I beat Dragon Age 2 yesterday. I admit I was a little disappointed because it seemed short. Looking back, I playing close to 30 hours in a short time span to beat it. I got it Thursday or Friday and could have had it beat by Sunday. There were only a couple of hours left on the game when I played it yesterday.
Again, I’ll compare it to Mass Effect 2 in degrees of content – not context of content, but formula of content. Very short main story with a lot of side quests and companion quests that fill in the time. I suspect you could easily beat the game in one day if you focused on advancing companion plots that fit with the game and skipped the rest; namely Isabella and Anders’ quest lines.
Considering the main story quests, you really only had the delve into the Deep Roads, dealing with that Chantry chick that was turning people against the Qunari, Isabella’s relic, Qunari, Anders’ quests, then the revolt against the Templars. The most time consuming part likely came from the beginning which was basically, “do quests to get 50 gold so you can advance the story.” That was all.
In the end, if you didn’t have proper rep with the companions, they might turn on you. Some appear to be predisposed to one side or the other. Oh, in case it wasn’t obvious, you end up being part of something that sparks the Circle of Magi turning on the Templars and, to some degree, the Chantry. As in, you distract the High Cleric while Anders goes and plants an arcane bomb only you don’t realize it until the Chantry explodes.
I said there would be spoilers! :p
Neutral characters: Varric, Isabella
Pro-Mage characters: Anders, Merril, Bethany (if you have her)
Pro-Templar characters: Aveline, Fenris
I didn’t have Sebastian so I’m not sure which way he swings. I also didn’t have Carver because I went Warrior to start. (I am going to play through as a Mage just to see some differences. So far Bethany gets killed instead of Carver during that battle with the Ogre in the beginning.)
Did I miss anyone else?
I went Pro-Mage.
Aveline was going to side with the Templars because they represent order, however, she thought I was the shit so she stuck around and noted the Guardsmen were protecting the innocent citizens so staying out of the Magi-Templar fights. Fenris, who clearly doesn’t like Mages, flipped sides (despite having favorable rep with him) until just before the fighting started where I had the option to talk to him. I brought up the fact that the Magi were facing close to the slavery he did. This was done by selecting the “Join Me” option so he switched sides.
In my next play through I’m going to see what happens when I side with the Templars. Maybe after this one as a Mage, though it’ll be interesting to see what happens as a Mage going against the Circle? heh. I’ll have to save game lots and try it out.
I think in this play through I’ll try to fill the void in power left when the Arishok kills the Viscount. I did note there was an achievement for becoming the ruler or something and I did catch the dialog option that I suspect would have started it but decided to play neutral.
p.s. BIG SPOILER – really, I’m going to ruin the game for you if you read this. Flow of the story would be:
- escape from Lothering/Blight to Kirkwall (short)
- get into Kirkwall (short)
- earn 50 gold to get on board the Deep Road expedition (long)
- do the Deep Road where Bartrand betrays you and his brother, come back out (short)
- sort out Chantry+Templar+Zealot hostilities towards Qunari (medium)
- find Isabella’s relic, which is why the Arishok is hanging around and why she won’t ever enter the compound (short)
- fight your way to the Keep during the Qunari assault where you duel the Arishok (I ended up protecting Isabella, I don’t know if they’d leave peacefully) (short)
- power vacuum created by lack of Viscount, Meredith gets too powerful/pushy while the mages get anxious, Anders blows up the Chantry to force the issues (medium)
- pick sides – fight to the Gallows; resolve alliances (companions choose to stay with you or leave) (short)
- fight waves of the side you chose to oppose (a second chance to reconcile companions) (short)
- kill each of the leads of the factions; Meredith is corrupted/maddened by the idol Bartrand had taken from the Deep Road, Head Enchanter from the Circle decides to use Blood Magic – both were pretty big fights, though the one with Meredith seemed bigger/longer (short)
- game over
Some of those points could be mashed together and I don’t think thing you can advance the story until you sort out Bartrand the one time or distract the High Cleric for Anders. As you can see, a lot of the filler is doing the side quests or spending time earning cash for the Deep Road expedition.
That’s all for now.