Mark Plays ‘Dragon Age’: The Golems of Amgarrak DLC

In the Dragon Age DLC “The Golems of Amgarrak,” I should not be surprised by how disturbing this is. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to play Dragon Age.

The Golems of Amgarrak

HADSHF;J HA AHASDFS A;D

CAN THE GENERAL THEME OF DRAGON AGE JUST BE “Everyone makes terrible choices for their own benefit that always backfire and created mutated terrors”? Because GOOD LORD. “The Golems of Amgarrak” essentially follows the same pattern as most of the main storylines of Dragon Age: you go on a journey with a specific purpose, there’s a ~mystery~, and then everything is fucked up forever. Hey, if something works, there’s no need to change it!

It was great to have a dwarf-centric DLC, especially one that was in Orzammar and dealt with golems. Plus, I really do love stories that are basically mystery missions where you have to go rescue people who ~never came back.~ So, the Alien movies and tons of science fiction films, you know? Jerrik Dace contacts Roslin to assist him in venturing to a place called Amgarrak to learn what Caridin was doing down there long ago and to find his brother Brogan. I AM DOWN. I even got to import my level 33 version of Roslin from Awakening!!! THIS RULES.

HELLO, SNUG. LET’S BE BEST FRIENDS.

I got the sense from the past DLC missions that this wouldn’t last more than a couple hours, but I was still surprised how weird this was in the very beginning. After defeating a very small group of darkspawn, shit got bizarre, y’all. There were all these blue chests scattered about that shimmered and were inaccessible. Then I spotted a few doors with this weird pink/purple hue to them, and none of this made any sense. And as I found more and more of Darion’s journals, I understood pretty much nothing. Why were there these ghastly representations of Brogan’s men? And was that skittering lizard thing that kept running away from us? Why were there so many mentions of lyrium? I HAD SO MANY QUESTIONS, and none of them were being answered! Then I came across this:

What the fuck is going on? How come we can see Brogan and hear him, but we can’t interact with him? Is this like those weird ghostly memories in other parts of Dragon Age? I thought this might be the case, but why were they blue?

WHY ARE THERE SO MANY PHANTOMS AROUND????

A PILE. A LITERAL PILE OF CORPSES. WHAT DID THE DWARVES DO DOWN HERE, AND WHY DO I HAVE TO GO FIND OUT WHAT THIS ALL IS??? This seems so unfair!

IF I DO SOMETHING WITH THIS, IS PINHEAD GOING TO SHOW UP? This is some Hellraiser shit, I swear. So I decided WHAT THE HELL and went ahead and activated the switch. Instantly, my entire world was awash in that same bluish hue that was previously only surrounding certain doors and chest. Is this like a lyrium parallel universe or something???? Or is this some weird dimension in the Fade? I DON’T EVEN KNOW. But I guessed (correctly!) that this probably meant that all those chests and doors were now accessible in this realm. OKAY, THIS TOTALLY RULES. I traced my way backwards, fighting REVENANTS ARE YOU SERIOUS and these strange Lieutenants that were fairly tough if not for the fact that Roslin has the Unending Flurry skill, which is the GREATEST thing against big bosses because THE ATTACKS ONLY END WHEN ROSLIN RUNS OUT OF STAMINA. Oh my god, why wasn’t this available all the time? Not fair!

I also found Brogan, who was unfortunately suffering from the mental degradation that comes with exposure to high amounts of lyrium. Poor guy was fucked up. But he still joined my party! I also found a ton of enhancements for my Runic Golum. My god, that thing ruled. A golem who can essentially act like a mage? THIS IS SO RAD. Again, I ended up wanting them for an entire playthrough of Dragon Age. Well, not to replace Shale, though. Shale rules. I still think she’s my favorite companion in the whole series.

Anyway, it was around this time that I started hearing about the Harvester. Great, another ambiguous name meant to inspire fear in me! Well, it’s working. This was also when I got totally stuck for about ten minutes. I couldn’t figure out how to get into the next room, which was blocked by a purple barrier. Why was this one a different color? I actually discovered the answer to this entirely by accident when I tried to talk to Jerrik and mistakenly activated that lyrium switch a third time. Then this happened:

OH. OH MY GOD. Another dimension? Seriously, this DLC rules. After gaining access to the next section, fighting all kinds of spirits and golems, and (unfortunately) finding Darion’s body, the real reason Brogan never returned is revealed: Darion is fucked up. Well, Caridin was, too. My god, the Harvester is so awful. But even before I actually saw it, Jerrik was pretty upset that we’d have to destroy the Forge and with it, any more secrets that Caridin left behind. For real, do people in Ferelden just never learn that they shouldn’t experiment with powers greater than them? How many fucked up mutations or disasters am I going to have to fight?

I’d like to think that the Harvester is a reference to The Thing, because it sure looks like that monster and operates like it, too. Right?

Seriously. I doubt that the designers developed this in total ignorance to The Thing.

The Harvester had two “phases” that I had to beat: one in the body seen above, and then again when its head separated from its body. YEAH. Okay, no thank you. It wasn’t a challenging fight for a boss, but I blame that entirely on the fact that Roslin has the best set of skills and talents possible at this point for a Rogue. Sadly, the secrets of the Amgarrak are left behind when the place begins to cave in on itself. Though this isn’t before one whopper of a twist ending when I find out THE HARVESTER WASN’T ALONE.

PLEASE TELL ME THOSE THINGS WERE CRUSHED AND THAT I DON’T HAVE TO FIGHT THEM IN DRAGON AGE II. Oh god.

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11 Responses to Mark Plays ‘Dragon Age’: The Golems of Amgarrak DLC

  1. Randomcheeses says:

    Ah Golems of Amgarrak a.k.a. There Is Always More Disturbing Shit Around The Next Corner.

    The Harvester legit made me scream when I saw it. In fact this whole dlc gave me a sense of claustrophobia and flesh-crawling tension. I spent the entirety of it desparately missing the sunlight. (And Alistair. Seriously, it would've been so much better if my warden could've brought her bff with her.)

    cyrnfr gryy zr gubfr guvatf jrer pehfurq naq gung v qba'g unir gb svtug gurz va qentba ntr vv

    Bu Znex . . . Jul qb lbh fnl gurfr guvatf . . .

  2. @camharr says:

    My main memory of this DLC was playing it on Nightmare difficulty for the achievement and my entire party dying and me kiting frantically around the room with nasty, scary death storming behind me. When I finished, I was sweaty, exhausted, wrung out, and mildly pissed at myself for going through it.

    And that's why I don't go for that kind of achievement anymore.

  3. TheDMG says:

    "It wasn’t a challenging fight for a boss"

    Things I really never expected to be written….

    I'm kinda dumfounded.

    The Harvester is generally considered the toughest fight, by a long ways, in the entire Dragon Age series. The primary intention behind this DLC was to release a ridiculously difficult DLC (even when you view it in your DLC it mentions the challenge.) My first time playing it, I played it with a sword-and-shield tank straight out of Origins and I had to move the difficulty down from Nightmare to Hard just to make it through. The playthrough I did parallel with you this time through was specifically geared towards having someone who was able to beat the Harvester on Nightmare and even with tons of planning (included bringing tons of runed-out gear and Manuals to respec my companions) I still only beat it after about 5 hours of trying (and on that win I nearly died so many times to Elite skeleton mob in the second half of the fight). When I finally beat the Harvester on Nightmare it was my final Dragon Age achievement, after two years of playing the game, so I even shared the achievement to Facebook, something I've never done. I was that proud of winning, even with an Arcane Warrior mage that I'd specifically engineered for the fight.

    The only thing I can figure is that the difficulty really doesn't scale for this fight because I've heard that Rogue is probably the hardest class to fight the Harvester on because of the ridiculous damage those Elite skeletons do.

  4. xyliane27 says:

    “Rirelbar znxrf greevoyr pubvprf sbe gurve bja orarsvg gung nyjnlf onpxsver naq perngrq zhgngrq greebef”?

    Future Mark Plays: Ununun Qentba Ntr VV. Guvf vf gur gvgyr bs gung tnzr.

    I really hated fighting the Harvester. Just have nothing but frustrated, annoyed, hateful dislike for it. It took forEVER with my wardens, plus it's creepy.

  5. This is the second worst (after The Darkspawn Chronicles) piece of DA:O DLC. It just never really goes anywhere interesting and ends with a boss fight that is never challenging and just goes on forever (I'm really baffled that fight is considered hard as I had trouble even paying attention to it. I was playing a warrior if anyone is wondering.)

    It's kind of an unfortunate place for you to end your DA:O experience but at least MASS EFFECT IS SOON!

  6. stumpoman says:

    the jump in difficulty is huge when you switch to nightmare. on easy or normal its a boring fight

  7. biblioteknician says:

    I can't remember WHY this particular DLC's final battle ROYALLY KICKED MY ASS, but it did. I played with my non-blood mage, and had the difficulty up, so that might be why, but oh my god I KEPT DYING ALL OVER THE PLACE. So kudos to Mark for having an easier time of it!

    Man, I know you're doing Mass Effect next, which I am ALL ABOUT, but I kind of can't wait until you get to DA2. I really can't. :)

  8. Passing by says:

    And thus, Mark Plays Dragon Age: Origins has come to an end. Such timing, to end on a friday. Anyway, I've only played a small part of the Walking Dead game, so once again little substantial talk coming from me. I am looking forward to the week after that.

  9. Ninjababe says:

    I just have to say that this is my least favorite DLC for Origins. It gave me nightmares. For days. The broodmother wasn't as bad as this.Something about this DLC just gave me the heebie-jeebies! I still can't even think about playing it again.

    V nyfb nggevohgr guvf qyp nf bar bs gur ernfbaf V ungr gur raqvat bs qentba ntr gjb. Gurer'f n zbzrag jura V fnl 'bu, uryy ab!'. Vs lbh'ir cynlrq qentba ntr gjb naq guvf qyp, lbh xabj jung V zrna… Inthr, V nz.

  10. Lee Arnold says:

    This looks like an above average DLC to me. I mean, at least they made the effort to add some decent game content and design instead of just recycling the old content from the original game download.

    For example, when I downloaded a DLC onto my playstation recently it charged me from my PSN account and I ended up getting content that looked exactly the same. The same stuff just put into a different context. That really pissed me off actually I have to say!

    This DCL looks like decent quality to me and I would probably enjoy playing it :)

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