Why the Game's Title Should Have Been Dragon Age: Impositions

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Why the Game's Title Should Have Been Dragon Age: Impositions

We are getting used to the idea of microtransactions, but virtually forcing players to buy health potions for multiplayer with real cash is a bit too much.

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Yikes. Considering all the good things I'd heard about DA:I, I'm surprised this hasn't come up. That sounds like a very.. unpleasant system.

Beyond that "you're letting your group down" mentality, I worry that it also results in people who don't pay in falling behind their friends who do pay in, so they're even more pressured to toss some cash in so they don't keep falling behind..

You know, this article sums up what my gripes with Mass Effect 3's multiplayer mode and why it left such a bad taste with me. And to make things even more annoying, they made character progression, customization options, consumables, character acquisition, and more all randomized, dragging out the timeframe of you getting anything even close to what you'd personally prefer in-game. "Want to play a Drell Vanguard with your favorite sniper rifle and pistol? Good luck! Maybe you'll get it after a bunch of games(and even then, you need to make it past a certain wave to get anything) oooooor you can pay us MONEY! for random drop boxes."

Guess I've got that to look forward to when/if I ever decide to touch the multiplayer. I'm really surprised this awful system hasn't raised more ire. Besides a token mention of microtransactions in reviews, this is the first I've heard about the system in any detail at all.

Errickfoxy:
Yikes. Considering all the good things I'd heard about DA:I, I'm surprised this hasn't come up. That sounds like a very.. unpleasant system.

I'm not too worried about it. Don't get me wrong, it's a absolutely shitty thing to do, but the reason this hasn't come up by now is because no one really plays the multiplayer. I clicked on it once to see what it was, but didn't even bother to play a match.

The solution? Simple: Don't play the multiplayer. Let EA know that we will pay money for good single-player campaigns and well-made DLC, but not for potions in the multiplayer that most people don't even play.

EDIT:

an annoyed writer:
You know, this article sums up what my gripes with Mass Effect 3's multiplayer mode and why it left such a bad taste with me. And to make things even more annoying, they made character progression, customization options, consumables, character acquisition, and more all randomized, dragging out the timeframe of you getting anything even close to what you'd personally prefer in-game. "Want to play a Drell Vanguard with your favorite sniper rifle and pistol? Good luck! Maybe you'll get it after a bunch of games(and even then, you need to make it past a certain wave to get anything) oooooor you can pay us MONEY! for random drop boxes."

I think EA was trying to make lightning strike twice here. I kinda thought ME3's multiplayer wasn't that bad. Progression sucks, but it was fun to mess around with, and there was always something reasonably cool...even if it wasn't your favorite thing.

While I can kinda justify ME3's multiplayer, with it being a shooter and all, there is no excuse for shoehorning multiplayer into Inquisition. And since it is apparently riddled with microtransations, punish EA for putting it there by not playing it.

I think the problem is being overstated - I haven't tried playing the MP a ton, but I haven't had much of a problem running out of health potions just using all of my in game money on large chests.

You can only use 2 potions in a match, so its not like the game is based around spamming potions to win.

That said, yeah MP is kind of lack luster in DA:I, but I think the "strong arm you into paying real money for potions" thing is being overstated here. There are plenty of other things to complain about it.

I mean I'm not saying your 100% wrong or anything, but the potions aren't really the sticking point, if I were going to pick something to complain about with the micro-transactions it would be in relation to how the crafting system and getting better gear works.

At this point I'm actually surprised they aren't offering Dead Space 3 style resource packages for the single player crafting system.

cynicalsaint1:
There are plenty of other things to complain about it.

And for each of those other things that can be complained about, this argument can be used to shout it down. So if we spend $60 on a game that has a million things wrong with it, we shouldn't be complaining at all, should we?

Errickfoxy:
Yikes. Considering all the good things I'd heard about DA:I, I'm surprised this hasn't come up. That sounds like a very.. unpleasant system.

Beyond that "you're letting your group down" mentality, I worry that it also results in people who don't pay in falling behind their friends who do pay in, so they're even more pressured to toss some cash in so they don't keep falling behind..

People have to use something to complain about it.

wait DA:I has Multi-Player? ... huh, still not going to touch it.

Bad Jim:

cynicalsaint1:
There are plenty of other things to complain about it.

And for each of those other things that can be complained about, this argument can be used to shout it down. So if we spend $60 on a game that has a million things wrong with it, we shouldn't be complaining at all, should we?

... You're kind of completely ignoring my point, which is that you seem to get enough potions through regular play, without needing to spend any real money on them - so when compared to the other, larger issues, the potions really don't matter too much - you know hence the word "overstated".

He's essentially harping on a theoretical problem which in practice really isn't as much of a hindrance as its being made out to be in actual play, when there are other actual issues that are. For example your performance online is much more heavily based on the gear you get which is entirely random ... and if you want to pay for gear - well that's entirely random too.

This has passed under the radar so far, first I've heard of it. I have been enjoying the game so far, its the Dragon Age sequel that DA2 could/should have been. Its got some niggles and issues but every Bioware has them, usually the good far outweighs the bad but this is pretty disgusting though.

I haven't and have no real intention to play the multiplayer, I would rather just play an MMO if I felt like multiplayer bot bashing but even then I think this is dreadful. No it won't matter to me but the fact they did this is what matters, its definitely one of the worst cases of multiplayer microtransactions cash grabbing.

I don't think even many of the worst Asian grind MMOs have tried this yet, its more like a mobile game F2P shenanigans... Except you have to buy the game for a full retail price...

Sure no-one is being forced into buying potions or playing the multiplayer but EA are selling the game with multiplayer as a significant piece of content, whether everyone plays MP or not or choose to buy potions is irrelevant as its included in the item you're buying and trying to "guilt trip" and use social pressure to get people to buy microtransactions is disgusting.

It also makes me wonder if this idea had anything to do with the removal of healing magic and the changes to the mechanics of health and healing in the game, I actually liked that but I wonder if they did so they could try and encourage health potion microtransactions in the multiplayer. Having healing mages in the single player but not the multiplayer and having the "option" to buy potions would have raised even more questions, by not having them at all it gives the impression of being a purely game design choice but after hearing about this "feature" in the multiplayer makes me wonder.

At least they didn't try to tie single player progression to multiplayer progression this time, although there is still a chance for that in some DLC or the next Dragon Age game. Some bullshit like having to have your Inquisition forces clear a bunch of ruins out to progress or get certain plot lines or equipment.

Up for some Thedas readiness statistics anyone?

cynicalsaint1:
At this point I'm actually surprised they aren't offering Dead Space 3 style resource packages for the single player crafting system.

Some of the crafting is a little annoying at times, maybe its because in the near future we will see DLC of "crafting packages" or Elite Inquisition resource gathering squads. It might even be to encourage simpl item pack DLCs like DA2s "mages pack" as getting good gear is annoyingly tedious at times, thing is anyone wanting to play Nightmare difficulty is going to need the good stuff (which the eight ability slots is going to hurt anyway).

We're stepping ever closer to John Riccitiello's wet dream about charging money upfront for ammo in multiplayer...

Heck, with this we're even arguably there.

an annoyed writer:
You know, this article sums up what my gripes with Mass Effect 3's multiplayer mode and why it left such a bad taste with me. And to make things even more annoying, they made character progression, customization options, consumables, character acquisition, and more all randomized, dragging out the timeframe of you getting anything even close to what you'd personally prefer in-game. "Want to play a Drell Vanguard with your favorite sniper rifle and pistol? Good luck! Maybe you'll get it after a bunch of games(and even then, you need to make it past a certain wave to get anything) oooooor you can pay us MONEY! for random drop boxes."

ME3's model had nothing on this article and what it's talking about. Sure, it wasn't all sunshine and roses, but....

Blachman201:
We're stepping ever closer to John Riccitiello's wet dream about charging money upfront for ammo in multiplayer...

Heck, with this we're even arguably there.

Why not? Destiny's already charging you for the rest of its story. That was another thing that was unthinkable when it was first suggested.

With all the glowing reviews of Inquisition, I was momentarily stunned into thinking that EA had managed to release a game without one aspect of it being either broken or deliberately fucked up for the purposes of making money.

Good to see everything is back to normal.

Wait, Greg Tito said that this game is the best game since Dragon Age 2! Is that not to be trusted?

Seriously, is this real? I didn't even know da:i had multiplayer. Would this be noticable to me that only wants to play singleplayer?

misogynerd:
Wait, Greg Tito said that this game is the best game since Dragon Age 2! Is that not to be trusted?

It sounds like this is a MP only system, if Greg Tito only played SP then he would not have run into it and thus been unaware. From what I've seen this has flown under the radar and appears that most players don't even go near the MP anyway. Still a disgusting system though.

Zachary Amaranth:

Why not? Destiny's already charging you for the rest of its story. That was another thing that was unthinkable when it was first suggested.

I'd argue that episodic games are a whole different beast than charging real Earth currency for in-game ammo clips.

Ok, this game just dropped from a ~€25 purchase to a ~€10 purchase.

The difference between this game (also Mass Effect 3) and many other games that misuse the microtransaction model is that all future DLC for multiplayer will be free. So if I can get tons of additional content beyond what was shipped (assuming they make as much as they did for ME3) just because some people can't resist the need to buy health potions in game, I'm totally fine with that. I applaud the people who spend money on Platinum (the in game currency in DA:I you buy with real money) to get more health potions.

That said, I do agree that it's complete BS how the enemies get stronger if someone dies.

cynicalsaint1:
He's essentially harping on a theoretical problem which in practice really isn't as much of a hindrance as its being made out to be in actual play, when there are other actual issues that are.

No, the point of the article is that these practices are a mere warmup, and that we should expect these type of issues in the future, and with a greater impact.

But it's nothing new, we've seen it with DRM, DLC, Free-To-Pay... and probably a lot of other things I can't think about right now.

The bottom line of the article: If you care about where the industry is going, these things cannot be ignored, even if, right now, they aren't such a big deal.

I despise the way the industry is heading, this is just one of many, many examples. It is annoying for anyone who values their time and particularly sad how much the whole model preys on the 'whales' who don't have enough self control to avoid spending way too much money.

Unfortunately a significant number of people, the majority perhaps, are willing to put up with it in the so called 'casual' market where freemium started. And it appears a growing number in the more serious gaming market are also accepting it.

Rassmusseum:
So if I can get tons of additional content beyond what was shipped (assuming they make as much as they did for ME3) just because some people can't resist the need to buy health potions in game, I'm totally fine with that. I applaud the people who spend money on Platinum (the in game currency in DA:I you buy with real money) to get more health potions.

It is a slippery slope. I know some people can play even the most grindy freemium game and avoid paying any money but the reality is that most people value their time more than that. In fact it is quite likely that as you get older (not saying you are currently young, but regardless, as you get older) it is likely that time will become increasingly rare and precious to the point where you too won't be able to justify the time to grind and may succumb to paying to win. So for your own future self, if nothing else, you should perhaps rethink your support of freemium...

Shamus Young:
Why the Game's Title Should Have Been Dragon Age: Impositions

We are getting used to the idea of microtransactions, but virtually forcing players to buy health potions for multiplayer with real cash is a bit too much.

Read Full Article

So my brother linked me to this article, asking me if what Shamus was saying is true, as I've been playing quite a bit of Dragon Age Inquisition multiplayer (about equal to the single player campaign) and trying to get him to give it a shot.

Shamus has the underlying mechanics correct, but completely misses the execution of it, showing he has very little to no experience with the multiplayer aspect of this game.

Let me clarify.
Most importantly, the fact that every chest you buy (with gold or real money) contains healing potions, yes, that's right, every chest, you don't have to hold off upgrades, because the upgrades/item chests ALL contain health potions.

You get plenty of gold if you complete the map, and if you're struggling, play on the easiest difficulty and unless everyone is level 1, you'll complete it without needing any potions.

Potions are barely required before the final boss of any map, as you get fully healed between each zone (there are 5 zones per map, each taking 3-5 minutes depending on multiple factors such as how many treasure doors spawn, map layout etc).

I've never once had someone complain that I died and didn't use a potion before doing so (as usually if something kills you, it's because you stood in a fairly obviously bad position, got genuinely unlucky, the Keeper didn't keep barrier up as they were too busy DPS'ing, or Tank did not build Guard and now everyone is dead), and people who use consumables (such as Regen pots on other players, Jar of Bees for bosses) are usually praised as this is not the norm, and is not normally needed unless you are undergeared/underleveled for that difficulty.

Comparing this to Mass Effect 3's multi, which I also loved, the need for consumables is only to help you reach endgame levels early (think Gold/Platinum on ME3 without highly leveled weapons). In fact ME3 was far more consumable centric whilst also being far harder to gather said consumables.

The gripes I have with DA I Multi, are the silly naming for easy/normal/hard (routine/threatening/perilous) and the crafting system in which materials and their effects are not explained at all (You kind of need to know that Iron sucks and what its stats are from single player to be more effective in multiplayer crafting as materials and crafting are not explained at all)

RNG with finding weapons/accessories can also be annoying, you can do a normal mission and get an item level 10 unique (purple/epic) weapon, and have it already be weaker than the item level 15 common you got from easy, feeling completely underwhelmed from your new shiny as it goes straight into the salvage bin to craft some armor.

Lack of content, there are only 3 enemy types and 3 maps, yes randomization happens but most of the random doors are just 30 second distractions to get extra gold and chance at item drops.

I know this is only my first post, and I'm making some likely unpopular calls, but, seeing someone scrutinize a system based on mechanics without understanding or explaining execution, frustrates me.

Edit: Forgot to mention, you can also die 3 times before going down for good and enemies get harder, if this is the case, you're playing above your level and probably shouldn't be tackling whatever you are attempting, the fact it gets harder if someone dies so often, is there to try and stop one person carrying the entire team solo, it is a team game, and coordination and knowledge of role help greatly)

We are getting used to the idea of microtransactions, but virtually forcing players to buy health potions for multiplayer with real cash is a bit too much.

I'm waiting for EA to announce that they need that money to fix all the game-breaking bugs plaguing the PC and 7th gen console versions.

From what I've played he seems to be completely overstating the impact of this system and the cost of these items without using cash.

From my actual first hand experience the multiplayer is exactly like the one in Mass Effect 3, with a crafting system to help balance out the RNG. Mass Effect also sells consumables for cash, but they're so easy to obtain that it doesn't matter, just like in Inquisition.

So basically Shamus read about the system, didn't play it for himself and is now lamenting it's implementation, even though he has no idea what he's talking about. If he's going for a sort of "symptom of what's to come" thing it falls under the slippery slope fallacy.

It's the exact same system for ME3, which allowed for a bunch of free content, including doubling the maps and characters, adding a faction of enemies, a new event and a new difficulty.

Oh wow, I didn't hear anything about this. I wasn't planning on getting Inquisition so I wasn't reading up on it. If it is as described that's pretty vile.

Blachman201:

I'd argue that episodic games are a whole different beast than charging real Earth currency for in-game ammo clips.

Perhaps it should be advertised as one, then. Saying that there will be story DLC isn't the same as saying that the story is being released in parts.

Blachman201:

Zachary Amaranth:

Why not? Destiny's already charging you for the rest of its story. That was another thing that was unthinkable when it was first suggested.

I'd argue that episodic games are a whole different beast than charging real Earth currency for in-game ammo clips.

Paying for the rest of the story is pretty much what MMO's have done forever, haven't they? The subscription ones, anyway.

OT: Yeah, that sounds almost like DOTA II levels of potential rage at teammates. No thank you.

But honestly... it's a Dragon Age game. Are people really playing this for multiplayer? I mean, I guess people are. I'm still kind of shocked that people played ME3 multiplayer, even with it's positive reception. Playing multiplayer in a game like Dragon Age is just... I don't know. I can't wrap my head around it.

edit: Thinking about it. Is this why they removed healing from the mage skills? Rely on potions in multiplayer, and just do the same for single player? If so... well. EA. Nothing else to say.

I hear such good things about the singleplayer, it's sort of sad to hear such a damning condemnation of the multiplayer.

The silly thing is, though, that it's penny wise and pound foolish. Well-crafted multiplayer can be a terrific way for social circles to drag new players into a game, long after the initial sales rush has passed. Instead, it sounds like this one has been crafted to attempt to sucker an existing player base that has already paid out their entry fee.

And what has it got to be like to be one of the people who was responsible for crafting an also-ran component of an otherwise well-received game, designed for just such money-gouging? That can't be good for your morale as a team member.

This kind of bottom-lining inability to look at the big picture is what has helped turn EA into a curse in so many people's mouths. It's really unfortunate.

daibakuha:
From what I've played he seems to be completely overstating the impact of this system and the cost of these items without using cash.

From my actual first hand experience the multiplayer is exactly like the one in Mass Effect 3, with a crafting system to help balance out the RNG. Mass Effect also sells consumables for cash, but they're so easy to obtain that it doesn't matter, just like in Inquisition.

So basically Shamus read about the system, didn't play it for himself and is now lamenting it's implementation, even though he has no idea what he's talking about. If he's going for a sort of "symptom of what's to come" thing it falls under the slippery slope fallacy.

It's the exact same system for ME3, which allowed for a bunch of free content, including doubling the maps and characters, adding a faction of enemies, a new event and a new difficulty.

It somewhat depends on how hard they twist the knife I guess. How hard do they push you in DA:I instead of ME3.

But what I really notice is the laziness honestly. EA didn't have ANY balancing mechanics for number of players, so solution this time around? FUCK IT MAKE IT ALWAYS THE SAME NUMBER OF PLAYERS! lol.

Kekkonen1:
Seriously, is this real? I didn't even know da:i had multiplayer. Would this be noticable to me that only wants to play singleplayer?

Nope. There aren't even any trophies/achievements for multiplayer (as far as I can tell). It is a completely stand-alone thing that you don't have to play whatsoever. I mean, even in Mass Effect, the N7 ranks transferred into single player if you wanted, but here there's nothing.
Okay, that might not be true. It's possible that once you hit max level, you may be able to move the character into single player to up your 'influence', much like Mass Effect 3. I don't know though because I haven't touched multiplayer.

Anyway, this sounds like Mass Effect 3's multiplayer all over again. I just kind of shrug and go, "Big deal." I guess I'm one of those people who say, "get good." I spent tons of time playing the ME3 multiplayer with friends and strangers, and while there were times I was a bit jealous because someone had a cool gun, I never felt like I needed to buy anything in order to enjoy the game. I'm betting it's the same way here. With enough practice, I was able to get good at the multiplayer and stop being a downer on my team.
Now, if this starts making it's way into single player like he said, then yeah, we're going to have a problem. I'm already annoyed that I can't just find more potions and that I'm limited on how many I can carry. At least they replenish every time you make camp or travel, but it's still kind of a drag.

Sniper Team 4:
Now, if this starts making it's way into single player like he said, then yeah, we're going to have a problem. I'm already annoyed that I can't just find more potions and that I'm limited on how many I can carry. At least they replenish every time you make camp or travel, but it's still kind of a drag.

At about 40 hours in and I barely use potions anymore. Shields become so good and The damage mitigation from warriors is really good. I'm actually playing Knight Enchanter on my Inquisitor and I'm finding that I am somewhat of an unkillable god.

And I had no idea this was a thing because I never touched the multiplayer and have no intention to. It has nothing I want.

I'm actually playing Knight Enchanter on my Inquisitor and I'm finding that I am somewhat of an unkillable god.

You know, one of the best aspect of Dragon Age 2 is that even if you took the Healer specialization, a mage Hawke was never completely unkillable and could be beaten if you were not careful enough.

The thing is, I suspect the reason sequels and supplementary material keep bashing the audience's heads with the idea that the Hero of Ferelden was this unstoppable force of nature way above archdemons in the food-chain comes from the fact that after the game was released, the writers realized that the Arcane Warrior was so overpowered that the only way for their story to keep making sense was:
1. Assuming that most players had chosen this specialization (because most did: I mean, which character will you choose: the one with the very big sword, or the one who can do That?)
2. Run with it and build their canon around the idea that the Warden was this abnormally powerful freak before sending him/her on a wild goose chase far away from Thedas in order to get rid of their marysuesque presence.
3. Make sure to avoid giving players the possibility to create another overpowered medieval Jedi.

Apparently, they missed step 3.

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