Originally Posted by DeepO
Combat is only faster if you play on casual or normal, but then itīs pure hackīnīslash without need to use any tactics whatsoever.
If you play on hard or nightmare, you need to play more carefully, but bar few interesting scenarios the game is chock-full of filler which just takes unnecessarily long to dispatch and gets repetitive/tedious fast.
Companions are mostly dull and of sketchy characterizations and you canīt really choose the pacing of interacting with them yourself, every dialogue is strictly regulated via notification in quest log. Sometimes they visit each other and sometimes you can let them to participate in dialogues which is pretty cool, but it still doesnīt make them markedly more memorable. All 4 potential "love interests" are also for some reason bisexual.
Other in-game characters arenīt memorable either, mostly because writing in general is undercooked.
Player character isnīt well designed either because the game does a pretty bad job helping player to identify with him, which is mostly caused by non-existent plot line.
And of course then there are copy pasted areas all over the place.
Itīs even worse than in Mass Effect because in DA2 copy pasting merrily occurs even in "main quest" related locations. There are few layouts used over and over and difference is only in closed doors or some hubris in the way.
And locations themselves are poorly designed, no matter whether itīs an exterior or an interior, itīs mostly just a linear corridor with no alternative routes.
Thereīs also no attention to detail and lighting is generally poor (no light/shadows ambience, everythingīs just bright).
The premise of adventure in one big city and its immediate surroundings throughout 10 year span is an intriguing concept, but DA2 simply doesnīt live up to it and instead of tightly focused C&C driven experience delivers not much more than an endless stream of uninspired side quests, filler combat, copy pasted locations and half-assed characters.
It has some good points, but ultimately just doesnīt deliver, neither as DA:O sequel, nor as a standalone experience.
Oh, and btw the promised 10 year span is somewhat misleading, because afaik the game ends after year 7 (not that it matters much, the game consists of prologue and 3 acts anyway) and the year 10 is just in the framed narrative.
These complains seem to be the most widely accepted analysis (from objective RPG fans) of the flaws of DA2, and further evidence that 13(?) months was simply not enough time to flesh out the game's concept. However, I have large doubts Bioware could have even pulled off the "adventure in one city with a lot of choice and consequence" that creates extremely high replayability and role-playing value because they have never had (or wanted) ambitious, branching plot-lines in their games. The whole concept seems like a disaster, as it does not play to Bioware's strength of creating interesting but linear story-driven experiences. Combine that with the extremely short development time, and it's no surprise that DA2 is a mixed bag that mostly feels like a poorly created rush-job.