Morning Discussion

BioWare points, then. They're stupid aren't they? While platform-specific currency points are a bit iffy they do serve a purpose but developer-specific points are simply silly. Especially when the Mass Effect 2 DLC store doesn't offer 560-point blocks, which is how many you need to buy the Kasumi Goto pack. Luckily the Dragon Age store does offer a Goto-sized point chunk but it all feels a wee bit underhanded.

Poor show, chaps. Kasumi is a great chum though. I started replaying Mass Effect 2 on Friday so I could stay awake all night to hopefully reset my body clock after E3 smashed it and it's nice to have a female shipmate who's simply a fun friend.

From The Chatty

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    June 21, 2010 5:11 AM

    i picked up Dragon Age: Origins on the cheap as i didn't have any money when it came out. I'm about 2 hours in and im not too impressed. does it get better??

    my main gripes with it is that the combat isn't very involving and its more of an "issue command" combat system.

    although the dialogue and story seems to be going somewhere, i can't help but look at the characters and textures in general and cringe (im playing on xbox btw)

    also, i feel there are a lot of things that havn't been explained to me yet about controls and menu content.

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      June 21, 2010 5:14 AM

      Isn't that how all Bioware games are? Even Mass Effect boiled down to using the right skills.

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        June 21, 2010 5:17 AM

        Uhm, I guess you could put it in those words, but is ME2 combat anything like DA combat? No. Not at all.

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        June 21, 2010 5:22 AM

        yeh, i'm learning skills, but the combat seems so automatic. i dont really need to touch the sticks, i can press A and let him walk over to an enemy and then leave him to do his thing. His stats dictate if he hits or misses, how much damage etc. doesnt matter how fast i mash the buttons or anything like that, my skill at combat in games accounts for naught in DA.

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          June 21, 2010 5:27 AM

          This is how RPGs often are. It's how the system is designed. A heavy emphasis on player skill isn't something they just forgot to put in there. Or at least, a heavy emphasis on combat reflexes. The player skill comes in at the strategy and tactics levels, not the attacks themselves.

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            June 21, 2010 5:30 AM

            Like he says, it's about strategy and tactics - flanking, retreats, which spells are used, who serves what role in the fight and so on.

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              June 21, 2010 5:38 AM

              ive barely touched the tactics. i was looking through the menus and found them. gave my hound a tactic to come and help out people with low health by stunning their attacker.

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                June 21, 2010 5:50 AM

                Tactics as a concept, not the Tactics the game mechanic (which facilitates automation of the first).

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          June 21, 2010 5:30 AM

          The game draws its lineage from the Baldur's Gate series. You're supposed to let individual characters do their thing for normal attacks and manage the entire team's priority of targets, use of items and abilities.

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          June 21, 2010 5:58 AM

          "i dont really need to touch the sticks, i can press A and let him walk over to an enemy"

          Well, your first problem is playing on a 360. Your second problem is not playing on a hard enough difficulty.

          I really liked the combat on the higher difficulties, it made you use a lot of strategy, positioning, good use of elixers/salves/etc...

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      June 21, 2010 5:15 AM

      It is an "issue command" combat system, that's not going to get better.

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        June 21, 2010 5:23 AM

        so there isn't going to be any more depth to it other than "which attack can i use that isnt on cooldown?"

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          June 21, 2010 5:26 AM

          This is kind of a silly complaint, the combat is if anything more in-depth than Baldur's Gate.

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          June 21, 2010 5:39 AM

          Yes, it has a lot more depth than that.

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          June 21, 2010 5:58 AM

          Play on a higher difficulty, at the very least you should be worried about where your guys are standing, unless they made it easier on the 360.

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          June 21, 2010 6:00 AM

          Against piss easy mobs, you aren't going to be challenged at all, but there are some incredibly hard fights in the game.

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          June 21, 2010 10:38 AM

          you've never played a D&D-based RPG before, have you?

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      June 21, 2010 5:17 AM

      you got the wrong edition. Much better game on PC.

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        June 21, 2010 5:25 AM

        PC isn't an option for me. can't be doin with the hassle.

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          June 21, 2010 5:27 AM

          Is it because of your specs?

          DA:O scaled really well. Even on the highest settings, it's not really that complex of a game.

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            June 21, 2010 5:28 AM

            I ran it on high settings and my computer is 4 years old except for my 8800GT. The PC version really is the one to play.

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            June 21, 2010 5:32 AM

            ive never had anything near a top-of-the-range rig, but the 3 times ive bought PC games, (the last one being UT2004, in 2005) i alwayds had issues of crashing, crappy graphics and things generally being a pain in the ass.

            i prefer the buy game, insert game, play game flow of consoles. Also, i enjoy knowing that the graphics i see on the box and in screenshots, are the ones i will be seeing when i run it on the console.

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          June 21, 2010 5:31 AM

          "PC isn't an option for me. can't be doin with the hassle." I think you bought the wrong game.

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            June 21, 2010 5:34 AM

            i don't mind games that are complex and a hassle to learn or get into, i just don't wana be doin that when im not playing a game.

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          June 21, 2010 5:33 AM

          No hassle, no superhigh hardware specs, and the game plays so much better. I'm not talking about the graphics here (although they are a bit better), but the gameplay itself is simply better.

          I love my xbox, but a game like dragon age really shines on the PC.

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          June 21, 2010 9:41 AM

          Well, at least we got our morning abortion thread rolling early.

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        June 21, 2010 10:38 AM

        oh ffs. just stop it.

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      June 21, 2010 5:34 AM

      Did you do no research on the game?

      And the game is like 40-50 hours long, stick with it to see it shine. What is your main hero? If you say archer, that is your first problem.

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        June 21, 2010 5:36 AM

        i did a while back. enough to know it was a good enough game for me to play. I got it because it was a long game and wanted soemthing deep to get into when i'm not on bad company2. i picked a human warrior. i like fighting with 2 swords :D

        i will stick with it, was just wondering if it's like RDR where the first couple of hours just bring you into it slowly or if it starts as it means to go on.

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          June 21, 2010 9:04 AM

          You should research some of the important skills. Arcane Warrior makes a lot of the difficult fights way easier. Proper mage spell combos help too. Also knowing how to unlock the classes helps since you may not unlock everything your first time through.

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      June 21, 2010 5:35 AM

      I played through both origins and awakenings on 360 and had a blast. the game is an issue command game. the biggest issue (depending on what type of RPG gamer you are) is that if you play on the base difficulty, the game becomes excessively easy. this is because there is no friendly fire so i would just rush my tank into the middle of a horde and throw down AOE after AOE until everyone was dead.

      And I would wait on doing the mage tower until the radial menu clicks and you can easily select spells/powers at will. It was one of the first places I went and holy hell was it frustrating due to the controls. Once it clicks though, it's actually pretty good and works as good as you could hope. Still not PC greatness though.

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        June 21, 2010 5:38 AM

        i did play it on normal, the thought of friendly fire seemed like it would be frustrating.

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          June 21, 2010 6:43 AM

          Yeah. It would be because no tactical view but the way I used it felt like an exploit since I'd just spam AoEs on my tank. But then again, there are good spells that are not AoE so it'd be possible to play w/o them or just cast the shield on your tank before doing so. I think it also scales up so it wouldn't be full damage if you just go up one tick. But I like to at the end to dominate in an RPG so it was fun for me.

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            June 21, 2010 7:04 AM

            hard is 50% FF damage, playing without FF makes the combat boring because you don't have to pay attention to what you're doing at all.

            no risk = no reward.

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              June 21, 2010 9:16 AM

              I forgot that they totally made the console versions easier. The PC Normal has the 50% friendly fire damage and hard has 100%.

        • Zek
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          June 21, 2010 9:23 AM

          I can only imagine how pitifully easy the game would be playing a Mage with all the big AE spells without FF.

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            June 21, 2010 9:34 AM

            I had some crazy fire resist stuff on my tank to help early with it (played on pc, hard) and by the time i got the rest of the AE's with my mages, my tank would just stand there and laugh at earthquake/blizzard/lightning combos anyway. scaling was a little off in this game. :/

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            June 21, 2010 9:50 AM

            Even with 50% FF it's not bad at all. I generally don't worry about it unless it's something that will immobilize. The ones you have to be careful of are Fireball, because of the obvious knockdown and DoT, and Blizzard, because it will knock you over and possibly freeze you.

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      June 21, 2010 5:50 AM

      I hated the real-time combat

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        June 21, 2010 7:38 AM

        I made extensive use of pausing when I played.

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      June 21, 2010 6:36 AM

      Later in the game, and on higher difficulties, combat becomes highly strategic and you need to play extremely close attention to everything that's going on. Unit placement, spells used (and in what order and on whom), equipment, potions etc etc. It can be very involved. Up the difficulty and you'll have more fun.

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      June 21, 2010 6:41 AM

      The story gets better once you get out of your Origin quest which if you are only 2 hours in are probably still doing.

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      June 21, 2010 10:44 AM

      You're just not far enough in to it. The combat will get to the point where you have to micro-manage the shit out of your battles, which is what makes it fun. Just make sure you have it on a hard enough difficulty.