113 of 131 people found the following review helpful
THE RETURN TO THE AGE OF THE CLASSICS IS NOW COMPLETE!,
This review is from: Dragon Age Origins: Ultimate Edition - PC (Video Game)
In the past I have chastised EA a number of times for its release of cookie-cutter games, crippled with atrocious DRM schemes. So, in all fairness, I now have to say this: DRAGON AGE: ORIGINS IS A GAMER's DREAM! It is an excellent game collection which (unfortunately...) does not come free of DRM madness. The original game and its expansion have only a simple disk-check; however, for some unfathomable reason, the DLCs/Packs in this edition have to be...downloaded (and activated) from EA's site. So, thank you EA for trying to listen to your customers but too bad you missed the cigar for not been able to hold it together to the end.
This is one of those games that are easy to control, a joy to roam through and fun to play at no end.
I am a huge cRPG fan and cannot remember such a great companion/squad cRPG ever since the Baldur's Gate Saga. And to tell you the truth, this is the game I was dreaming of being able to play one day while playing BG (yeah, by now we all know that NEVERWINTER NIGHTS never delivered).
There are about a dozen gender/race/class/background choices and a great many combinations in forming your party. The armor and the weapons are exceptionally made and everything shows on your characters. And the graphics are truly beautiful! You have to see the rendering of flames to believe them.
Nevertheless, what really stands out is the gameplay. Every battle is a puzzle to be solved, pausing ever so often to reallocate enemies to the best suited party members (a feature I loved in BG!). Of course one can always turn off the autopause feature and let the AI take over the rest of your party and turn the game into an hack&slash action RPG (not exactly my cup of tea but, hey, it's still nice to know it's there).
Finally, this is a game made just like the classics in many ways, including duration. I have been playing the game for hours at no end and I feel the urge to start over the moment I reach the epilogue. Now DRAGON AGE: ORIGINS is one satisfying RPG!
My only gripe is this: I did not appreciate such short dialogue options. Most fit a single line and more often than not they consist of a couple of words. I like my RPGs to be wordy and challenging to my verbal imagination as well - and I want my characters to participate in the humor, not just provoke it or react to it. Remember the long dialogue options in BG? Well, expect to find DRAGON AGE: ORIGINS much more laconic.
I guess 10 years of fast-paced FPS and blitzkrieging RTS do take their toll...
This ULTIMATE EDITION not only contains both the original game and its AWAKENINGS expansion but also all nine Content Packs. For such an epic game to be sold at this price, this is a bargain not to be missed!
The blood sprays, the swords clang and the spells explode. The animations are beautifully made and add a lot to both enjoyment and immersion. There is a verse in Homer's Iliad I love: "the warrior fell, his armor echoing around him" - and I was reminded of it many a times throughout the game.
The game is now complete and it will stay with you for a very long time.
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Showing 1-10 of 11 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Oct 30, 2010 6:01:53 AM PDT
If I'm not mistaken, the "FREE of any DRM madness" doesn't apply to the "nine Content Packs". Instead, you get codes you have to register with an EA account and get authorized in order to play them.
In reply to an earlier post on Oct 30, 2010 6:15:37 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 30, 2010 9:43:18 AM PDT
Sadly, this is true.
The original game and its expansion come with a simple disk-check and require neither online activation nor registration.
The DLC/Packs, however, need to be downloaded from the EA site.
Thank you DEOREN for pointing this out (I edited my review accordingly).
Posted on Oct 30, 2010 11:57:21 AM PDT
Ben W says:
The reason it's great is because EA bought Bioware (one of two companies that has never made a bad game, the other being Blizzard), and thus far has managed to keep their game-ruining meddling fingers out of Bioware's development & creative process. :-) Remains to be seen if they can resist the temptation to ruin another MMO since Bioware is making what could be a great Star Wars game.
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2010 11:15:50 AM PDT
so you don't download the DLC from bioware site but instead from EA?
Posted on Nov 3, 2010 7:00:08 PM PDT
The DLC is on the disc. You have to register a serial key at the EA website and then log into Dragon Age with your EA account. This only needs to be done once per computer; afterwards, you can play all the content offline. It's a pain, but it's fortunately not as outright evil as some DRM methods.
Posted on Nov 9, 2010 1:28:26 PM PST
Neuro, your dialogue gripes struck a digital chord of mine. Tho our younger gamer brethrens have taken its toll, it's an acceptable price for a game that's worthy of its predecessor BGII:SA.
Been waiting forever for the Ultimate Edition, ever since the original first came out. Looks like it was worth the wait.
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 17, 2010 3:03:50 PM PST
Yeah, I bought this game because of this review, and ended up in DRM hell. Fortunately, I was able to return it.
Posted on Jan 6, 2011 12:57:09 PM PST
RPGee Wiz says:
Great review Neuro. I was considering writing one of my own, but you have more or less said it all.
In reply to an earlier post on Apr 10, 2011 8:42:10 AM PDT
Could someone enlighten me as to what a DLC and DRM are.
In reply to an earlier post on Apr 10, 2011 9:00:00 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 10, 2011 9:05:39 AM PDT
They are both methods used by the worse game publishers to screw over their own customers.
DRM (Digital Rights Management) schemes, such as SecuROM, Tages, StarFORCE etc, are security drivers bundled with the game, supposedly to prevent the illegal copying and digital distribution of games. They never did anything like that of course, ever. All games get cracked, ripped or cloned days if not hours following their release.
In most cases, they are but thinly veiled attempts of the game publisher to kill the (very legal) second hand market and sell at full price a product which is essentially rented (as it will only allow for a handful of installations before blocking all access to your own game).
In other cases, they are illegally gathering data (which they send to their occasional mothership), trying to pave the way towards a future where our PCs will turn into the mega-publishers' proprietary consoles and we will have to pay-per-play for games bought through digital distribution vehicles, such as STEAM or GamesForWindows.
DLC (DownLoaded Content) is yet another attempt of game publishers/developers to milk their own customers for more money by essentially yanking out components from their finished game to be sold at a near date as "extra content" - usually at a price 1/5 of an entire game.
For example, DRAGON AGE: ORIGINS had over 25 DLCs(!), most consisting of a single item (that may not even work -remember the Memory Band?) or a single character whereas CIVILIZATION V has about 5 DLCs, all adding a civilization that should had been in the original game in the first place - such as Babylon and Spain!
I try to stay clear of DRM schemes that rob me from the possibility of replaying the game I buy anytime in the future and never buy individual DLCs as I consider them pure exploitation. If I enjoy a game very much I always wait for the Ultimate/Platinum/GameOfTheYear-edition which contains them all at a very reasonable price.