Further Thoughts On Dragon Age

1.) Man go Mage, or don't go at all. That's what John Cole told me, and damn was he ever right. At the moment, I'm running a three mage, one warrior group--Me, Wynne, Morrigan and Alistair. I'm going for Shale as soon as I can.

2.) I just finished up with the tower and I have to say this is the best and worst game that I've played in a long, long time. It's the best because its ambition, again in terms of story-telling, is pretty incredible. I can't say much more, as we all aren't proceeding at the same pace, or even in the same way. I just want to say that Morrigan and Wynne actually feel real.  It's the worst because I feel like the game doesn't break with convention enough. It's like they walked up to the cliff, and in several instances they took the leap, but in other instances they looked down and said, "Nah."

3.) Unquestionably, it's a great game, though--and one that I actually hope more women will play. I've actually had to split time with Kenyatta--she's rocking the female dwarf warrior--and she's really been sucked in. I've had to teach her some basics, like the mechanics of kiting, but beyond that she's doing great. Again though, I think the big hook for women gamers will be the story-telling, the sense of immersion, as opposed to straight blood and swordplay--though they'll like that too.

4.) Getting back to point two, I think my ideal RPG would dispense with this tank/healer foolishness and give all your characters some ability to heal. It also would dispense with the notion of grand events keyed by royalty. Like, maybe the grand events would be initiated by kings, by the story would be more bottom up with royalty at a remove from the actual heroes.


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Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle.

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