I can imagine there was once a time where character progression once meant character consistency; as in, the system made you feel as though your characters were your creations, their entire relevant beings having been shaped by your choices. And truly, there’s a thrill in that. There’s a certain high in creation and in seeing your creations succeed in a challenging world.
I, however, struggle with some forms of character progression. These forms of it often irritate me and threaten to put me off good games due mostly to my lack of rationality in those moments of irritation.
I don’t like most types of leveling systems. I don’t like the combat in Dragon Age: Inquisition. It makes me feel as if I’m not in control, no doubt partly because I’m still not familiar with its strategic camera controls. But mostly, it’s because I’m really not in control in some situations. Some instances of combat seem just too high a level for my party to effectively combat and I’m just not inclined to run away and return once I’m a higher level. Because that isn’t fun either. I don’t find it very fun to return to a lower-level enemy, just to cream him or her with no effort or strategy at all. But what’s to stop me from doing that every time? How can I tell which instances of combat will be an equal match to my party? What’s to stop a player from taking on challenges that don’t stretch his or her skills? And what, regarding in-game systems, is there to motivate a player to challenge his or her own tactical ability?
I mean, remember the flaming rage-demon-thing that bothered me when I just started the game? I decided to pay him another visit after an hour or two of grind. I was on my way to his spawn when I noticed something warm on the sole of my boot. It was the rage demon. Soon after, a few more of him spawned but they fell just as quickly. What irks me is that in a system like this, with a large open world filled with many different and varied instances of combat, I am both afraid that some instances will be too much to handle or too little to provide me any satisfaction of completing them. I admit, I’ve probably been playing the game wrong. As in any RPG, I guess the core game is in preparation more than execution. And I just realized there was a hub from which I could upgrade and craft new gear, which will probably help me cream more enemies afterwards. I’ve also decided to be at peace with how the first wave of rift enemies is usually just an appetizer, giving you small taste of what’s to come. So if those first few enemies are at all a challenge, you should probably pick your party up and run.Given all that, though, I’m still afraid I won’t enjoy the game. But I’m not giving up on it. I don’t believe it’s fair for me to say the game isn’t fun when so many others are crazy over it. Even if it’s not ‘my kind of game,’ I still think there’s something I can get out of it. And it’s unfair to me as well if I don’t put some effort into this thing. I could really be missing out and it might be my fault.I wonder what it means that this game has irritated me rather than causing me to dismiss it and give up on it. I guess I’ll find out.