Still drooling over Dragon Age here, now being over 30 hours into it (thanks Xfire). The challenge has really held up, and even though I now have more options in terms of party members, gear, and abilities, many of the encounters still require a few tries before I see success. The mental reward for such a challenge is also nice, because when I do come across an easier encounter, it just feels like it’s easy because my guys are heroes with some real power, rather than it being easy for the sake of easy. Hopefully that makes sense… I’m also very interested to see how Hard mode plays on a second run through, or even Nightmare mode.
I also want to address something I mentioned in my review concerning the story and the layers of gray in the choices you make. Having dug a little deeper, there ARE some tough choices to be made in the game, and things don’t always play out like you would expect them to. Even though the main enemies you face are evil demons, at times even they make you pause and consider options beyond just killing them, or the option to kill them is not always the ‘best’ option in terms of being a good guy. When you start factoring in how your party members are going to react (and this depends on who you have with you at the time), things can get gray very quickly.
Finally, I’ve completed both DLC additions (included in the pre-order CE edition), and while nice, they felt a little tacked-on, and if I had to pay for them now I would elect to skip them. It’s decent-enough content, but it does not really add a whole lot to the game’s story overall, which is generally one of my issues with DLC. I think (hope) more happens with the keep, but the golem party member for me is very meh in terms of abilities and function, although the little side quest to get him was interesting. He is also limited in gear selection much like your dog companion, which is a negative for me. At least he seems to have an interesting personality, but I wonder how much he integrates into the overall story, considering he is a ‘tacked on’ extra.
Not to spoil anything, but the entire quest line around getting the mages circle to help you, wow. Just wow. I was up till 1:30am last night because I simply could not walk away without seeing the conclusion, and it was worth every sleepless (ba-zing) minute.