someone else, like Hawke or Shep, interacting with the world. I was choosing the way I wanted to interact with the world.

Hawke is a good character, and very entertaining, but Hawke is Hawke. Hawke is not, and never can be, me. Therefore, of course, she is less interesting to me. emot-keke


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#31 | Back to Top10-22-2013 08:11:37 AM

Ashnod
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

But you aren't the Warden either...rather, the Warden isn't you and can never be you.

I am not sure I see the distinction between Hawke and the Warden in this respect.

Last edited by Ashnod (10-22-2013 09:08:00 AM)


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#32 | Back to Top10-22-2013 09:47:23 AM

Snow
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

While we cannot project ourselves completely onto an rpg protagonist, we can project a certain aspect of our personality, how you think you would act if you were put in similar situations. A multitude of dialogue options increases the possibility that everyone will find exactly what they think they would say in the given situation, or at least something close.
I remember having to actually scroll through widely different dialogue options in games like Baldur's Gate, and more often than not I would be able to find an answer that made me go 'yes! I would totally say this in that situation'. 
In DA2 it was rare, at least for me, that I agreed fully with any of the three 'personalities' of Hawke. Sure it did happen sometimes, but often I would end up clicking the little mask icon of silly!Hawke out of sheer automatism.
Hawke felt more like a carefully pre-designed character that can branch into several directions depending how you steer him/her, and less like a result of my personal madness and whimsy, like the Bhaalspawn was emot-biggrin

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#33 | Back to Top10-22-2013 09:51:22 AM

Ashnod
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Snow wrote:

While we cannot project ourselves completely onto an rpg protagonist, we can project a certain aspect of our personality, how you think you would act if you were put in similar situations. A multitude of dialogue options increases the possibility that everyone will find exactly what they think they would say in the given situation, or at least something close.
I remember having to actually scroll through widely different dialogue options in games like Baldur's Gate, and more often than not I would be able to find an answer that made me go 'yes! I would totally say this in that situation'. 
In DA2 it was rare, at least for me, that I agreed fully with any of the three 'personalities' of Hawke. Sure it did happen sometimes, but often I would end up clicking the little mask icon of silly!Hawke out of sheer automatism.
Hawke felt more like a carefully pre-designed character that can branch into several directions depending how you steer him/her, and less like a result of my personal madness and whimsy, like the Bhaalspawn was emot-biggrin

Hmm.

I think this is just going to be a disconnect between me and everyone else, then.

I tend to craft elaborate stories around my protagonist, all in my head, mind you, but these characters are never me. I live vicariously through them and feel their joys and pains, but when I'm scrolling through a dialogue tree I'm never looking for the option for what I would say. I'm looking for the option most appropriate for the character I'm currently playing.


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#34 | Back to Top10-22-2013 10:11:28 AM

Snow
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Ashnod wrote:

Hmm.

I think this is just going to be a disconnect between me and everyone else, then.

I tend to craft elaborate stories around my protagonist, all in my head, mind you, but these characters are never me. I live vicariously through them and feel their joys and pains, but when I'm scrolling through a dialogue tree I'm never looking for the option for what I would say. I'm looking for the option most appropriate for the character I'm currently playing.

I think it's just a different approach. DA2 opened my eyes to this kind of roleplay, I got all maternal towards Hawke emot-biggrin - she became a person of her own, in a way. Even with limited customization, she ended up a fun character ( and that's what good writing does ).
Similar thing happened in ME, too.

Last edited by Snow (10-22-2013 10:17:16 AM)

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#35 | Back to Top10-22-2013 12:38:20 PM

Lurv
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Well, I don't necessarily think of the Warden as *me*, but it seems easier to project the personality I want on them. Since you get a wider variety of choices and they're for the most part mute.

Hawke felt more like a pre-designed character, as Snow said. And it's not like that can't be an interesting way to play too, but I would be lying if I said I didn't miss the way Origins did it. Although I guess the amount of actual influence you get on the game isn't that different in DAII, I guess the Warden appealed more to my ~imagination~.

What I liked with DAII was the changed rivalry/friendship-system. The idea of it, anyway.

Last edited by Lurv (10-22-2013 12:39:17 PM)

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#36 | Back to Top10-22-2013 01:53:50 PM

Yasha
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Ashnod wrote:

I tend to craft elaborate stories around my protagonist, all in my head, mind you, but these characters are never me. I live vicariously through them and feel their joys and pains, but when I'm scrolling through a dialogue tree I'm never looking for the option for what I would say. I'm looking for the option most appropriate for the character I'm currently playing.

Given the choice between pretending I'm me in a different world and pretending I'm someone else in a different world, I usually pick me, although I can do both. I like having the Warden with no default personality getting in the way of expressing mine. As I said, though, that doesn't mean I don't like Hawke and Shep.

Lurv wrote:

What I liked with DAII was the changed rivalry/friendship-system. The idea of it, anyway.

Oh god yes. The gift system was so broken. If they were trying to imitate life, gifts were the wrong way to go about it. The way it works in DA2, with the gift pretty much always (I don't remember any exception, anyway) starting a conversation about the character's motives/past/future, and the emphasis on your words and actions as a determinant of your relationship rather than just another factor, makes so much more sense. I have a hard time with seeing that as a downside, although I heard a lot of bitching about it. Like, why?? It's so much more realistic that way! emot-confused

Speaking of gifts, though... anyone else notice that Alistair's less important gifts are basically action figures? This is one of those times when I don't know whether it was completely obvious or whether I'm reading too much into it, but the mental image of him sitting by the campfire, examining the statuettes and making up stories about them in his head is adorable. emot-keke

Although, it does sort of speak to a lost childhood, and that's a little sad too.


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#37 | Back to Top10-22-2013 02:10:46 PM

Lurv
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Yasha wrote:

Speaking of gifts, though... anyone else notice that Alistair's less important gifts are basically action figures? This is one of those times when I don't know whether it was completely obvious or whether I'm reading too much into it, but the mental image of him sitting by the campfire, examining the statuettes and making up stories about them in his head is adorable. emot-keke

Although, it does sort of speak to a lost childhood, and that's a little sad too.

It is pretty adorable and sad.

Anyway, the main problem I had with your companions in II is how you can't talk with them when you want. I get the advantage of having fixed conversations, since it can make the scene more interesting and such (and you can't max out your friendship in the beginning of the game similarly to Origins), but it got to the point where I only did quests because I wanted to get to the next conversation.emot-keke;

That aside, rivalmances. I've yet to actually try them, though. It's hard being really mean to my companions. emot-frown

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#38 | Back to Top10-22-2013 02:21:19 PM

Snow
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Lurv wrote:

That aside, rivalmances. I've yet to actually try them, though. It's hard being really mean to my companions. emot-frown

The rivalmances seem more intense, actually. Fenris and Anders are somehow more in-character when you rivalmance them.

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#39 | Back to Top10-22-2013 04:59:50 PM

Ashnod
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Yasha wrote:

Given the choice between pretending I'm me in a different world and pretending I'm someone else in a different world, I usually pick me, although I can do both. I like having the Warden with no default personality getting in the way of expressing mine. As I said, though, that doesn't mean I don't like Hawke and Shep.

Hmmm. I don't see Hawke as having a default personality. I think Hawke's personality is up to the player, as much as the Warden's is. Or perhaps it is more that I don't see the Warden as having a blank slate. Either way, the two are equatable to me.

Perhaps it's simply a matter of having a voiced protagonist that alters this for some players, I dunno.

I find the discussion of blank slate characters vs characters with defined backgrounds and goals fascinating, btw, so I hope no one is taking offense at my questions.

Speaking of gifts, though... anyone else notice that Alistair's less important gifts are basically action figures? This is one of those times when I don't know whether it was completely obvious or whether I'm reading too much into it, but the mental image of him sitting by the campfire, examining the statuettes and making up stories about them in his head is adorable. emot-keke

Although, it does sort of speak to a lost childhood, and that's a little sad too.

I think you're reading too much into it, but only just slightly. emot-wink His Feast Day gift is a Grey Warden doll after all.


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#40 | Back to Top10-22-2013 10:18:53 PM

Ashnod
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Finished with my first Dragon Age II run.

Loved it.

Not sure why everyone else hated it. I agree with Yasha on this. Listening to some of the fans on the worst forum ever, you'd think this was the biggest stain on gaming culture prior to the release of Mass Effect 3.

In my opinion, woefully over-criticized.

Granted, I knew some of the things about it going into it, so that might have prepared me for the third Act better than the fans that played it cold. But when those events finally happened, they for the most part felt right. Not flawless, obviously.

But yeah.

Very glad I played it. Someone regret staying away from it as long as I did.


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#41 | Back to Top10-23-2013 01:25:38 AM

Yasha
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From: Edmonton, AB, Canada
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Ashnod wrote:

Hmmm. I don't see Hawke as having a default personality. I think Hawke's personality is up to the player, as much as the Warden's is. Or perhaps it is more that I don't see the Warden as having a blank slate. Either way, the two are equatable to me.

Perhaps it's simply a matter of having a voiced protagonist that alters this for some players, I dunno.

I find the discussion of blank slate characters vs characters with defined backgrounds and goals fascinating, btw, so I hope no one is taking offense at my questions.

Good, because I'ma write you an essay!

Actually, it's really helping me to define why I like ciphers better. I've actually voiced this sort of thing before in discussions on this topic in person, but I never had to define why because they were of the same opinion.

Hawke, to me, comes off as definitely a character in her own right. With the 'angry', 'snarky', and 'nice' choices, of course, but the same unifying characteristics show up in Hawke's dialogue that would show up in, say, Fenris's dialogue, or Merrill's. It's not like any one of them needs to say "Yes Hawke this breakfast is delicious and I HATE SLAVERS" so that you recognize them; they're all given verbal tics, word choice preferences, specific patterns of speech that define who they are. Keep in mind, this is before voicing! But, for a quick example:

[...]bring you gold or giggles[...]

Which of the characters can you see using the word 'giggles' in this context? I bet you already know-- [Isabela, of course, the full line being, "If it can't bring you gold or giggles, what's the point in dwelling on it?"]. It's the word 'giggles.' Can you see anyone else using that specific word, especially in that specific way?

Personally, I think maybe Varric would use that word the same way. But most of them would put the same sentiment in a different way.

They do the same thing with Hawke, too, though to a less obvious degree. But the unifying language that Hawke uses makes it seem, to me, that all three of the choices are moods of the same person rather than different characters.

In contrast, the Warden was written with either very bland word choices, or many different options-- there was no unifying scheme except the one you imposed on it. So to me, that makes it easier to play the Warden truer to what I think I would do, or what I wish I could do.

Of course, the voice further differentiates Hawke. The Warden would have been impossible, or at least very fucking hard, to voice. The tone and inflection are too dependent on there being a personality, and since the Warden has none, you would end up with choppy voiced segments in place of a discussion. There's no unifying mood to conversations unless you put it there. You can imagine in the tone of voice that would make your dialogue choices make sense, but I'm fairly sure sustaining a mood/personality substitute that wouldn't sound stilted and awful no matter which dialogue you pick is impossible, so they wisely left the Warden silent.

As to why I like ciphers... it's probably all the tabletop roleplaying I used to do. I'm used to my character being an iteration of me that I have to act out, so I find that more satisfying than playing someone else. Of course, there's definitely stretching and exaggeration and outright differences-- the best character I ever played being fanatically religious and convinced of elven racial superiority-- but I'm used to doing the tone of voice and inflection and choosing which wording I like best on my own.

It's basically the same thing as driving automatic or stick, for me. In one of them I choose when to shift and how to use it, and the other does half the work for me but gives me less freedom-- but no matter what, I still love to drive. emot-keke

Ashnod wrote:

I think you're reading too much into it, but only just slightly. emot-wink His Feast Day gift is a Grey Warden doll after all.

Ha, it would be a less convincing theory if I could figure out another reason that Alistair would collect little statuettes, but whenever I try I just end up with a mental image of him acting out battles with them when he's supposed to be keeping midnight watch. emot-keke

Ashnod wrote:

Finished with my first Dragon Age II run.

Loved it.

Awesome.

You know, I haven't actually finished the thing yet? I know what happens, of course. It's super rare for me to actually finish a game-- They start to feel repetitive and I get bored. DA:O is one of the... maybe three or four games I've ever finished. DA2 will be one someday. Just... not yet.

But yeah, I hate how people treated it. It's a solid game. I mean, it's not DA:O, but it sure doesn't deserve all the shit it got.


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#42 | Back to Top10-26-2013 12:13:25 AM

Ashnod
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

This isn't funny unless you are a fan of Lazytown. Or at least of the song in the link. cool

But if you are...

Last edited by Ashnod (10-26-2013 12:14:01 AM)


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#43 | Back to Top11-01-2013 01:23:13 AM

Ashnod
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

From the same woman who brought us the awesome Reignite for Mass Effect III, here's Malukah covering In Uthenera from Dragon Age: Origins.


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#44 | Back to Top11-01-2013 11:25:39 AM

Giovanna
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

etc-love Gorgeous! I'd never seen Reignite before either, but it literally took the first 5 seconds for my chest to tighten. Stupid Clint Mansell and his stupid heart-rending music and stupid Bioware and their using it so stupidly well. emot-mad


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#45 | Back to Top11-02-2013 04:19:46 AM

Snow
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

I skipped the whole bit with Leliana's singing in the game since it looked pretty awkward, but this cover is fiiineeee emot-keke
Soundtrack-wise, DA2 ost was pretty damn awesome, too etc-love
This little gem, for instance


Even if it did play for about 2 sec in-game emot-frown ( or the bgm was set too low on my comp )
And Mage Pride (which is basically this with lyrics) is somewhere near the top of my list of favorite game music numbers ( Master of Tartarus still beats it, though...)

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#46 | Back to Top11-03-2013 08:18:47 PM

Ashnod
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

First playthrough of Dragon Age II was as a rogue. I'm almost through with my second playthrough, this time as a mage.

Still love it.

Love the characters, love the story, and I've gotten to the point where I even love the hyper-fast combat.

Can't for the life of me fathom why this game got so much hatred, aside from the expected "It wasn't the first game all over again" cries that so many sequels get.


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#47 | Back to Top11-09-2013 03:12:55 PM

Ashnod
La poétesse revolutionnaire
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Decided to go back to Origins and replay the Dalish Elf story considering that nearly every single elf in the origin story shows up on Sundermount.

Wow, it's hard to have a voiceless protagonist again. I feel like my character is mute. emot-frown


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#48 | Back to Top12-08-2013 02:03:20 AM

Ashnod
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)



Just finished my third full playthrough; this was a back to back Origins/Awakenings/DA2 run.

There is not an emoticon to capture how much I love this series right now.


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#49 | Back to Top03-12-2015 01:48:10 PM

Kita-Ysabell
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

So I've just gotten into this.  It's… it's a little bit one of those HOLY SHIT WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ALL MY LIFE moments, it might be "standard" fantasy fare, as Yahtzee says, but it's so well-realized and nuanced that it doesn't feel like it, it feels like a real place.  Plus no-one's sent me to go get 20 bear asses yet, except for that one time that I've decided doesn't count.

All the let's plays I've started watching have a fairly strong focus on roleplaying, I don't know whether that's a product of the game or a side-effect of the people it attracts, but I found I've done the same, and… it hasn't been too jarring.  Not too much blatant CHOOSE YOUR CHARACTER'S ALIGNMENT HERE moments, and given that I'm playing as Violetta- something of a female expy of Max Damien- that's probably saying something.  The game doesn't allow all of the extremes of faith or subtleties of tone or secrecy or general weirdness that Violetta would get up to, but… I really doubt an RPG could allow a player to do that, since so much of it is non-verbal, and it's a really specific trait, and not a common one, at that.

Really, the most disconnect I've noticed is that the game only allows intimidation through threat of violence, not, say, just staring really hard at people until they give you what you want.


"Et in Arcadio ego..."

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#50 | Back to Top10-25-2016 11:39:44 PM

Kita-Ysabell
Covert Diarist
Registered: 11-18-2012
Posts: 818
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Re: Dragon Age: The deep roads AGAIN? (Spoilers)

Okay, several hundred hours (probably) into the series later, and:

My favorite moment of DA II comes from my first play-through, where I fantastically bungled the relationships, where after Hawke's mother died, Fenris was like, "Are you taking care of yourself?"

And as soon as the conversation ended (Hawke might have even gotten a little snippy) I was like, am I taking care of myself?  Dude, you have MUSHROOMS growing in your living room, are you kidding? I do NOT have to take this from you, get your shit together, Fenris, if you are going to keep living here, you can take the goddamn MUSHROOMS out of the goddamn LIVING ROOM.  THEN you can not-so-subtly imply that I'm not keeping up appearances.

Pity it wasn't available in-game.


"Et in Arcadio ego..."

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