Originally Posted by Tilean
I don't think there is anything wrong with condensing dialogue. Actually, for Bioware RPGs I think it's the way to go, because as I wrote earlier their choices have always been binary and you can usually tell before looking at the options what your actual choices are. I also think that it enhances immersion. I always find it strange to pause in a dialogue to slowly weigh each option against each other. In Mass Effect 2 I very often found myself choosing my next answer while the dialogue was still in full swing, this usually made the whole experience feel a lot more natural. And when I abstractly compare how I "play" dialogue in DA:O to ME2, it really isn't that much different. In both I usually go through all the "investigate" options and then make my choice. I feel that this is the way Bioware has always encouraged players to play their dialogues, so I really don't see anything wrong with them using the "wheel". But I also rarely imagine my hero actually voicing the dialogue option I choose, maybe our playing styles are just too different…
To be honest, I didn't romance either Jaheira or Viconia in BG mainly because I let Viconia die in BG1 and I always thought of Jaheira as a kind of mentor figure, so the prospect of romancing her always felt awkward. Though, all this talk of DA and the recent re-release on GOG has definitely made me want to play the BG series again, so I will probably check it out in the near future.
I know, I'm kind of a weirdo. I grew up reading fantasy novels and playing PnP, so I always developed my own voices for characters. In the first Mass Effect, the dialogue options were just about the same for what was said, and Mark Meer, for what it's worth, is a better voice actor than whomever they have doing Hawke. It's not just BioWare, either. I damn near ground my teeth when Geralt just ejaculated, "Abso-fuckin'-lutely," in The Witcher. I understand that the dialogue wheel is easier for consoles to figure out, and with the This-Is-What-You-Mean symbol in the center of the wheel, you can figure out the right tone of what you want to say. I still read dialogue, though, because I think it's important, and sometimes, I want to say the mean or intimidating thing, depending on who I'm talking to, and I want to know that it's going to fit with what my character is about.
I can't recommend that you play through Jaheira and Viconia's romance enough. Honestly, with the lack of 3d textures and kissyface cutscenes, the writers had to do more with personality and integrating the characters into the story. Not only are the correct dialogue choices more difficult to ascertain, there's no mirrors, gloves, or trinkets to give them to make up for screwing up a dialogue. If you carry the romances through to the end of the game, they're an incredible example of the way Bioware used to write.
Originally Posted by aries100
The dialogue choices in a Bioware game have always been like this
a) Do you want us to help you?
b) We'll help you - but it's gonna cost you some money
c) No way - them fighting words
d) Tell me more
Here you have nice, not so nice, and combat options and the investigation options.
The dialogue wheel is just another way of organising these options. When I played the demo, I had no trouble identifying these 3 basic dialogue options that do exist in any Bioware game - all the way back to Baldur's Gate.
It's never been about identifying the correct choice. Without voice acting, you're reliant upon good writing to make conversations and dialogue flow. I still pay a lot of attention to what's written, even though the idea has been condensed, and Hawke doesn't say exactly that. However, no matter what comes out of Hawke's mouth, If I see something as simple as, "I'm hungry," written on the screen in the middle of a serious conversation, I automatically give him Sloth's voice from "The Goonies," and it ruins immersion a little.