Dragon Aged? Like a vintage cheese.

Avid reader! You may have noticed one third of TGAM hasn't been pulling their weight around here recently. That is because Richie! got sucked into Dragon Age: Origins. Big time. We managed to lure him far enough away from the 360 version of the game but only with the promise of helping explain to you avid reader why 'marmite' Dragon Age was worth playing, how Richie likes to roll (two meanings!) and why all dwarves are scots.

How do you normally play RPGs? General dick or worthy saint?
It's a tough one and particularly pertinent in Dragon Age as there are achievements either way for the moral decisions you make in the game. And unless you are Save Scumming you are only going to get one half of them on your first play through. But in general, when I play any game, I tend to be as nice as possible, helping everyone I can find, doing every quest I can, but also most importantly getting to grips with the world and it's mechanics, then when I'm aware of the world and it's exploits my second character will be an arsehole.

Do you play as yourself, the character or RP your own character?
I usually name my characters after me, and try to get them as similar looking to me as possible, and with female characters I tend to name them "Richaladin" after my shelved WoW Paladin. With Dragonage I just delved in, I enjoyed the banter and how you could approach it, however sometimes you got the feeling that it didn't matter that much as the plot steered you in the same direction. SPOILERS the classic example is at the start of the Mages origin storyline, where you HAVE to betray Jowan whether you want to or not END SPOILERS. But essentially I found myself putting points in "Coercion" purely for the alternative options you have.

emooist tits I ever sawedDo you play the game to exploit it (maxing DPS with gear combos etc.) or play more to experience yet another fantasy world?
I'm a gamer at heart, I cant help but try and find the best way to make bigger and bigger numbers appear on the screen, but in saying that in between the theorycrafting I enjoyed the world, tolkien-esque as it may have been, there was a feeling of it's own entity.

How important is the narrative?
Very. As I mentioned the storyline does break up the action but it will also combine the two, essentially you can choose who the bad guy is in your eyes and the story will evolve around that, also influencing the NPCs, and the way they react to you.

Hyper realism quick let us invoke the uncanny valleyHow was the story?
Fun, genuinely fun, it didn't delve to much into the realms on Medieval stoicism, despite the land you are in being on the brink of an invasion there is an entertaining endearing levity from the characters, and how they react to each situation. I left the dwarves story line to the very end of the game, as i didn't care for them that much, but their section of the game was a delight to play! From a a gameplay point of view the "Deep Roads" was a lot of fun to navigate, coupled with the banter form the drunken character Oghren, and even the ability to deeper understand the origins of the DLC character "Shale". Never really liked dwarves, but dragon age did it well! On a side note to this if you play the Dwarven Noble Origin story you are more central to the plot there and leads to some really interesting story you are not privy to as any other character.

Favourite moment from the game?
From the mechanics, probably throwing on all the passive skills of the Arcane Warrior Specialisation, you end up glowing, on fire, , surrounded by a shield, absorbing the corpses of the fallen, it's bad ass! Plot-wise, SPOILERS If you are playing a bastard, desecration of the ashes of a revered holy idol. Your party members reactions are priceless, and having that option is awesome END SPOILERS.

Worst moment from the game?

Before the most recent patch, when you were nearing the end of the game, there used to be a delay before you could loot the corpses. More frustrating than anything. There is also a bit where Leliana (bisexual rogue singing bitch) sings, ugh cringe-tastic.

Why are the class names in most RPGs horribly geeky? This prevents these games from being promoted via word of mouth because saying "I rolled again as a Rogue" makes any muggles within ear shot die of laughter.

I blame western RPG's (JRPGs are usually a bit more imaginative, when it comes to this... Onion Knight anyone?) and they're adhering to the classic Dungeons and dragons roots. Just call it something different.

NPCs. Bothered? If one of your buddies die do you miss their 'company' or their sword?
Well technically no-one in your party is an NPC as you can control them at any point, and as far as combat goes, as long as one member of your party is alive you will regenerate after battle. However there are many decisions you can make that will influence whether characters stay or go, and yes you will miss them, for skills, achievements, or even just the chat.

Why are all olde worlde people Scottish?

Just the Dwarves and its more like a weird mix of Scottish and Swedish. And why? I haven't got a fucking clue, I blame John Rhys Davis personally.

Three RPGs better than Dragon Age?
Tales Of Vesperia
Mass Effect (only slightly, so similar)
Oblivion

Three RPGs worse than Dragon Age?
Balur's Gate
Blue Dragon
Fable 2

Needless to say, would.Dragon Age DLC yay or neigh?
Yay, I got the special edition which included the stone prisoner and such, I bought the Grey Warden Keep DLC too, It was all fun and does offer some good upgrades to your character, I'm genuinely intrigued by the expansions too, however not until they get reduced in price.

Did you play any of Dragon Age Journeys to get those unlocks?
Nah, I stopped caring when I heard "Flash game".

So there we have it. Dragon Age: Origins. S'arlight.

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