Dragon Age: Origins – a Game for Everyone

Dragon Age: Origins, which was released in November 2009 by Bioware, has to be one of my favorite Xbox 360 games. First of all, let me start off this review with a disclaimer. I am, AT BEST, a casual gamer. I leave the serious gaming to my husband. However, when a game is top notch and simple enough that even I can play, then I join in on the fun. Dragon Age provides just what I need from a game – interesting plot, good voice acting overall, and the ability to simplify the game play so even a “n00b” like me can play it without getting completely frustrated. It is also a game my husband and I can share because he’s able to turn up the difficulty level so he does not get bored. With the economy the way it is these days, it’s incredibly important for us to get our money’s worth out of the games we purchase.
The story line of Dragon Age: Origins has a few different options. You can choose your gender, race, and ‘class. I personally chose to be a female human noble rogue because I had heard a rumor that if you were a female human noble, you’d be able to seduce the incredibly charming male character and possibly become queen. Honestly, what girl doesn’t want to be a queen, am I right? You are then able to customize your looks, voice, etc and head into the game. I won’t spoil the specifics of each back story, but you eventually become a member of the Grey Wardens, a group of warriors with a specific talent to fight off an enemy known as Darkspawn. This ability comes from sacrifices that all the warriors make. To make a long story short, you end up becoming the leader of a party dedicated to fighting off the leader of the Darkspawn, called the Archdemon, and saving the world. Throughout your journey, you meet new people who you can choose to have join you, pick up new skills, and buy/sell armor and other goods along the way.

The game play is a great combination of RPG tactics and button mashing. As I mentioned, remember, I am a casual gamer and I do enjoy my button mashing! For those of you that are more talented with video game play, there are many more options. The game is completely customizable from start to finish. In each situation, you get to decide which direction you want to take, even in the simplest conversations.

Regarding the graphics, since I know that can be a big deal for some, they aren’t the greatest. There is some lagging that occurs and it isn’t the most beautiful game. However, they are definitely not bad enough to make the game unplayable. If you are looking for gorgeous graphics and cinematic cut scenes, however, look to a different Xbox 360 game. The voice acting though is wonderful (I’m a voice actor, so I’m pretty picky about this!) and definitely adds to the enjoyability of the game play.

Overall, I found Dragon Age: Origins for the Xbox 360 to be an enjoyable and exciting game. It challenged me (even on casual – I said I wasn’t the best gamer), kept me entertained, and always wanting to know what would happened next! I would highly recommend it to my fellow casual gamers and more experienced gamers alike. It’s a game everyone can enjoy.