Just when you thought downloadable content couldn’t get any worse, Bioware drops the proverbial nuclear bomb on us with Darkspawn Chronicles. Even though the rest of the DLC for Dragon Age: Origins has been spectacularly mediocre, it managed to add to the rest of the game as a whole. A new companion complete with a ton of dialogue, closure over the events at Ostagar and even a pretty good story along with the lovable party storage chest. Darkspawn Chronicles accomplishes none of us and at the usual price tag it’s starting to feel like players being dangled any little bone that they might be tempted to grab.
Darkspawn Chronicles tells the story of what would have happened at the Battle of Denerim at the Warden (the player character) not been around. You battle through all the familiar parts of the city while encountering many of the characters you’d meet in the normal campaign including party companions. The catch is this: You play a Hurlock vanguard that has the ability to recruit and unceremoniously dismiss any Darkspawn you see. It starts off pretty simple with recruiting a Hurlock or a Genlock, but once you get the ogre it’s pretty much smooth sailing from there. The ability to grab and simply destroy any elite level enemy that comes up is pretty overpowered. Keeping the Ogre alive throughout the entire battle grants you an achievement, but it really isn’t too difficult once you’re able to put an emissary in your party to heal.
Inevitably you battle your way to the arch demon where you’ll find Alistair, Leliana, Morrigan and Barkspawn (the trusty mabari) battling the arch demon, which you have to rescue. That’s pretty much it. It’s a pretty neat experience the first time around but there really isn’t any incentive to do it again. Unlike the other DLC that become attached to the campaign, Darkspawn Chronicles feels like the demo for some other Dragon Age campaign. By the third time I’d rammed down a group of civilians with the Ogre I had gotten pretty bored.
Not that any story was to be expected but adding a few battles after that one would’ve been nice. Taking the horde on a warpath through Ferelden would’ve put a smile on my face. Sacking a few Dalish camps, setting the circle tower ablaze or absolutely ruining Redcliffe village for a second time would have all added a much needed extension on this incredibly short effort.
Normally this is the point where you’d be instructed to not buy this you’re on the fence, but even if you’re already a die-hard Dragon Age fanatic I wouldn’t recommend getting this. Your five bucks is better spent grabbing a pizza and a soda.