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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Better than you've heard.
This game has been out for some time and consequently has been reviewed extensively. Most of the flaws other people have mentioned are real and annoying, BUT there are many things which I think make this a terrific game, especially for female gamers. Many people will disagree with me I'm sure, but I'm going to write the review I'd like to have read when I was...
Published 23 months ago by F. Martin

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34 of 38 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Make an effort Bioware...
I want to start off by saying the game is not half bad. I have just finished the game so I thought it time to give my critique. That said...I will continue.

My main problem is the heavy recycling of interior cells. Its amazing how Bioware thought none of their players would notice the same 'Dungeon' time after time. For this reason I say "Make an effort". We're...
Published on 10 April 2011 by Barking Wilder


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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Better than you've heard., 31 May 2013
By 
F. Martin (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
= Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Dragon Age 2 (PS3) (Video Game)
This game has been out for some time and consequently has been reviewed extensively. Most of the flaws other people have mentioned are real and annoying, BUT there are many things which I think make this a terrific game, especially for female gamers. Many people will disagree with me I'm sure, but I'm going to write the review I'd like to have read when I was considering buying this game.

I'm a female gamer and I love RPGs. For me an RPG is something I like to bury myself in, like a great book where you get to see an aspect of yourself in the protagonist, make friends/build relationships, AND have a great story, fun levelling, killing monsters and looking cool in amazing gear. The problem with so many RPGs is that they get the last four things right and completely ignore the the first two. Dragon Age II does not do that. Red Dead Whatever might be the most amazing cowboy experience ever, but why do I have to play as a hairy-arsed bloke I can't relate to? For me that's not roleplaying, it's adventuring and the difference is important.

Dragon Age II allows you to build a female character (which should not be a rare optional extra) and the NPCs you collect for your team as you try to stop Kirkwall from imploding have well written if sometimes annoying personalities. Another aspect which really improves immersion for me is that my character actually speaks, instead of the mute staring person I controlled in DA Origins (which is also a fantastic RPG for female gamers - just a little more dated).

Now that I've tried to outline where I'm coming from, here's my list of pros and cons for anyone who has a similar attitude to RPGs.

Pros:
1. You can play as a female protagonist.
2. Good voice acting, especially for Hawke. Lots of English accents with gravitas.
3. Immersive storyline, especially if you play as a mage. Although personally I felt the climax was the end of Act 2. Act 3 felt a bit (just a little bit) like a DLC they bundled in when they realised the main game was too short. (FO3:Broken Steel? - good but not as good as the main game).
4. Reasonably well written NPCs.
5. Your dialogue choices affect your personality (like ME's paragon/renegade system). My wisecracking Hawke had me in stitches on many occasions.
6. Dynamic and fluid combat (much improved from Origins)
7. Some, but not the best, replay value. I've had most fun with mages and rogues. Warriors are a bit dull in that they have no special talents (lockpicking, traps,etc) and do not have the same involvement in the story line as a mage.

Cons:
1. Dungeon maps get reused relentlessly to the point where it's almost funny.
2. Loot is a joke (e.g. 'moth-eaten scarf' or from one of the DLCs, 'mouldy biscuit' - seriously?), a lot of the usable stuff is generic and when you collect it you can't see its attributes without opening the inventory. That gets old very fast.
3. Less sense of being an epic hero and more of a problem solver for people hell bent on fighting with each other. You're a referee who is forced to enter the fray basically.
4. You can only have conversations with your companions when you get a quest to go to their house to do so. Talk to them at any other time and you'll only get a stock phrase. No party camp like in DAO. I'm baffled as to how Bioware thought this was a good idea.
5. Invisible walls, doors that you can't open if you stand too close, minor stuff like that but ultimately this isn't trying to be a sandbox game.
6. No crafting, no smithing, no decorating your house, etc.
7. Silly gameplay which defies the laws of the game world. e.g. spawning waves of humanoid non-magical enemies (how?), teleporting mage enemies, etc.

In spite of all the criticisms, this game has given me several enjoyable play-throughs and in a few months time, I'll probably have another go. What keeps my interest is probably the emotional depth and my sense of involvement in the character I've created. The same reason I keep going back to the Mass Effect series.
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34 of 38 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Make an effort Bioware..., 10 April 2011
= Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Dragon Age 2 (PS3) (Video Game)
I want to start off by saying the game is not half bad. I have just finished the game so I thought it time to give my critique. That said...I will continue.

My main problem is the heavy recycling of interior cells. Its amazing how Bioware thought none of their players would notice the same 'Dungeon' time after time. For this reason I say "Make an effort". We're paying for game which is following an epic like Dragon Age: Origins and a game which is several steps behind Mass Effect 2. Both are Bioware games which wipe the floor with this one.

Its not a lack of originality, as the storyline is good. Its just poorly executed and you find yourself rolling your eyes as you enter the same area you did two quests ago. It takes away 90% of the immersion when everything looks the same.

The interface is inferior to the last game. The skill trees can easily be confusing. The inventory system is appalling and the items (compared to the last game) do not make sense when trying to decipher their usefulness to your character.

That said, I still plowed 30 hours of my life into it and I will be playing through again. And to be honest, the immersion I felt in Origins, Awakenings and the numerous other DLC's from the first game was never going to be mirrored. If they fix this for the inevitable Dragon Age 3 then I look forward to it.

You win this round Bioware. But only by a slim margin.

EDIT 23/08/2011: After rethinking my initial review I have had to drop my rating by one star on both 'Fun' and 'Overall'. The game really doesn't compare to its predecessor. My decision to change my rating came after something as simple as listening to the two soundtracks. The title theme 'Origins' reminded me of a game I did not regret playing. Thinking back, this was not a good game. My above review still stands, but overall this is not a game I am proud to have in my collection.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bit of a letdown, 2 Jun. 2012
By 
S (England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
= Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Dragon Age 2 (PS3) (Video Game)
Where the original Dragon Age felt huge and expansive with the illusion of a freedom to roam, Dragon Age 2 feels small and cramped.

Kirkwall is remarkably samey. The same locations are reused ad naseum over the three acts, and the dungeons are cookie cutter similar. The gameplay is improved with some very nice button mashing action but that isn't what this series was about. It used to be a pretty awesome RPG with the minmaxing of stats, and use of a plethora of equipment. Now the equipment is boring and linear without the superb side quests (and hierarchies of side quests) that triggered rewards like Gaxgang and Starfang in origins.

The major flaw is the repetition of dungeons, but also equally damning is the inability to equip party members. No longer can they be equipped the same as the main player but instead linear upgrades take their place. This removes a huge amount of escapism.

Further the dialogue is oversimplified. You get given the option to be cheeky or rude, and the trick in trying to figure out hoiw to play a conversation is gone. Instead everything is right in front of you and again very repetitive. The romance element has been watered down with every character being bisexual (Really bioware? I'm all for diversity, but you've got waay too far here).

What really prevents it being great is the lack of replayability. You advance acts, you have a typical mage/templar choice in most instances but that's about it. Short of trying to please the invading Arushak there's no trick to it. It's very closed off, and feels rushed. As an RPG it's a pale imitation of Origins.

That said, it does look lush in places, has less bugs and the combat feels more fluid so it isn't a complete waste. It's a reasonable to OK hack n slash but it isn't an RPG in the same league as Origins.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Come on BioWare, 14 Mar. 2013
= Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Dragon Age 2 (PS3) (Video Game)
I want to start off by saying that I love the storyline. It's just great, the depth of it and the characters really makes this a game that you want to play. Now I'm afraid I'm going to have to point out all the things I did not like.

I think that bioware believes all gamers are idiots. If they thought we wouldn't notice the constant re-use of the scenery then they must be the idiots. Half way through the game I came to a point where I needed to fight off some some evil monster guys. Do you want to know what I did next? I turned the console off because I had been in the same area over five times before all of which claimed to be in different places around the map. It just got on my nerves but I powered through and in finally I finished the game.

Although the conversations between your character and the other characters around the world are very well laid out they become boring and very dull as you choose a reply out of the possible three they give you which normally have nothing to do with the little snippet they give you to help you choose.

The game-play is good, I will give bioware that much. It is satisfying swinging a great sword through the air and cleaving five enemies in half at once, but after a while you begin to feel like it is all a bit too easy when you start racking up all the abilities.

If you can take one thing away from this review it would be that if I could turn back time, I wouldn't buy this game.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Clearly an unfinished game released early, 22 Sept. 2013
By 
Max - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
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This review is from: Dragon Age 2 (PS3) (Video Game)
Why oh why didn't I believe the reviews. Dragonage 2 has the distinct look of an unfinished game that was forced out early to retailers by the publisher. Just one hour into playing this game and you can see that the minimalistic scope can surely not be by purposeful design. You've no doubt read about the very small area in which your characters get to interact. Well not only is it small but its also devoid of any life, streets are almost empty bar a few AI knocking about. There's no sense of anything, certainly not the struggle that was going on in Kirkwall as told in the story.

The general design of locations seem to me quite lazy. Add to this a very stripped down RPG format that reduces a large amount of character customisation. Bioware still offer the, now a bit silly, 'relationships' you can have with characters (I guess now their calling card), but that itself is so corny that I didn't even bother pursuing it at all. Press the right buttons and bring some hidden gift to a character and you can watch a silly love scene... Why?

Sadly I didn't finish this game as I felt it was going no where, which is a real shame. It's not really up to the standard of Origins. If you are a big fan of Dragonage I'm sure you will get something out of this game. Unfortunately I didn't.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An Unfinished Masterpiece, 23 Jun. 2011
= Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Dragon Age 2 (PS3) (Video Game)
I suppose the first thing to say about this game is don't think of it as a sequel to Origins, so much as a game set in Thedas which refers to events in Origins. Dragon Age 2 (why such a prosaic title?) is much closer to the pen and paper game than Origins was and so concentrates more on the Dark Fantasy element, choc-a-block full of moral dilemnas. In fact, the game can be emotionally harrowing (well, on the first go anyway), which is surely a good indicator of the scale of possible immersion. None of the missions are as long winded as many in Origins were (can we say, Orzamar!) and using a two-handed weapon is now fun! Spells and skills now come with upgrades, which can be a dilemna in itself: should I take a new skill and have more options in battle, or should I improve on an existing one? There are battles aplenty, Qunari aplenty, cameos from familiar faces and bags of Thedas lore to be discovered. The game, then, should have been a triumph.

Unfortunately, there is too much wrong with it to give the game more than an average score. The quality of the graphics is little short of a disgrace after Origins, and this game is around fifteen hours shorter than the original. This would make the story suffer, if there was any real story to speak of, but there is not. There's no over-arching heroic goal, no sense of destiny: there's no sense, at any point, of real purpose, beyond occasionally saving Kirkwall (the city in which the majority of the action takes place)and sorting out your companions. And your companions really do need sorting out, the dark fantasy element having gone perhaps too far! Whilst they happily (and often amusingly) banter with each other, gone are the in-depth discussions of Origins. There are very few gifts that you can get for them and there's not much romance in the air either (beyond one character who fixates on you no matter what). Combat has become overly arcadey and special moves are hard to follow because of the speed of things, though I dare say that there are a few who will be happy with that.

Probably the most glaring and annoying fault, is the recycling of a very limited number of dungeons. You will constantly find your self in a very familiar place, but where certain tunnels that were open before have now conviniently (and not very convincingly) been blocked off. The lack of musical impact is also very evident, and all the more sad since it played such an important role in Origins. It's not that what music is there is bad, but it doesn't have the same finesse as in the original game and it seems to have been deliberately kept low-key - no Lelianna solos here.

In short, this game feels rushed and incomplete, and much of what made the original so good has been taken out. Much the same as in Awakenings in fact, only much, much worse. However, there is enough good about it that I played through twice (and different missions are presented depending on your class) and will play through a third time after completing Origins on the PS3 (I've always played it on the computer). If you are a die hard fan of the Thedas setting, you'll still get enjoyment out of this, but look to pay as little as possible for what is, in the end, an inferior product.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Worth buying as a bargain only, 14 Nov. 2012
= Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Dragon Age 2 (PS3) (Video Game)
Dragon age: Origins was a good game that was overly praised. Where it suffered the most was in its dated graphics and MMORPG design of having Rogues as primary damage dealers and Warriors as tanks.

Dragon age 2 goes some way towards improving the situation. The graphics for the characters and equipment have been updated, but the world around them remains as dreary as ever. Rogues remain overpowered from a damage perspective, but warriors have greater crowd control abilities to them which helps balance things out a little. Mages now have several defence capabilities that help to make them fun to play as characters.

Your companions are a predictable lot, from the sexpot pirate girl to the sarcastic Dwarf rogue. It is very hard to be suprised by, or even care what happens to them.

One undoubted improvement is the ability, through a free download, to redefine your character's facial appearance during play. As has always been the case since Oblivion, many a character who looked perfect on the creation screen ends up looking like quasimodo once the action commences.

The storyline is largely inferior to Origins, though at times it does rival it. The game as a whole feels unfinished. There's much corridor design and inexcusably, much reuse of the same dungeons. Kirkwall as a city is bland, bland, bland.

The length of the game is another area that is to be commended. As a time when some game studios think they can get away with a ten hour campaign, Dragon age 2 triples it.

I would have felt rather hard done by, had I paid anywhere near full price for this game. As a bargain buy for £10 or under, it is satisfying filler until something better comes along.

I sincerely hope that Bioware finally pull their finger out with the dragon age series and present us with a Dragon age III that looks great, plays well and is actually finished this time.

Then give us BG3 !
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1.0 out of 5 stars Not Nearly as Good as Dragon Age: Origins, 10 Mar. 2013
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This review is from: Dragon Age 2 (PS3) (Video Game)
This game does not measure up to the quality of the first.

Despite the negative reviews on here I thought I would give it a go as it was only £10. However, I found myself bored very quickly. The side-quests are all very much the same and there is no clear storyline. You find yourself stuck in the same location for the majority of the game running between quests.

The outset of the game leads you to believe that you are going to an expedition in the deep roads and that your journey may proceed from there but this expedition only lasts for a short period and you end up back where you started. I couldn't bring myself to go on past this point through sheer boredom.

I would strongly recommend that you try another game if you want a good RPG.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A Solid RPG., 12 Jan. 2015
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This review is from: Dragon Age 2 (PS3) (Video Game)
Dragon Age 2 is a great game but it is far from perfect. On the positive side, the combat has vastly improved from the tedious auto attack system in Dragon Age Origins. Mages in particular are badass. Also, the user interface is much smoother and easier to navigate. However, bioware seem to have substituted good writing for this improved combat system. The characters are mostly forgettable and boring and the voice acting is pretty poor. The Mass Effect choice wheel has replaced the list of dialogue options from Dragon Age Origins which is a nice addition. Despite the negatives, this game is a must play for Dragon Age fans but if you haven't played Dragon Age Origins then you may not appreciate improvements and changes although it is still a fun rpg.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars dragon age 2, 16 Feb. 2012
= Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Dragon Age 2 (PS3) (Video Game)
a great game but i found it gets to hard after awhile but thats prob just me , shame because i wanted to see the ending of this game , some ppl prob find it easy so dont let my experince put you off . great game worth the money
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Dragon Age 2 (PS3) by Electronic Arts (PlayStation 3)
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