In the second hour of Dragon Age: Awakening, I am overwhelmed in the best way possible. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to play Dragon Age.
Oh my god, this is going to take way longer than I thought, and I am all for this. Somehow, I have ten quests. TEN. HOW ARE THERE ALREADY TEN QUEST? I haven’t even left Vigil’s Keep yet! This is all perfectly fine because I never want this to end. I know I still have Dragon Age II to get to, but I’m also content sticking around this game for the moment.
So! On to many important things I learned or discovered this hour of Awakening:
There are now steel and white steel weapons in the game. Dumat’s Spine in particular had some fantastic bonuses attached to it, room for three runes, and had identical damage to Duncan’s Sword. I COULD NOT WAIT TO ENCHANT IT. Thankfully, there’s a nice mage in the throne room who was more than willing to help me out and OH MY GOD HER RUNES ARE INCREDIBLE.
I can already tell I’m going to have fun with this. But unfortunately, Roslin was not a runecrafter yet, so I had to wait until I was able to give Nathaniel (who I’ll get to) skill points so that there was a runecrafter in my party. At the start of this hour, only Anders and Oghren were available as party members. Ugh, mourning Mhairi still. Why couldn’t she survive??? Not fair. I picked up a couple missions through Letters for the Commander, and then was asked to go down to the basements to talk to an unruly captive. I didn’t recognize Nathaniel, and his first response to me was to be super snotty and rude. Well. You’re not making a good first impression, dude.
Except then he says I killed his father. Real talk: I killed so many people in Origins. I actually giggled because I could not even begin to guess who he was talking about. That’s how murderous Roslin was during that story, and I think I generally played her more on the forgiving side.
OH. OH OKAY. His dad was Arl Howe, perhaps my most hated character in the entire game. Well, this is awkward, no? And it’s not like Nathaniel did anything to me personally, so I don’t dislike him. Even worse, he had no idea what his father was responsible for, so I couldn’t bring myself to hate him. Of course, then I was presented with a whole host of options about what to do with him. Kill him? Set him free with his stuff? Let him free? In the end, I surprised the seneschal by using the Right of Conscription for the second time in the game. Roslin’s reasoning basically focused on the fact that the Grey Wardens are in dire need of more people, and it took four wardens to subdue him. That’s gotta be good, right? So, I simply figured that he’d go off after his Joining (if he survived it), and I might see him later in the game. You can imagine my surprise when it was revealed that he can actually be your companion. Whoa, that’s pretty cool! This is will be the first time there’ll be two rogues in my party, so I equipped Nathaniel with a bow so he could serve a different function in battle.
And then the DELUGE OF MISSIONS HIT ME. I have to deal with Dwarkin’s explosion down below Vigil’s Keep, Master Wade needs some new material to work with, and how are there so many missions already. But we need to talk about something else:
is that for real
Why is there a kitty in this game? Not that I’m complaining! But why is there a random cat? Even stranger, I took the cat with me and it’s just IN MY BACKPACK. That’s so cute! Does it just stick its head out to get air from time to time? This is what I spent my time thinking about. Well, I also checked my backpack and saw the cat was a gift. A GIFT. What??? Okay, well, I was determined to talk to my companions as much as possible to see if I could find more secret quests or anything, so I handed out the gifts I had to my various party members. Oghren got some alcohol, and Anders got the cat.
And then Anders proceeded to flip the fuck out. It was more than just the perfect gift for him. His only companion in the Circle was once a cat, and this gift is exactly what he needed. He named the cat Ser Pounce-a-Lot, which, if I recall, was the name of that deadly “tiger” from one of the books in the mage library in Witch Hunt. THAT CAN’T BE A COINCIDENCE. Okay, so after getting +26 approval from Anders (whoa!!!), I check the cat again. It has “special powers.” Okay, what??? I’m saving that for a time of need, but what? Also, the game told me that I got a new ability: “Minor Willpower.” WHAT IS THAT. I couldn’t find it again, but I won’t complain about it.
The first mission I decided to tackle was clearing out the basement/cellar of Virgil’s Keep, hopefully to block anymore darkspawn from coming up and ruining things for my people. In the first room, I found a mabari with a note attached to it, and it revealed that Adria Howe had actually taken refuge down below. Oh god, this wasn’t going to be good, was it? I began to feel worse about her fate as I fought things like “prisoner ghouls.” How’d she survive this?
JESUS CHRIST SHE DIDN’T. What the fuck??? Oh, poor Adria. I’m sorry I couldn’t save you!
After clearing things out and giving time for that dwarf to set charges and clear the rubble, I went back to that weird door in the area with all the jail cells. Upon opening the door to that crypt, I discovered this:
HOLY SHIT THERE ARE SO MANY THINGS I CAN TAKE IN HERE!!! I started to the left, opening each sarcophagus and taking whatever I found inside. I made the dire mistake, though, of investigation that keyhole without any sort of key on me. That activated A BILLION OF THESE BUTTHEADS:
They killed my entire party aside from Roslin in the first two minutes, but she’s got excellent armor and Constitution, so I was able to keep her alive long enough to take out all the risen Skeletons. On the opposite side of the room, I did find a key that worked for only one of the keyholes, but I’m guessing the rest are scattered throughout the game. Hmmm. So what’s behind that final door?
I was only able to complete one last task before my hour was up. Also, that got me FOUR MORE MISSIONS. Dudes, what? I can’t stop getting quests! So after getting the fealty from the nobles, I decided to walk around and–
WHY IS THIS SO FUNNY TO ME??? I half expected a Lord Dude and a Lord Lady to show up at some point. Bless.
All right, onwards I go!
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