Dragon Age: Origins E3 Previews

Shacknews and Thunderbolt Games are both offering up their own E3-based previews of Dragon Age: Origins.

An excerpt from Shacknews' article:
The presentation began with lead designer Mike Laidlaw spending ten minutes explaining how players can have sex in the game. There was no lead-up to this segment, mind you. This was the headline topic. This was the new shit.

Laidlaw loaded up the "party camp," essentially a bonfire where your party members hang out. Walking up to a red-headed woman, Laidlaw noted that the player has "reached the point where she'll really do anything," and I cringed.

Then it was on to the sultry wizard Morrigan, who normally plays the tough sorceress, "but she's really been hitting on us."

So how does one copulate in BioWare's latest? You hand out gifts, of course. Laidlaw promptly wooed Morrigan with a book of arcane magic. This has gameplay application, as Morrigan will earn magic points by reading the book. "But there may be other gains as well," said Laidlaw, and I wanted to throw up a little.

And an excerpt from Thunderbolt's article:
Following this glimpse of character interaction, we were shown combat against a dragon. It was the first time the team showed a battle pitting the hero against a dragon and it lived up to my expectations. With a user display that's vaguely reminiscent of World of Warcraft, the combat was fast-paced and frantic. With the click of a button, the player can assume control of any character in their party, allowing you to use each party member to their fullest extent as you battle.

As spells flew and the dragon expelled fire in every direction, I was very pleased to see the frame rate hold up at a consistent rate. The graphics were incredibly rich, with excellent texturing. Individual scales of the dragon could be seen as our hero navigated the chaotic battlefield until he finally was able to mount the back of the beast and slide his sword into the dragon's neck. The dragon's death was highlighted with a massive splatter of blood covering everything in sight. A diverse color pallet should allow for very different environments as you plug your way through the game.