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Default Dragon Age - First Impressions

September 29th, 2010, 15:51
I have found a few new bits again :

- In Redcliffe, the people are stupid. There are boats out there on the lake. Why don't they just gather on them and outdrive the approaching "hordes" ?

- A plot question :
Spoiler


- Another plot question :
Spoiler


- And I've found a rather serious, but not at all game breaking bug, just a nuisance :
Spoiler


I think I've found another case of "stupidness", too,
but I can't remember anymore, what it was.

- And what I found quite lame was the demon of the Tower - not the last boss, the one before that … because it followed so closely the clichι of "you didn't defeat him at all. You defaeted just another form of him".

- And the day before yesterday I was thinking of writing a lengthy "rant" here as well … Something about Dragon Age rather leaving a taste of bitterness in my mouth than entertaining me. Which led me to the thought that Dragon Age might appeal to other "senses" than just "fun". Because I cannot find much "fun" in such a dreaded world.

But I must also say that I just can't understand why people actually like horror (movies, novels), gothic and movies like "Saw". I just can't understand it. It's beyond my "senses".

Coming from board games to pen & paper role-playing games and at the same time to PC adventure and role-playing games, "gaming" as such has always the factor of "fun" in it. I just can't understand why people do like horror-themed pen & peper RPGs. I fail to see any "fun" and "en-joy" factor in it. (Enjoy -> en-joy -> joy)

Dragon Age is like a … an exciting novel, the plot is imho quite interesting in some places, but it plys rather than a novel of grom times than something fun and colourful like … Commander Keen, for example. There are WORLDS between both (two worlds ? )

Okay, enough ranting. I think you already know me good enough to know how I think.

“ Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.“ (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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September 29th, 2010, 17:33
Originally Posted by Alrik Fassbauer View Post
- A plot question :
Spoiler
Spoiler


Originally Posted by Alrik Fassbauer View Post
- Another plot question :
Spoiler
Spoiler
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September 29th, 2010, 18:50
To the first spoiler : Yes, but how, in fact ?

To the second spoiler : Well, I fear that I might have used it too early, perhaps … I'm wondering right now whether I should try an older savegame ?

“ Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.“ (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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September 29th, 2010, 19:46
Originally Posted by Alrik Fassbauer View Post
To the first spoiler : Yes, but how, in fact ?
Spoiler


Originally Posted by Alrik Fassbauer View Post
To the second spoiler : Well, I fear that I might have used it too early, perhaps … I'm wondering right now whether I should try an older savegame ?
Spoiler
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September 29th, 2010, 20:40
Originally Posted by Dwagginz View Post
Spoiler
Spoiler

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September 29th, 2010, 22:45
- In Redcliffe, the people are stupid. There are boats out there on the lake. Why don't they just gather on them and outdrive the approaching "hordes" ?

The undead just pull a "pirats of cariaben" then

Originally Posted by Dwagginz View Post
Spoiler
Spoiler – Spoiler

(Sorry fore the gramma, are Danish)
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September 29th, 2010, 23:17
Hello, yes, I understood and used it now.

Strange, that in my first try, Irving was dead. Now, I used it any time I needed to.

Unfortunately, there's a strange … kind of "magic storm" that kills absolutely EVERY surviving magician after the fight on that platform - except Irving. That wasn't necessary.

And now, I found out that help for Redcliffe can be gathered there seemingly ONLY if Irving survives … Interestingly there's actually "two endings" depending in survival of Irving. The "main Templar" at the entrance of the Tower says actually different words, then.

Another oddity I noticed : The "Kodex" speaks of - regarding Redcliffe -
Spoiler

“ Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.“ (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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October 1st, 2010, 23:51
Did a few random quests today - saving a bunch of people from the "Horde", as I call them.

What goes on in a mind that decides that players shouldn't have the chance to save all or at least most of the refugees ? I might sound harsh, I might sound weird, but to me it is a bit sadistically to let players only witness - with relative helplessness - as hurlocks are killing quite helpless refugees one-by-one. The premise of the game seems to be : You don't have a chance, so use it ! Or "no matter how hard you'll try, you won't succeed".

The designers there decided seemingly towards a kind of gameplay that puts forward rather strong emotions within the players. Either through blood, gore ( [cynism]but we already all know that those who play these kind of games ren't emotionally affected by blood and gore anyway, to them it's just like water : yet another fluid[/cynism] ) or through instilling the feeling of helplessness, of pitifulness within the player. Such as with strong, menacing killing-machines like the hurlocks kill helpless, homeless refugees one by one, with the player trying hrd to prevent it, but not having any real chance to suceed in any way.

I know I sound harsh, but I have my concerns about what designers of games with this premise might think of players, or how they decide to treat players. "These are pixelated peasants, nothing more", they seem to think, "you shouldn't care about them, or rather we'll teach you not to care about pixels".

This is like a slam into my face. In a pen & paper session, I'll immediately leave such a sadistic GM.
But on the other hand, I do know that sadistic GMs actually exist. They have some kind of fun in putting a group against odds where they cannot win - or only barely.

On a more serious note, I have begun to think whether players/gamers who play hack & slay and shooter games have lesser or even rather underdeveloped mirror neurons than others.

HSPs often have too much developed mirror neurons, it seems to me (and I am one), which leads to HSPs having a far better understanding in/to social matters.

In order to be able to kind of "kill" "pixels in the shapes of humans", one must shut off a portion of his or her own mirror neurons, because the mirror neurons are what makes you respond to something that looks similar to you. Or so I understood it.

Real-life killers and solders I think must shut off quite a huge part of their mirror neurons - because otherwise they wouldn't be able to shot and kill other people.

I begin to wonder in how far gaming affects the mirror neurons. Or whether certain genre attract a certain kind of people. In a recent study I read about in the local newspaper, it was shown that hunters don't "believe" in animals having emotions, but vegetarians rather tend to do so.

Which *could* imho be a hint towards "tell me what you play and I'll tell you how many mirror neurons you have", kind of.

“ Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.“ (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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October 2nd, 2010, 00:14
High fantasy, low fantasy, dark fantasy??

I think you're grossly over-analyzing things.
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October 2nd, 2010, 14:39
That's just the way I am.

And I really should stop writing late at night …

“ Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.“ (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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October 3rd, 2010, 09:12
I don’t find that encounter sadistic at all, it show you that even through you are a Gray Warden, you are no super man, and you can’t set everything right, just by being there. If that was the case, I think the game would be boring, its like seeing one of those Hollywood action movies, there the Hero kill hundred of bad guys, while they shoot thousand of bullets after him, and hit anything but him, I find those kind of movies boring, you know after the 1st action screen, that the hero is invulnerable! That’s the challenge in that?

Dragon age is a Grim affaire, but then you do succeeded something, the feeling of victory is that bigger.

By the way you did better at me on my 1st play through on Normal, I did not manage to save any at all. All through Im at my second play through now, on nightmare, here I succeed on saving two

(Sorry fore the gramma, are Danish)
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October 3rd, 2010, 12:06
Excuse me, I'm playing on "easy" and all gore turned off.

And yes, I understand that it is a grim world - and in-game the phrase hs already been said : "The darker the times, the bigger the hero" or so (no exact wording) …

That means to me that I'm just another kind of player and that I don't fit in into what they (at Bioware) had intended.

I just think that I don't fit into any regular "D&G" themes at all. I just don't like it, but regarding the sales and everything, a majority seems to like it.

Which leads me to the question of whether "D&G" reflects sort of "real life", - in an "indirect way" ?

I think I'll never understand why people - and a majority of players ! - actually likes this kind of setting - dark and grim worlds, full of blood, gore, helplessness, and little achievements.

I have the feeling - I wrote it several times already, I know - that more and more people feel drawn into this kind of setting - more and more people seem to like it.

And I'll never understand why.

And because I can't understand it, I must try finding reasons that help me understand it. One of them is the guess that "dark & gritty" might reflect - sort of - real life in games. World economy crisis and so on.

Me, I'm playing games rather for escapism, which means to me : "relax from real-life affairs". And I do need some sort of colourfullness, otherwise I'm not able to "stop it" in my brain/mind, and relax from the real life.

But Bioware seems not to produce for people who want to relex the way I do. They seem rather produce for people … Well, I can't really say. It's like Max Paine to me (from what I've heard about the game). A game full of emotions, but almost only negative emotions, not positive ones.

What leaves me helpless, unfruitful, is the try to find an answer to the question what their intention was, when they produced this game.

“ Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.“ (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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October 3rd, 2010, 14:42
Another thing : There's a - for me - quite big "immersion breaker" : You know, that I'm somewhat language-oriented , and that's my problem.

In every speech I listen to, if there is any name, and person's name, any character's name, and town's name, even with several special words which can only be understood with the context of this world -

the names are spoken with an american-english accent. No exception.

I … really don't know how to transfer this experience to you to show you how it breaks the immersion or me … Others wouldn't have any problem(s) with it at all.

It's a little bit as … Try to imagine Gothic with all person's name, character's names, names of towns, names of animals, names of regions, all spoken with a distinguishable German accent. With no exception.

The problem I have here is kind of … I'm supposed to kind of "live" within this world, "be part of it", so I'd suppose that everything would have an accent of "my" language … But now, every word has a *different* accent … one that is totally … foreign from within this world, so to say … It's as if Ferelden hd once been invaded by a different nation, which hd later withdrawn or died out - but their foreign names have rmained. It's a little bit like the Hyksos reign of ancient Egypt.

“ Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.“ (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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October 4th, 2010, 09:01
Originally Posted by Alrik Fassbauer View Post
It's as if Ferelden hd once been invaded by a different nation, which hd later withdrawn or died out - but their foreign names have rmained. It's a little bit like the Hyksos reign of ancient Egypt.
But it did The Tevinter Imperium

(Sorry fore the gramma, are Danish)
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October 4th, 2010, 09:26
Originally Posted by Alrik Fassbauer View Post
I think I'll never understand why people - and a majority of players ! - actually likes this kind of setting - dark and grim worlds, full of blood, gore, helplessness, and little achievements.
Because we're not pussies…. like you.


jk
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October 4th, 2010, 11:47
Well, the *real world* is already grim enough for my taste, thank you.

On a more serious note : I know that I'm sensitive - and tht I'm quite much sensitive. Which means that I perceive things much "harder" and a little bit "sharper" than others do.

And that might be reflected by how I perceive this game and its contents.

I'm moderating within an HSP forum, which is basiclly a forum of HSPs, so I'm used to that kind of "perceiving", which means that thre are much more "pussies" out there than you might be aware of.

Only within the last 2 weeks there have been about 10 newcomers there.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Highly_sensitive_person

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October 5th, 2010, 13:08
Visited the Brazilian Wood and the Lady Of The Lake … Or so.

When I saw the "Lady", I had the thought that "she looks very amrican". She reminds me of an higher-tier employee of McAfee I once talked to at the CeBit in Hannover, Germany. Similar hairstyle, a distinct looks of … what I'd call "american". I cannot put it into words, it's just the style or look or so …

The ruins let me think as if someone there at Boware had set down to draw with the goal to tell all Drakensang designers : "Well, THAT's the way a proper ruin should look like !" - In Drakensang 2, you can sort of "visit" ruins, too. They reminded me of them.

Which reminds me of anoher "silliness" … - Browsing through the walkthrough in research to find the reason of a few inconsistencies in a quest let me find out that this game actually has a character called "Forgrim" in it - is that tue ???

I don't know who had this name earlier - but two RPGs with almost the exact name being released at about the same time is not a thing of randomness to me.

I often have the the rather serious feeling as if someone at Bioware had studied Drakensang 1 very closely … I'd even say that someione had studied Drakensang 2 even more closely, because there are elements which are very similar within these ruins … but that simply can't be, since there's too much time between both.

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October 6th, 2010, 16:24
That was the Lady of the Forest. I honestly couldn't say that she looks American. She looks naked, but that's about it.
Then again I wouldn't know what an American look is and haven't been able before to identify someone based on their looks as American, but maybe you have some talents in that area

I don't recall anyone named Forgrimm in the Brecilian Forest. Where was he, or was he mentioned in a book/letter?

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October 6th, 2010, 18:47
Well, Gamebanshee mentioned someone called "Forgrim", but not within the forest, but somewhere in the whole game.

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October 6th, 2010, 22:55
Originally Posted by Alrik Fassbauer View Post
Well, Gamebanshee mentioned someone called "Forgrim", but not within the forest, but somewhere in the whole game.
Cant rember him either, maybe it's one whit a very small role. Now we are at the translation, "For grim" means "to Ugly" on danish

(Sorry fore the gramma, are Danish)
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