Set in the events after your bloody struggle with the Archdemon of Dragon Age: Origins
, the expansion – Awakening
– released by BioWare pits you against the task of ridding Ferelden of the darkspawn completely. Your victory against the Blight did not push the darkspawn fleeing back to the Deep Roads as has history has shown to be the usual progression of events. Awakening will set you on the task of fighting against onslaughts of darkspawn yet again, and challenging their new various menacing commanders.
Awakening starts you off in a new world under a new role: that of the Commander of the Grey Wardens. You enter the land of Amaranthine and quickly realize that you’re back to organizing troops to help with the devastation that incessant darkspawn attacks have planted. Although the experience is very reminiscent of Origins’, it is obvious that it is more matured and places you in a more experienced position. The game will even begin with the joining ritual to becoming a Warden as it did in Origins, but it will put you in the position of observing rather than taste-testing the darkspawn blood. This scene creates the setting for an imminent experience that is much like that of the original game but with the distinction of coming from an even more important and dire perspective.
The grand theme to the expansion of Dragon Age is fairly similar to the main game’s: the darkspawn threat is becoming progressively unmanageable, and as you put in efforts to gather a formidable army while investigating the powers behind the darkspawn brutes, you’ll come across desperate faces belonging to peasants, refugees and orphans all with hands outstretched. BioWare once again does a wonderful job of presenting the sort of distraught lands that lay at the mercy of war.
Alongside the poor are the nobles who will appropriately bicker over matters of politics, and dabble in deceit and corruption in the midst of it. Wading through their mess becomes ever more important in the expansion because as the Commander the final word for deciding on justice is yours. Choosing your allies and your enemies wisely can benefit your journey as well as its outcome.
Your main plot missions will take you to meet new and old characters, and this is where BioWare gets a chance to shine yet again. Origins really gave you the opportunity to investigate your companions, and Awakening provides you with more characters of diverse backgrounds to explore, all of whom have their own entertaining demeanors. The decision to bring Oghren back as a companion in your crew was definitely an invited one as he was one of the more delightful characters with his somehow disgusting yet charming attitude.
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