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Default Dragon Age - PC GotY @ Gamasutra

December 7th, 2009, 17:34
Dragon Age takes PC GotY at Gamasutra followed by: Dawn of War 2, Left 4 Dead 2, Empire: Total War and Torchlight taking fifth place. Risen gets an honourable mention. Here's what they had to say about Dragon Age…
Dragon Age is a game full of compelling contradictions. Its gameplay paradigm is a revival of the kind of systemic, arcane PC RPG that BioWare previously revived in the late 90s with Baldur's Gate — but its finely-tuned modernization and playability deflect anachronistic impenetrability. At first glance, its setting seems like forgettable boilerplate fantasy — but that surface level belies a slate of unexpectedly engaging and believable party members, and well-integrated undercurrents examining its world's class and race relations.

These days, not many multiplatform games feel so intrinsically native to the PC as Dragon Age. Some elements play equally well on any system — characters, dialogue, situations, choices — but the intended feel of the game is best conveyed with a mouse and keyboard, and the more complete UI. Using the mouse wheel to seamlessly scroll between the modern chase cam and the old-school remove-the-ceiling top-down view is oddly satisfying in its own right, and is endlessly practical as the game flows between exploration and tactical combat. Characters can be direct-controlled, clicked-and-dragged, given automated tactics; as with the narrative situations, player choice is the name of the game.
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December 7th, 2009, 17:34
I think I agree with that. My other highlights were/are The Witcher, Dragon Age, Risen and Braid. The Witcher and Braid are not from this year, and Risen, while hard to compare with Dragon Age, does not reach such high quality.

I didn't play that much this year. I replayed Ultima 7, both parts. I played a bit of GTAIV, which is a good game but a horrible console port. I played through Modern Warfare 2 which was disappointing. Operation Falshpoint 2 is okay. Far Cry 2 was a total disappointment.
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December 7th, 2009, 17:45
The PC version of Braid was April this year only the 360 version was 2008. It should have made that list easy.
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December 8th, 2009, 02:51
Batman belongs on the 'honorable mention' list, while the abomination that is the PC version of Modern Warfare 2 deserves a different sort of award …

— Mike
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December 8th, 2009, 04:55
No surprise about DA taking the top spot, and it's nice to see Risen getting a mention. I definitely don't agree with Torchlight being in the top 5 though.
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December 8th, 2009, 04:59
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
No surprise about DA taking the top spot, and it's nice to see Risen getting a mention. I definitely don't agree with Torchlight being in the top 5 though.
Just curious, have you played a significant amount of it?

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December 8th, 2009, 05:06
Originally Posted by txa1265 View Post
Just curious, have you played a significant amount of it?
I'm not sure what you consider significant, but I've played enough to see that it's a better than average Diablo clone, but not much else. I do own the full game. I could see it being a top 5 game if you're a big fan of that sub-genre.

Top 5 *overall* though? Only in a weak year for gaming.
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December 8th, 2009, 05:51
So what's wrong with Modern Warfare 2? I broke down and got it the other day, but I haven't had a chance to install it yet. I take it doesn't live up to its predecessor?
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December 8th, 2009, 12:35
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
So what's wrong with Modern Warfare 2? I broke down and got it the other day, but I haven't had a chance to install it yet. I take it doesn't live up to its predecessor?
Action-wise it's more of the same. Well-scripted, linear, adrenaline heavy shootouts. In one aspect, it is even better than the first game: As far as I can tell, Infinity Ward has given up on infinite spawning. You don't need to continuously advance to make enemies stop spawning. Areas can run out of enemies even if you stay put.

There are also more locations, and more variety, which is nice.

The game however never reaches the atmosphere of the old one, and for me, Call of Duty is all about the atmosphere. The plot does not make any sense at all, which is ridiculous given that any fifth-grader can write a coherent story for a shooter. For instance, much has been written about a certain controversial level. The real travesty for me however was that the consequences of this level, namely a full-scale war, are not believable at all. The plot holes are huge.

The series also loses the little bit of grey it had. Throughout, it's go-west-patriotism against the ultranationalist Russians. I like playing shooters, but consider myself a pacifist. I appreciated how in the first game there was a bit amount of grey. Little touches. This time however, you are good and they are evil.

Also, the level design has become worse. It's either super-linear or it tries to be more sprawling and ends up lacking direction. Most of the time the developers didn't find the right balance. There are also more levels in which you and maybe a second guy fight against probably hundreds of enemies. IMO the immersion suffers from it.

Add the fact that there are less gameplay options. For example, if you want to play without crosshairs, you have to play on higher difficulty levels. There is no seperate option anymore.

So it's more Modern Warfare. If you really enjoyed the first part, you will like the second. But I can promise that you won't get very excited over the title.
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December 8th, 2009, 13:18
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I'm not sure what you consider significant, but I've played enough to see that it's a better than average Diablo clone, but not much else. I do own the full game. I could see it being a top 5 game if you're a big fan of that sub-genre.

Top 5 *overall* though? Only in a weak year for gaming.
I partially agree - I would say that it is more polished than any non-Blizzard action-RPG bar none, with extremely well done random dungeons and

Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
So what's wrong with Modern Warfare 2? I broke down and got it the other day, but I haven't had a chance to install it yet. I take it doesn't live up to its predecessor?
It is a console shooter in a worse way than FEAR 2 or Far Cry 2, and as noted the level design is mediocre, the game is really short, the multiplayer for PC is crap and really overall this is just EA's version of what Sony has done with the PSP.

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December 8th, 2009, 17:18
The big problem with MW2 is it is even shorter than it's predecessor which I already considered too short for the cost. No MW2 for me!
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December 8th, 2009, 20:17
Not sure about that, though perhaps MW2 just felt longer because it is not as good
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December 8th, 2009, 22:16
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I'm not sure what you consider significant, but I've played enough to see that it's a better than average Diablo clone, but not much else. I do own the full game. I could see it being a top 5 game if you're a big fan of that sub-genre.

Top 5 *overall* though? Only in a weak year for gaming.
Obviously didn't complete my thought before … I would say that Torchlight is the most polished aRPG since Diablo, but I agree if it is in the top 5 it is a weak year for gaming. And I'm not sure if I would put it in my top 5, but very likely my top 10 … so that doesn't say anything much better.

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December 8th, 2009, 22:48
Shame about MW2, I kind of had a bad feeling when I bought it….another $50 down the drain.

Come to think of it, 2009 was a somewhat poor year for FPS games. Take away L4D, and how many quality shooters were there for the PC?
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December 9th, 2009, 01:16
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
Shame about MW2, I kind of had a bad feeling when I bought it….another $50 down the drain.

Come to think of it, 2009 was a somewhat poor year for FPS games. Take away L4D, and how many quality shooters were there for the PC?
Let's see … in general … FEAR 2, Wolfenstein, Far Cry 2, Red Faction Guerrilla, Serious Sam HD, Borderlands, L4D2, MW2 …

Wow … what a piled of console infested mediocrity! My faves of the bunch were L4D2 and Red Faction.

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December 9th, 2009, 06:07
Actually, I almost forgot about Serious Sam HD. It's seriously good……pun intended.

Back on topic: How long till the release of the GotY edition of DA.
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December 9th, 2009, 11:35
Originally Posted by txa1265 View Post
Let's see … in general … FEAR 2, Wolfenstein, Far Cry 2, Red Faction Guerrilla, Serious Sam HD, Borderlands, L4D2, MW2 …

Wow … what a piled of console infested mediocrity! My faves of the bunch were L4D2 and Red Faction.
Im getting tired of FPS especially after buying & playing lots of xbox games which most seem to be fps. When I was visiting a relative and we played xbox splitscreen multiplayer I noticed all the game multiplayer games were fps shooters.

Recently I only bought red faction and that for PC only. Its an interesting game and I would play it too if only it worked properly (waiting for patch). L4D2 I might buy one day if the price comes down.

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December 9th, 2009, 13:11
My only objection is Empire: Total War , there are other grand strategy games that do the same things and more .
DAO is a good game but nothing close to monumental, rightfully topped the charts but i don't know if this indicates a good or mediocre gaming year.
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December 9th, 2009, 13:51
Regarding shooters: Anyone played the new STALKER game? I heard it was decent.
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December 9th, 2009, 13:52
Originally Posted by Grandor Dragon View Post
Regarding shooters: Anyone played the new STALKER game? I heard it was decent.
I don't believe the English version is finished yet. I definitely plan on getting it as soon as it's available.
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