Saturday, 24 January 2015

My two Dragon Age world states

If there's one game series with replay value, then it's the Dragon Age series. So I've played every game twice :P Here are my two world states (I wish I could just import the tapestry videos from Dragon Age Keep, but EA aren't that smart apparantly):

First playthrough:

Dragon Age: Origins:
Female city elf warrior named Kallian Tabris. She's still alive after the end of the Blight. Romanced Alistair and he remained with the Wardens, enabling Anora to continue being the queen. For the quest with the Dalish elves I chose neither side and remained neutral with the result that I had to fight Zathrian and the curse was thus ended. In Orzammar I chose to ally with Harrowmont, and in the Circle I sided with the templars, which resulted in Wynne's death so I never got her as a companion. I never got Zevran either as I, in this playthrough, basically killed everything. He tries to kill me? Then I kill him. I saved Redcliffe by sacrificing Isolde, allowing Connor to live. But I did not defile the Urn of Sacred Ashes when I went to get that. I killed Loghain in a duel, and I had Morrigan do her ritual with Alistair so neither of us would die. For Awakening I killed the Architect, chose to let Amaranthine fall to preserve my Keep, let Nathaniel live, but didn't reunite Oghren and Felsi since that quest was never given to me. In Witch Hunt I let Morrigan go through the eluvian and I didn't follow or stab her. In Warden's Keep I killed Sophia and let Avernus live and continue his research. In Stone Prisoner I didn't manage to save Amalia, but I recruited Shale.

Dragon Age 2:
Elia Hawke. Female rogue. Humorous. Romanced Merrill. Joined the smugglers to be able to enter Kirkwall. I killed everyone who opposed me and joked about everything. I sided with the templars on everything, although my sister was sent to the Circle. Turned rebellious mages over to the templars, sent Feynriel to the Circle, kicked Keran out of the templars for being a danger of possession, blackmailed Ser Thrask because of his abomination sister, had Feynriel made Tranquil, sent the escaped mages back to the Circle, handed the conspirators over to Meredith, and executed Anders. I killed the Arishok and his entourage. I rescued Nathaniel in the Deep Roads. I killed Merrill's entire clan, but let her keep the eluvian. I sided with Larius in Legacy DLC.

Dragon Age: Inquisition:
Female Dalish elf rogue named Ellana Lavellan. Romanced Solas and was heartbroken. Sided with the mages and made them my allies, and met Connor in Redcliffe. I didn't manage to save anyone when Haven fell apart. I met Alistair as Hawke's Warden friend and ended up physically in the Fade with my party and those two. In the heart-wrenching decision of who should stay behind I chose Hawke, and had Alistair return with me only to exile the Wardens. I allowed Celene to die so Gaspard could take the throne, closely watched and steered by Briala. I kicked Sera out of the Inquisition after Halamshiral. At the Temple of Mythal I chose to do the Petitioner's Path, allied with the Sentinels against the Red Templars, and then let Morrigan drink from the Well of Sorrows. I supported Leliana as the new Divine, which happened.

Second playthrough:

Dragon Age: Origins:
Female Dalish elf rogue named Teia Mahariel. She's still alive after the end of the Blight. Romanced Zevran. For the quest with the Dalish elves I chose to align myself with the Dalish, killing Witherfang, allowing the curse to continue, and letting Zathrian live. In Orzammar I allied with Bhelen, and in the Circle I allied with the mages. I recruited both Wynne and Zevran this time around. I saved Redcliffe by killing Connor and the demon that possessed him, and I still did not defile the Urn. I had planned to have Alistair and Anora marry, but since my rogue couldn't defeat Loghain in single combat I had Alistair do it and thus Anora refused to marry him. Still Alistair became king and Anora was locked away. I still had Morrigan do her ritual with Alistair. In Awakening I allied with the Architect against the Mother, allowing him to live. I managed to save both the Keep and Amaranthine, let Nathaniel live, and reunited Oghren and Felsi. Witch Hunt was the same... In Warden's Keep I allied with Sophia and killed Avernus. In Stone Prisoner I managed to save both Amalia and her father and recruit Shale.

Dragon Age 2:
Marian Hawke. Female rogue. Diplomatic. Romanced Anders. Joined the mercenaries to be able to enter Kirkwall. Took Bethany with me into the Deep Roads where she contracted the Blight, but Anders took her to Stroud and had her saved. I sided with the mages on everything this time and I tried not to kill anyone (except stupid templars). I sent Feynriel to the Dalish, but still made him Tranquil because he asked me to. I had a high enough friendship with Isabela for her to return with the Tome of Koslun and I allowed the Qunari to take her back to Par Vollen with them, so I didn't have to kill the Arishok. I allowed the escaped mages to go free, and I handed the conspirators to Orsino. I rescued Nathaniel and let Anders live. I managed to save Merrill's clan, and had her destroy the eluvian. I once again sided with Larius in Legacy DLC.

Dragon Age: Inquisition:
Female Dalish elf rogue named Ariana Lavellan. Romanced Cullen and lived happily ever after. Once again sided with the mages, and saved all but one when Haven fell apart. I met Hawke's Warden friend Stroud and when I ended up in the Fade with them I chose to save Hawke this time. I also recruited the Wardens as my allies. I sided with Celene and reunited her with Briala. I made Florianne's treason and betrayal public and sentenced her to farm work. I became best friends with Sera and had a lot of roof time with her. At the Temple of Mythal I once again chose the Petitioner's Path and allied with the Sentinels, but this time I chose to drink from the Well of Sorrows myself. I allied myself with the Guardian of Mythal - a dragon. I supported Vivienne as the new Divine, but still the title went to Leliana.

I just realised that almost all my characters have red hair and are very pale. Except for two who have black hair but are still really pale. Interestingly, my favourite characters to play have been Teia, Elia, and Ariana. All the ones who took nothing seriously and joked about everything.

I'm still not sure I'm entirely done with this series. But I won't play for a while. I need to step away to gain some perspective. Would be interesting to play the series as a mage, though. And maybe male?

Friday, 23 January 2015

Dragon Age companions appreciation post

Originally from Dragon Age: Origins and its DLC Awakening

Alistair is my bro. I love him to bits. Not romancing him during my second playthrough of Origins was really tough, because he's so adorable and funny. I squealed when he briefly popped up in 2, and I sacrificed Hawke so he could live in my first playthrough of Inquisition. I can't have a world where he's not alive. I love all the little war table quests I get from him in Inquisition.
"Have you ever licked a lamp post in winter?"

Sharpest tongue in Thedas. If Alistair is in my party I need to have Morrigan there too, because their banter is priceless. She's a bit dark, but fiercely loyal and not someone you want to get on the bad side of! And I love that she showed up in Inquisition! I had no idea how much I'd missed her.
"How odd. We now have a dog and Alistair is still the dumbest one in the party."

Leliana is cute as a kitten in Origins. I have no idea what happened to her during those ten years between Origins and Inquisition, but holy fuck she's been hardened. I still love her to bits, though. She's like a little sister. A little sister with scary moments.
"Try not to look too incomptenet. It's embarrassing."

Tbf I didn't care much for Sten during my first playthrough of Origins, but then I maxed out his friendship during my second playthrough and Sten is absolutely adorable under that tough facade. He keeps calling my Warden 'kadan' and he adores cookies.
"I am a simple creature. I like swords, I follow orders. What else is there to be puzzled by?"

I came to like Wynne a lot more than I thought I would. She has a lot of fire for being that old and she's so naughty. When Zevran flirts with her she turns him down, two breaths later she's the one flirting with Alistair! xD
"Now that you're in an intimate relationship I think maybe I should tell you where babies come from."

Zevran is so much more than what he seems. He seems like a happy-go-lucky rogue who only wants to have fun and sex. But there's so much more to him. He's probably the most complex character of the game. He sounds like Puss in Boots when he talks, and he's my baby.
"We all do our share of murdering around here, don't we?"

Shale is ma guurl. There's not much more to it than that. She's one of my favourites to have in my party.
"I wonder what it is like to float... or drown."

Oghren is hilarious! But I always feel sorry for him, there's so much in his life that's messed up and then he goes and tries to do good but messes it up more instead. I hope he's happy with Felsi now.
"By the tits of my ancestors!"

I loved Anders in Awakening and wished so hard that I would be able to romance him. Then he shows up in Dragon Age 2 and I'm basically on cloud nine. Too bad that Justice DESTROYED him. Justice, you suck. I still love Anders, though, I just wish he could've been more like his old self in 2. Every time Hawke talks about Anders in Inquisition I smile like an idiot.
"All I want is a pretty girl, a decent meal, and the right to shoot lightning at fools."

Probably my favourite character out of Awakening. He's such a serious guy and yet he forms a friendship with Anders who's basically the opposite of serious in Awakening. And then he shows up again in 2!!! :D
"If it isn't the great hero, my father's murderer."

Sigrun is badass. I love how Oghren is always trying to flirt with her and she's always brushing him off. Good for her, I wouldn't want to be flirted with by Oghren either. His breath probably smells like a whiskey sewer... She's my girl in Awakening.
"Isn't perspective wonderful? You'd think people who are so tall would have more of it."

Velanna had very few redeeming qualities tbh. She didn't exactly give a good impression of the Dalish, but ofc that hardened surface is explained and she's slightly nicer after the Warden finds out about her past. Still, she was never one I tended to pick for my party.
"Funny, isn't it? Andraste fought a tyrannical empire, only to have her followers become one themselves."

I brought Justice along a lot. Usually it was Nathaniel, Anders and Justice in my party and Justice was always like a father figure, like he was the one to keep my crazy Warden and the Boys in line and teach us to do right and be just :P I really liked Justice in Awakening, but because of what he did to Anders... we're not on the best terms right now.
"How odd that mortals find so many differences to hate when you have so very much in common."

Favourite team?
Alistair + Zevran + Wynne

Originally from Dragon Age 2 and its DLCs The Exiled Prince and Mark of the Assassin:

I hardly liked Bethany. She was too much of the kind and nice girl who always does what people expect her to do. So I turned her into a Warden, just because that was the most unexpected thing I could think of to do with her.
"Maker's breath! Can't you do this when I'm not around?"

Aveline rubbed me off the wrong way. She's too proper. The only quest involving her that I half enjoyed, half wanted to facedesk was the one where Hawke tries to get Donnic to understand that Aveline likes him, without actually telling him she likes him. Because that quest showed a completely new side of her, a side that I could actually relate to and like.
"Shout if you need me, Hawke. I'll always be there for you. Just... knock first."

Okay, so Varric is one of my four favourite characters in 2. I was so glad when he showed up in Inquisition, because what would Inquisition seriously be like without my favourite dwarf? Not even half as funny! The storyteller extraordinarie, with a heart of gold, a great sense of humour, and a heavy romantic sorrow. The only male dwarf I've ever loved, and he's not even a romance option!
"Hawke, I'm a businessman. Now and then, I shoot people."

Merrill is cute enough in-game to get a chibi picture. My favourite elf ever. You should've seen my face when I made a Dalish Warden in Origins and realised Merrill and I were from the same clan and then I ran around talking to myself "Marethari, Merrill, Ilen, Paivel, Maren, Pol... みんな... I missed you so much! I'll never kill you guys again!" I love Merrill. I love everything about her.
"I'll try not to hit anyone. On our side, I mean. I'm babbling again. Let's go."

Fenris, my love, one day I'll endure your hot-n-cold behaviour and finish a romance with you... Fenris is introduced as he literally pulls the heart out of someone's chest - and he makes it look beautiful. Fenris' entire being pulls at my heart every time my Hawke interacts with him.
"Ah, here we are at the center of power. Smell the oppression, everyone!"

Choice party member for dirty banter. And because it was really fun to have a one night stand in a game and both sides were perfectly okay with it. Isabela was briefly in Origins, but I love how she got a bigger role in 2. Sorry for handing you over to the Arishok.
"I like big boats, I cannot lie."

The pretty pious boy who I tired of pretty quickly. Would've loved to romance him but chastity vows are a bitch.
"Varric, would but the Maker approve, you and I would be so much more than the best of friends."

I really liked Tallis, I wish she could've come with me back to Kirkwall when we were done in Orlais, but apparantly not. Still got a kiss from her, though! :3
"You go elbow-deep in wyvern shit and I'm the weird one?"

Favourite team?
Fenris + Isabela + Merrill

Originally from Dragon Age: Inquisition:

'Badass' is the best word to describe Cassandra. I love how it's revealed that she's fangirl. Probably the most unexpected thing to find out about her. But it was amazing and priceless. Also, because Inquisition is basically made for shipping I am so shipping her with Varric... and Tethraghast seems to be a thing on Tumblr. Combination of Varric Tethras and Cassandra Pentaghast.
"They will stand in the fire and complain that it is hot."

Solas was my first romance in Inquisition, romance that ofc ended in heartbreak, because why can't I ever pick the right guys?! A little elf with a big secret, lots of arcane knowledge and a love for the Fade. Seriously, during my second playthrough when I knew what his secret was it was so obvious how many times he almost accidentally slipped up. You're not very good at keeping your secret, Solas!
"Every great war has its heroes. I'm just curious what kind you'll be."

Cullen is so cute it hurts my heart. He's also one of few people to have featured in all three games :) My Warden ran ofc into Cullen in the Circle of Ferelden and I just ran past him going "Hiya Cullen, I'll pounce you when you're older! Seeya!" His character development is amazing btw, if nothing else you should love him for the person he's become after all that he's been through.
"Can't you see why I want nothing to do with that life?"

Josephine is... interesting. I wouldn't see her as a friend, but as far as advisors go she's amazing. I love her for her job, but the one-on-one scenes between my quizzie and her are always friendly and heartwarming. I may need to do a male quizzie just to find out how her romance plot plays out.
"Common ground is the start of all negotiations."

I can't decide if I like Blackwall or not. There's something about him that speaks to me, but at the same time I feel betrayed by him.
"It's not right... to want to do good, to be good, and have that turned against you."

Vivienne is a bitch, but I think she knows. I also think it's all an act she's had to maintain all those years and now she doesn't really know how to stop. Although I try to see past her facade she's still too posh for me and I can't seem to like her.
"Magic is dangerous, just as fire is dangerous. Anyone who forgets this truth gets burned."

I had a really hard time with Sera to begin with. In my first playthrough I didn't like her at all and in the end I sent her away. During my second playthrough I decided to really try and get to know and like everyone. With Sera that attitude paid off, because she's one of those people who doesn't like anyone until they've proven that they're worth liking. I can respect that and now Sera is probably my best friend.
"Mother pushbucket frigging bastard shitebag pissface! Eat it, you lop-eared, son of an arse-nut rot-suck piece of... ugh!"

Iron Bull
I like Bull. I love his banter with Sera and his relationship with Dorian that he practically initiated with his incessant flirting. And while I've always been hesitant to the Qun, Bull actually makes it sound good. I respect him for that.
"Whenever you need an ass kicked, The Iron Bull is with you."

Dorian, Dorian, Dorian... Where to begin? He's friggin wonderful! Everything from his narcissism to his moustache is absolutely fab. His personal plot is really deep, and shows a very real problem despite it being in a game. I adore Dorian.
"I'm here to set things right. Also? To look dashing. That part's less difficult."

If you ever have a bad day bring Cole along and do a bunch of fetch quests that make people happy. Cole's comments will make your day better. Cole is lovely. I love how he talks and how he's so easily pleased with acts of kindness. He's strange and odd, and somehow that really speaks to me.
"He thought if he didn't have magic... I'm what he wanted to be. Him, but normal. So no one would hurt him."

Favourite team?
Iron Bull + Sera + Dorian

And just for fun: Favourite ultimate team?
Fenris + Sera + Merrill
Ultimate elf party. 

Saturday, 10 January 2015

The evolution of the qunari

1). Dragon Age: Origins - Sten
2). Dragon Age 2 - Arishok
3). Dragon Age: Inquisition - Iron Bull

I started playing Origins again and suddenly it feels very weird to have the qunari without horns and without the pointed ears, which is weird because I remember that when I started playing 2 I wondered what the hell they had done to Sten's people.

But this time around I'm making sure to become close friends with all my companions (buy a huge bunch of thoughtful gifts from Bodahn), and suddenly Sten's adorable. I asked him if there was anything at all he liked about Ferelden and his answer was... cookies! Sten loves cookies! :3 The badass, giant, moody, broody Sten loves cookies! ^w^

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Dragon Age: Inquisition

(I'm gonna have to make a tag for all my DA posts... There! Done!)
Dragon Age: Origins review. Dragon Age 2 review. Dragon Age fluff.

I started playing Dragon Age: Inquisition on December 22nd and I finished today. Just over two weeks and almost 100 hours later. So if you wonder about the lack of posts here lately, this game is the answer. I love massive RPGs with immersive worlds and DAI was no exception. It's massive to the point that I always found new quests when I thought I was finished with an area. There was always something to do. I love that. Now I'm impatiently awaiting the DLC that was so obviously hinted in the final scenes of DAI.

I have a thing for elves. If I could've made an elven Hawke in 2 I would've. Instead I had her romance both Fenris and Merrill. My Warden in Origins was a city elf. My Inquisitor is Dalish, and she romanced Solas. (If you only knew how much I'm seriously considering replaying Origins as a Dalish and romancing Zevran... I might just do that, I don't feel done with Thedas yet. Just give me time and Thedas will be up there with Tamriel, just you wait ;)) I have encountered very few elves in DA, whom I haven't liked. Sera is an unfortunate exception. I just found her annoying, especially after I completed the quest in the Winter Palace and she was so condescending about me being no better than the stiff noble assholes. At that point I sent her away. If you don't like it - there's the door. Goodbye. But there's still no character that I've loved as much as I've loved Merrill. Incoming: awesome elves!
Zevran, Fenris, Merrill, Sera, Solas
Merrill, Fenris, Sketch, Velanna, Zevran, Ariane
Fenris, Zevran, Solas

I loved DAI from the get go. The hours I spent at work just putting stuff in boxes I was running around Thedas in my head. Especially imagining different romance angles and things to come. Corypheus had me dumb-founded from the start. I killed him! I swear I killed him in DA2 Legacy DLC. The hell is he doing alive?! What business does he have to still be around? How many friggin times will I have to kill you? But I can't deny that it was an epic main quest and the final scenes... holy shit! O_o I'm so excited for further story based DLCs (no more shitty extra equipment). I loved how big part elven culture, heritage and history played in DAI and it got so interesting because my Inquisitor is Dalish (I decorated all of Skyhold in Dalish designs #sorrynotsorry).

It got a little annoying to be running around closing rifts. That probably turned into the most grindy, boring, necessary part imo. I started comparing them to Anchors in ESO that you just have to do, but the novelty of them wears off pretty quick. But the Anchors are more epic than rifts so they get more points there. I never grew tired of looking for shards or completing astrariums. Although both of those things could drive me insane. Especially when trying to find a way up on that cliff where that friggin shard is. I can see it on spy cam through the friggin rock, but how the hell do I get up there?!?!?! I think I only had to google help for two astrariums. I'm feeling kind of proud of that. Also the general confusion over the fact that my char could jump in a DA game was funny in retrospect. In earlier DA games space has been the pause button. So every time a fight was beginning in DAI my char started jumping about the place. It was mostly annoying until I got used to it, but now it's funny.

Then there are the characters. I miss Sandal. When I was going to appoint an arcanist for Skyhold I hoped that it would be him. It wasn't, but I felt somewhat rectified by it being Dagna. Although, how she can be just as flimsy at 30 as she was at 19 is beyond me :P I love Varric. I was having a hard time with Cassandra to begin with, but she grew on me (especially after I found out she's a fellow fangirl). Solas went to my heart directly, as did Dorian, and Iron Bull. All four of them have been subjected to my flirting Inquisitor. Cole went straight to my heart, similar to the way Merrill did, but unlike Merrill he never really nested there. I was always neutral towards Blackwall, although his revelation almost made me fall off my chair. Then there's Vivienne and Sera. I never liked any of them. For being so different they're so alike. Both of them believe themselves and their way of life and their beliefs to be better than anyone else's. For someone who's not superior at all, Sera really seemed to have a kind of superiority complex, like she believed herself to be better because she wasn't playing the Game, and anyone who tried their hand at the Game was worthy of resentment.

The companions: Cullen, Vivienne, Varric, Cole, Solas, Cassandra, (player), Iron Bull, Dorian, Leliana, Sera, Josephine, Blackwall

I was thrilled to see Leliana, Morrigan, Alistair, Cullen, and Hawke again. Meeting my Hawke in-game felt like running into myself. It was hilarious! The fact that my Hawke was humorous in 2 made everything a lot funnier, because she retained her sharp tongue and sense of humour. I was sort of hoping that she'd bring Merrill (her wife) with her to Skyhold, and was disappointed when Merrill didn't show. And I loved Alistair's parting words: "Tell Morrigan... just tell her I stood there looking foolish." :') I cried at how sad Varric became after he found out that Hawke died in the fade. I was devastated when I had to make the impossible decision between leaving Hawke behind or leaving Alistair behind. I chose to leave Hawke behind because Alistair and my Warden is my OTP and I just couldn't break them up, especially not after Alistair told my Inquisitor about the argument they had about who'd go out and look for a way to cure the Calling. At first I thought Alistair was being a bit of a pushover, but then I thought "You try arguing with the woman who personally fought an Archdemon and lived to tell the tale." Point taken. Alistair is still adorably in love, though, that much was obvious. 10 years later and he's still adorably in love! :3

Also I just found out that if the Inquisitor doesn't romance neither Dorian nor Iron Bull they end up as a couple. *fangirling overload* (*0*)