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RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Dragon Age - Return to Ostagar Reviews

Default Dragon Age - Return to Ostagar Reviews

January 14th, 2010, 22:21
Despite being pulled yesterday, GameBanshee found a handful of sites who managed to grab Return to Ostagar from Live and whip up reviews. They're all small sites but the comments are largely consistent.
EndSights awarded 3/5:
It’s unfortunate that collecting these items and then killing a boss is all there is to the DLC, but for $5 I guess that’s expected. Completing the content will take 45 minutes to an hour. The DLC isn’t too story-heavy as you’ll be fighting most of the way through it; in addition, the ending to the content doesn’t make it clear that it’s officially over, which left me to question whether or not I was done and/or if I had missed something. All in all, learning the fate of King Cailan is interesting and the loot is worth finding. It’s interesting while it lasts, but unfortunately it ends sooner than you might hope.
RPad.TV calls their article (Not a) Review - I'm not sure what that means but here's a snip:
For $5, Return to Ostagar is a pretty poor value. BioWare’s launch DLC offered important features that you could enjoy throughout the entire game. The Stone Prisoner gives you Shale, arguably the most entertaining companion in the game, as well as a versatile warrior. Warden’s Keep gives you an amazingly useful storage chest and access to the best sword in the game. Return to Ostagar has its share of goodies, but nothing nearly as useful or entertaining.
…and Addicted to Gaming is more positive but agrees with the length. Score - 3.5/5:
Return to Ostagar pretty much does what it says on the tin. Word reaches your ears that a survivor of the great battle has escaped captivity and is seeking the aid of the Grey Wardens. The Darkspawn have dug in deep at Ostagar and it is up to the brave ones to return to the battlefield and take revenge on these demonic creatures for their fallen mentor and King. I managed to complete the DLC in just under 45 minutes with one achievement unlocked (“In War, Victory” – worth 25 gamerpoints) and while this may disappoint some, you need to remember the low cost of the pack itself and the nice shiny new gear you receive from it.
More information.
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January 14th, 2010, 22:21
Hmm. Doesn't seem worth it for now. Maybe after my next playthrough (after I finish the 20 games sitting on my shelf. )
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January 15th, 2010, 00:24
I bought points specific for this … so I'll grab it regardless.
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January 15th, 2010, 01:02
It really does sound like it isn't worth the money you are paying for it.
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January 15th, 2010, 01:05
All in all, learning the fate of King Cailan is interesting and the loot is worth finding. It’s interesting while it lasts
Well I think that's worth $5. I wasn't expecting a lengthy quest anyways.
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January 15th, 2010, 03:29
I would expect more than an hour for my $5. Better to pair that $5 with another $5 and get a full game on Steam.
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January 15th, 2010, 03:32
I'm sorry but this whole model feels like I'm buying a ticket to a ride at an amusement park. Way to ruin the immersion.
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January 15th, 2010, 06:04
Originally Posted by ToddMcF2002 View Post
I'm sorry but this whole model feels like I'm buying a ticket to a ride at an amusement park. Way to ruin the immersion.

I do wish it was being done a bit differently. They could have at least had the decency to not have a section labeled "Premium Content" that you have to see every time you open your journal.
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January 15th, 2010, 11:49
Not worth it I think. Besides, by the time I'm done with my 1st or 2nd playthrough, The awakening should be out works for me.
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January 15th, 2010, 16:06
I think we are looking at the razor blade / inkjet ink model in computer games. An inkjet printer gives you a lot for very cheap, but then you buy inkjet cartridges for big $$$. So, DA:O costs $40 and gives you 60-100 hours of entertainment. Then DLC costs $5 and gives 1 hour tops, so $40 of DLC gives you 8 hours hmm…
Well, at least DLC is optional, unlike razor blades and ink
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January 15th, 2010, 17:13
5$ doesnt exactly mean a whole lot to me, to get some additional playtime and flesh out the story n provide some more stuff. Are we really, seriously sweating 5$ here? The much-ballyhooed "time" thing again? How much "time" do you get out of it if you get new items that you carry around for days of play?

Everytime i sneeze, a little guy comes out of a hatch in the wall and charges me five bucks fer crissake. To pay it for something that I want is practically a luxury these days
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January 15th, 2010, 18:00
5$ might not be much but it seems to me like they just found a trick to eventually make me pay for one game at least twice as much its original price by continuously providing me with new little shiny trinkets.

It really does nothing for me… I haven't even downloaded the free DLCs I got with the game yet because I can't be bothered with the process (they could have included them in the DVD just as well) Also there are plenty of things to kill and things to loot in the game already, I don't care for more. Not to mention that the in-game DLC "commercials" bothered me a lot and the last thing I want to do is to encourage them.
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January 15th, 2010, 18:59
@xSamhainx

$5 isn't a lot of money but what's the total DLC cost up to now? $20-30? I only paid $40 for the game to begin with.

First it starts with Dragon Age, a complete game that's 40-60 hours long.

Then the next time they pull this it's most of the game, 30 hours long, buy the additional side quest for $5, it's only $5 each!

The 3rd time it's the main story line, add side quests and overpowered items to make you feel cool for $15! It's really the same as 3x $5 expansions.

Then it's a small part of the game, the engine, want content, want to see the story finished, $20. Side quests? $10 each. Bug fixes and stuff we intentionally left out so you'll buy the DLC that fixes it? $15. *cough* warden's keep chest *cough*

This is EA we're talking about here. They started with a reputable company in Bioware and a good, long, game for a reason. They knew DA was a good game (at least some people think so), they knew it would sell. The first couple of DLCs are fairly reasonable to get you used to the idea, next time, it's not such a good deal, a few games after that….not so much.

We used to call DLC expected support from the developers and publishers and we sure didn't pay for it. Compare DA's DLC to Valve and what they've released for free years after release of Half Life 2 and TF2.
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January 15th, 2010, 20:34
I agree with xSamhainx, I think people are overreacting a bit. If you think it's too much then don't buy it….end of story.

A combo meal at a fast food joint costs you $6-$7, but at least playing DA won't make you fat.
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January 15th, 2010, 21:34
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I agree with xSamhainx, I think people are overreacting a bit. If you think it's too much then don't buy it….end of story.

A combo meal at a fast food joint costs you $6-$7, but at least playing DA won't make you fat.
You just aren't reading the right blogs … it will make you fat and violent, and since there is magic it will make you a devil worshipper. And apparently last week an articles said it was more dangerous than porn!

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January 15th, 2010, 22:32
Originally Posted by holeraw View Post
5$ might not be much but it seems to me like they just found a trick to eventually make me pay for one game at least twice as much its original price by continuously providing me with new little shiny trinkets.

It really does nothing for me… I haven't even downloaded the free DLCs I got with the game yet because I can't be bothered with the process (they could have included them in the DVD just as well) Also there are plenty of things to kill and things to loot in the game already, I don't care for more. Not to mention that the in-game DLC "commercials" bothered me a lot and the last thing I want to do is to encourage them.
It's not much of a "trick" if you aren't interested in the product and won't pay the price. Should be a non-issue for you.

Originally Posted by LuckyCarbon View Post
@xSamhainx

$5 isn't a lot of money but what's the total DLC cost up to now? $20-30? I only paid $40 for the game to begin with.

First it starts with Dragon Age, a complete game that's 40-60 hours long.

Then the next time they pull this it's most of the game, 30 hours long, buy the additional side quest for $5, it's only $5 each!

The 3rd time it's the main story line, add side quests and overpowered items to make you feel cool for $15! It's really the same as 3x $5 expansions.

Then it's a small part of the game, the engine, want content, want to see the story finished, $20. Side quests? $10 each. Bug fixes and stuff we intentionally left out so you'll buy the DLC that fixes it? $15. *cough* warden's keep chest *cough*

This is EA we're talking about here. They started with a reputable company in Bioware and a good, long, game for a reason. They knew DA was a good game (at least some people think so), they knew it would sell. The first couple of DLCs are fairly reasonable to get you used to the idea, next time, it's not such a good deal, a few games after that….not so much.

We used to call DLC expected support from the developers and publishers and we sure didn't pay for it. Compare DA's DLC to Valve and what they've released for free years after release of Half Life 2 and TF2.
Yeah, funny how we all have different perspectives. Like, the only DLC so far (excluding this one which isn't technically released) anyone should have paid for is Warden's Keep at $8.

So, you say a 40 hour game with $30 of DLC already and I say an 80 hour game with $8 DLC.
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January 16th, 2010, 04:28
Yeah, $5 is real cheap. But so is less than an hour of content.

And no, I don't buy popcorn at movies, either. Same reason.
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January 17th, 2010, 00:48
Originally Posted by txa1265 View Post
You just aren't reading the right blogs … it will make you fat and violent, and since there is magic it will make you a devil worshipper. And apparently last week an articles said it was more dangerous than porn!

DLC seems to involve few money (for each player), few time (gameplay time involved), and a rather intense developing effort (some real stuff need to be done and you are involved in a lot of testing to not break the original game and have the DLC compatible with any savegame). So even if some DLC addict behaviors appear I don't see how much harm they can do, it's a system much less perverse than MMORPG for example.

Myself I'm reconsidering my general point of view about DLC because of those points.

RTO is the typical DLC making me dislike DLC approach, too few contents for motivating me, month of efforts lost because of this, when merged in a bigger addon with much more content I could have enjoyed, as it is it's just fun lost for me, a waste. Wait more DLC released to then come back to the game and play them all won't work because they won't have a global link, it will be only small elements spread through the game.

Another point making me not like the DLC approach is the in game publicity, I feel it rather weird. The third point is the control scheme it involves by forcing you subscribe to a community, at least they can't force you participating. All in all, those 3 points aren't big points, and some good things could come from DLC.

Now if DAO is still installed and I'm still playing it, I could buy and try few DLC even without enough contents, like RTO. If it's not installed, no chance. If it's installed but I have switch to new games and haven't played it since some time, very few chance. But at the occasion of an addon, this could be a temptation to then try old DLC if they don't imply replay once more the original game and if they fit well the new addon.

All in all, I don't see much how the DLC approach could become a sane economical approach, the problem is programmers cannot guaranty anything free from bugs. And DLC involves sort of multiple game versions, so multiple possible tests. I don't see that evolving well.
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January 17th, 2010, 14:12
Originally Posted by Dasale View Post
All in all, I don't see much how the DLC approach could become a sane economical approach, the problem is programmers cannot guaranty anything free from bugs. And DLC involves sort of multiple game versions, so multiple possible tests. I don't see that evolving well.
That's where careful design comes into it, and I expect they have experts in this sort of thing. For instance, you can design DLC to be walled off experiences, ie, guarantee that no two pieces of normal DLC interact with each other, except in very minor and controlled ways for example an item, which is just an object with some standard attributes. Then there is no need to test multiple DLC versions.

Likewise you can make the DLC add onto the OC, rather than changing it, which also walls off the likely interactions and possible bugs - taking this to extreme you can get the situation where the OC already ships, and is tested with, the links to the DLC in place.
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January 17th, 2010, 20:47
Sure add an item in a CRPG… with features already existing in the game in a range of values already fully tested, yes that is working. Add a new feature, use ranges never tested and in some weird way you'll never expect you could broke something in the OG.

Now items is the simple point, everything else it's a lot more complex, if DLC are only a set of items, why care?

I don't understand your point about "DLC add onto the OC", if that means an independent part of the game that only take profit of the OC engine, I don't think that this will work better because if the DLC, necessary small, only add a separate contents that will hardly appeal much. Moreover if the game is successful the stream of user made stuff will make quickly pale such DLC.
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