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BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms

A post on the Dragon Age II forum on the BioWare Social Network titled by BioWare's Mike Laidlaw discusses some of the negative feedback they've seen about Dragon Age II, saying "I’d like to take this opportunity to address some lingering concerns and clear the air somewhat" (thanks nin via Kotaku/BeefJack). Here's a portion with his take on the pros and cons of their RPG sequel:

Following the launch of DA II, I did some interviews and some of you interpreted my statements to mean I was blind to the concerns that have been voiced repeatedly on these forums. That was never my intent, nor the message I wanted to convey.

I am absolutely aware of the concerns voiced here. Issues like level re-use, the implementation of wave combat, concerns about the narrative and significance of choice and so on have all been not only noted, but examined, inspected and even aided me (and many, many others on the team) in formulating future plans. Further, I'm not only aware of the concerns, but I agree that there are aspects of DA II that not only can but must be improved in future installments. And that is precisely our intent.

Finally, let me conclude by saying that while we are all aware of your concerns, I am very proud of what the team accomplished with Dragon Age II. I know many are advocating a "it wasn't broke, why did you try to fix it?" stance, and I absolutely understand why. From my perspective, as someone looking to the future and the DA franchise, I think that DA II moved us into a space that has more potential.

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66. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 29, 2011, 22:57 Dades
 
Everyone is threatening to kill his family of course, not just a single unhinged idiot and he's not used to dealing with people like that as part of his job or anything.

Practice what you preach.
 
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65. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 29, 2011, 21:31 Creston
 
Dades wrote on May 28, 2011, 18:44:
You rage out at individual people in the industry all the time so maybe you should chill out about other people getting frustrated and doing the same.

You might want to learn the difference between generally thinking the industry is going into the shitter (and being lead by the likes of Bobby Cocktick), and commenting to that effect, and THREATENING TO KILL SOMEONE'S FAMILY over a fucking game, genius.

Creston
 
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64. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 29, 2011, 19:53 Xombie
 
Creston wrote on May 28, 2011, 16:07:
That said, it's ridiculous that people were personally attacking the guy. It's a fucking GAME.

If people on Blues News ever stopped whining like babies about video games, there wouldn't be anyone left here.
 
Xombie x0mbie x0mb|e Xombie
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63. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 28, 2011, 18:44 Dades
 
Creston wrote:
That said, it's ridiculous that people were personally attacking the guy. It's a fucking GAME. If you don't like the direction they take the game in, don't buy it. The internet turns into a bigger fucking cesspool every year.

You rage out at individual people in the industry all the time so maybe you should chill out about other people getting frustrated and doing the same. He put himself out there several times before and after the game came out, gave numerous development interviews with misleading information and this non-apology is almost insulting. If it takes people yelling at him and calling him names to understand why they're upset then so be it.

Creston wrote:
This would lead to either Bobby Cocktick burning down Gamefly's HQ and murdering all its employees, or to publishers releasing games with more content.

Creston wrote:
Yep, that sounds pretty much like gfwl alright. There's an article in PC Gamer with Kevin Unangst, and how they're "putting all this stuff in that developers want!" and how they're "going to be solid competition to Steam!"

Not a single fucking peep on the horrendous idiocy their horseshit client forces gamers to go through, such as the example above.

/still can't log in to Batman's GFWL.
//FUCK YOU KEVIN FUCKING UNANGST.
 
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62. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 28, 2011, 16:07 Creston
 
I think that DA II moved us into a space that has more potential.

By which they mean: Crank out cookie cutter sequels every year and hope to make enough money to please our EA overlords, rather than try to make awesome games.

A larger potential audience? Sure, who wouldn’t want more players diving into the experience of playing an RPG?

Funny how DA2 still hasn't sold even 60% of DAO. So if your intent was to reach a larger audience, the only word that really comes to mind is FAIL.

That said, it's ridiculous that people were personally attacking the guy. It's a fucking GAME. If you don't like the direction they take the game in, don't buy it. The internet turns into a bigger fucking cesspool every year.

Creston
 
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61. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 28, 2011, 13:25 EricFate
 
Translation:

"At least two other studios have now released products that the fanbase who this particular product was marketed as being designed for like better than our product. Now we have DLC in the pipeline and we want the people who were disappointed by our product to be gullible enough to open their wallets again, so here is my apology note and a promise that we have learned our lesson."
 
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60. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 28, 2011, 13:25 Prez
 
Cutter wrote on May 27, 2011, 11:07:
They want to make their games faster, cheaper and dumber for the masses, period. Bioware has been done for some time now.

Sadly, I think this is true. What a damn shame.
 
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“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
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59. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 28, 2011, 13:17 Slashman
 
Fion wrote on May 28, 2011, 13:04:
loomy wrote on May 27, 2011, 21:29:
DA1 actually was broken. 90s gameplay doesn't fly in 2011. The nerds may like it but it won't bring home the $$$.

I'm sorry but DA:O was Biowares best selling game of all time. It brought in more than $4 million. Thats a million more than Mass Effect 2 made them. So your 'it wouldn't make any money' idea is what doesn't fly.

Knowing that, perhaps you'll understand why everyone bulked at the changes. Why change your most successful formula? Perhaps EA thought if they made the game more of a twitchy shooter they would attract twithy shooter kinds of money from the game. I mean thats what they have been trying already, ME2 anyone?

I actually think that ME2 worked rather well. The new shooting mechanics were much better than ME1. The only complaint I have about it is that they streamlined everything else too. They didn't really need to do that. The new combat system was fine. They just needed to scale back the junk weapons and upgrades, while still keeping it so that you had more flexibility in modding your weapons.

I dislike ammo types as an 'ability'.

Apart from that stuff and the planet scanning, I enjoyed it more than ME1.
 
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58. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 28, 2011, 13:07 Fion
 
avianflu wrote on May 27, 2011, 20:55:
You have to admit, the Da2 demo was a giant red alert not to buy the game.

It most certainly was. But like a blind fan I bought the game anyway. Not the first or the last time I regretted spending $50 on a game that ended up sucking this year either. I think in the future we'll be calling 2011 'the year of the cursed games'. Besides Portal 2 and Witcher 2 there hasn't been a single decent mainstream game all year.
 
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57. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 28, 2011, 13:04 Fion
 
loomy wrote on May 27, 2011, 21:29:
DA1 actually was broken. 90s gameplay doesn't fly in 2011. The nerds may like it but it won't bring home the $$$.

I'm sorry but DA:O was Biowares best selling game of all time. It brought in more than $4 million. Thats a million more than Mass Effect 2 made them. So your 'it wouldn't make any money' idea is what doesn't fly.

Knowing that, perhaps you'll understand why everyone bulked at the changes. Why change your most successful formula? Perhaps EA thought if they made the game more of a twitchy shooter they would attract twithy shooter kinds of money from the game. I mean thats what they have been trying already, ME2 anyone?
 
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56. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 28, 2011, 10:07 Dades
 
Slashman wrote on May 28, 2011, 06:49:
They didn't like the new 'direction' I'm guessing...

That's exactly what one of them said in an interview.
 
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55. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 28, 2011, 06:49 Slashman
 
Jerykk wrote on May 28, 2011, 05:59:
When I played DA:O it was pretty clear to me that the third and fourth stringers were working on the Dragon Age series.

Considering that DAO was the best RPG Bioware made in years, I wouldn't consider the team lacking in talent. The problem with DA2 is that it was rushed. Also, I think two of the lead designers on DAO left Bioware.

They didn't like the new 'direction' I'm guessing...
 
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54. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 28, 2011, 05:59 Jerykk
 
When I played DA:O it was pretty clear to me that the third and fourth stringers were working on the Dragon Age series.

Considering that DAO was the best RPG Bioware made in years, I wouldn't consider the team lacking in talent. The problem with DA2 is that it was rushed. Also, I think two of the lead designers on DAO left Bioware.
 
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53. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 28, 2011, 04:41 entr0py
 
Warskull wrote on May 28, 2011, 04:13:
Mass Effect 2 was quite good. I think the actual issue here is Bioware spreading itself too thin. You have Mass Effect, Dragon Age, and The Old Republic all in development at once. There is a finite amount of talent at a studio. When I played DA:O it was pretty clear to me that the third and fourth stringers were working on the Dragon Age series.

All their good devs are probably working on other series, leaving Dragon Age to what's left.

Good eye. They don't make it easy to distinguish who made what game, but Bioware actually has 4 development studios. DA2 was made by Bioware Edmonton, ME2 was made primarily by BioWare Montreal, and The Old Republic is being made by BioWare Austin. At this point it would be nice if they acted a bit more like Rockstar and at least made it clear what particular studio worked on which game, even if they're all named some flavor of Bioware.
 
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52. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 28, 2011, 04:13 Warskull
 
captawe wrote on May 27, 2011, 19:08:
Umm, Bioware doesn't exist except in name only. EA bought them and control all the shots. Bioware is just a name on a website and a marquee to pimp crappy games from.

Mass Effect 2 was quite good. I think the actual issue here is Bioware spreading itself too thin. You have Mass Effect, Dragon Age, and The Old Republic all in development at once. There is a finite amount of talent at a studio. When I played DA:O it was pretty clear to me that the third and fourth stringers were working on the Dragon Age series.

All their good devs are probably working on other series, leaving Dragon Age to what's left.
 
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51. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 28, 2011, 01:09 Jerykk
 
You do realize you're responding to a troll, right?

No, I didn't realize that. He's made posts in the past that were sensible, so I didn't have much reason to consider him a troll.
 
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50. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 27, 2011, 22:58 BladeTurbo
 
This reminds me of when Deus Ex 2 was released. To me it was a rushed out sequel that favored the console gamers. It didn't even come close to what the original did to gaming. Hopefully Bioware will fix this in the 3rd installment. That is my $.02.  
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49. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 27, 2011, 22:48 entr0py
 
captawe wrote on May 27, 2011, 19:08:
Umm, Bioware doesn't exist except in name only. EA bought them and control all the shots. Bioware is just a name on a website and a marquee to pimp crappy games from.

You know by that logic most developers don't exist, right? Including id, Maxis, Creative Assembly, Rockstar direction/city, Rocksteady Studios, Irrational Games, ect. Publishers always exerted a lot of control over design and budget, and it's true that increases when the developer is a subsidiary. But publishers don't actually make the games.
 
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48. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 27, 2011, 22:02 Bhruic
 
You do realize you're responding to a troll, right?  
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47. Re: BioWare on Dragon Age II Criticisms May 27, 2011, 21:39 Jerykk
 
The nerds may like it but it won't bring home the $$$.

You do realize that DAO sold more than 3.2 million copies, right? That sounds like a lot of $$$ to me.
 
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