Gamespot Interviews Lead Designer of Dragon Age II

Shaun McInnis of GameSpot has quite a lengthy interview with Lead Designer Mike Laidlaw about some of the differences between their latest sequel, the controversies of those changes as well as what he thinks of the finished product:

GS: The most noticeable change for combat is how much faster it is. Looking at the final product, do you feel the team was able to hit that sweet spot between being quick and reactive while still allowing for strategy and planning out moves ahead of time?

ML: I think it’s close. There’s some tuning to be done, but I’m much happier with the overall feel of the combat in Dragon Age II than I was with Origins. Origins brought some amazing team-based play into the fray, and I know that the systems driving the two games are identical in terms of which stats are checked and how the combat is calculated. But the overall feel that as a warrior I don’t have to gamely amble forward to begin my attack is something that creates a consistency between classes. If I have someone nearby who can launch fire from their hands and explode enemies, I don’t feel that just because I’m wearing plate-mail I should have to trudge forward to begin combat.

Obviously, there’s balance to be done. Certainly, we made some changes in terms of what I think of as the barrier to entry. Origins, especially on the PC, was very difficult unless you were already an RPG veteran. Now, that’s a more realistic [difficulty]. It’s something to continue to tune, and this is a first outing with something that has almost endless potential.

Overall, an excellent interview with many insightful comments from Laidlaw.  You can check it out in its entirety here.