SW: LegoHan&Chewie

Regarding the DA2 and the LSW3 demos

I downloaded and played the demos for Dragon Age 2 and Lego Star Wars 3 Tuesday, and I have a few thoughts on them.

The Lego Star Wars game is based around the Clone Wars, and the two chapters featured in the demo were from two of the Malevolence episodes in season 2 (I think). The first one I played was the episodes were Padmé stumbles into a trap, gets pulled aboard the sinking Seppie ship and the boys have to go rescue her. Like the previous Lego games, you have to go looking around for objects to destroy and move to solve puzzles, which is always fun, though slightly frustrating at times. One of the small issues I have with the game is that when pressing the button usually used to block bullets/lasers with your lightsaber, you're also targetting a spot where you can throw your lightsaber. Now, I'm not sure if deflecting laser-blasts is in the default set up (I only played through it once) but that was a little annoying. One of the cool aspects is that you can switch not just between characters on screen, but you can also switch from one scene (Anakin and Padmé on the bridge) to another (Obi-Wan and Threepio trying to escape from Grevious).

The other chapter you get to play as Plo Koon, flying his Jedi-Starfighter, and destroying Malevolence. The flight controls are bad, which is unfortunately typical of this series. This was also the chapter where, after Plo docks to activate or deactivate something by hand (I wasn't paying that much of attention), he needs to use an "explosive" weapon in order to get to a computer outlet to do what he needs to do, and for the life of me I couldn't find the weapon I needed, so I got out of the demo, a tad disappointed. That said, I'm definitely buying the game when it comes out. Was there any question that I wouldn't? :)

The Dragon Age 2 demo was pretty cool, but had one major flaw. I think it takes place during the events of DA:O, during which you play the male or female version of a character named Wolfe (or was it Hawke? Probably Wolfe because I'm guessing there'd be a lot of Lady Hawkes :p) in one of three different classes: Mage, Warrior, and some other class I couldn't quite make out, although I decided to start with the female Warrior right away, so I didn't look too hard. A cut-scene starts the demo. Some PO'd woman is looking for the "Champion" (that would be you!), and she wants some dwarf to tell her where the Champion is. "What do you know about the Champion?" he asks, then we cut to a scene where you and your sister take on a horde of darkspawn and defeat them rather easily. Apparently, according to the dwarf, this is just a legend, and he proceeds to tell the "real" story.

Now cut to you, your mother, brother, and sister, running from your darkspawn over-runned home. During your exodus, you decide on where to go next, take on more darkspawn, and run into a paranoid Templar and his wife. He eventually promises not to kill the Mage in your party until you're all out of trouble. Then more darkspawn come along, including this big, human ram-like creature that handed my ass to me and my entire party. Apparently the skills I had in the legend part of the story aren't the same as I have now.

Here is where I have a problem with all the RPG elements of the game. Basically the print on the screen is so small that I can barely read it, or even make out what I'm doing, or trying to do. Am I drinking a healing potion or throwing a ball of fire? I'm thinking getting a bigger TV, but will I still have to sit two feet away from the screen to play this game? This is the one major failing I have with Bioware's games: reading the fine print.

Maybe I'll get an HDTV for myself for my birthday. I still have to do my taxes, so maybe my refund will go to that.

Anyway, there are my thoughts on those two demos.