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Old 12-07-2009, 06:35 AM   #281
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Does anyone use the qunari guy? (can't remember his name) I've tried to toss him in in place of Alistair a couple of times but he never seems to stay alive very long.


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Old 12-07-2009, 08:37 AM   #282
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Sten. My 2nd playthrough included him, until it was cut short by my desktop dying. I found him thoroughly disagreeable. All he does is complain about every decision I make. It seems the only thing that would make him happy would be for me to strip naked and run screaming headlong into the oncoming darkspawn horde. I don't think he quite gets the whole "gathering an army" thing.

The only time he ever agreed with one of my actions was in the alienage when
spoiler:
I let the head slaver go in exchange for using the captive elves as fuel for a blood magic spell that enhanced my stats

but even that was only given very grudgingly. I think he may well be the most dislikeable NPC that I have ever encountered in an RPG. If you want a 2H warrior, I'd suggest going for Oghren instead. He's much better value.

As far as 2H warrior utility is concerned, my first playthrough I played as one. I didn't find it to be much to my liking. You really have to max out the 2H tree to get any useful abilities. By far the best is Indomitable.

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Old 12-07-2009, 08:53 AM   #283
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I've used Sten, but yeah, his low constitution stats don't allow him to stay alive very long. As for his personality, he is the most difficult to figure out, that's for sure, but I don't hate the character.

I do have to point out that I've found Alistair even more useless to have with me, since he seems to die even quicker than Sten, regardless of armor, weapons and stats.
spoiler:
I must admit, Loghain was far more useful to have around.


Now, a question completely unrelated to the stuff above, but it might be worth a few laughs - what name did you give Dog (and why)?
Me, on my first playthrough I didn't really have many ideas so I typed the first name that came to mind, which was Bolt for some reason. On my second playthrough, however, I named him Peanuts, because I thought it would be a funny name for a huge war dog. On my third playthrough, I named him Tiny for the same reason as the 2nd playthrough name. Still haven't finished the third playthrough though, I've decided to wait for "Return to Ostagar" to be released in order to freshen up the game a little.

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Old 12-07-2009, 09:09 AM   #284
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Now, a question completely unrelated to the stuff above, but it might be worth a few laughs - what name did you give Dog (and why)?
Sugarboy

It seems to fit his personality. Really it is the name of my mother’s rat dog and the two do have very similar personalities and both are able to find interesting stuff.


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Old 12-07-2009, 11:13 AM   #285
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All dogs must be named Meathead.
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Old 12-07-2009, 11:42 AM   #286
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My Dwarf named his dog after his father (Endrin), but for most of the other characters i've either named it after Duncan (sentimental, I know), or called him Ozzy.






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Old 12-07-2009, 12:55 PM   #287
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Hmmm..I was thinking about using both Alistair and Shale too. Might try it next time But...your PC is a spirit healer I take?
Going as a Spirit Healer + Blood Mage in this game (had the blood mage spec unlocked in an earlier game so no need for any vile actions to get it ).

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Old 12-07-2009, 01:39 PM   #288
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stoffe as a blood mage. I just can't see it.

I'm playing as another Rogue this play through. Rogue has to be my favorite class. Not crazy about Specialization of Bard, but Duelist and Ranger seem to fit my playing fine. Have been using different party members on this play through, my main party is Wynne, Morrigan and Leliana, but have used Shale, Oghren, Sugarboy and Stern at one time or another. Even Zevran has left camp this play through, but not to fight (just to hear his comments).


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Old 12-07-2009, 04:53 PM   #289
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Old 12-07-2009, 05:09 PM   #290
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Alastair stays alive just fine, but I have him working up the shield and templar trees and that works pretty well with his play style. Set up his AI to take a potion at 50% health automatically and you'll have less problem with him dying. For really tough fights I have Wynne cast lifeward on him, since I'm playing a rogue and he's my tank.

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Old 12-07-2009, 05:37 PM   #291
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New patch up, v1.02. Mages received a much needed nerf.

Quote:
Balance

* Daggers now apply 0.5 points of damage per additional point in dexterity and 0.5 points of damage per additional point in strength, as originally intended. This increases dagger damage for high-dexterity characters.
* During combat, mana or stamina reserves now correctly regenerate more quickly when reserves are low. This allows players to occasionally use an talent or spell in the later stages of lengthy fights.
* When exploring, mana and stamina now regenerate more quickly at higher character levels. This reduces downtime between fights.
* The spells Force Field, Crushing Prison, Cone of Cold, and Blizzard now have shorter durations and/or longer cooldowns. This ensures that combatants can no longer stun-lock each other by repeatedly casting the same spell.
* The cooldowns for several low-level sustained abilities are now shorter. This ensures that players are not penalized for accidentally deactivating them.
* Certain battles were not scaling properly, resulting in excessively difficult fights. They now scale as intended.
* Enemy corpses now drop health poultices and money more appropriately, resulting in less clutter in the player's inventory.

Gameplay

* In rare cases, enemy corpses were selectable when they contained no loot. This no longer occurs.
* Party members whose combat tactics were set to defensive behavior no longer stop attacking after using a spell or talent.
* In rare cases, combat tactics conditions could fail to determine whether a character had enough mana or stamina to use an ability. This no longer occurs.
* The Rally talent no longer repeats its audio effect if it is active during certain conversations.
* The Rally talent no longer deactivates upon area transitions or conversations.
* The Shimmering Shield spell now deactivates when the character is out of mana.
There are a few other plot and PC specific fixes I didn't quote.
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Old 12-07-2009, 10:33 PM   #292
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Quote:
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stoffe as a blood mage. I just can't see it.

I'm playing as another Rogue this play through. Rogue has to be my favorite class. Not crazy about Specialization of Bard, but Duelist and Ranger seem to fit my playing fine. Have been using different party members on this play through, my main party is Wynne, Morrigan and Leliana, but have used Shale, Oghren, Sugarboy and Stern at one time or another. Even Zevran has left camp this play through, but not to fight (just to hear his comments).
i extolled the virtues of being a blood mage to stoffe so i'm claiming credit for this



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Old 12-08-2009, 07:04 AM   #293
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stoffe as a blood mage. I just can't see it.
After coming to the realization that Blood Magic is nothing like what they make it out to be in the story (doesn't seem to actually make your spells more powerful at all, no actual bloodletting to use it, no evil acts required to get it if previously unlocked, not even Templars care if you use it right in front of their eyes) I figured I might as well pick it this time around.

Shapeshifter is pretty worthless (weak shapes since spellcasting gets disabled, that takes forever to activate and forever to recharge) and Arcane Warrior didn't match the caster play style of my mage, so not much else to choose from for the second spec. Spirit Healer seems to be the only mage specialization that actually makes a big difference.

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New patch up, v1.02. Mages received a much needed nerf.
Much needed?

It was completely unnecessary if you ask me, it's a single player game, and it's not like it's easy even on the Easy difficulty setting as it is. In fact I'm going to hold off on patching until someone releases a mod that reverts the spells back to their old behavior. (I'd do it myself but I'm getting neck pains from all the dejected shaking of my head when trying to use the Toolset.) I'd prefer if they kept their patching to fixing actual bugs rather than screw around with working gameplay mechanics.

Spells that costs a ton of mana, takes a long time to cast (leaving you open to interrupts) and can only be cast once per minute does not need reduced duration and even longer recharge in my opinion.

(Yes, I play as a mage as my main character )

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Old 12-08-2009, 09:54 AM   #294
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Just because it's a single player game doesn't mean they shouldn't fix up shoddy balance.
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Old 12-08-2009, 01:16 PM   #295
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Just because it's a single player game doesn't mean they shouldn't fix up shoddy balance.
Assuming there is even need for such a thing as balance in a single player game, which there really isn't, in my opinion. Different classes are good at different things.

Besides, there was nothing wrong with mages before.

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Old 12-08-2009, 02:02 PM   #296
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They didn't need a nerf, they just need more useful spells/abilities - primarily the shapeshifter alluded to by stoffe.
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Old 12-08-2009, 02:18 PM   #297
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What about the plot elements that the new patch fixes? Are these fixes necessary? I didn't read about them because I'm not very far into the game and I didn't want to spoil anything.

I've played enough to agree that the mages did not need a nerf, BTW. I almost always play as a spellcaster, myself.


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Old 12-08-2009, 03:20 PM   #298
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The main thing as far as plot that the patch fixes is downloadable content item now stay in inventory at the end of the dwarf noble origin. This is something that has been mentioned needing fixing in this thread.

They fixed a XP exploit and a few bad placements of creatures/NPC.

“Certain battles were not scaling properly, resulting in excessively difficult fights. They now scale as intended.” This is the one I like the best. Fights against fodder opponents should not be more difficult then facing a boss. A few of the boss fights have been extremely too easy, while what should be a mediocre opponent at best has been a nightmare.

BioWare should have nerfed Mages altogether, Rogues are the only way to play.
spoiler:
Joking – Mages are fun, and I don’t believe they needed to be modified.


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Old 12-08-2009, 07:35 PM   #299
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What about the plot elements that the new patch fixes? Are these fixes necessary?
Damn, they've fixed the Duncan XP bug. That's one thing that definitely didn't need fixing.
On the other hand fixing the items thing in the dwarf noble origin story was definitely necessary.

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Old 12-09-2009, 02:43 AM   #300
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To get the pre-1.02 patch spells back, I just exported spell_blizzard, spell_cone, and spell_singletarget from the toolset (which has the old source scripts). Seems to be working fine.

Oh, the activation cost and cooldown duration can be tweaked easily by editing ABI_base (no need to use the counterintuitive toolset).


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Old 12-09-2009, 07:15 PM   #301
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Here was an interesting article on Dragon Age on MMORPG.com.


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Old 12-09-2009, 11:40 PM   #302
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Here was an interesting article on Dragon Age on MMORPG.com.
quite truthfully, i don't have a problem with it. i'm a mature adult, and i'm entitled to make my own decisions. if a parent is stupid and naive enough to be surprised that mature content is in an M-rated game that they just bought for their own child, then there really is no hope for our species.


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Old 12-10-2009, 12:22 AM   #303
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I agree with stingerhs.

There is a Big M and a Mature 17+ warning on the case. If parents are too stupid to read it, then the children have more problems than playing this game.

I got the all the romance Achievements without having a homosexual relationship with the elf. My Female elf did have Lesbian sex with a human though.

I’ll wait patiently for the Fox News segment entitled “Frodo meets Debbie Does Dallas.” The right wingers must think BioWare is a bunch a perves after the same type of controversy with Mass Effect. Hope they at least do their research this time before making compete fools of themselves like they did in the Mass Effect fiasco. Oh, what am I thinking research is a socialist word to them.


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Old 12-10-2009, 12:26 AM   #304
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Oh, what am I thinking research is a socialist word to them.
Or a fascist word--it's all the same to them.

It's easy enough to read the warning on the box and read reviews. I do that for every game that my kids are going to play. I decided that the violence and gore was far more of a problem for their age group than the 'let's get into the tent in our underwear and make mad passionate whatever'. If my son happened to play that, he'd probably end up choosing all the non-romance options anyway (because he's 12 and the idea of kissing is still totally gross to him), so he wouldn't be in danger of seeing the 'love' scenes.


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Old 12-10-2009, 01:19 AM   #305
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Just played... most of the game. It was alright, all the stuff I disliked about the game pretty much hit home within the first 5 minutes of gameplay, so it only got better from there. Haven't finished it though, accidentally read the ending on the interwebs, and it sounded pretty dull and a long ways away so I gave up.

Couple things I liked:
- A couple characters: The elf Assassin and Alistair were hilarious. There were some other guys you ran into during the game who were fun, too.
- The character customization. I played as a nomadic tattooed Elf warrior named CocaCola, 'nuff said.
- You could choose not to pick up certain followers. That makes things significantly less flabby, especially when there are only 3 classes anyways. I basically used the same 3 party members the entire time.
- The Dwarf city. Ever since I first saw the Lord of the Rings, I've wondered what Moria would have looked like when People were living there. And now I know.

Couple things I didn't like:
- The gameplay/combat. Its not compelling at all, you point and click. Sucks all the fun and adventure right out of it and turns the action into a grind-fest. Half the reason I didn't bother finishing the game was because I knew I would have to face the boss in the end who would probably test my patience more than my skills.
- The story. I hate when people complain about "generic fantasy" games, but Bioware's cookie cutter story arcs are getting old. I often found myself accurately predicting events well before they unfolded, and being frustrated when it was supposed to come as a surprise later on.
- A couple characters. The Qunari guy had no personality, the dog was just a toy, and a lot of npcs took forever to say nothing, causing me to occasionally zone out on important details.
- The graphics. The facial animations were pretty stiff, the environments were well designed but lacked detail, almost as if they had been made for an older game.
- Performance. I'm running the game on nearly 10ghz of processing power, 4gigs of ram and a pair of HD4870s in Crossfire, I should not be getting any lagging. Memory leaks EVERYWHERE.

The mod tool is pretty extensive, just makes me wish KOTOR had some of that action, though.


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Old 12-10-2009, 05:28 AM   #306
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- Performance. I'm running the game on nearly 10ghz of processing power, 4gigs of ram and a pair of HD4870s in Crossfire, I should not be getting any lagging. Memory leaks EVERYWHERE.
That's weird. I'm playing on a 3GHz Core duo machine with 2 GB RAM and an ATI Radeon HD 4850 card, with all graphics features set to max, and I've not experienced any lagging or slowdowns anywhere in the game.

(Crashes is another matter though. The game is extremely unstable on my computer. Maybe I'm just not running the game long enough between the crashes to start experience performance issues. I'd have given up trying to play it a long time ago if the game wasn't as good as it is.)

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Old 12-10-2009, 09:31 AM   #307
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Sounds like Mass Effect 2 would be more to your taste cire992.
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Old 12-10-2009, 10:40 AM   #308
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A couple characters. The Qunari guy had no personality, the dog was just a toy
You never even finished the game once, but you are critical of the characters? After my first complete play through I would have tend to agree with your point that Sten had no personality. Even after my second and third playthrough, I still would have agreed with you. However, on my forth playthrough I figured out the dog was not useless. If you take him with you and then ask the dog “Do you see anything interesting” in various locations, he will bring items including gifts to bribe your companions. There are also some very funny random comments between the dog and your other companions (especially Morrigan). The extra gifts allowed me to get Sten’s friendship up and have some very interesting (yet short) conversations with him including his side quest. I would say that your assessment of him having no personality is an overstatement. He provides one of the funniest lines in the game during a random conversation with Morrigan (I think it is the third or fourth time they talk). He has a stoic honor bound personality, but if you get what you can out of his story, then you know that is the way of his people. He definitely has a personality, it is just different from others within the game and it is logical that it should be since he is a foreigner in a strange land.

He is definitely not my favorite NPC, but he is at the very least interesting. Sten is just a little more difficult to get to know compared to Leliana or Alistair. Hell, I still don’t even know his name, just his rank.


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Old 12-10-2009, 10:52 AM   #309
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The one thing I agree with is the story was pretty dull. I guess it fits the whole "introduction to the world" thing, but now that we know more about Thedas, I'm hoping they up the story to the next level.

Show spoiler


However, I really enjoyed the artistic style, the dialogue, the characters, and the lore behind the world. Just needs an awesome story .
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Old 12-10-2009, 04:17 PM   #310
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- Performance. I'm running the game on nearly 10ghz of processing power, 4gigs of ram and a pair of HD4870s in Crossfire, I should not be getting any lagging. Memory leaks EVERYWHERE.
Quote:
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That's weird. I'm playing on a 3GHz Core duo machine with 2 GB RAM and an ATI Radeon HD 4850 card, with all graphics features set to max, and I've not experienced any lagging or slowdowns anywhere in the game.
I've got a similar setup to the stoffe, but with 4 GB of memory, and an 8800 GTS 512, the unpatched version of the game let me play with everything maxed out at 1920x1200, although I've had to scale some stuff down to just high or medium since the (first) patch.

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(Crashes is another matter though. The game is extremely unstable on my computer. Maybe I'm just not running the game long enough between the crashes to start experience performance issues. I'd have given up trying to play it a long time ago if the game wasn't as good as it is.)
I haven't had it crash for me. Windows 7 superiority

Quote:
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The one thing I agree with is the story was pretty dull. I guess it fits the whole "introduction to the world" thing, but now that we know more about Thedas, I'm hoping they up the story to the next level.

Show spoiler


However, I really enjoyed the artistic style, the dialogue, the characters, and the lore behind the world. Just needs an awesome story .
spoiler:
I definitely agree with you about Loghain, his stated motives didn't really make sense, and he was just a dick for the most part. Also he has a bad name. As to the Archdemon, I'd have liked it if the final battle with it was more than just fighting off hordes of Darkspawn footsoldiers while it hacks up fireballs at you and looks vaguely menacing. And if it had an objective beyond wreaking havoc.


I am but a speck of dust in the unused fruit bowl that cages the unwashed masses, however, so it's still one of my favorite games in spite of the game's prose not moving me to tears with its beauty, since it was fun for me to play. I like blowing things up with magic a bunch.



"No, Mama. You can bet your sweet ass and half a titty whoever put that hit on you already got the cops in their back pocket." ~Black Dynamite
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Old 12-10-2009, 05:05 PM   #311
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I haven't had it crash for me. Windows 7 superiority
QFE, QFT and any other QF you can think of.

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spoiler:
As to the Archdemon, I'd have liked it if the final battle with it was more than just fighting off hordes of Darkspawn footsoldiers while it hacks up fireballs at you and looks vaguely menacing. And if it had an objective beyond wreaking havoc.
spoiler:
Yeah, I agree that the one thing that lacked was for the player to learn the Archdemon's final objective before hacking it up. Considering the connection between the Wardens and Darkspawn and all those nightmares, I had hoped to eventually hear the Archdemon speak and perhaps even have some sort of a brief conversation with it before crushing its skull. As it was, it definitely lacked a personality. I suspect Loghain was there as a secondary villain to make up for the fact that you won't hear anything but roars from the Archdemon.


Fortunately everything else about the game is simply awesome, so the above didn't ruin the experience for me.

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Old 12-10-2009, 05:19 PM   #312
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Fortunately everything else about the game is simply awesome, so the above didn't ruin the experience for me.
Was it ever established in the lore if dragons are intelligent sentient creatures in Dragon Age, or if they're just huge, awe inspiring, instinct-driven animals? I can't remember anything being said about that in the game.

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Old 12-10-2009, 06:50 PM   #313
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Was it ever established in the lore if dragons are intelligent sentient creatures in Dragon Age, or if they're just huge, awe inspiring, instinct-driven animals? I can't remember anything being said about that in the game.
I've looked at the Archdemon, Dragons, Dragon Cults and Old Gods codex entries, as they are related to the question and as far as I've seen, the writers left it somewhat of a mystery. There are valid suspicions of higher intelligence in dragons and there's one sentence in the Archdemon entry that gives further hints, saying about the current Archdemon that "he is now a maddened husk of his former self", from which it is logical to conclude that he has to be more than a simple beast. The Dragon Cults entry is also interesting as it explores the possibility of higher intelligence in High Dragons. In the end I guess it's up to the players to draw their own conclusions.

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Old 12-10-2009, 10:11 PM   #314
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You never even finished the game once, but you are critical of the characters?
I don't care if Qunari or whatever his name was suddenly became more lively in the last hour of gameplay, it doesn't make up for the fact that he was a mannequin with a sword for the rest of the game. Useless, too. I played as a warrior and Alistair is a warrior, so he's pretty much just baggage. Same with the other mages. I'm stuck with Morrigan from the get-go, so I never even bothered with Lelina or the other lady, they're just kind of redundant. I guess my point is that they're optional characters. Ultimately, they don't contribute anything vital to the story, and in Qunari's case, they didn't even do a decent job of hiding it. Just makes me stop and wonder if designing certain characters in the game was the best use of the devs' resources. Dragon Age is the first rpg I've ever played that put me in that 'less is more' mentality. Makes me wonder about the new Mass Effect game.


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Old 12-10-2009, 10:51 PM   #315
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Did not say he did liven up in the last hour of the game. However, he did have some interesting things to say if you actually took the time. BioWare just did not design their usual easy level conversation system like KOTOR or Mass Effect. In Dragon Age you actually have to work to get to know your companions. However, if you don’t like that system then you are more than entitled to your opinion. I’d just be critical of the system instead of the NPC.

For what it is worth, I find Leliana, Morrigan and Wynne the most useful companions. It has nothing to do with one companion being better than another, it has to do with my playing style. I’ve also use Sten in my last playthrough and had no problem with his survivability. To me he was very useful, but I’d still rather play the game with two rogues (including my PC) and two mages.


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Old 12-10-2009, 11:55 PM   #316
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"he is now a maddened husk of his former self"
motive found



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Old 12-10-2009, 11:59 PM   #317
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Wow. Just got a glimpse of this game last night. Un-freaking-believable. Saw it on a pal's PS3--got it for his woman.

In the gameplay it even had a familiar written dialogue feeling to another Bioware game I played not too long ago. *smug face*

Some glitches and flaws, granted, but all in all it looks to be a MORE-than decent game.
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Old 12-11-2009, 01:42 AM   #318
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Windows 7 superiority
I finally managed to finish my 2nd playthrough after my old comp died a couple of weeks ago. Playing it on my new machine - i7 860, 8GB RAM, GTX260 Super Overclock, Win7 x64 - it still runs just as crap as it did on my old box. Memory leaks lead to ever increasing load times of ridiculous proportions. Haven't had any crashes as yet, but I imagine that was only because I didn't play it long enough (the save I resumed was at the Landsmeet).
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Old 12-11-2009, 11:26 AM   #319
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what's that? you haven't had crashes on windows 7 either?

windows 7 superiority



"No, Mama. You can bet your sweet ass and half a titty whoever put that hit on you already got the cops in their back pocket." ~Black Dynamite
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Old 12-11-2009, 11:43 AM   #320
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Yeah I don't think a sum total of 2-3 hours on Win7 is a thorough benchmark. I'm about to start my 3rd playthrough, so we'll see what the verdict is after another 30-40 hours.
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