Thoughts on the DA2 companions (Spoilers)


 Perfect excuse to use this humourous picture I found!
Aveline
  • BioWare's improvements to the combat system make me want to use her more than I ever wanted to use Alistair or Loghain
  • Her companion mission with Guardsman Donnic is my personal favourite of the entire game.
  • Haven't tried her as a love interest yet, will do at some point.
  • Voice actor ( Joanna Roth) does a great job with what I believe are few standout moments. Maybe that's not the point with Aveline, she's exactly what she's there to be, a hard as nails woman who rarely tells a joke outside of sarcastic comments.
 
Isabela
  • Much better design than her Dragon Age: Origins version.
  • Now that the dual-wielding warrior no longer exists I keep a close eye on Isabela for when I play a rogue in my third playthrough.
  • Don't blame her for looking after number 1, was a little angry when she just left a note and never appeared again in Act 2 though.
  • Currently my love interest in my second playthrough, looking forward to anything I might have missed with her in my first playthrough.
  • Voice actor ( Victoria Kruger) is one of the best performances in the game, if she's not nominated for Best performance by Human Female at Spike Awards 2011 I'll be shocked. "Tits and arse," should be right up their alley.
 
Merrill 
  • Had zero opinion of her from the Dalish Origin in Origins, the new design has worked wonders
  • Not being able to use creation spells AKA Healing plus buffs is very damaging when picking a party
  • Liked her innocence regarding Blood Magic but thought she got what was coming to her at the end of her companion mission
  • Felt like an inferior version of Mass Effect's Tali'Zorah. Not sure if they meant to go that direction or not.
  • My first love interest, I suspect the most likely to stay with Hawke longterm considering she has nothing to return to.
  • Hope the eluvian is resolved in DLC, maybe with Hawke and Merrill travelling through and meeting The Warden and Morrigan? I can dream I suppose.
  • I literally just found out the voice actor of Merrill as I'm typing this. Eve Myles who fans of Doctor Who and Torchwood will recognise did a brilliant job bringing an also-ran character from Origins to life in DAII.
 
Fenris
  • Unique design and background story, those are positives right?
  • Complete ass who I don't want following me around moaning about mages and whatever else he's angry about.
  • If I need a warrior I'll use myself as a two handed sword user or Aveline any time.
  • I'll use him more when I go on a evil playthrough, siding with the Templars and other bad descisions.
  • Gideon Emery is the voice actor responsible for me playing through Final Fantasy XII for as long as I did, his performance as Balthier was that good. If I don't use Fenris more in future playthroughs I'll feel like I've done the man a disservice.
 
Varric
  • Best all-round for design, playstyle and party banter in my opinion
  • Brian Bloom is the best male voice performance for me
  • Hope Varric returns in DLC
  • A pity his companion missions fell into the Dragon Age II reuses too many areas for missions flaw.
 
Sebastian
  • For a religious Chantry guy he wasn't as annoying as I was expecting, but that is probably due to his royal background more than anything regarding the Chantry.
  • I'll never pick him over Varric unfortunately.
  • His companion mission was responsible for meeting and chatting with Leliana so thumbs up for that.
  • I wish I had his armour for Hawke, best designed in the game.
  • I'm not familiar with his previous work but for a 36 year-old to be described as a veteran actor/ voice actor as he is on his GB page, Alec Newman seems to be doing well for himself and it shows in his work as Sebastian. Though I wasn't convinced about Sebastian's loss when Anders blew up The Chantry.
 
Anders (+ Justice)
  • Wasn't impressed by the changes made to Anders, his design was better in Awakening I think.
  • The Justice union wasn't really fleshed out enough for me to care that much, maybe if there was a boss fight against Vengence Anders.
  • The underground mage who blew up The Chantry and started the whole mess didn't have to be Anders, the Anders I know from Awakening certainly wouldn't have done it
  • The change in voice actor only cements the dislike I have for DAII Anders, Greg Ellis will always be Anders for me, not Adam Howden.
  • Had we spent more time in the Fade I would've liked to have a chat with Justice, see how he's himself in the Fade, what his opinion is on his Vengence self that's inside Anders. For the little dialogue he had Adam Leadbeater (He needs a GB wiki page creating) was perfectly competent.
 
Bethany/ Carver Hawke
  • No interest in either of these two due to them only being playable in Act 1 which is a pity as it would've added a little replay value.
  • Carver looked a little bland, Bethany looked a bit better.
  • No knowledge of anything Nico Lennon or Rebekah Staton have done previously. They did what they could I guess, wasn't really interested in anything either of the characters had to say.
  • Lots of different choices with their outcomes which was a nice change from everything else in the game which felt as if your choices in situations never really mattered.
20 Comments
21 Comments
Posted by FLStyle

 Perfect excuse to use this humourous picture I found!
Aveline
  • BioWare's improvements to the combat system make me want to use her more than I ever wanted to use Alistair or Loghain
  • Her companion mission with Guardsman Donnic is my personal favourite of the entire game.
  • Haven't tried her as a love interest yet, will do at some point.
  • Voice actor ( Joanna Roth) does a great job with what I believe are few standout moments. Maybe that's not the point with Aveline, she's exactly what she's there to be, a hard as nails woman who rarely tells a joke outside of sarcastic comments.
 
Isabela
  • Much better design than her Dragon Age: Origins version.
  • Now that the dual-wielding warrior no longer exists I keep a close eye on Isabela for when I play a rogue in my third playthrough.
  • Don't blame her for looking after number 1, was a little angry when she just left a note and never appeared again in Act 2 though.
  • Currently my love interest in my second playthrough, looking forward to anything I might have missed with her in my first playthrough.
  • Voice actor ( Victoria Kruger) is one of the best performances in the game, if she's not nominated for Best performance by Human Female at Spike Awards 2011 I'll be shocked. "Tits and arse," should be right up their alley.
 
Merrill 
  • Had zero opinion of her from the Dalish Origin in Origins, the new design has worked wonders
  • Not being able to use creation spells AKA Healing plus buffs is very damaging when picking a party
  • Liked her innocence regarding Blood Magic but thought she got what was coming to her at the end of her companion mission
  • Felt like an inferior version of Mass Effect's Tali'Zorah. Not sure if they meant to go that direction or not.
  • My first love interest, I suspect the most likely to stay with Hawke longterm considering she has nothing to return to.
  • Hope the eluvian is resolved in DLC, maybe with Hawke and Merrill travelling through and meeting The Warden and Morrigan? I can dream I suppose.
  • I literally just found out the voice actor of Merrill as I'm typing this. Eve Myles who fans of Doctor Who and Torchwood will recognise did a brilliant job bringing an also-ran character from Origins to life in DAII.
 
Fenris
  • Unique design and background story, those are positives right?
  • Complete ass who I don't want following me around moaning about mages and whatever else he's angry about.
  • If I need a warrior I'll use myself as a two handed sword user or Aveline any time.
  • I'll use him more when I go on a evil playthrough, siding with the Templars and other bad descisions.
  • Gideon Emery is the voice actor responsible for me playing through Final Fantasy XII for as long as I did, his performance as Balthier was that good. If I don't use Fenris more in future playthroughs I'll feel like I've done the man a disservice.
 
Varric
  • Best all-round for design, playstyle and party banter in my opinion
  • Brian Bloom is the best male voice performance for me
  • Hope Varric returns in DLC
  • A pity his companion missions fell into the Dragon Age II reuses too many areas for missions flaw.
 
Sebastian
  • For a religious Chantry guy he wasn't as annoying as I was expecting, but that is probably due to his royal background more than anything regarding the Chantry.
  • I'll never pick him over Varric unfortunately.
  • His companion mission was responsible for meeting and chatting with Leliana so thumbs up for that.
  • I wish I had his armour for Hawke, best designed in the game.
  • I'm not familiar with his previous work but for a 36 year-old to be described as a veteran actor/ voice actor as he is on his GB page, Alec Newman seems to be doing well for himself and it shows in his work as Sebastian. Though I wasn't convinced about Sebastian's loss when Anders blew up The Chantry.
 
Anders (+ Justice)
  • Wasn't impressed by the changes made to Anders, his design was better in Awakening I think.
  • The Justice union wasn't really fleshed out enough for me to care that much, maybe if there was a boss fight against Vengence Anders.
  • The underground mage who blew up The Chantry and started the whole mess didn't have to be Anders, the Anders I know from Awakening certainly wouldn't have done it
  • The change in voice actor only cements the dislike I have for DAII Anders, Greg Ellis will always be Anders for me, not Adam Howden.
  • Had we spent more time in the Fade I would've liked to have a chat with Justice, see how he's himself in the Fade, what his opinion is on his Vengence self that's inside Anders. For the little dialogue he had Adam Leadbeater (He needs a GB wiki page creating) was perfectly competent.
 
Bethany/ Carver Hawke
  • No interest in either of these two due to them only being playable in Act 1 which is a pity as it would've added a little replay value.
  • Carver looked a little bland, Bethany looked a bit better.
  • No knowledge of anything Nico Lennon or Rebekah Staton have done previously. They did what they could I guess, wasn't really interested in anything either of the characters had to say.
  • Lots of different choices with their outcomes which was a nice change from everything else in the game which felt as if your choices in situations never really mattered.
Edited by damswedon

I felt more or less the same except for Fenris who I took for a spin for a spin every now and then, he has some good party banter with Varric and becomes less of an ass by act three. In my game I was happy that I didn't max out his friend or rivalry bar because I feel like if he had joined me at the end it would of gone against the way his character was in my game. The same goes for Isabella. In my game I didn't really give her a reason to stay. 
 
I think I would of accepted Anders+Justice a whole lot more if it was some other Mage, them using Anders just feels like the quick and easy way of telling a story.

Posted by ZombieKitty

It's weird I  never even met Isabella through either of my playthroughs of DA2. I think Varric is my favorite, I wish more of the companions had humor.

Posted by TaliciaDragonsong

That's the thing with companions in videogames.
Often there are just a few so well designed (Varric, Isabella, Aveline) that those are the standard picks.
That others lack healing (Merril) or are ruined fan favorites (Anders) or just plain leaving a bad impression from their meeting (Fenris).
 
Not having Varric in your party just feels like a crime to me, like Oghren or Morrigan in Origins, too awesome and well done not to have in your party (altho I must admit there is nothing wrong with the rest of the cast in Origins, varied parties which all work one way or another!)
 
We really need Varric DLC, his story telling wasn't what I expected it to be, I expected him to interrupt the story at times or blow it out of proportions at certain events.
Maybe have it tie to your dialogue like how Hawke changes? Have him make more up if you're a joker, make things more dark and bloody when you're 'evil' or have him talk nonsense about rainbows and Templars being best friends with Mages on ponies if you're 'good'.

Posted by Mystyr_E

I want more Cassandra DLC and yeah, I quite enjoyed Isabela too, and she wasn't quite as off-putting as Morrigan can be

Edited by TheDudeOfGaming

Aveline isn't a love interest...pissed me the fuck off. Still,got mah pirate chick, she's pretty hot right?
In combat Varric and Isabela are BEASTS, especially late game, the drawback is that they are the glass cannon type of beasts, not much hp or stamina.
Sebestian is also good, but i keep wondering why we got another archer,you already have varric and if your character is an archer pretty much makes them useless.
 Currently playing as a mage with primal school/spirit healer and in mah party got Anders, Aveline and Varric, this setup didn't fail me once.
Anyway i was very pleasantly surprised with all the characters, some great writing.
@TaliciaDragonsong:
See i fell the exact same way about Varric, but couldn't care less for Morrigan, Oghren was cool :)

Posted by Mike76x
@FLStyle said:
 
Bethany/ Carver Hawke
  • No interest in either of these two due to them only being playable in Act 1 which is a pity as it would've added a little replay value.
You can run into her twice, and she can be playable at the end of Act 3
Posted by Skald

I liked Fenris. He had the most interesting back-story and companion quest, and his voice actor is plain awesome.
 
I also liked Sebastian. Really unique background and romance sub-plot, and his accent is plain epic.

Posted by Enigma777
@Mike76x said:
" @FLStyle said:
 
Bethany/ Carver Hawke
  • No interest in either of these two due to them only being playable in Act 1 which is a pity as it would've added a little replay value.
You can run into her twice, and she can be playable at the end of Act 3 "
Wait, I thought if you picked them to go in the Deep Roads with you, they don't leave your party...
Posted by CooVee

Varric is the man and Bianca is a beast. I would love some DLC or even a spin off game where you play as the clean shaven dwarf.
Posted by blackfire83

I actually had some sort of glitch during the High Dragon fight where Varric would continually regenerate health as if he was out of combat. The rest of my party fell (I wasn't prepared for the fight) and Varric ended up solo'ing the last half of the dragon fight due to the aforementioned glitch. I kinda felt like it could've been an awesome exaggeration in Varric's telling of the Champion's story, though.  
 
Varric: "And then I single-handedly finished off the High Dragon..." 
Seeker: "Bullshit." 
 
Edited by Mike76x
@Enigma777 said:

" @Mike76x said:

" @FLStyle said:
 
Bethany/ Carver Hawke
  • No interest in either of these two due to them only being playable in Act 1 which is a pity as it would've added a little replay value.
You can run into her twice, and she can be playable at the end of Act 3 "
Wait, I thought if you picked them to go in the Deep Roads with you, they don't leave your party... "
There are three things that can happen to Bethany, I assume Carver is the same way.
1. If you leave them at home -
2. Take them into the Deep roads with Anders in your party (or have an Awakenings imported character - I can't confirm this) -
3. Take them into the deep roads without Anders (and imported a character that did not go through Awakenings - also can't confirm)  -
 
After any of the three she is gone from your party by Act 2
Posted by Enigma777
@Mike76x: Wow, that sucks, though it does explain why Bethany/Carver don't have a custom specialization like all the other party members. i was going to replay the game again because I hated how Carver became a templar, but now it seems like that was the best choice.
Posted by Mike76x
@Enigma777 said:
" @Mike76x: Wow, that sucks, though it does explain why Bethany/Carver don't have a custom specialization like all the other party members. i was going to replay the game again because I hated how Carver became a templar, but now it seems like that was the best choice. "
I think Carver getting mashed by the ogre is the best choice.
Posted by damswedon
@Mike76x said:
" @Enigma777 said:
" @Mike76x: Wow, that sucks, though it does explain why Bethany/Carver don't have a custom specialization like all the other party members. i was going to replay the game again because I hated how Carver became a templar, but now it seems like that was the best choice. "
I think Carver getting mashed by the ogre is the best choice. "
Right you are there.
Posted by FLStyle
@damswedon said:
" @Mike76x said:
" @Enigma777 said:
" @Mike76x: Wow, that sucks, though it does explain why Bethany/Carver don't have a custom specialization like all the other party members. i was going to replay the game again because I hated how Carver became a templar, but now it seems like that was the best choice. "
I think Carver getting mashed by the ogre is the best choice. "
Right you are there. "
+1
 
@TheDudeOfGaming said:
" Aveline isn't a love interest...pissed me the fuck off. Still,got mah pirate chick, she's pretty hot right?  "
Sad times :(
 
@TaliciaDragonsong: All true, bring on the DLC!
Posted by GalacticPunt
@FLStyle said:
" @damswedon said:
" @Mike76x said:
" @Enigma777 said:
" @Mike76x: Wow, that sucks, though it does explain why Bethany/Carver don't have a custom specialization like all the other party members. i was going to replay the game again because I hated how Carver became a templar, but now it seems like that was the best choice. "
I think Carver getting mashed by the ogre is the best choice. "
Right you are there. "
+1 
+one mi-won twoops
 
I'll go with Mike76x's second option in my other playthrough.  Bethany's epic boobs deserve a better fate than she got in my game.  I went in the Deep Roads without Anders but with a completed save of Awakening and Witch Hunt.  Still ended up with #3.
Edited by LordXavierBritish

Fenris was cool, Varric was cool, Isabela is typical thief/whore, Merrill's whole schtick was kind of unbelievable, Anders is kind of a prick, Aveline is too much of a straight man to be any fun, Carver needs to shut his god damn mouth forever, and I'm not paying for a character who is never going to come close to Shale, Shale is better than all of them.

Posted by Mike76x
@GalacticPunt said:
" @FLStyle said:
" @damswedon said:
" @Mike76x said:
" @Enigma777 said:
" @Mike76x: Wow, that sucks, though it does explain why Bethany/Carver don't have a custom specialization like all the other party members. i was going to replay the game again because I hated how Carver became a templar, but now it seems like that was the best choice. "
I think Carver getting mashed by the ogre is the best choice. "
Right you are there. "
+1 
+one mi-won twoops  I'll go with Mike76x's second option in my other playthrough.  Bethany's epic boobs deserve a better fate than she got in my game.  I went in the Deep Roads without Anders but with a completed save of Awakening and Witch Hunt.  Still ended up with #3. "
Yeah I just went through the Deep Roads without Anders, turns out he's the only one that can get the job done there.
Posted by TheDudeOfGaming
Posted by Yummylee

Really great summary write up for the characters, and I agree on nearly all fronts - especially towards Aveline. Bitch was hardcore seriousness, and I loved her for that. 
 
I'm not surprised by a lot of the disliking towards Carver, though I still found him to be alright, and had him with me through all of act 1 during my first playthrough. (Fenris gave me a really bad first impression with talk of corrupted souls, his silver hair and overall emo-angst appearance) 
I thought Carver's plights toward being the odd one out of the family, lacking no magic ability, was an interesting story set up, and he was one of the few who was sort of the middle of it all between views on the Templars vs Mages, seeing both sides of the struggle, including the dangers and irresponsibilities. He was willing to admit that all Templars are generally ''pricks'', but mages are also incredibly dangerous and should never be entirely trusted. I prefer him over Bethany in any case, since she was pretty average as just the usual goody girl mage.