That definitely bothered me, but I was replaying Mass Effect earlier, and it struck me as odd that I don't remember hearing lots of the same complaints for it.
Oh it was definitely bitched about. That and the auto-generated planets along with the Mako controls were like 90% of the complaints back then. Mass Effect got away with it because while it was shallow in some areas, it was deep and enjoyable in others. Dragon Age II is just an all around shallow experience in almost every aspect of its gameplay.