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How does Dragon Age compare to Baldur's Gate?

Discussion in 'Dragon Age: Origins' started by Son of Imoen, Dec 7, 2011.

  1. Son of Imoen Gems: 4/31
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    I bought and started playing Dragon Age Origins mainly out of curiosity, as it was launched by Bioware as being the 'spiritual succesor of Baldur's Gate'.

    I was sceptical at first and especially disappointed by the lack of fleshing out of the NPC's in the Ostagar chapter, but once I finished that part of the game (though I want to avoid spoilers in this thread), it turned out that afterward there was more banter between the NPC's and lots of well-written dialogue once I arrived at the place called party camp. I haven't advanced beyond that point yet, but it seems past that point just like in Baldur's Gate there's no railroading, but you're given the freedom to pick areas of the Worldmap at will.

    So after getting to know the game better (19 hours of playing time, according to the game menu) I'm less disappointed, leaning towards the opinion it's a good RPG after all. The remaining disappointed is in the spells. There's nothing like the intricacy of casting of 2nd Edition Dungeons & Dragons, with buffing, dispelling of buffs, interupting casting, silencing enemies and all the other things you can do with magic that requires you to delve deep into the system and make battles involving affairs because of the magic. The involvement in battles in low-level DA-O comes from combat tactics more than from magic. Will that change later in the game?

    I'd love to hear your own comparisons of Dragon Age vs. Baldur's Gate.
     
  2. hannibal555 Gems: 9/31
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    I finished DA, and it is a good game.

    Though it doesn't even come close in complexity to the tactics involving spells in BG.
    My opinion is, that tactical gameplay in BG is much more fun (well I like the complexity).
    Nevertheless, NPC interaction in DA is nice (maybe even better than in BG), but the overall main story is pretty dull (again, in my opinion).

    My feeling is that DA (but not DA2!) is the last great (what I consider great that is ^^) game of Bioware.
    Enjoy it :).
     
  3. henkie

    henkie Hammertime Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    I wouldn't call DA a good game, but the NPC interaction is at least very well done. Some of them at least. Others less so.

    The story is pretty much your standard fantasy fare. It seems to be an aesthetic they went with, given the rather stereotypical race and class choices (human - elf - dwarf / fighter - rogue - mage), but nothing truly special here. BG's story was much less standard by comparison.

    Even the progression is rather standard: go to these four places and gather the four puzzle pieces to be able to open the way to the great big bad guy.

    Combat is a bit were it falls down for me in DA:O. The main gripe I have with it is that the enemies are leveled so that a fight with darkspawn at Ostagar is literally no different than a fight with those same darkspawn 20 levels later. Apparently, not everybody minds this, but for me it takes away the feeling that your character is getting stronger. And I have a tendency to completely lose all interest in a game once I realise that.

    It's certainly not as fun as BG and while the story and characters are a lot more developed than, say, NWN, the combat and gameplay in NWN was a lot better.

    All in my opinion, of course.
     
  4. Rawgrim Gems: 21/31
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    DA is abit behind the BG games, but on par with...Knights of the old republic, I would say. A damn good rpg. Too bad DA2 seems like Tekken with conversaions.
     
  5. pplr Gems: 18/31
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    I've gone through both BG2 (w. ToB) & DA.

    I liked them both.

    Some of the DA character interactions are excellent. Though Minsc will be a pleasing figure for a long time....

    In DA some things are less obvious than in BG2. Without giving you spoilers all I can do is before making some of the big decisions in the game look at what multiple people say before you make your choice. Listen carefully sometimes. And in general look around and see what you think of the situation.

    Ok, enough said. And some decisions are much more obvious than others.

    There is less variety with spells but I still found it useful to engage in sniping and/or freezing enemy mages. You don't disrupt most of their spells but you can take them out or knock them down as a way to keep them from casting a new spell.

    Every so often a big spell will take time to cast and when I see an enemy mage powering up I'll often knock him down or have one of my own mages cast a quick freeze spell.

    One thing the game doesn't let you do is go on a rampage and slaughter an entire town. When you aren't in combat the game just assumes you aren't trying to hurt others.

    In some situations this may work better with the storyline and keep the occasional player who wants to act like a manic from doing so. Though there are other times when it may be tempting to hit someone and you cannot.

    I give DA:O a thumbs up, ditto for BG2.

    There are some similarities and differences between the 2 as you've noticed (both have a starting path you have to work through and then give you a great deal of freedom of movement.)
     
  6. Son of Imoen Gems: 4/31
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    I tend to get my bases covered if I make a wrong choice by reloading or have a different character do the things I know with hindsight would be better choices. The easy switching between characters is a thing I like. With BG it wasn't very difficult either, but to keep things tidy I keep different installs, minus the data, bg1data, music and CD2 folders, by copying the contents of the folder to start another run with a different characters. Making the Black Isle folder almost 70 GB big, with some 17 campaigns. With DA-O, it's the same 15 GB for 2 characters right now.

    I doubt I will run 17 campaings with Dragon-Age though. And why is Dragon Age II that bad? I hear a lot of people complaining about it on Baldur's Gate fora, it's such a bad game?

    *edit: it's not 17 campaigns still running, I'm not that gluttonous. It's 8 finished, 7 still going, 2 waiting to get started (among which Planescape Torment for the first time), 2 installs are aborted campaigns and 3 are unmodded vanilla installs I don't use to play but for building modded installs from it. Making it a grand total of 21. I admit to be Baldur's Gate addicted and getting my fix alot. :hippy:
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2011
  7. Beren

    Beren Lovesick and Lonely Wanderer Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Actually, I think there's plenty of tactical sophistication, character development, and variety in DAO if you play it enough times. For me, its been like peeling away layers with each playthrough.
     
  8. henkie

    henkie Hammertime Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Like an onion. Unfortunately - also like peeling an onion - playing it makes me want to cry.
     
  9. omnigodly Gems: 17/31
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    I'd say BG2 > DA, but barely - the barely that makes the difference is the number of game changing mods available.

    Vanilla vs. Vanilla DA is easily just as good as BG. Where one lacks the other picks up, not the least of which the graphics, especially facial expressions during dialogues and the ability to dress up your character ;).
     
  10. Munchkin Blender Gems: 22/31
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    I like DAO more than any other game I have played, including Baldur's Gate series. I just like the characters and the personality that the developers gave the characters and how you as the player can change that. I also like how the game does not define good and evil; the game is all about shades of grey.

    As for BG series, to me it was one of the best games ever until DAO came out. DAO was fresh some new with a new system for combat and magic. The story, though not completely new, was epic and brought you into the game world; DAO has enough character backgrounds that class and race helped determine it; whereas in BG the story was the exact same for all class and races, DAO had the extra of add a bit more to the character story based on class and race chosen, which I thought was unique and new.

    If you compared the series and not just the games, I would say both are equal and here is why; DA2 and BG2 both did things that you did not think about or that you may disagreed about. Both of the series 2nd game improved graphics and focused around a major city with some quest taking part outside of the city. BG was able to track time of day, DA2 allowed you to determine the time of day (BG2 was better with tracking time). DA2 brough about voice acting into the game for the main character, most hated it, I enjoyed it, but than again I enjoyed the ME series and the voice acting of the the main character.

    I believe both series are great and offer players plenty to talk about. I just want to see how Bioware, I mean EA, plans to execute DA3. Will it be another NEW engine, will the enhance the current engine used, etc... I also hope they spend more than 18 months developing the game. How about updating DA2 with new areas and adding a full blow expansion.

    As for DAO vs. DA2, DAO kicks it down and spits on it while its hands are tied behind its back and blind folded. DAO made a lot of players want more DA goodness; however, DA2 was rushed and that is visible in the DA2 main game.

    Engouh ranting... DA = BG... They are both great series of games.
     
    AngelusMortem likes this.
  11. henkie

    henkie Hammertime Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Am I the only one that thinks the dialogue animations look stiff and unnatural? I mean that they just stand there, maybe pace around a little bit, sometimes even emote, but most of the time they just stand there like they're holding a conversation by phone and the person they're talking to isn't even in the same room.

    It could be so much more dynamic, like how they do the cutscenes in for instance Saint's Row 2 or any GTA since GTA3.

    Also, the now spoken dialogue also means that the voice acting should be up to par. And some times, it just really isn't and it just puts you on a trebuchet and hurls you right out of the experience.

    All in all it certainly could be a lot better than the text walls in BG, but I'm not sure it actually is at this moment. At least not in any BioWare game I've seen from the last few years.
     
  12. Son of Imoen Gems: 4/31
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    No, you're not the only one. Being used to small BG-avatars, it was nice to see people talking and show emotion in their faces, but it surprised me, when two npc's start talking to eachother, they don't look at eachother, just as if the person they're talking to is standing somewhere else. Very weird. Like a phonecall, indeed.
     
  13. Barmy Army

    Barmy Army Simple mind, simple pleasures... Adored Veteran

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    It's a good game, is Origins. It's probably the closest a game as come to being a spiritual BG2 successor, but it's still a way off. We just have to accept that the days of PS:T & BG2 are long gone. Still, I really enjoyed DA:O.
     
  14. Munchkin Blender Gems: 22/31
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    After playing Uncharted series I agree with you 100%; in fact, if Bioware played the Uncharted series by Naughty Dog software and found a way to incorporate updates to their game cut scenes who knows what the ratings would be for the next DA game; however, Bioware games do have multiple lines and reaction based on the selection by the player that other games do not have. This is where careful planning and using as much the full Blu-Ray disc to create the game would make an improvement over their prior games, but than again Bioware would have to make the game also useable on DVD since most PC’s and Xbox still use that outdated format. :)
     
  15. pplr Gems: 18/31
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    There are shades of gray but some of the choices are still pretty clear good/evil ones. Elves & Werewolves has some pretty clear good and evil options.

    Bhelen/Harrowmont was much harder (more shades of gray and harder to see what the options actually were as aspects of one were made obvious and aspects of the other were made very subtly.

    Agree, I liked there magic system because it involved less micromanagement and operated more sensibly in that if you knew a spell in D&D and had it in your mind for a week why would you suddenly forget it 5 minutes after casting it?

    If magic is based on something you had to power up then it made more sense. Though there is something this would allow mages to be.... illiterate. If magic is more about manipulating energy or using it and letting it recharge then-like someone who practices swinging a sword or aiming a crossbow-you don't need to be able to read to do it.

    Now maybe how to manipulate energy is passed from one mage to the next via training and research which reading could assist with but it does potentially challenge there stereotypical mage or wizard sitting in a room full of books.



    This was one of the real high points of the game. You can reply the game without going through Irenicus's dungeon each time.
     
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