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DA: Awakening, Final thoughts

Finished! Took about 18 hours (I was actually closer to 14/15 when I posted last). Once triggered, endgame moves really fast. I'm really glad I had my expectations set properly for that. I'm so glad I shelled out the big bucks to upgrade Vigil's Keep and outfit all the soldiers with good armor -- it made the choice to save Amarathine City so much easier. Otherwise, I think that would have been pretty wrenching. I thought it was odd that Nathanial argued for saving the Keep rather than the city, since all along he has approved whenever I made a decision that benefited Amaranthine. I did end up taking a final party of Anders, Justice, and Nathanial. The fact that there was no parallel battle at Vigil's Keep surprised me -- I had expected it to be like the final battle of DA:O, where the remaining companions had a piece of the fight. But it all happened offstage.

Mother vs. the Architect: I sided with the Architect, and it wasn't a particularly tough call -- I will always take someone who tried to do good, and failed, over a force of chaotic evil. They are both somewhat tragic figures at the end, really. I have a hard time actually blaming the Architect for the Blight -- maybe he sped up the process, but if I understand the lore correctly, it would have happened eventually anyway. I like the idea of the Architect's experiments as a dark mirror to the Wardens and the Joining.

Epilogues: I wish the game would be a little smarter about reusing text, because the Warden's epilogue doesn't make sense at all. It says she left to rejoin Alistair, and then no one knows where they went or what they did afterwards, which seems a little unlikely to me given that Alistair is going to be a little busy being king of Ferelden. There was a similar sloppiness in the Warden's epilogue for Origins, but I suppose I found it more jarring this time because the Alistair cameo was so pitch-perfect. Regardless, I am happy to join the ranks of epilogue-deniers (...wrong fandom?), at least for the sake of my own ficcing purposes, and keep Sereda on as the Warden-Commander of Ferelden for a little bit longer.

Other outcomes... I was careful with soldier assignments and saved much of the farmlands, so it seems that the Wardens' reputation in Ferelden has been preserved and improved. Nathanial is sticking around and restoring honor to his name, so the future I envision with him as the Warden's second is nicely intact. Velanna disappeared in the final battle -- I wonder if that has something to do with the fact that I never reunited her with her sister? Anders left the Wardens to set up his character for being in Dragon Age 2 in a way that seems odd to me; why would he voluntarily work with the Circle again? Oghren and Sigren were heroes of the final battle and seem to be staying on as well, although I never did manage to get Sigren her Joining. Presumably that could have happened afterwards, though.

Somehow, I managed to beat Mother on the first try, which never happens. But actually, thinking about it, I think I killed most of the bosses on the first try. I only remember getting Game Over a couple of times throughout the whole game. Whether that means I was over-leveled, or the game was too easy, or I just got lucky a lot, I'm really not sure. Since I mostly play games like this for story, I don't mind if the difficulty curve is a little on the easy side, but I hope the rest of the DLC is a little more of a challenge.

Speaking of which... Now I am contemplating what to do next. Since I bought the ultimate edition, I have the other DLC quests -- Leliana's Song, Witch Hunt, the Golems one. I'd like to play them all eventually, but I have no clear thoughts on which I should play first, or whether I should just set it all aside and go pick up Dragon Age 2 as soon as possible. Hmm.

This entry is also posted at http://owlmoose.dreamwidth.org/534379.html. There are currently comments on DW.

Comments

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
chaineddove
Jun. 19th, 2011 11:43 pm (UTC)
I vote DA2 (but then, uh, you knew I would). The DLC is fun, but it's nowhere near as fulfilling as a full game. Also, Velanna vanishes regardless of your choices, so I wouldn't worry about it (poor Nathaniel's taste in women is not excellent, it seems).
owlmoose
Jun. 20th, 2011 01:12 am (UTC)
I did like Nathanial's flirtations with Velanna, in his formal, proper way. Much better than Oghren's attempts to flirt with anyone, that's for sure! Oghren reminded me of Zevran, going on and on about Wynne's bosom.

I'm going on vacation in a week, so I doubt I'll start DA2 before then, but maybe I'll set it up so I'm ready to play when I get back...

chaineddove
Jun. 20th, 2011 10:30 pm (UTC)
Oghren's attempts to flirt with Sigrun did give me the giggles sometimes, though; especially because she had witty rejoinders most of the time.

And hey, no rush, but jost know that when you do start it, I will be rejoicing over here in my corner.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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