Developed by BioWare and published by Electronic Arts in 2009, Dragon Age: Origins is a hardcore, third-person Role-Playing Game in the style of Knights of the Old Republic (also developed by BioWare), Vampire: the Masquerade – Redemption, and Neverwinter Nights.
It’s a combat-heavy swords and sorcery fantasy game, with knights in shining armour, castles, spells, wizards, and a large variety of enemies. Combat is real-time in essence, but – like in the above-mentioned games – you can press pause and issue orders to your characters, effectively making combat a real-time/turn-based hybrid.
The story is about you – the son of a betrayed king – on a quest to join a secretive order of warriors called The Grey Wardens, and into battle against a fearsome army of evil Darkspawn. The plot is a little more complicated, but I don’t want to spoil it, other than to say that it is excellent – better than your average fantasy game – and I found myself quickly warming to the characters and dialogue.
Presentation-wise, Dragon Age: Origins is top quality. Maybe not quite as good as The Witcher 3, but definitely a game that is beautifully refined on every level. What I particularly liked were the information boxes comparing equipped items next to similar items on your inventory – making identifying better weapons and armour easy.
What really shines with Dragon Age: Origins, though, is the gameplay. The controls and interface take a little getting used to, but otherwise it’s a dream to play. Moving around and doing things is intuitive and the interface is both helpful and useful, with lots of depth and clever touches.
Overall: I’m very impressed by Dragon Age: Origins. I wasn’t initially sure what to expect, and some fantasy action games bore me because they’re so ‘generic’ Not so with this game – the story and characters are appealing and worth fighting for.