Dragon Age: Darkspawn Chronicles DLC Review

Darkspawn Chronicles is the latest downloadable content for BioWare’s Dragon Age Origins. Comparing it to the past DLCs that were released for the game, Darkspawn Chronicles is a unique one as it allows you to play as the enemies, the Darkspawn. Playing as the Hurlock Vanguard, it’s time to heed the Archdemon’s call and gather an army to take down the leader of the Grey Wardens. Play the game in a whole new perspective and unlock a weapon that can be used in both Origins and Awakening expansion.

The DLC is now available on Xbox 360, PS3, and PC for $4.99 but is there something special to make this DLC worth purchasing? Let’s take a look on the DLC’s HOT and NOTs:

HOT

Goodies to Unlock
Finishing through the Darkspawn Chronicles DLC will give gamers a powerful weapon that can be used in both the Origins and Awakening Expansion story mode. The Dragonbone-kind sword has a damage value of 11.60 with a lot of elemental attributes that makes the weapon somewhat powerful than the rest of the weapons in the game. In addition to the weapons, there are trophies or achievements that can be unlocked. One trophy or achievement will unlock automatically upon completing the DLC.

Recruit an Army
Taking down the leader of the Grey Wardens will be a hard one. As the Vanguard of the Darkspawn Army, you will have the power to thrall the Darkspawn minions. There are different kinds that can be recruited; an Ogre, a Wolf, a Hurlock Emissary and more. When one of the minions dies, they no longer come back to life. Don’t worry, as every time your minions gets wiped out, more will respawn and you can do your recruiting again. Each of these minions have unique abilities that can give you an advantage when killing the enemies of the Darkspawn.

NOT

Purely Fight, No Voice Work
Throughout the rest of the DLC, there are no voice-over conversations whatsoever between the Hurlock Vanguard and the Archdemon. Gamers will be spending most of the time killing the enemies of the Darkspawn. There will be no experience to gather but items can be collected such as Potions that heals your health. There are a total of five areas in Denerim where you will have to wipe out every single enemy. It gets very repetitive doing the same thing over. Once you get to kill the leader of the Grey Wardens, that’s it! Basically, the story of this DLC is too shallow and not worth seeing. It’s purely hack and slashing.

It wasted my time!
Darkspawn Chronicles can be finished in an hour. While I was playing it, I just wish it would be over soon as I couldn’t handle the awful gameplay this DLC offered. There is really nothing to do in the DLC except fight enemies that always respawn, and go to the next area. I just wish the DLC has much more depth to it, but apparently, it’s shallow.

VERDICT

The Darkspawn Chronicles is only worth buying if you’re after the special Darkspawn weapon that can be unlocked after finishing it. Fans who have exhausted the game already should just stay away from this and save their $5 for something else. The weapon is indeed useful for anyone who is still playing Origins or the Awakening story mode but other than that, there’s no point to get this DLC.

[Editor’s Note: Dragon Age: Darkspawn Chronicles DLC was reviewed on a PlayStation 3 platform.]

7 thoughts on “Dragon Age: Darkspawn Chronicles DLC Review

  1. Jeez… Thank god I read this. I am the hardest of hardcore DA fans and am all for wasting money on DA things but I can hack and slash anywhere in any game. What a waste to have no story! I don’t want to ruin my purified love of DA by playing this. Ugh, I might as well go buy a Big Mac instead tonight for those $5. Thanks for the review.

  2. Well atleast Bethesda might learn something from all the flaming and use this knowledge to produce content thats worth buying.

    I will personally skip this one, its not like the fighting system is so amazing that it will stand on its own without all the other beautiful elements that we have seen in the other content.

    In other words: meh

  3. Bah dam it…. I’m wishing I read this before I bought it :/ was the greatest waste of $5 :(
    Was really interesting for the first 15 minutes and then I just set it on casual wishing for it to end.

  4. I rather enjoyed this small expansion. It gives a nice new perspective to the old franchise. Yes, it is hack and slash. What were you expecting? Developing relationships with your fellow Darkspawn? They don’t talk! (except in Awakening, heh!) No voice work? Of course not, they don’t talk. Let me say this again DARKSPAWN DON’T TALK! I for one would have been disappointed if they had the archdemon speak. As it is, this DLC is a fine piece of entertainment, certainly whorth your buck.

  5. Awww I was hoping to seduce the Archdemon, oh well a man can dream on such thoughts, as that majestic beast takes me close and so on and so forth.

  6. I also am enjoying this DLC. For $5 you get a different game play. By not having your character level up, but instead working on gaining respect and fear, I find you play differently. (For one thing you think hard about who gets the gifts)

    Also for me it was fun to kill some of the characters. Killing whinny Wynne was a highlight for me.

    The only thing I wish they would have done was have a set up cinematic.

    Compared to “Return to Ostagar” I think this is a better DLC. However, like most things dealing with gaming it depends on what experience you are looking for.

    This is very lite on the Role Playing and more heavy on the strategy.

  7. I have well over 1,000 hours with Dragon Age, all DLC and expansion. Over 100 videos of the game, funny moments, gameplay, party banter (Prison Break awesome combos as my most viewed) on my YouTube. So I’ll dispute the “hardest of the hardcore DA fan” or at least ask to be included among them.

    The only bad thing about TDC is that when we enter Fort Drakon we jump right to the roof. There should be at least two floors of fighting before the roof, killing some prisoner in their cells, chasing the Fort Captain while he screams “Why didn’t I take that post at Lothering!”, meeting Sandal at the stairs to the second floor and being unable to kill him when he asked “Enchantment?” to the Vanguard.

    Seriously, it is a lot of a fun for lousy 400 points (5 bucks) which I usually spend in 30 secs on a burguer or in a day on a pack of cigarretes. TDC is well worthy and fun to play. My first run was in NM and it’s tubed. Pretty challenging too. And it may be seen as just another nightmare a warden has after the Joining. It’s actually pretty cool to have a new char right at Lothering to play after TDC and then you see that it was just a bad dream while you flirt with Leliana or free Sten from his cage.

    I’ll be repeating myself here but this DLC actually makes lots of sense into the Origins context, specially if one is as lucky as I was by not only having well over 1000 hours with the game but yet another new character just entering Lothering when I halted her run and started TDC.

    Like someone commented on my vids of my first run in TDC, the concept alone of killing all those chars I’ve come to love deeply might seem sick and repulsive. BUT, in the “what if’s” realm, what if it was just one of those Archdemon inspired nightmares all new Grey Wardens have?

    I’ve not only enjoyed greatly the DLC – because it is a hell of a fun time to play controlling an Ogre, Shriek, Blighted Wolf, Emissary, Hurlock dual warriors, s/s, 2 handers, Genlock Archers, s/s and of course the Vanguard leader of them all and fighting those mighty defenders of Ferelden including its villains like Howe, Cullen, that Ser in Loghain’s pocket but also Oghren’s Drunk gang, punch them all in their faces with a mighty Ogre (and very weak on NM so the keep them all alive is very challenging, without potions that some of the darkspawn cannot use) – but I was deeply relieved when I went back to that new char that hadn’t even met Leliana yet and it all seemed like a bad dream. And when I did meet those first companions-to-be in Lothering, it all made sense and it was like a fresh view on Origins again… after over 1,000 hours with this game.

    And my new “Punch the **** out of Morrigan” video has a lot of potential, just like the “Slap the **** out of of Morrigan” by Fergus did! I love Morrigan but I really always wanted to do that and I never used the “slap Morrigan” mod.

    Of course I want more DLC with story, deep dialogues, choices, more RP elements, etc. But as an analogy, the fact I’m a musician, love classical music and enjoy so much a good Philharmonic concert does not prevent me from loving good ol’ rock’n’roll and have a hell of a time in an AC/DC concert.

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