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Tuesday, January 12, 2010

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The New York Times Enters The Dragon Age
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

The New York Times has published a new review of Bioware's most recent RPG offering, Dragon Age: Origins. The fantasy role playing epic challenges players to take on the role of a Grey Warden, assemble a team of unlikely heroes, and defend the land of Fereldin from the monstrous Darkspawn.

From the review:

To succeed in Dragon Age, particularly at its higher difficulty levels, you will need to study its intricate though coherent combat dynamics. You will want to read the game’s Internet message boards to glean the insights of your fellow players. You will need to hone your tactical awareness and thoroughly understand the abilities and limitations of each member of your band of adventurers — each spell, each weapon, each special attack move. If those things don’t sound like fun, Dragon Age is not the game for you.

But a great single-player role-playing game cannot be made from play systems alone. Even more important to a great game of this sort is that it provide players with a world they actually care about saving (in this case defeating the demon menace by rallying mages, elves, dwarves and men to the cause). That means setting, plot and personalities, and it is in these elements that Dragon Age is perhaps the best electronic game yet made.

In particular, not even the Grand Theft Auto games, as fabulous as they are, are populated with such a panoply of fascinating, nuanced, realistic characters. In Dragon Age, the avatar that you create can adventure along with as many as three companions simultaneously out of a total of nine that you can discover. Setting aside your pet war hound, each of your bipedal comrades — the conflicted and vacillating knight, the hilariously rakish bisexual assassin, the court bard turned nun — feels like a real person. They have their own agendas and their own moral compasses. (In Grand Theft Auto everyone is a bad guy.) Some care about doing the right thing. Others care only for themselves. Some will abandon you or even attack you if they disagree with your choices as the story unfolds.
Check out the full review at the page listed below. Dragon Age Origins Review
Dragon Age: Origins

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