Hot new goodness for PC gamers:
Dragon Age 2 is officially launched in North America today and BioWare has decided to celebrate its arrival with a little treat for PC gamers. Folks playing the sequel on a well-specced machine can download a high-resolution texture patch that adds an option to enable higher detail replacements for most textures in the game.
To take advantage of the 1.1GB update you'll need a video card with at least 1024MB of memory. BioWare also noted that most of the benefits gained from the high-res textures will only be seen when running the game in DirectX 11, which essentially limits the update to gamers with an AMD Radeon HD 5000/6000 or Nvidia GeForce GTX 400/500 series graphics card
I read a few people were unhappy with the low(ish) res textures in the PC demo, at least we know for sure this won't be the case anymore.
AusGamers has the texture patch online: download the texture patch here
. promoted/edited forum item
Posted 10:59am 09/3/11
Posted 02:20pm 09/3/11
Posted 02:21pm 09/3/11
Posted 02:31pm 09/3/11
Having said that, the demo played like a gem so I'm hoping the issue is a bit hit & miss.
Anyways, for those people with a nvidia card maybe hold off on the texture pack until you know the games running smooth without it, as from what the interwebs are saying the issue has to do with DX10/11
Posted 02:44pm 09/3/11
Posted 02:45pm 09/3/11
I've only played about an hour but would have to say my first annoyance is that you don't get to the character creator until after the intro so if you make a character that looks cool in the character creator interface but looks like a freak in the actual game world it's a pain in the ass to fix it up. Other than that having your character voice acted is a huge improvement and the combat is a lot more fun than the first one which were my primary concerns.
Posted 03:01pm 09/3/11
Of course what I am likely to do is wait a little bit and see some other peoples creations before making mine. Plus I have to wait anyway, my copy is coming from the UK.
Posted 03:09pm 09/3/11
downloaded the texture pack yesterday. hopefully it will run awesomely with me 2 hd6870's
Posted 03:29pm 09/3/11
Edit: No go, directly clicking on the .exe pops up a preload steam box.
Posted 03:45pm 09/3/11
Posted 03:47pm 09/3/11
I thought you were dead.
We've been actually winning in your absence btw! :P
Posted 03:49pm 09/3/11
Posted 03:51pm 09/3/11
I'm not dead, but the internet in my new house is. STILL don't have a f*****g phone line connected, getting really over it. Long story.
You're only winning because you're probably in bronze without me ;)
Posted 05:22pm 09/3/11
Posted 06:20pm 09/3/11
Kind of funny you mention that ... one of our 3s teams finally got promoted to silver ffs, something stupid like 28 wins to 6 losses ><
Posted 10:21pm 09/3/11
Posted 10:58pm 09/3/11
Game runs perfectly, smooth as and looking awesome. Just after 20-30min of play it locks up (randomly) and not only in intense scenes, but even when there is only the 4 characters on screen. Running it on max settings, with Hi-res Disabled, I was playing for hours and didn't have any problems...
I was going to try update the ATI drivers... but it's pot luck with ATI and the moment I tried I know it would f*** something else up >.> It still looks great without the Hi-res textures anyway, which will probably do for me.
Posted 11:24pm 09/3/11
Game runs fine except that occasionally it slows down massively during some scenes and in combat once last night it froze for a full 40 seconds.
Other then that, awesome game. Hadnt even run the high res textures or anything.
I'm only running a GTX 275 though.
Posted 11:53pm 09/3/11
Anyway, game looks and plays nicely for me at max settings dx11 with the texture pack. Games not bad but could have been so much better ;).
Posted 12:07am 10/3/11
Posted 12:24am 10/3/11
Posted 02:35am 10/3/11
- Graphics are nice, but get used to seeing the same dozen areas over, and over, and over, and over. They really dropped the ball on this. You go into the same sewers, same tunnels and same cave systems multiple times for different quests. Cmon guys you really couldn't of made a special area for each quest that requires you to go into a cave, or a tunnel?
- Combat is f*****g awesome. Massive improvement over DA1. Remember the combat walking stance in there? Looked like you were carrying 2 sheep under your arms and the women looked like polio victims. None of that here. The fast paced nature of combat this game around makes it really feel hectic even though you can pause whenever you want
- Characters are great, with lots of varied personalities. I can guarantee the first time you see Isabelle you will think "phowar, i gotta get into her" which is what I did. Also the romance system is improved. You can romance anyone in your group regardless of gender. Want some hot man of dwarf man action? it's all here for you.
- Different classes really feel awesome. Mages have some kick to them and can attack with their staves in this awesome fashion which will have you hording different elements if your main is a mage. Rogue has a ton of agro reducing skills like evade which makes you do a backward leap and shed most of your agro, or stealth in the middle of combat with a smoke bomb. Good s***.
EDIT - Some bad points I don't like about it
- You don't control your companion's armor. That changes it's look automaticly as you play through the game. Most you can do is manage their weapons and rings/amulets and such.
- They seem a tad... Dumb. I dunno maybe it's just me but I feel they are more stupid than what they were in DA:O
- Since you can't upgrade your companions armor, you are CONSTANTLY getting armor and weapons that is restricted to the main character and yet you can't use any of it. I dunno but I like keeping my group up to date with stuff. This is the same issue I had with ME2 really. 1 of the best parts of an RPG is outfitting your group and yourself with s*** you find. Here that's taken away from you mostly.
I dunno. I love the combat and skill trees to death in DA2 but just wish they could of put that into the 1st game since it had much more depth and s*** to do. This seems sort of like a console first attempt to me, which is a damn shame. Still can't get over that bioware of all people took such a cheap way of making a game, by copying and pasting so many areas, and sticking you in 1 town for most of the game. This game sure is getting a lot of heat. Oh and also apparantly they "forgot" (their words" to put auto attack in for the console gamers so I guess your stuck mashing the crap out of the A button then.
last edited by DM at 02:35:16 10/Mar/11
Posted 07:47am 10/3/11
Restricting armour for your companions is lame. Dumbed down combat is fun, but dumbed down. The conversation system is limited, basically your character is nice, comic relief or a bastard. You could almost choose that at the start of the game and have no conversation wheel.
The stats of characters seem limited, pretty much as a mage you pump magic and will for example.
If you expect to play this game as an RPG it is fail.
If you just want to play an adventure game then it is pretty good.
Posted 10:09am 10/3/11
Kind of glad I didn't pre-order now, might pick it up at the sales at Christmas or something.
Posted 10:40am 10/3/11
Posted 12:19pm 10/3/11
Posted 12:36pm 10/3/11
Posted 02:35pm 10/3/11
Woah! What a load of s***. If i bought i second hand and couldn't play I would've gone apes*** at whoever sold it to me.
Posted 03:32pm 10/3/11
It's EA. surprise surprise.
Posted 03:37pm 10/3/11
Posted 03:44pm 10/3/11
I don't really care, I'm just pointing out to those who are all wtf maen that it's already been happening for a while
Posted 03:47pm 10/3/11
Posted 03:48pm 10/3/11
Party armour issues: yes I used to like to outfit as well but I actually think this works. A main problem of outfiting was you wasted time shuffling armour. You decide to take other person who you used ages ago, sure his stats are up to same level but all his kit is old and you didnt really keep much good stuff for him. This way you know his armour is at the right level for his character, the key bits are weapon and buff's like amulets / rings.
I'm getting into the combo's now and really like it, its great to make an enemy stagger and get the mage to hit it. Or my main char (rogue) to shatter someone who is brittle etc. I think the specializations work well.
I think the restrictions in these areas make the game flow a lot better and help you focus on other aspect.Sure a lot of choices are fairly black and white, but they actually affect the outcome of the story (or so it seems, not played through it second time)
I'm a fair bit along and ive not met Isabelle, must have missed her :( I keep getting options for Gay love choices. Not the good kind of gay love either.
Posted 04:25pm 10/3/11
Anyway I started a brand new game this time with a rogue archer. I must say that despite all my issues with the game it is rather fun but I noticed something a bit... odd. The game heavyly favors archers. Sure as a warrior you can go in and whirlwind but after that, your stuck doing rather crappy hits. I'm only using a bow I got at Lv 6 or 7 doing a quest in the bone pit and i'm hitting people anywhere from 80 up to 350 damage. If people don't fall over or flinch from my hits, they just explode into blood and guts. I'm going to turn it up a notch on the difficulty to try and make things not seem so easy. Oh and the explosive arrow upgrade you can get which makes your team in the radius become harder to hit is brilliant. I had a mage on 10% hp tank a dragon for 10 seconds because of it.
Posted 04:42pm 10/3/11
A problem for some a feature for others. When I played through DA:O I used an inventory mod and threw nothing decent away :P
Posted 05:18pm 10/3/11
I managed to move on without meeting her, shame, might go back and see.
I'm using a rogue archer, it definately seems to be fun (my only annoyance is i see no way to easily switch between bow and dual daggers, be nice for a hot key), at least range is an easy option. My whole tactics consist of my fighter / tank using immovable and some extra buffs like barrier to sit there take all the hits and have the other 3 either mages or rogues just hammer them. Obviously with things like shadow specialization you can do it with little harm or evade when you get swarmed(upgraded to stun) so nice to evade them and kill.
Posted 05:22pm 10/3/11
I am starting to find the one dimensional karma system that Bioware likes to employ a bit annoying. Take the moody elf for example, my character gets on well with him in most situations and gains friendship points but because I'm playing a mage every time something magey happens he emos out and I pick up rival points keeping our relationship neutral. Which would be fine if you didn't get rewarded for being one extreme or the other.
Posted 06:03pm 10/3/11
Can't even get through the intro bit that was in the demo.
Posted 06:25pm 10/3/11
I'm a complete loot whore but the system in this doesn't bother me whatsoever. Having to pick gloves boots armour and helm for every party member is a pain in the ring. I'm happy to kit out my char and just give weapons and jewellery to party members.
Combat is all sorts of awesome, quests are fairly varied and the story is on par with DA:O.
Definitely have to agree on the lame repetitive use of dungeons. Would have much preferred randomly generated areas to having already been in the same couple so many times already at level 7.
All in all though I'm having an absolute ball tearing mobs apart with my stabby rogue.
Posted 07:49pm 10/3/11
Posted 08:38pm 10/3/11
edit: bah guess i lost it when i upgraded. stupid thing should save into steam folder not c drive.
last edited by ravn0s at 20:38:33 10/Mar/11
Posted 08:39pm 10/3/11
Game seems ok so far, combat not so sure on though, the third person consolized viewpoint only seems to take away from the game, it doesn't add anything, and i keep finding my squad getting arseraped simply because i dont notice a squad spawning in behind me, fairly annoying.
The inventory, i guess it seems a bit lame, but on the other hand the previous dragon age it felt like i spent as much time f*****g about with crap in the inventory as i did playing, so itll probably be for the best.
Posted 08:59pm 10/3/11
Posted 09:17pm 10/3/11
Posted 09:21pm 10/3/11
Fist of Stone packs a whallop.
Archer's Lance is so OP if you aim it right. This was at level 7 I think.
Posted 09:43pm 10/3/11
I don't think that would be a direct comparison, since Hero's Quest was more about the comedy / mythologies, plus tended to go more with the solo hero who could die in the desert random combat thing. F*** I loved hero's quest / quest for glory.
Posted 01:39am 11/3/11
I love how my toons personality seems to evolve based on the moral choices you make. My guy has now turned into a complete smart ass,even when I choose the "good" options.
The story seems to branch off a bit too much, but it's told well and is getting better as I go.
Posted 01:45am 11/3/11
Posted 01:48am 11/3/11
Posted 09:13am 11/3/11
played about 2.5hrs and really enjoying it. kinda pissed that i lost my origins save game though.
Posted 09:45am 11/3/11
By the time I'm ready for a second play through there will probably be a myriad of different saves with different choices that you can grab from around the place.
Really enjoying it at the moment. Picked a Warrior to start, 2H and Set him up as a DD but moving him more towards a DD / Tank role. Have the Dwarf Rogue using Ranged (mixing in a bit of support) and 2 Mages, Sister and the Dalish Elf Chick, DD / Heal and DD / Support.
As for death blows, doesn't the very, very first Ogre you kill... right at the start, give you a death blow too... or was that whole fight cinematic?
Posted 09:59am 11/3/11
Posted 09:59am 11/3/11
Posted 10:20am 11/3/11
I've found during the beginning phase at least, that using my tank to get the attention of the tougher foes while my 2 mages and archer collectively one shot all the trash mobs one at a time (with a bit of AOE for good measure) works pretty well.
I get totally annoyed every time I go to inventory to equip people and see all my boots, helm and so forth, 'restricted to Hawke' ffs why remove that???
I hope a good mod comes out that sorts that issue out.
Posted 10:38am 11/3/11
Yeah, I'm waiting for new Catalysts to come out, last release was mid february so theres some due.
Posted 12:25pm 11/3/11
Posted 04:06pm 11/3/11
According tot he Devs both ATI and nVidia were meant to release new drivers early this week to make DA2 performance better. They also guaranteed consoles had the option of auto attack then admitted they forgot to implement it...
Posted 04:22pm 11/3/11
Posted 05:17pm 11/3/11
Dragon Age 2 is a rushed product stinking of EA. Such repetitive use of maps and in such an amateurish way, same rooms different doors blocking it off. Even the mini-map has the areas 'available' when they just aren't.
This game could have been so, so much better with more time to develop. So long Bioware, you were once great.
Posted 10:14pm 11/3/11
At least in the first one the guys spawning out of thin air were rogues or whatever.
Its also like the first one where your entire team decides to attack random targets and spread out as soon as an encounter starts, but it seems harder to micromanage now. (yes you can f*** around with the tactics i guess, but i cbf)
Posted 10:25pm 11/3/11
Also, Ctrl + 1 will select all party members and make them attack what you're attacking.
Posted 10:40pm 11/3/11
Posted 11:10pm 11/3/11
All the shops are now chests with an owner standing outside, all the quests are copy & paste "run to this room, kill a few guys" run back, collect reward.
I'm enjoying the game, but it has less then the first game had.
IE in the first one I would use a rogue character & have a bow, then at close range, use a hotkey to switch to melee weapons.. you cant even hotkey between different gear setups or weapons now.
Had about 9 hours playtime so far, doing lots of quests - havent paid the 50g for the expedition yet.
Posted 12:07am 12/3/11
Posted 08:53am 12/3/11
Posted 09:14am 12/3/11
Posted 09:27am 12/3/11
The combat seems much more fluid now and actually interesting to watch - so that's a welcome change.
The story for me is just beginning, and considering this is supposed to be a 40 - 50 hour game I wouldn't expect it to pick up properly until I'm about to leave hte first town.
I like the minimalist UI.
Graphically the game is considerably better than DA:O
The dialogue so far hasn't impressed me.
If the story picks up then I'll find myself enjoying the game quite a lot.
Posted 12:40pm 12/3/11
Theres only one town, the entire game takes place in Kirkwald
Posted 01:17pm 12/3/11
I also think that although the conversations are much more limited, the conversation wheel works well for me. I remember in DA:O I resorted to saving before every conversation because of the amount of times I'd hit a response that was nothing like what I had expected it to be and took an unintended action was beyond annoying.
I've been enjoying the game. It certainly feels less epic than DA:O and judging by what I've seen of the story it is going to feel like bit of a let down at the end as I can already tell that this whole game is more of a prequel to the real story.
But the game play and having a voice acted lead is such a massive improvement that I don't care at this stage. I could never make it through a second play of DA:O because of how tedious it was to actually play despite loving the story and characters but I can see myself going through this a couple of times like I did with ME2 and if I'm right about this being the beginning to a true continuative story line then I think in the end it will actually be a pretty good franchise. The problem being that we won't see more of the story for a couple of years.
Still, there are a lot of areas that could be improved, but I'm very impressed with it compared to the first one in terms of playability.
Posted 04:24pm 12/3/11
Posted 04:39pm 12/3/11
Yeh but they could have streamlined it without (apparently, not played it yet) obliterating all control over inventory. Could plonk an iLevel on gear for classes and allowed you to auto-equip, then tune as needed.
Posted 04:53pm 12/3/11
i lolled too until i realised there's a massive blade on the end of the staff.
Posted 05:00pm 12/3/11
Posted 08:45pm 12/3/11
Posted 08:46pm 12/3/11
This pretty much sums it up. I just finished the game before and im very disappointed.
Posted 09:03pm 12/3/11
How many hours did you put in to the game?
Posted 09:22pm 12/3/11
May replay it on hard with a rogue or something.. see what happens.
Posted 09:43am 14/3/11
Thus far I find the story has a few good twists and turns. Some side quests are a little fluff but thats been going on for years, and yeah repetitive dungeons is a little annoying, also a bit less magic play from the other side(regretting dispel magic atm). But the thing I miss the most is a bit of item lore. Like to know a swords history etc. Hardly a ruiner in my opinion.
Otherwise its good fun. I guess I really like the 10 year arc, adds depth and feels better to know your hero doesnt go from zero to king in a couple months.
Posted 12:04pm 14/3/11
Cant say much without massive spoilers, but choising one faction is correct and just... then the story forces you to kill them anyway. Balls. Twice. Balls.
I don't mind the inventorry thing, too much... You can still find/buy some equip to enhance their Auto-Level up Body piece etc. I do prefer doing it myself though...
The game seems to have a semi-decent (not great) core story, which very little of the game time is spent on. The vast majority of the time is spent on simple fetch quests, or easy kill+fetch quests.
Every single warehouse is exactally the same. I dont mean similar, I mean exactly the same. Although some of them have doors, perfectly good doors mind you, that simply cant be opened. Fair enough you're too lazy to make 50 different warehouses for the 50 warehouse fetch quests... but you could have at least done something better with the doors. Magical barriers, fallen beam or something. Some cave entrances were blocked off by carts etc, which was better... but still anoying.
It was the same for Tunnel/Cave/Sewer/Dock Area/Thag. I understand reusing elements, but to just copy+paste an entire dungoen many, many times seemed cheap, boring and lazy.
A.I. / Battle is stupid;
Mage: Oh look I'm perfectly safe standing where you told me where to stand. Oh look, an enemy is using an AoE on the tank. I'LL JUST F*****G RUN NEXT TO THE TANK GET SWAMPED AND DIE.
Or: Ok I'm safe off in the corner. Oh s*** 3 guys popped, thats ok I can run over there tank can taunt and I can run to a safer spot. Oh s*** another 5 guys popped just where I ran too. Tanks Taunt is down, that's ok, he can use an AoE to get hate. Now i'll run over to that quiet corner where there isn't anyone. F*** 10 MORE GUYS!? COME ON! And now i'm swarmed and die in 2 seconds.
Warrior: Oh look, there is a guy, way over the other side of the battle, I'll run over to attack him. Instead of this guy standing next to me.
Everyone: Oh S*** battle started, better spread out as far as we can into a retarded location. Then I better run further just incase someone wanted to be close to me to help me, I dont need no stinking help.
Other then that, game's fine...
Still, even with all my gripes... I am having fun playing it. Which is all that counts, right?
Posted 12:27pm 14/3/11
im loving the game. im a bit disappointed with the copy+paste of dungeons etc, but the gameplay/story more than makes up for it.
sadly, theyre probably going the same route with me3 since its being done in 18 months or so as well. :(
last edited by ravn0s at 12:27:17 14/Mar/11
Posted 12:28pm 14/3/11
Shouldn't the default tactics do things appropriate for the class, with use of tactics reserved for cool s*** like combos rather than telling the mage not to tank?
Posted 12:48pm 14/3/11
Critic reviews - 15 good, 1 mixed
User Reviews - 146 good, 41 mixed, 410 bad.
I call bulls*** on that. No major gaming rag has given this bad marks? The horrific copy+paste job alone is worth bad marks. Yeah I know only 16 people have review it according to metacritic but cmon, they are all giving it glowing reviews and saying it has "minor flaws", "more soul" or "an amazing game". No. It's a half finished game they rushed out.
last edited by DM at 12:48:30 14/Mar/11
Posted 12:46pm 14/3/11
Posted 12:55pm 14/3/11
Gameplay seems ok, good even. I am still dissapointed that the story is <10% of the actual game though.... or at least it seems to be.
Posted 01:28pm 14/3/11
The best conversation I've had so far was with Aveline when she was trying to get the attention of one of her fellow guards. Would have been fairly straight forward except for the fact I have Isabella in the group at the time and she was giving her constant s*** for it. It's gems like that that make games like this great, having the right character in the group for the right moment can produce gold.
I'm disappointed with the lack of speciality options for mages. I have a speciality point that I haven't spent because after force mage the only options are Blood magic/Spirit healer so you are pretty much expected to make a pact with a spirit or a demon which to me seems weak. Was hoping there would be something similar to the arcane warrior talents of DA:O that you have to find but seems like what's there is all that's available.
Posted 03:06pm 14/3/11
But, as for the metacritic thing, DA2 is not a bad game, it's just not an improvement on the original, hence all the nerdrage, and yes the copy/paste is extremely lame, there was a mission where i went to some chicks "safehouse" and i couldnt help but notice it was exactly the same as my house, right down to the book on a desk where i read my letters.
The stupid ai combat is pretty much the same as dao as well, i find myself pausing every 2 seconds just like the original, if i dont everyone just splits up and takes a different target, obviously on default without setting up tactics.
Posted 11:26pm 14/3/11
Just finished then, bit over 28 hours on normal and did every single quest.
Definitely a hell of a lot smaller in every way to DA:O.
If only we could get a game with the same combat as DA2 but the size and scope of the first.
Posted 02:41am 15/3/11
Posted 09:07am 15/3/11
Posted 09:14am 15/3/11
Posted 11:15am 15/3/11
Just no point really. Where's the epic 'save the world' feel or something from DA:O? Where's the interesting characters?
Posted 03:51pm 15/3/11
Posted 05:45pm 15/3/11
You never will, its all set in/around kirkwall :(
Which is probably the thing that bums me out the most, one of the things that stayed with me after the original DA:O was how awesome the world they have created is, and how huge it is, and how much I want to see more of it. I'm really disappointed the sequel shows off such a tiny part of this huge awesome world they've built.
Posted 05:33pm 15/3/11
Posted 05:51pm 15/3/11
Posted 05:57pm 15/3/11
I didn't mind the shorter story simply because it makes for possible re-playability similar to ME2 which I was able to finish 2 and a half times before getting bored. That said I wouldn't say the story was particularly good, something at the end particularly had me thinking, "wtf, that's just stupid" in regards to what the mage guy did. I did enjoy some of the characters, particularly Varick, Isabella and Merrill but the story felt uninspired for the most part. The story that results from the end of the game seems more interesting than anything that you get to partake in during the game.
Still despite my complaints, I enjoyed the game enough to finish it and consider trying a different play style run through which is something I can't say about many games I've played.