Dragon Age: Origins

A rich world, interesting storyline, multiple endings and more await you in Dragon Age: Origins. It's brilliant

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Dragon Age: Origins You don't work alone in Dragon Age: Origins. That's a good thing considering the task you have
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By  Jason Saundalkar Published  March 25, 2010

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Number of players: 1
Online play: N

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What do the games Baldur's Gate, Neverwinter Nights, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and Mass Effect have in common? If you said they're all made by Canadian-based BioWare then you're right on the money. BioWare has earned itself a triple ‘A' rating when it comes to role playing games (RPGs) because each of the aforementioned titles have been brilliant and scored numerous accolades. Dragon Age: Origins is one of the company's latest efforts and we're pleased to say it's just as spectacular as its counterparts.

Right from the off Dragon Age differs from its predecessors thanks to a feature known as ‘Origin Stories'. Once you pick the character you wish to play as, you begin playing an early part of that character's life and this provides an introduction to the character in terms of his experiences and his perception of the world around him. Only once you complete this segment do you get to begin playing the actual storyline.

In Origin the story revolves around your character joining a group of legendary protectors, known as the Grey Wardens. Each member of this group dedicates its life to destroying the ‘Darkspawn' - a force of demonic creatures that normally lives underground but also swarms the surface of Thedas at certain points in time. These movements are known as ‘Blights'.

Being a proper BioWare RPG you'll spend most of your time in Origins exploring the very detailed world of Thedas. There are numerous places you can visit, hundreds of side-quests that you can complete and loads of characters to talk to. The voice acting in Origins is brilliant as BioWare has used the voice talents of well known actors such as Claudia Black, Kate Mulgrew and Tim Curry. The non-playable characters that you eventually recruit also automatically converse at leisure during the game and this gives you more insight into each character's background.

As the main character the choices you make regarding what you say to your companions and to others in the virtual world affects gameplay quite strongly. Depending on the choices you make you'll find you can finish Origins in different ways with the appropriately different ending.

While conversing is a big part of the Dragon Age play experience you'll also get into a lot of battles. The game works well here too because the combat manages to be both fun and engaging while not being too complicated. This makes the game accessible to players that aren't hardcore RPG gurus.

For: Like past RPGs from BioWare Dragon Age: Origins is set in a richly detailed virtual world; you can get lost for hours without actually advancing in the game’s storyline.
Verdict: Origins is an epic in every sense, it boasts strong characters, great RPG gameplay, a rich virtual world and excellent production values.

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