Adventures of a Non-Gamer: Dragon Age II


by Shawn Kelly (@DearShawnie)

Let me just say that before I proved wrong all of my misconceptions about gamers and gaming, a certain type of thing came to mind when I thought of gaming and those who were into it. Dragon Age II is that game. I didn’t realize I was doing it, but this sort of fantasy-ish, dragon-y (real words, you guys) stuff is the exact label I slapped on the forehead of all you gamers. Since then I’ve expanded my horizons, realizing the diversity of the gaming world and how many options there are. I’ve only dabbled in dragons with things like Skyrim and Fable, neither of which turned out to be favorites. However, I’m willing to give things a second chance because I am open minded! Side note — I didn’t know it until just now that “dabbled in dragons” is the sentence that has been missing my entire writing life… I’m feeling strangely whole in this moment. Do you feel honored to have shared this moment with me?! YES?!

In other news, I still don’t love fantasy-ish dragon-y stuff… it’s just all a little dark for this girl who likes sunshine and other things of this nature. The “dark spawn” featured throughout Dragon Age are super creepy to me. Have I talked about my tendency to scare easily? The dumbest of horror movies have me sleeping with the light on for at least a week. Also, is this a safe place to admit that Disney movies were slightly traumatizing as a child? Disney villains were no joke in the mid-eighties to late nineties. Anything after 2000 is for pansies, kids! Am I yelling at children now!

Anyway, it came as no surprise that I wasn’t feeling the setting and demon-slaying, but I still had fun with this game. One thing I did notice is that I’m getting better with maps. Actually, I’m only getting better with maps in video games. I’m still the equivalent of blind toddler when trying to follow maps in real life. I thank God daily for GPS. It’s the reason I’m still here, you guys. Another thing I liked about this game was level options — casual, normal, hard, nightmare.

“No, I’m not dysfunctional at gaming. I’m just super casual!”

This one goes down smoother for sure. I feel like if you’re playing on the casual setting you can wear things like cute tees and maybe yoga pants. When you’re playing “nightmare” style, you probably have to wear something super ugly like chainmail and other forms of ancient armor that do nothing for the figure. Sucks for you guys!

I did have a min-audience while playing, which would have made me nervous in the past, but now I’m fine. People chiming in with advice and helpful reminders like “you have to turn on the Xbox now” is more beneficial than one would think. One little thing that did irk me about my audience is that they kept reminding me how hard it was to die in this game every time I commented on how surprised I was that I hadn’t died yet.

I will leave you with perhaps the most embarrassing thing that has happened to me on these gaming adventures so far. I’ll say it quick, like tearing off a band-aid. I never knew that you could sit anywhere other than directly in front of the console while playing! As in, I genuinely thought I had to sit like a foot from the console this whole time, which always made it a bit uncomfortable. In short, someone was like “why are you sitting so close?” I was like “Um… the controller signal can reach that far?” Blank stares answered back. I moved on quickly, hoping to erase this from everyone’s memory. The good news is that now I can sit on a comfy couch instead of the hard floor.

Happy gaming, you gamers!

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