7. Ally Relations Are Improved
If you did things your allies didnâ€™t approve of in Origins, they didnâ€™t like you. That wouldnâ€™t be a big deal, except that cool companion missions werenâ€™t available unless your approval was high with the appropriate character. In Dragon Age II, you can do these missions regardless of whether your ally loves or hates you. Instead of gating story content, the approval system now bestows passive bonuses. If a party member is your friend, youâ€™ll get one kind of bonus. If that same character is a rival, youâ€™ll get a different one. This way, you get reward whether youâ€™re nice or mean, plus you still get to do all of the quests. Being neutral, however, still has no advantages.
So apparently 'rival' just means they hate you? When I first heard the rival system mentioned I thought it would be a little more nuisanced than that. This sounds dumb.
I don't think Game Informer have explained this very well. According to Bioware's writers, rivalry/friendship isn't supposed to be hate/love, it's more 'disagree/agree with the issues that are key to them.' If they're rivals they still respect you, they just don't agree with your view on the world, and there's a different dialogue path that reflects this. If you're enough of a dick towards them it's still possible for some of them to leave, like Leliana would in DAO if you
destroyed the Sacred Ashes
, but that's separate from the rivalry/friendship meter.
I'd dig up a quote from the official forums but someone is spamming plot spoilers in thread titles. I'd advise anyone who frequents there to steer clear for awhile.
EDIT: Found the thread
I was thinking of.
Does anyone know when the reviews will be posted?
There have been a few reviews already, in magazines.
PC Gamer UK 94
PC Games 88
PC Gamer Sweden 85
Official Xbox Magazine 90
The big websites will probably have their reviews up sometime later today or tommorrow. I don't know about RPGFan, do they tend to get review copies?