Author Topic: The Inquisition Thread  (Read 4750 times)

Offline Starfox

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The Inquisition Thread
« on: March 09, 2015, 09:46:22 PM »
I guess this is where I'll put my remarks for Dragon Age Inquisition starting with this one that not everyone may be aware of:

There's no savegame import in Inquisition. Yep that's true... Took me by surprise that one. If you want to "import" the universe you created during the two previous games, you'll have to go to the Bioware website and log with your Origin account into the thing they call "Dragon Keep". There your achievements for the previous games will be scanned (don't really know why this is important) and an attempt at finding your savegame will be made. I said attempt because on all my completed saves -- after playing Witch hunt -- of DAO (and there's a lot of them) the thing only acknowledged the existence of two of my characters. As for DA2 on 2 complete save only one was found. So you'll have to do it the hard way which means using the so called "tapestry" and modifying all the relevant options so the state of the world corresponds to what you left it in. After that you click the export button and when you start a new game in Inquisition, it will ask you if you want to import a state from Dragon Keep. Click yes and there you go.

On one hand it took me half an hour before I could start a new campaign. On the other hand, it could be the occasion to test some scenarios you never tried without having to replay DAO or DA2. To be frank though, I'm not sure of the importance of the thing... but I'm only 5 hours in the game so maybe the importance will be shown later.

There's a story behind this lack of import feature... Bioware claimed it was made to avoid the "inconsistencies" encountered in DA2 -- and true, they were many; it appears that the only solution was to throw the whole system out of the window and let people go back to pencil and paper (albeit electronic ones). 

As the whole process above can be done without even having bought the game I suggest for those interested to do it now to save time.

More later...


Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world. -- A. Einstein

Offline Starfox

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Re: The Inquisition Thread
« Reply #1 on: March 11, 2015, 01:08:19 PM »
So my thoughts about Inquisition so far: worse than I hoped, better than I feared.

On the plus side, we're back in Ferelden (with Orlais on the side -- pretty amusing to see how they finally turned Orlais -- especially Val-Royeaux --in a mix of France and Venice; with bards singing in French even). The fact to be back in Ferelden brings some fond memories of DAO especially because you'll be visiting some locales you already know about; the game for example start in Haven as in "the town of crazy fanatics who believed that Andraste was reborn in dragon form" just after the destruction of the temple of Sacred Ashes which is the first thing you'll see when starting a new game (the story begins about 10 years after the warden put an end to the Fifth Blight and just after the interrogation of Varric by Cassandra ended -- those two become your first companions with a new character, an elven mage to complete the normal team of 4).  The new hero also comes with a title, after the Warden and The Champion welcome the "Herald of Andraste". Leliana and Cullen are both back in the game -- but none of them as companions -- along with a set of new characters and this is where it begins to hurt.

Among the new characters, you find an host of bi-dimensional people which seems to have only one interest: to serve as cannon fodder in your party. Cassandra -- that we only saw as interrogator in DA2 -- is possibly the character with the most complicated background with the exception maybe of Iron Bull (an atypical Qunari that despite being from the Ben Hassrath -- the Qunari police/spy organization for those who forgot -- hence following the Qun to the letter, is also the most funny guy in the game, he is exactly the opposite of Sten). For some reasons on the other hand, Varric tuned the jokes down... a pity -- the only funny interactions are between him and Cassandra and that's because he was his prisoner and thoroughly grilled before becoming a companion of sort and doesn't miss an occasion to remind her of the fact. I find the other companions so far pretty much forgettable for different reasons but mostly because they are either overdone or not enough. And this is possibly the first sign that Bioware is not what it was anymore.

At least it's good to see that Leliana is still in love with my warden after all those years :lol: (and yeah that does mean she's off-limit as a romance possibility in Inquisition and that's OK; it would have feel weird to see her cheating on my old character with my new one). And the "new" Leliana is weird enough as it is; aside from a couple of occasions in which Corrine Kempa can't help but be cheerful like the old Leliana was, the new Leliana is much darker; probably came from having been a spymaster for most of the previous 10 years so I guess it's story related and not just an arbitrary choice by Bioware.

Anyway, it's not to say that the game is horrible because in fact I find it better than DA2 on a number of things, particularly the recycling of the areas is gone. The new engine (that's a variation of the one powering Battlefield 3) allow for vast areas and when I say vast I mean it; at least in Dragon Age terms. For example the Hinterlands (the area immediately South of Redcliffe) can be depicted as easily being 20 times the size of the Kocari Wilds from DAO and with no particular point resembling another. So that's good. There are horses in the game and they are justified, at least in areas when you don't run into a mountain every ten meters. Using a horse is however a bit... sketchy. Your whole party disappears to just leave your character on the horse and suddenly reappear when you dismount... So I was there asking myself: "Is there that much space under the saddle?"

The game is not completely open world as it still relies on "areas" like the previous games but those areas are significantly bigger than those previously seen in Dragon Age.

Gameplay-wise it's a mix of common (things you already used in previous games) and new things sometime clever (I like the idea of the war room for example) or annoying (the crafting system is overdone).

What changed from the previous games? Well, one has less abilities to use per class (I didn't think that was possible as DA2 already dumb down the system an awful lot) and you cannot put  points  into your attributes anymore (cunning, strength... etc.); the game does that entirely for you now following a basic rule... You're a mage? Magic and willpower... A rogue? Cunning and dexterity... A warrior, Strength and constitution of course. You're a mage and want to put a few points in constitution once in a while just to augment your health or in strength to better resist being knock down... no can do. I guess that asking of players to put points in attributes was too demanding for some.

You still have the possibility (thank God) to choose one ability on level up -- here the system does not significantly differs from DA2. Specializations completely disappeared however, as well as sustained abilities; I guess that's part of EA conception of streamlining.

The level of difficulty is... well, think about DAO on the worst days but a bit more difficult than that. This game follows the same scheme as DAO, meaning that you shouldn't visit some corners of some areas before achieving some level or in other terms one should "play the f...ing game in the order you're told!" Not applying this rule can get you pretty much screwed. In my adventurous spirit I widely disregard the rule... unfortunately. So I got my ass kicked numerous times by bandits, pack of wolfs, bears (I think that even a Fennec bit one of my thumbs off at one point despite being non-hostile) not mentioning the big parties of Fade demons that one must fight in order to close "Rifts" that only your character can close (last time I tried to fight one such party in a remote area of the Hinterlands at level 5 my party got decimated in 10 seconds... seriously... they were falling like flies and I didn't even have time to realize what was happening). I'll give you one tip... if the weapons or armors you find in an area are of a level higher than your character... get out of there... quickly.

The crafting system is... cumbersome. It's not so the crafting in itself (you buy or found a schematic, you find the right quantity of material and the right quality for what you wish to obtain -- different material having different properties and voilà you craft an armor or a weapon). No, the cumbersome part comes from spending an awful lot of time -- much more than you'd spend in Skyrim for example) just to keep a stock of material because material may also be required for things not at all related to crafting your own weapons or armor and unlike Skyrim most material cannot be bought it can only be found. In Brief after a time the whole system of crafting and requisitions (material you have to provide to others) begins to feed you up.

Also a new "feature" introduced is jumping. Well that's a common feature in games but as far as Dragon Age go, it's a first. Unfortunately that gave a "brilliant" idea to Bioware... making the player jump everywhere to reach some impossible places where are located some things that must be found. I can't tell you how much health I lost just getting to some of those places. My opinion is that if you have to make a player loose health over just getting a trinket, that's not worth doing. But now that Bioware has a new "feature" to play with you can't stop them.

Well that's all for now, there are other things to say but I'll keep that for later otherwise I can't play the damn thing.
« Last Edit: March 11, 2015, 09:31:25 PM by Starfox »


Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world. -- A. Einstein

Offline Starfox

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Re: The Inquisition Thread
« Reply #2 on: March 12, 2015, 01:20:42 PM »
OK; so don't do what I did.

Good advice: ignore most of the side quests (just bring enough power to go forward through the main quest) and speed through the main quest until you hit some point in the story. Can't tell you which because of spoilers but you'll know it when it happens. Suddenly the story, the universe and options open up much more.

Or... you can do what I did, do most side quests and exploration available, going through very rough spots because of my low level character and end up stuck in a prologue that lasts about 30 hours while it could take under a dozen. That's what happens when you're the kind of person who wants to do side quests before going through the main quest (and that developers forget to call a mere prologue "prologue").


Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world. -- A. Einstein

Offline bobdog

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Re: The Inquisition Thread
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2015, 06:44:53 AM »
Good information. I normally try to level up my character in the side quests so that the Main Quest is a breeze.

Offline Silver Sorrow

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Re: The Inquisition Thread
« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2015, 01:50:56 PM »
I might chime in here too...I just realized that I am a genius!

Stop laughing. Stop it, I said.

The proof: since just the "standard" game wouldn't do for someone of my peculiar obsessiveness, I figured out a way to get the $70 deluxe edition and save $20. How it's done:

1. Buy the standard PC *physical* edition from, say, Amazon, for $39.99.

2. Wait a couple of days for it to show up. I suggest taking up a hobby to pass the time, such as asthma or heroin or attempting to Friend on Facebook all of the actresses you liked as a teenager. [Hint: not even my family wants to be my friends.]

3. Install. Set aside several days for this. There are FOUR discs.

4. Go to the Origin store and buy the upgrade to the Digital Deluxe edition, for $9.99.

5. Install that.

6. Revel in the fact that you just saved $20. Use those savings to buy yourself something pretty. But make sure she's technically legal before clicking "Buy It Now!"

7. Question why this whole ordeal was necessary, unless you're one of those nutjob completionists [*sigh*...guilty], or just a huge fan of video game soundtracks and exclusive in-game items.

And now, this genius (no, no...go ahead: laugh. there. feel better about yourself now?) is going to take a little nap, as all this geniusity has made him feel like someone's punched him in the forehead. FYI, he also feels that way after performing simple math problems. (Then he starts speaking in the third person. No wonder his aunt ignored his "happy birthday!" Facebook post. The bitch.) Ah, allergy season...how I've missed thee. Yet another reason that I invest in huge open-world RPGs.

Okay! Time to hit chargen, wander in a random direction, and become dragon chow within seconds!
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Offline Starfox

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Re: The Inquisition Thread
« Reply #5 on: March 14, 2015, 08:50:46 AM »
I don't know, I just took advantage of their -40% offer which is about the same thing (even if I added the upgrade). I guess you like it complicated  :biglaugh:

Anyway a couple of things I'll put here to correct what I mentioned earlier because hitting the point in the story I told you in my previous post really do change everything.

- There are specializations. Or at least there are one specialization per character. However those specializations are only unlocked after you hit the switch in the main plot. Exception is for the main character for which there's a couple of plot abilities unlocked. For the specialization you can choose one among three but you'll have to work for it as they can only be obtained via a quest (tip: the starting point for this quest is available on the war map -- only after you get to the main plot switch, of course).

- The characters start being much more interesting after the "switch". Before that they barely talk to you which as I already mentioned make them all look extremely bland. They become more involved after the "switch" and ask you for your help so you get to know them better. Still there are characters I can't stand but hey, I never could really stand Morrigan (speaking of which Vivienne is a Circle version of Morrigan.... what a pleasure).

And remember I say "switch" to prevent spoilers. I could say Skyhold but that would clearly be a spoiler, albeit minor.

Full spoiler:

Spoiler
Haven is the DAI equivalent of Lothering. It is a temporary location destined to be obliterated. And before that happens, player only has access to a fraction of the game possibility. Unlike Haven, all other areas will remain open and their side quests available so it's the reason why one has to speed along the main quest until after the destruction of Haven to have access to all the possibilities as soon as possible. The problem here is that although the potential destruction of Lothering was pretty clear in DAO so you knew you were still in some sort of prologue, there's not even a single hint regarding the destruction of Haven before it happens so it's easy to think that one is in the main portion of the game while it's far to be the case.
« Last Edit: March 14, 2015, 09:05:06 AM by Starfox »


Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world. -- A. Einstein

Offline Silver Sorrow

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Re: The Inquisition Thread
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2015, 11:40:51 AM »
Unfortunately for me, I couldn't find it on sale, so I had to construct this elaborate scheme. At 40% off, I could've saved another $8... :redhot:

I'll add in a couple of things:

- With the latest patch (5? 6? it's hard to tell what version), there's mouselook...instead of holding down the right mouse button and moving around with the keyboard (which hurts like hell after a while). And it works...mostly. Sort of. Apparently they're still working on it, and I hope they get it right, but what are the odds of that happening?

Anyway, it's still glitchy and a little weird: it defaults back to the original control scheme if I loot a container or a body...anything that requires the interface to switch. So I have to hit the mouselook key again.

- Chargen: I'm not sure why they went through so much trouble to make the characters so much more lifelike than ever, and just gave up when it came to the hair. Bioware has never been great at that sort of thing, but now it's like they're using it as some sort of screwed-up badge of honor. Most of the hairstyles suck, the eyebrows are upsettingly bad, the beards are horrifying, and unless you feel like screwing around with texture/shader quality sliders (requiring a restart to see your changes), you're just going to have to accept shiny plastic hair.

I'm not sure I like the new system, either; I'd rather deal with slider clicks that I can count, rather than manipulating an arrow around a grid. ::)

Still, besides the hair, the characters look damned good. I just couldn't understand why Cassandra had these great eyebrows while my character was suffering from eyebrow alopecia...or worse: gigantic bushy male eyebrows, because the pinhead devs couldn't be bothered to create resources for both genders.

For example:

and

It bothered me so much -- yes, it did -- that I had to find a mod for it. (You can find it on Shantia's Tumblr.) I don't like using mods until I've finished a game, but...damn.

The improvement(s):

and


A good male character, however, is an easy task right out of the box:

"And this, kids, is what happens when you shave with a greatsword."


I'm out of things to bitch about for the moment, so I'll just...y'know...PLAY the damned thing.

As a bonus, here's what happens (to me) when one game bleeds over into another: trying to recreate that Skyrim archer as a DAI archer? Please don't. Not until the modders fix things.

DAI vs. Skyrim:

   


Of course, this is Skyrim after, what, four years' worth of modding, while DAI's only been out for several months. Give 'em time...

NOTE: No, I have no idea what my deal is with babes and black lipstick. I'd see a shrink about it, but who has that kind of money?
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Offline Starfox

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Re: The Inquisition Thread
« Reply #7 on: March 15, 2015, 06:57:28 PM »
Quote
there's mouselook...instead of holding down the right mouse button and moving around with the keyboard (which hurts like hell after a while).

I don't know I use the controller this time around (there's a complicated story behind that)... anyway, controller support doesn't come without it's own share of problems as the jump button is the same as the use button. So a lot of time I actually jump instead of using something (that particularly happens with ladders once I actually almost killed my character while attempting to grab a ladder to climb down and jumping a dozen meters below instead) which is very ridiculous.

I agree with the brows they are awful. But  I don't like using mods on my first playthrough so I endure... but they are truly horrible.

Quote
I'd rather deal with slider clicks that I can count, rather than manipulating an arrow around a grid. ::)

They did that because... much easier with a controller. I know, that sucks... But if there's something I learned this past couple of years it's that games involving a lot of melee combat or possessing an auto-targeting feature are much easier to play with a controller. I still refuse to play any game involving aiming with a controller as typically a controller does not have the fine precision a mouse has to control aim. But for recent games like Kingdom Of Amalur, Thief 4 or even Skyrim to some extent, a controller seems to be a natural choice because those games were really designed with a controller in mind. According to my doc it's also better for the spine (he thinks the position adopted while playing with a keyboard and mouse is not "optimal"... but what does he know?)

So back to Inquisition, a little spoiler. Well not really a spoiler... If you read the books (particularly the one called The Calling) you'll know who a certain person is as soon as you'll hear about her. If you didn't read the book it will be more complicated. So there it is:

Spoiler
At one point you run into Grand Enchanter Fiona. Those who didn't read the book don't know it but Fiona is actually Alistair's mother. King Maric knew it (of course as he slept with her in the first place -- in the deep roads... how romantic) and Duncan knew it too. As Fiona was an elf, a mage and a Grey Warden all at the same time, she decided that Alistair would be better entrusted to his father but of course his father couldn't keep him because of the obvious political complications. So he decided to place the child with Arl Eamon and asks Duncan to keep an eye on him as a favor that Duncan accepted -- they became friends during their trip through the Deep Roads -- so to be sure that it would have all he needed. That happened about 20 years before DAO. Of course everybody lied to Alistair so in DAO he could only tell what people told him. It ensues also that Alfstanna -- his alleged sister -- was never his sister at all and that he himself is half-elf without having any elven features -- I let you imagine the uproar in Ferelden if someone knew that the King is half-elf. It is not explained in the books why Duncan finally made Alistair join the Grey Wardens. Maybe he thought that his mother being a Grey Warden the Joining had much more chance to succeed. Or maybe he just wanted to have him close so he could keep the promise made to Maric. Anyway it was amusing for me to run into the true mother of Alistair. She's even still concerned about the happiness of her son... how touching. Anyway, Maric disappeared some time after the birth of Alistair, Duncan is dead and Arl Eamon never knew the truth so in short nobody could testify in her favor even if she wanted to get close to her son.




Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world. -- A. Einstein

Offline Silver Sorrow

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Re: The Inquisition Thread
« Reply #8 on: March 16, 2015, 09:43:12 PM »
I'm seriously considering remapping jump to the alt key, since I'm so used to hitting space to pause combat. Bad guys approach, and there I am, the dumbass, jumping up and down like I had good sense, instead of pausing to consider my time-honored tactic of shooting barely-effective fireballs of minor irritation at them. (There's an editorial or two in that statement, but I'll let it go for now.)

I'm also looking into controllers, because I'm tired of the muscle cramps and remembering control schemes (these games are always so pissy whenever I want to remap wasd to wzxc...sorry, but I don't have tiny little girly hands like the target demographic). Either a Logitech or an Xbox 360-style. I think I've gone through this ordeal before, but I never bought one. Hmmmmph.

Quote
I actually almost killed my character while attempting to grab a ladder to climb down and jumping a dozen meters below instead

:biglaugh:

No, no...I mean, to quote a former President (Secret Service codename: "Dress-Stainer"): "I feel your pain."  :lol:

Quote
... but what does he know?

Exactly. Bad posture is essential to gaming. If I don't have a muscle cramp dead-center in my back at the end of the day, I know that I haven't vegetated to my fullest.

Quote
If you didn't read the book it will be more complicated.

For some reason I haven't read the books, so that's good to know.  :ok:


Today I wandered into the wrong part of the Hinterlands. I climbed a tower and recruited an "agent" who had been picnicking with a mage. Then I saw a rift a little ways past her. So I mosey on over...

A few Shades, Wraiths, and several VERY angry Rage demons later... I remember thinking that Winter's Grasp was a better choice than a fireball on a Rage demon, but in all, I think my entire party was chunky red mulch within a minute.

So much for "casual" mode.  :ss-meh
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Offline Starfox

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Re: The Inquisition Thread
« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2015, 11:12:50 AM »
Did a little error previously. Alistair's alleged sister was named Goldanna. There's indeed an Alfstanna but she was the sister of the templar you find in the dungeon of the Arl of Denerim. Funny how one confuse names after a bit. But they were both "anna" in any case.

So I will ask a question that is currently haunting me. Possibly you're not that far yet into the story but feel free to keep it in mind for later, has Morrigan lost some weight at breasts level or is it just me? She seems to have downgraded several sizes, borderline flat.

Quote
So much for "casual" mode.  :ss-meh

There's no casual mode... there's a thing a bit easier (relatively speaking) than the easy level but one has to be mad to call that casual, which obviously the guys at Bioware are.

As a note: most flagrant flaws I've found so far in the game are gameplay related. Which is a relief sort of. It's like the Bioware of old.

Quote
Either a Logitech or an Xbox 360-style.

I'd pick a xBox style, unless you intend to play with very old games which fail to acknowledge the xBox 360 controller. Just about all the game developed this past 7 years if they feature a controller support give the preference to the xBox (unless they are exclusive to the PS4 but that is rare).
« Last Edit: March 18, 2015, 11:18:28 AM by Starfox »


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Offline Silver Sorrow

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Re: The Inquisition Thread
« Reply #10 on: March 20, 2015, 11:43:38 AM »
Goldanna, Alfstanna, banana-fana fo fanna, me-mi-mo manna... :hammerhead:

Morganna: haven't run into her yet, but I will be on the lookout for her new breasts...I will be looking for them like a hawk searching for a titmouse.

Rim shot.

They really need a "story" mode. For those of us who dislike spending five to ten minutes beating on a bad guy with a stupid amount of health PLUS a barrier PLUS immunities to everything PLUS being able to teleport PLUS...

...speaking of such things, I was wandering around the Fallow Mire today and ran into one of my absolutely favorite things to run into: a Revenant.

My exact quote was: "Oh shit NO."

It killed my Herald (what they've been calling me, I didn't pick it) within moments, but Cassandra, Varrick, and Solas managed to kill it. So after that I decided, hey, let's take care of that nutcase Apostate nearby, and...

...reload. I should've known I was in trouble when the loot I was finding was a couple of levels above mine. (While I usually gripe about equipment that I can't use, this is useful in figuring out where you shouldn't be in this game. Two levels above me? Turn around and get the hell out of there.)

On a side note, I do NOT feel all that powerful as a mage. I wonder sometimes if I'm actually doing any damage to anything at all. Not like DAO in the slightest, where my fireball spell would blast most foes ass over teakettle. Or DA2, which was at least entertaining for a mage. But this is...they pretty much shrug off fireballs. I wonder -- oh, how I wonder -- if this is some sort of dev overcompensation for the class being "overpowered" in the previous games...which they were...but they were *supposed* to be.

But at least I got out of the Hinterlands before they killed me too many times. In fact, there was a PSA on Kotaku: If You're Playing Dragon Age: Leave The Hinterlands!

Miscellaneous: The "druffalo" (or whatever) look like the bulls in Kingdoms of Amalur.

Also: my companions are just as stupid outside of combat.


They also clump together in doorways. Ace Ventura: "Make a hole, people!"

In other news...I managed to fix the crash problems I've been having. There were two types:

1. Crashing when using the journal.
Solution: Stop using the journal. Use the map.

2. Crashing in general.
Solution: Turn down the goddamn graphic settings. I really do not need any settings set on "ultra." Textures and shaders are perfectly fine on "high," and everything else can be set on "medium." I do not need SSAO or AA or anything else. The game looks good enough on middle-of-the-road settings at 1920x1080.

Side Note: match your texture quality and shader quality, that is: set both to the same; this alleviates the shiny plastic hair problem. Allegedly.

What else? Uh...oh, right: I'll look into the XBox-style controllers, then. I'll be using it on games that don't require a lot of precision aiming...although to be honest, I don't play a lot of those anymore.  :lol:
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Offline Starfox

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Re: The Inquisition Thread
« Reply #11 on: March 21, 2015, 10:18:10 PM »
The amusing part about Morrigan is that one meets her in the very last place one would expect her to be. I guess her little girl dreams caught up with her.

Yeah, mages are not what they used to be BUT I tried with an elven archer and that was almost worse. In fact inquisition is the kind of game better played with several tanks. If you play as a mage, bring Cassie, Blackwall and Bull. And that should do it if you stick to the areas adapted to your level of course. Varric is a good choice as long distance shooter because Bianca is somewhat more powerful than a normal bow (if you don't forget to upgrade it regularly). The silly enemy AI doesn't help. Your opponents generally target your main character despite more pressing concern I had a bandit at one point that was attacked by my three companions but he still wanted to cover the 50 meters to reach me and crush my head. When he did reach me he was a pincushion reduced to a fraction of his health and I was there contemplating the thing, baffled and asking "Seriously?"

I don't know if you ran into a dragon yet... but that hurts... something awful. I ran into my first one as I was level... 12 or 13 I think and that was by chance -- bad luck is more like it -- turning right instead of left in the Hinterlands. I saw a nice an quiet little way... I told myself "Hey, somewhere I didn't go yet, sweet". That overly joyous remark was soon drown in flames, blood and swearing. Remember the dragon from Act 3 in DA2... Inquisition dragons are like that but there are a dozen of them (not at the same time, fortunately). And not all breathe fire. Some breathe ice or lightning.

I had some odd crashes too but far an few between (with everything set on the default when I installed the game which was "Fade touched" -- the coined term Bioware used for "ultra"). Then I decided to have a look at resources consumption. This game goes very heavy on the CPU. On my 8 cores (running each at 4 GHz) 6 are constantly busy with two running between 60 and 80% and 4 running between 40 and 50%. The other two get used too but only from time to time for brief periods. It's the first game I see doing such a frenetic use of my octocore which globally run at an average of 60% (against 20 to 25) for most other current multi-threaded titles. At that point my guess is that the thing doesn't really like CPUs with less than 6 threads.


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Offline Starfox

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Re: The Inquisition Thread
« Reply #12 on: March 23, 2015, 08:14:46 PM »
Well, that's it, finished. Clocked at about 110 hours, not all of them worth it but mostly with some very neat moments which is a vast improvement over DA2.

The end is OK, not stellar but OK. The gameplay design of the boss battle could have used some polishing but at least the ending itself was not a complete debacle à la ME3 or a weirdo frag fest à la DA2. The real intriguing part happens just after the end credits though. Weird, unexpected, puzzling and clearly shout "There will be another one, or at least a DLC, thank you very much!". But it's a good kind of weird, not a "that doesn't even make sense" kind of weird. It's rather a "I knew there was something bizarre!" kind of weird.

So in short having played the game I think that people who gave 0 or who gave 10 were clearly both wrong. Inquisition is not horrible as I was led to believe reading some reviews but it's not the "Maker's second coming" either. It is however above average. A game I enjoyed playing with some reservations (most of them regarding gameplay and some regarding characterization -- although I was happy to let Hawke die at some point, as it made up for countless DA2 frustrations, I was not particularly enthused to see her back to begin with -- or him for those who played a male Hawke -- mainly because this was a character I played and there it comes back completely out of my control and I just don't think it's a particularly bright move in a RPG. Seeing a NPC like Varric, Leliana or Cullen coming back is one thing, but characters that were the player's avatars in other games are better left alone if one just intend to introduce them as NPC. It's taking something that belongs to players and reuse it for some weird purpose. Maybe in that particular case that could be seen as justified but my opinion is that Varric was enough to explain the whole thing and give necessary pointers.).

Which reminds me something I forgot to mention previously, the Villain of this story is directly tied to one of DA2 DLC, namely the one titled Legacy. In the end though I don't think that makes any difference whether you played it or not. Having played it gives a little more background and you're not completely surprised when meeting the big baddie for the first time but otherwise Inquisition (Varric especially) is more than happy to fill the gaps.

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For some reason I haven't read the books, so that's good to know.  :ok:

I'm not especially fond of books tied to games but I made an exception for Mass Effect (although the last one I read -- just before ME3 was released -- was disastrous) and Dragon Age even though I only read two of them, both linked to DAO. The first one, The Stolen Throne was interesting because it shed another light on the character of Loghain. In the book he's not yet a General, he's just a farmer that allies because of circumstances with the future King Maric and becomes his right hand, leading the revolt that will put an end to the Orlaisian occupation of Ferelden. The book depicts how Loghain won his famous title of Hero of River Dane and how Maric became king (as a side note it's also there that one hears for the first time of a certain Golem and his master the mage Wilhelm in the description of a battle that the said Golem only vaguely remembers when interrogated in DAO 30 years later :lol:). After reading the book I still couldn't excuse Loghain but I could understand his position in DAO. Even if his actions were still those of a bastard his motives were those of a patriot. He never cared for fame or power but he deeply cared for a free Ferelden up to the point that he was totally blinded by his hatred of Orlais and began to see Cailan as the real traitor for daring to talk with Empress Celene and wanting to invite Orlaisian Grey Wardens on Ferelden soil, worse a traitor that also happened to be his son-in-law and the son of the man who was his best friend, Maric. The final insult.
 
The story of the second book, The Calling, happens 10 years later and is about the events that led King Maric to restore the Grey Wardens order in Ferelden. There's a lot happening there. You hear about Duncan in his prime as a Warden (a real scoundrel he was  :purplelaugh: ), about Fiona the mother of Alistair, but also about the Architect (the same that is featured in Awakening). It's because Maric accompanied the Grey Wardens in an expedition within the deep roads (an expedition that left only three survivors, Duncan, Fiona and him) that he realized the extent of the darkspawn threat -- even though the fifth Blight was still 20 years from beginning it was already preparing below. And so he restored the Grey Wardens in Ferelden because he knew they were going to be needed soon enough even though Loghain was opposed to this decision thinking that Fereldans could defend themselves (I think that the guy who asks the Warden to investigate Warden Keep in DAO has a short and incomplete version of this story).

Anyway, both books are good reading and fit nicely the story of Origins. I just stopped there because the other Dragon Age books were tied to DA2 and I wanted nothing to do with that.


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Offline Silver Sorrow

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Re: The Inquisition Thread
« Reply #13 on: March 27, 2015, 10:30:40 AM »
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BUT I tried with an elven archer and that was almost worse.

I tried...sort of...with an archer, but when the very first demon in the game began to pound the crap out of me, I decided not to pursue that path of frustration until later. :mad1:  It's funny (in a bad way) that DAO was a little more archer friendly...it certainly was friendly to the bad guys, anyway. (Random Skyrim Imperial soldier: "I hate archers.") My order of priority kills was: mage, then archers, and then whatever assclown was trying to massacre me up close.

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If you play as a mage, bring Cassie, Blackwall and Bull.

I usually stick with that lineup; sometimes I replace Cassandra with Varric, because I keep running into these locked doors...still, at least I haven't had to deal with a locked chest every five feet as in DAO.

[Side note: Someone really should sit down with Bioware and explain to them why cross-classing -- such as, a mage who can open a locked door -- is a good thing, and if they ever want to see their mothers again, they will implement the concept in the next game...]

But I really don't like having Varric along all the time, other than the party banter, because he absolutely sucks at getting out of the way. First one to die in a fracas (especially with a dragon).

Example: The Dwarven ruin in the Hinterlands (Aluminumazzar, or something), on a narrow wooden bridge over a yawning abyss: a Darkspawn in spotted; Varric, standing on the bridge, decides to evade (evade WHAT, exactly??) by performing a back flip right off the bridge, into the depths. He respawned close by (with a good chunk of health gone), but regardless...stupid.

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The silly enemy AI doesn't help. Your opponents generally target your main character despite more pressing concern I had a bandit at one point that was attacked by my three companions but he still wanted to cover the 50 meters to reach me and crush my head. When he did reach me he was a pincushion reduced to a fraction of his health and I was there contemplating the thing, baffled and asking "Seriously?"

All. The. Time. Even with threat reduction abilities and such, my mage apparently has a giant arrow pointing at her head screaming "IGNORE EVERYTHING ELSE AND KILL ME NOW" (this is a talking giant arrow).  :redhot:

(I think it says something when the AI in your *third game* is worse than in the first.)

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I don't know if you ran into a dragon yet... but that hurts... something awful. I ran into my first one as I was level... 12 or 13 I think and that was by chance -- bad luck is more like it -- turning right instead of left in the Hinterlands. I saw a nice an quiet little way... I told myself "Hey, somewhere I didn't go yet, sweet".

Ah, yes...Lady Shayna's Valley. I was a mere level 6 stripling. I thought, hey, this looks like a lovely little...wait. Wait. Is that a dragonling? Oh, that's not a good sign. Hang on. Is that--? And then: roaring, fire, screaming, reloading an earlier save.

I came back later (level 12 or 13?) as a Knight Enchanter, and it was still a somewhat unpleasant experience...but not as bad as it could've been.

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That overly joyous remark was soon drown in flames, blood and swearing. Remember the dragon from Act 3 in DA2... Inquisition dragons are like that but there are a dozen of them (not at the same time, fortunately). And not all breathe fire. Some breathe ice or lightning.

They're definitely not the fluffy pushovers you find in Skyrim.  :lol:  At level 14, I had a little disagreement with the Abyssal High Dragon in the Western Approach. Dear GOD. That took forever, and it may still be going on...maybe that's the PTSD talking. ("Fire! Flames! Bull? Blackwall? Nooooooooo!") All three of my compadres were mulch in no time, and I credit the Knight Enchanter's barrier feature for keeping me from biting through my lower lip in frustration. Still, it was a gruelling experience. ...and not particularly well-rewarded (::)), but I guess my true reward is knowing that I killed it.

Yeah. When I tell the ladies the story of how my level 14 mage killed a dragon all by herself, panties will moisten and thighs will part.  :ss-woot

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This game goes very heavy on the CPU.

Exactly. My hard drive is...very active...whenever I play. I've reduced my settings a bit, so it only crashes *rarely* now.

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Well, that's it, finished. Clocked at about 110 hours, not all of them worth it but mostly with some very neat moments which is a vast improvement over DA2.

...and then they released the first DLC... ;D

I've still yet to get very far in the MQ. Right now I'm messing about the Exalted Plains and wondering two things:

1. Why do these wolves spawn right in front of me?

2. And why is it harder to take one down than a platoon of Darkspawn? (I ask the same question about bears, which someone described as "the cliffracers of the Hinterlands.")

Well...from what you say, at least they didn't screw up the ending to this game. Probably because Casey Hudson left before he could fuck it up.

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Inquisition is not horrible as I was led to believe reading some reviews but it's not the "Maker's second coming" either.

I'd have to agree; plus, I've put so much time into this game that I HAVE to like it.  :lol:

One point: I agree about Hawke. Unnecessary to include him/her...*her*, in my case. Although, at least they let me configure how she looked before running into her. ::)  I just wish that I could've gotten her to look as good in DA2 as she does in this game.

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Legacy. In the end though I don't think that makes any difference whether you played it or not.

Well, that's the funny thing: apparently I bought Legacy (I don't really remember doing so), but I've never played it. At one point, my DAI Hawke insists that she killed him deader than Bill Cosby's credibility (so to speak), but he came back somehow. So I guess it doesn't matter after all.

I have all three games installed, so I could, in theory, mount an epic playthrough of all three games, because hey, summer's on its way and I do not enjoy mosquitos or direct sunlight. I might just do that.

And as pathetic as I am, at least I'm not the type who brags that I soloed each game on nightmare as a rogue armed with only an iron dagger.

On a related side note, the Bioware forums are still a cesspool of pseudo-intellectual dipsticks and drooling retards. At least some things never change.

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After reading the book I still couldn't excuse Loghain but I could understand his position in DAO.

He really is kind of a tragic character...good intentions, but horribly misguided. I couldn't really hate him, but I still chopped his head off.  ;D

I will have to get the books, then.  :ok:

Some further notes:

- The latest patch fixed mouselook, so it works nicely now. There are still a couple of instances where I might have to toggle it again (those idiotic on-the-fly conversations with certain NPCs, for example), and it's still not all that useful with AOE spells, but it works pretty well anyway.

- Does it seem as if Bioware is beating us over the head with the "Gay is OK!" concept?

- I dislike being afflicted with so many companions. I didn't really give a rat's furry ass about getting to know them, or using them at all. I'm not sure that most of them were really necessary. Like Vivienne or Sera. Or Dorian. Or Cole. But I did pay *some* attention:

Blackwall: brooding Grey Warden. I like him.

Iron Bull: besides Varric, he's probably the best of the lot.

Varric: If I need a rogue, I usually pick him.

Sera: so...she's insane, I guess. I wanted to hit her in the face with a brick.

Vivienne: Black Maleficent. Oh, but I do like Black Maleficent. :love:

Cole: the kid from The Sixth Sense, in a way...like the plot twist in a possible sequel. "I AM dead people!" And I wanted to ram that stupid hat of his over his ears and kick his ass down a flight of stairs.

Solas: not very interesting, really. Kind of like a bland Spock impersonator with alopecia.

Dorian: As if we needed another prancing magic goop flinger.

- On the Exalted Plains, I've been running into a LOT of Arcane Horrors. And then there was the area where I stumbled across not only a Fade Rift, but also several undead, an Arcane Horror, AND a Revenant. That was fun.

- I wonder if the Friends Of Red Jenny have anything to do with The Mentalist...you know, Friends of Red John...ah, hell. Who knows.

And now...screenshots.

The latest patch broke mods. They haven't recovered yet...in fact, a lot of them are recommending that players go through this bizarre rolling back process in order to...you know what? No thank you. I'm good. Even though my character looks sad and tired --


-- without her enhancements, I can live with that until a solution is found. I'm not holding my breath, as it's obvious that Bioware's going to patch the thing again and add more DLC, so I expect more trouble for modders ahead.

The funny thing is, a lot of these people allowed Origin to update their game automatically, so they were hosed when the newest patch simply overwrote their installation. A think a good number of them had their saves corrupted too, so they couldn't continue with their precious characters and had to start over.

I'm not laughing. Really, I'm not. But I, being a GENIUS (go ahead and laugh, peasants), do not let Origin make changes to my game. So when it notified me that there was a new patch available and they wouldn't let me play the game without applying it (the stupid assholes), I was able to disable the mods and restore what needed to be restored. Since I was only playing with a couple of cosmetic mods (both literally and figuratively), nothing was screwed up with the new patch. My saves were not affected. They would have been, if I had been playing with mods that changed more than the ugly eyebrows...

Still, I'm not happy that Origin held my game hostage until I updated.

But all that doesn't matter when my hat has a flower.


At least, I think it's a flower. It may be a gay cuttlefish, for all I know.
It is the scent of garlic that lingers on my chocolate fingers

Offline Starfox

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Re: The Inquisition Thread
« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2015, 01:29:59 PM »
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I tried...sort of...with an archer, but when the very first demon in the game began to pound the crap out of me

Same for me because the very first demon jumps at your throat immediately (it spawn very close also) and as a level one archer you don't have any of the tricks (like leaping shot) that can allow you to evade melee opponents. My advice is to set Cassie to defend your character (by default she's set on "follow" and will engage threats that are not necessarily the ones attacking you). My tactic after setting her to defend was to let the demon hit me once then to run away toward her until she engaged then to take some distance and fire my arrows. Depending on "unknown" conditions that may work, or not.

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I usually stick with that lineup; sometimes I replace Cassandra with Varric, because I keep running into these locked doors...still, at least I haven't had to deal with a locked chest every five feet as in DAO.

There are much less locked doors and chests than in DAO. And there's also not a single trap in this game so that even further reduce the interest of the rogue companion. However now one needs a mage to dispel magical barriers and a warrior to bash things. But hey, good things are the fast travel camps where you can change your lineup if you're not satisfied so you don't have to go back to your main base or to run an awfully long way (in general I make of setting camps a priority whenever I enter a new area).

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such as, a mage who can open a locked door

And they were the ones behind Baldur's Gate, Neverwinter Nights so they know that the multi-classing concept works. They just don't want to make it easy for players. Plus multi-classing is a lot of work to implement in a game so I guess they're just being lazy.

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(Aluminumazzar, or something)

Valammar maybe?  :funup:

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They're definitely not the fluffy pushovers you find in Skyrim.  :lol:

Sure but in Skyrim you run into a dragon every 10 minutes. DAI dragons are much more scarce (fortunately -- usually you have to track them down, they don't roam -- there's only one place where you have three of them practically side by side and you can even miss one of those three because it is kind of hidden) I can't imagine going through Skyrim with dragons as powerful as DAI ones. I'm not a masochist.

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Yeah. When I tell the ladies the story of how my level 14 mage killed a dragon all by herself, panties will moisten and thighs will part.  :ss-woot

Seriously?  :hammerhead: :purplelaugh:

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...and then they released the first DLC... ;D

Tell me about it... I was starting to write the review and BAM! With that being said the "Jaws Of Haakon" is a title awfully close to the "Teeth Of Naros"... But maybe that's just me  :lol:

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Probably because Casey Hudson left before he could fuck it up.

Bad mouthing... I don't think Hudson ever worked on a DA title  :purplelaugh:

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Well, that's the funny thing: apparently I bought Legacy (I don't really remember doing so), but I've never played it. At one point, my DAI Hawke insists that she killed him deader than Bill Cosby's credibility (so to speak), but he came back somehow. So I guess it doesn't matter after all.

Cosby's credibility... Ouch that hurts, but not me so it's fine  :onethumb:

About Legacy: in fact DA2 DLCs (Legacy and Mark of the Assassin) are much more fun to play than the main campaign -- with the exception maybe of the boss battles in both DLC and particularly Legacy that are considerably tougher than anything one can find in the main campaign. I keep a bad memory of the Legacy fight as except for Hawke my whole party died despite using death ward and elfroot potions. At the end of Legacy you're led to understand that the bad guy may not be totally dead after all, a point that Hawke doesn't figure out (but that's the "I'm completely hopeless as a hero" trend of DA2 so it's normal). The reason why the bad guy can survive is stressed further in the main quest of DAI so I won't talk about it here. I can only say that the explanation is much more credible -- because it's valid for both the events of Legacy and DAI -- than the whole "starchild" thing of ME3 so I guess they were already planning DAI when they developed Legacy. Still, playing Legacy is not a requirement.

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- Does it seem as if Bioware is beating us over the head with the "Gay is OK!" concept?

Not particularly. You may not be far enough in a romance but even if you can flirt with just about everyone, some characters will come see you at some point and tell you "Well, I'm flattered and I like you but... No". It's not DA2 where everyone is bi. As far as I know Cassandra is straight so playing as a female is a no go but Josephine is bi so it's an alternative. I started a game with a male character to see what my options are and Cassandra is much more responsive, including a semi-nude scene which one doesn't have with Josephine -- maybe because I was playing as a female with her, I don't know. When I say semi-nude it's Mass Effect semi-nude not The Witcher 2.. So the romance options are more akin to DAO than DA2. Scout Harding would have been an interesting option, I like the style. Unfortunately she seems to only be there for a dwarven character and she's bugged.

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Sera: so...she's insane, I guess. I wanted to hit her in the face with a brick.

Same here. She's possibly the companion that grates my nerves the most. Just about each time she opens her mouth in fact. She's a romance possibility but really... who cares? I guess that they needed to provide for all tastes. And I guess that if you're not 25 years old or younger you can't "dig" her anyway.

Worse? I got the Sera song stuck in my head. "Sera was never an agreeable girl... lalala". Grrrrrr....

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Solas: not very interesting, really. Kind of like a bland Spock impersonator with alopecia.

You got the Spock vibe too? I thought that was just me. With that being said I'd suggest to pay more attention to him. Just saying. A guy that knows so much more about the Fade, spirits and the rift phenomenon than your common grade mage does strike as odd, no? That did strike me as odd until... well you'll see.

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The latest patch broke mods.

That brings back memory of DA:O. Unfortunately, this is not the same engine so... What's the point switching engines to still have the same problems?

OK... back to the Teeth of Haakon... Sorry... the Jaws of Naros...  :lol:

Edit:

About the Jaws Of Haakon: they say you need at least a level 20 character for it... Believe them. Seriously. Even 22 or 23 is preferable -- or even higher if you can. I got into it with my character that finished the main quest at level 23 and... ouch.

One thing I forgot to mention and moderately annoy me in general: none of the two female voices available for the player character sounds particularly inspired (they're OK but not "inspired"). That is rendered even more obvious and painful by the presence in the game as a minor character (Varric's friend Bianca) of Laura Bailey. And there I was asking: why not her? I guess Bioware found her too much "Saints Row" to cast her as a main voice. A pity.

Note: none of the male voices are much more inspired either.

« Last Edit: March 27, 2015, 08:00:08 PM by Starfox »


Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world. -- A. Einstein