Dragon Age: Origins (PS3)

9 Overall Score
Graphics: 9/10
Mechanics: 9/10
Story: 9/10

Solid RPG experience

Stop-and-Go combat

Game Info

GAME NAME: Dragon Age: Origins

DEVELOPER(S): Bioware / Edge of Reality

PUBLISHER(S): Electronic Arts

PLATFORM(S): PS3, Xbox 360, PC, Mac


RELEASE DATE(S): November 3, 2009


 Dragon Age: Origins was one of the most anticipated titles of this fall and it has garnered both praise and blame. My personal experience with this game, however, has been nothing but good and I am happily 45+ hours in and can’t wait until I have time to play more. I already have plans for second character* and I imagine that I will be playing Dragon Age right up to Christmas, at which point I will get mildly distracted by lots of other shiny new titles. Still, all told, Dragon Age: Origins is a damned good RPG and well worth both the cost and the time investment.

First off, let me address some of the criticisms that I have read and heard. The glitchiness and poor graphics that some have commented on have not been an issue for me. True, the graphics are not on par with the FMVs shown in the TV commercials. But, I either have not seen the poor graphics on my PS3 that others have complained about or it’s an issue that really doesn’t matter that much to me when I am playing. That said, I don’t think the game has bad graphics. Nor have I had problems with the combat. It is true that the auto-move sometimes runs a character off in a direction that I, as a player, would not have chosen, but again, that’s never made such a difference that I’ve cared overmuch. Maybe I’m just being slow, but I haven’t really seen or cared about a lot of the things about this game that seem be bothering others so much.

Now, let’s get to the goodness! The story behind this game is both classic fantasy RPG and, at times, quite a bit epic. It is true that I have gotten bored during some of the conversational exchanges – which are all voiced, by the way – but the story itself is solid and well developed. It has elements of urgency, revenge, love, politics, and so much more than you would ever get from developer that is not as highly committed as Bioware. The playable NPC field is also rich. At 45+ hours in my first play-through I have no less than 7 playable NPCs, plus another one from downloaded content. Now, true to my other experiences with Bioware’s RPG playable NPCs, these characters have character and some of them seem, on the surface, quite disagreeable. So much so in some cases that I tend not to play those NPCs just so I don’t have to listen to them.

The rest of the game is just as polished as the story and playable characters. There are several distinct origin stories for the main character that I have yet to play through. And there are plenty of items to loot, and, let’s face it, loot is a well established part of any good RPG. There is some micro-management of both items and combat, but the assignable tactics (like FFXII’s Gambits system) that each character has goes a long way towards alleviating this. The combat, at least for warriors and archers is easy to pick up and execute. And there’s even a crafting system for potions, poisons and traps!

All told, I like this game. I like it a lot. I can easily see myself playing this game through, making another character and playing it again**. And considering the 11.5 hours that it took me to play through Uncharted 2, I really appreciate a game that has some staying power. A $60 buy-in is a sizable commitment in down economy and weak holiday season, but I am glad I bought this game to tide me over til Christmas. I give Dragon Age: Origins a resounding two thumbs up and if this game is any indication of what they have planned for their Star Wars MMO, The Old Republic, then I can’t wait!

*It took me 49.5 hours to play through the game in Normal mode with my human warrior. It was quite epic.
**I have since rolled an elven rogue and am in the process of playing thorough the game again. It’s like I could see the future!


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Author: Michael Bartok View all posts by

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