Dragon Age Inquisition: ‘The Descent’ Review Indicates a Boring Initiative with Good Combat!

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‘The Descent’ is the penultimate expansion pack of Dragon Age Inquisition and with this DLC, the game returns to Deep Roads. It features a world of linear corridors, crazy-making crystals along with various kinds of enemies of the Dark Spawn. You must search for the source of earthquakes which threaten all your allies in the Dwarf Kingdom Orzammar.

Not many gamers look for combat in the DLCs released for Dragon Age Inquisition but with The Descent combat is what you get in great amounts! You will face deep-pitched battles which come with an updated and hardened army of Darkspawn who travel around underground settlements, also known as ‘Thaigs’.

These are actually large linear environments which actually try their best to not look linear. All of this comes with a big confused storyline regarding something that is called the Titan and that is actually the source of the earthquakes. Reviewers who have completed the game suggested that they have no idea about the Titan’s origin even after they completed it.

Sadly, gamers have to go through a lot of enemies before deriving that vague conclusion. The maximum amount of effort has been laid in making it a game that features a lot of Darkspawn battles along with new enemy categories which appear after you reach the midway point of this game.

If you are playing a hard difficulty, there is one particular battle which is quite challenging in nature. BioWare has tried its best to maintain the Dragon Age series, trying to achieve a balance between the combat, fun and complexity.

A lot of people will prefer the unbalanced aspects in PC rather than the combat-oriented Xbox version and the newly released Descent DLC exactly proves this point. In the earlier DLC expansion pack Jaws of Hakkon, a vivid and lush environment was featured with various kinds of challenges focused in it.

The presence of new recorded dialogue for your companions ensured a fun shouting match between Scout Harding and the Iron Bull characters. The expansion pack also had pitched battles but came with a wide range of new challenges along with a few new characters. Compared to the new DLC, the world of Avvar was worth exploring.

The characters have always been a strong point of Dragon Age Inquisition. You will feel that this game a soul in it, it’s living and breathing with a team of characters that you have gathered together. When you compare this to Witcher 3, the latter has a lot of technical strengths but you will often find yourself not caring for what happens next.

In The Descent, you get to see two new dwarven characters but they are both quite humorless and are mainly there for plot-advancement. It seems like Ogren and Sigrun from DAO: Awakening would have been a good addition here instead of the fillers that were forced on us.

When you start playing Descent, you are subjected to a confusion explanation about Dwarves and their connection to massive earthquake-creating entities which are known as Titans. Renn and Valta are two massively boring characters who completely lack the wit and spirit of their fellow dwarves and the story doesn’t seem to have any connection with the original Inquisition story.

Dragon Age: Inquisition

These characters keep progressing with you and offer explanations while they guide you through the Deep Roads. Sadly, these explanations are mind-numbingly vague, specifically during the end. The level design is quite lackluster with each subterranean floor having a different look, for instance, a fiery hall and a Blue cavern among others. Most of the places have a constant restrictive atmosphere about it.

2 COMMENTS

  1. Did you really just say that in The Witcher 3 you don’t care about what happens next? I couldn’t disagree with you more. In Dragon Age the side quests felt mundane and tedious to complete. In The Witcher 3 the side quests feel like they matter and often have their own meaningful stories to accompany them. I’m so glad I played Dragon Age before The Witcher because now that The Witcher 3 is out….there is zero desire to revisit Dragon Age, even for an expansion. The story in The Witcher has so much more weight to it and feels so much more personal. Geralt is an established character in a lore rich world unlike the often nameless heroes save for the text you entered at character creation in Dragon Age that seem made up just to have a new vehicle to drive through the new game. To me, the world and story of The Witcher just has so much more meaning and impact compared to the world of Dragon Age.

  2. I entirely disagree with you. I feel like the story of DA:I was vastly superior. I’ll absolutely concede that Geralt is a more fully developed character, but that’s where The Witcher 3’s strong points are, the previously established lore and characters. Those are also it’s weakest points for people who haven’t played either of the first two Witcher games. For example, I’ve only known who Ciri is for a grand total of 45 minutes and they’re already expecting me to care about whether or not she gets taken back to her father, or how the previously established story points assume you already have a detailed account of the Northern Kingdom’s and the Nilfgaardian Empire’s perpetually turbulent political history fresh in your mind. While in the proper context, the decisions you make feel weighty and morally ambiguous, but when you’re blindly stumbling into this world for the first time in the midst of all the chaos, it’s kind of hard to get your bearings. The same could be said for Dragon Age Inquisition, however they do a very good job of providing exposition at the start of the game. The idea is, of course, that you begin the game as an entirely blank slate and you shape your character’s relationships with each person you meet. It makes it much easier for the writers to explain why you need to have these story elements explained to you when your character hasn’t already been the protagonist of two previous games. That, in my opinion, lead to a stronger story on the part of Dragon Age Inquisition.

    I guess the best analogy I could come up with to explain my opinion is that The Witcher 3 is more like a choose your own adventure novel, with all the the core elements decided for you prior to your reading it, whereas Dragon Age is definitely in the same vein, but it’s more like a cRPG in the sense that your relationships with characters play a pivotal point in determining certain story elements and game aspects. I absolutely love both games, but I definitely prefer the structure, pacing and personal weight that DA:I’s story had.

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