Those that have been following the news know that Dragon Age 2's cat is out of the bag. We have Bioware confirming it and a nice wonderful Game Informer piece being done on the game. The folks over at GI see the masses clamoring for details about Hawke. Bickering about his origins, what he will be like, his class, race, gender, etc. These are details GI has. These are details GI is now going to drip out to the masses. It makes me wonder what will be left in the article that will make us want to read it.
These five facts comes ripped right from Game Informer's article. The bonus commentary comes free. I like to give back to the people.
PLEASE NOTE: Due to the nature of the article, we are discussing a sequel, spoilers of the first game and potential spoilers for the second game are bound to come up. Please do not internet nerd rage if I spoil something for you. You have been fairly warned.
1. Hawke will be a voiced character.
Unlike Dragon Age: Origins, the player's character in Dragon Age II will be fully voiced. This opens the door for a more cinematic approach to dialogue and creates an identity for the character outside of the text you see on-screen. It also eliminates those awkward scenarios where you feel like your character should be reacting, but instead just stares blankly without so much as a grunt.
As most people observed in the last article, this is Bioware taking a page out of Mass Effect's playbook. There is no doubt that they wanted to create a much more immersve experience with the dialog trees. There is part of me that wishes they'd have dialogs for all races and genders, to allow for a much more personal experience, but I know that is a fantasy. Realistically, I can accept this move as a trade-off for better dialog. I like hearing my main character's voice.
2. Hawke is human.
Yes, that means that you won't be able to select Hawke's race. However, just because that one aspect of Hawke's backstory is set doesn't mean BioWare is eliminating character creation. You can still choose your class and customize your appearance. When we visited BioWare's studio, we only saw (and heard) the male Hawke in action, but the team promises that players can select either gender for the character.
Again, this is a trade-off to allow a much more immersive experience in the game. I can accept this. I may not like
the design choice, but I can accept it.
3. Hawke didn't just survive the blight...he escaped it.
As the Grey Warden from Dragon Age: Origins was fighting darkspawn, Hawke was living in Lothering. Fans will remember that the small village was raided and destroyed (an event that occurred off-screen in Origins), and Hawke was one of the survivors. However, rather than stay and fight the darkspawn menace, Hawke flees Ferelden and heads north.
There was some concern that Hawke would be Morrigan's child, one of the potential endings for Dragon Age: Origins
. I thought that would provide for a very unique angle to approach the story. No longer are you a Gray Warden from the beginning, trying to defeat the Darkspawn, but now you are approaching the evil in another manner. Anyways, I digress, because that whole situation is moot! You are a survivor from an event that occurred during the first game. This make me wonder, since your Gray Warden from the first game destroys the Archdemon, then what will you be adventuring against?
4. Hawke is the Champion of Kirkwall.
Kirkwall is a major population center in the Free Marches, a collection of city-states north of Ferelden. This means that at least some of the action in Dragon Age II will be set in Kirkwall itself, though Hawke will also spend time in other areas of the Free Marches. What exactly Hawke does to earn the honorary title of Champion, however, is up to you.
So we will be traveling north. This again makes me wonder, what will be the overarching goal and storyline for this game? Pursuit of the Archdemon is out of the question...
5. Hawke drives the story.
Dragon Age II is not about killing an ancient evil or about quelling another blight; Hawke is the driving force behind the narrative. Over the course of the game's 10-year timeline, players' actions and choices will determine Hawke's history, relationships, and regrets...all in service to answering the larger question: Who is the Champion of Kirkwall?
Really Game Informer!? REALLY!? That is weaksauce. We figured Hawke was the driving force of the game. We knew that. We knew he wasn't going to quell another blight because those type of events do not occur on decade scale. One thing that did bug me about the first game, that I really hope the second game addresses more and really brings into the fold: dragons. They are the title of the franchise. We saw two in the first game. I want to see more! Where are the good dragons? Neutral dragons? Ice dragons? Fire dragons!
Anyways, this issue of Game Informer should be out soon. Get it.