I would like to say that I’ve played Dragon Age 2 until my retinas started to bleed and my fingers grew so worn from the analog stick I couldn’t play anymore. But alas, I have not been able to spend as much quality time with the game as I would have liked. However, from what I have played, it has been…. different.
I get how people have complained that DA2 is a dumbed down version of Dragon Age: Origins — as it is in some regards. The game play is a lot easier and the new abilities for your Hawke and party members are more powerful which makes gameplay simpler and quicker.
A big gripe of mine in DA2 is all the reused environments. In DA:O the world was expansive and the environments were rich with culture and history. But in DA2, you’re stuck in Kirkwall with environments/dungeons that are the same EVERY time. I mean, even if you enter one area from a totally different section in the game, you find yourself back at a location you were just in 10 minutes ago. I understand that BioWare was strapped for time, but that is lazy game development. In DA:3 they better shape-up and make the world immersive once again.
Although the world of DA:2 is lackluster, I like the characters that live inside of Kirkwall. I enjoy all the new companions, but at times they seem 100x more emo then the last cast of characters. Even the happy go-lucky companions have a past fraught with sadness and despair. However, I like the romance options in DA2. Right now, I’ve only had the chance to get to 3rd base with Anders, but I like how Anders and Hawke’s relationship has progressed over time.
Quests have been interesting so far, but the game seems a lot shorter than the 50+ hours I put in DA:O (some which I just spent running around doing nothing of consequence). I want more game! (And paying for DL content doesn’t count.)
In all I like DA2, but it feels like a completely different game than DA:O. It’s not a true sequel. Its a branch in the DA universe, but that’s it. Which is a bit of a shame, as I would have liked to played DA:O2.