Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Dragon Age to Emulate Skyrim?

While poking around the web this afternoon I found this GameSpot article referencing this interview suggesting that the next Dragon Age game might be less like its predecessors and more like Skyrim. (I won't quote the articles here since you all know how to follow links.)

I suppose the idea should be good news to me since I'm a fan of Bethesda's products, but if this info is correct and BioWare actually makes dramatic changes in the next DA game then I can't help but feel that it would simply be an attempt to mimic the big moneymaker Skyrim rather than an endeavor to actually improve upon their own franchise. While I prefer the Elder Scrolls games over the Dragon Age series, I have to admit that I'd have more respect for BioWare if they stayed true to their established Dragon Age formula and simply worked on what needs to be improved rather than attempt to turn the series into an Elder Scrolls clone.

As with most things, however, only time will tell what will actually develop...


  1. Sounds like a case of follow-the-leader.

    While I'd like more open world games, I worry that it'll be less "open world" and more "a larger area to wander around in while you get railroaded"

    I think it'll be especially bad if they try and rush it like DA2, open world games are not exactly known for their short development cycles.

    I'll be extremely pleased to be proven wrong though :)

  2. "a larger area to wander around in while you get railroaded"

    This is one of the reasons I haven't gone back to playing RAGE yet. A massive desert panorama stretches out before me, and yet the invisible barrier right infront of me won't let me do anything but look at it. If devs are going to continue to do that crap, they might as well go back to using 8-bit 2D backgrounds...

  3. Sounds like I won't be playing Rage then. Nothing makes me more determined to go somewhere in a game than being told I can't. Especially by invisible walls. I wasted so much time in WoW wallwalking and/or ghostrunning to get to the places that were closed off.

    It's unfortunately an easy way for developers to pretend to have a big world without having to actually provide one.

    Speaking of 8bit graphics, have you seen the project to make Daggerfall style retro textures for Skyrim? :)

  4. "Speaking of 8bit graphics, have you seen the project to make Daggerfall style retro textures for Skyrim? :)"

    I haven't heard of the project until now. LOL... sounds like my kind of people...

  5. I can see this one going either way.

    I know I've always hated that over-the-shoulder camera nonsense; and the combat controls in Dragon Age were clumsy at best. Moving to first person, and actual attacks and/or casting rather than the WoW-esque "click on the enemy once and watch" would be solid improvements.

    On the other... DA was one of the most linear games I've played in recent memory, and I can't help but think it'll be like Kirtai said: a huge, open world... but you only go exactly where we tell you to; when we say it's okay.

    On the up side, though: if they do go Skyrim-clone, that'll probably require ditching the dated and annoying Aurora engine; so the new one might not be a colossal pain in the ass to mod for.


    Take Bioware's writers; the dialogue, the romance, the deeper character interactions... and combine it with Bethsoft massive sandbox worlds...

    That could be kind of cool. Of course, having Bethsoft and Bioware work together would also probably result in the buggiest game in history (I'm still haunted by the time all the dwarves in DA simply had their skin disappear for no apparent reason -- every one was floating eyeballs, beard, and hair above the armor line)... but you can't have everything, right?

  6. Reading these comments is making me wonder if I actually want to try Dragon Age. I am all for having defined quests and what have you, but I do like the idea of being able to just wander around where I please, finding my own story lines and just doing side quests.

    I understand, from Herculine's previous posts, that Rage is also quite linear in design, but I admit that I might be interested in giving it a run. More just to see what Id has done with it than anything else.

  7. @Druuler:

    One thing I've always tried to keep in mind regarding gaming (and perhaps even everything else in life) is that just because something is different doesn't necessarily mean that it's bad.

    I seem to recall reading somewhere that you enjoyed playing Neverwinter Nights and that you've started playing Mass Effect; if you like those games then you'll most likely enjoy the Dragon Age games as well. I think I've also read that you enjoyed Doom 3, and if that's the case then you'll likely enjoy Rage as well.

    I tend to bitch and moan about the faults of some games, but that doesn't mean that they don't have some redeeming qualities as well. I can't name a single game that I've ever played that I didn't think something about it could have been done better (yes, even that one game). The best thing to do is don't just take my word for it; if you don't want to risk the cash on such games, maybe find a friend who has them or borrow them or something to test them out first. Then you can safely form your own opinions. Who knows... maybe they'll turn out to be among your favorite games.

  8. Most video games that I have played were very linear in design: NWN, Icewind Dale, Doom 3 as examples. It was not until I started playing Fallout 3 that I was really introduced to a non-linear or "sandbox" style of playing in a video game. As a long time player of Dungeons and Dragons and similar games (like Star Trek: The Roleplaying Game), I enjoyed a mixture of linear style and "sandbox" in my table-top/PnP games. It was something that I was looking for in my digital games as well. So I have been rather spoiled with FO3/NV and Oblivion, and somewhat loosing interest in the other games I have been playing.

    That said, I just might find myself thoroughly enjoying Dragon Age, Rage and Mass Effect. And then I will be trying my darndest to create Gamebryo mods based on them >.<

  9. It was pretty much the same thing with me. Once upon a time I was really into all the Final Fantasy games and thought they were just the coolest things ever. Then I discovered Morrowind and all that went out the window; I realized that all I was doing in the other games was basically sitting and watching a series of animated cutscenes spread out among a whole lot of reading. Sandbox games were literally a whole new world to me. Where other game genres are concerned I don't mind gameplay that is based upon progressing from stage 1 to stage 2 to stage 3, but now I've come to expect that there actually be a "R" in my RPGs.