|Pub: Electronic Arts|
|Release: March 2011|
|Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p|
by Sean Engemann
Dragon Age Legends takes place thirteen years after you successfully defeated Viscount Khedra, who was possessed by a pride demon and wreaked havoc through battles in the coliseum. Khedra's nephew Ravi, the new Viscount of the Free Marcher city of Kaiten, is now struggling with another family dilemma. His son Eiton was born a Tranquil, a puzzle never seen by the circle of mages. Now he has enlisted you, one of the few people he trusts, to venture into the Planascene forest and investigate the matter. The story is intriguing, leaving us with many questions and the resolve to find the answers. The story will apparently be episodic, with new quests and plot movers delivered every week, music to the ears of those who gobble up fresh content, which is, well... everyone.
With Dragon Age II fast approaching, Legends is now in beta testing and looking to launch in March. Although only a few screenshots and one teaser trailer are out so far, enough juicy tidbits have been divulged through the website and blogs that many educated speculations can be made.
Legends uses the same flash game platform as Journeys and involves the same turn-based, grid-style battle system (albeit with some expected upgrades). For those who never played Journeys and think that this style of gaming is only a detriment to the series, I urge you to give it a try. You'll be amazed at the similarities and impressed at how much devotion is put into keeping the continent of Thedas in balance.
The biggest change in Legends is that it will be a Facebook game, with all the pros you can expect from social gaming, and an attempt to eliminate many of the cons, such as being bombarded with spam. While you are welcome to play solo, there will be many perks to hooking up with friends in Legends. You'll be able to have a friendly competition (though probably not without a fair amount of boasting) to see who can amass the most amount of wealth or create the coolest castle. You'll also have the ability to pull your friends' heroes into battle, which will help you come out victorious and give them monetary gain for their participation. Sadly, those who've made a conscious decision to avoid Facebook and its tyrannical rule of the social world will not be able to partake in the Dragon Age Legends goodness, or perhaps this will be the game that will lure them in. But since both Origins and Dragon Age II are single-player games, Legends will finally bring relief to those who desperately but unsuccessfully scoured for a multiplayer mod.
Since the focus of Legends is on par with Dragon Age II, we can probably expect some of the changes to be similar. For example, the skill tree will be a web structure rather than straight chains. Another interesting connection is the unlockable items gained through Legends, which you will be able to upload to your Dragon Age II character. A set of five items (two rings, two amulets, and a belt) will be available, although how to earn them is undisclosed as of yet. This and future uploadable perks should be enough to lure any completionist gamer out there to play Legends.
With the release of Dragon Age II close at hand, it's hard to say whether Legends will beat it to the launch, but when you are online and need a quick breather from mowing down darkspawn with Hawke to check Facebook, why not bring Thedas with you?
CCC Freelance Writer