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Review: Dragon Age: Origins Leliana’s Song (X360 DLC)

Review: Dragon Age: Origins Leliana’s Song (X360 DLC)

Back in June, during the excitement of E3, BioWare announced new DLC on the way for Dragon Age: Origins titled Leliana’s Song. Of course I was excited, but after the semi-bland Darkspawn Chronicles, Chris was very apprehensive.

On Tuesday morning, the day of launch, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on the new DLC, but I also was hoping I wouldn’t be disappointed. From watching the official trailer, I could tell that the feel for this DLC would be significantly different, and it was. In Leliana’s Song, we find out  more about her past, especially the events that led Leliana to join the Chantry. We, obviously, knew that Marjolaine betrayed Leliana from what was said in Dragon Age: Origins, but we didn’t know how.

You start off the game, of course as Leliana, and are in the Denerim Market. Marjolaine tells how you and your sidekicks, Tug and Sketch, will be performing some jobs tonight. Tug is a warrior dwarf, and Sketch, from what I could tell, is a human mage, although his hair might have been hiding some elf ears, I don’t know. In the beginning I got a good sense for who the two new characters were, and I genuinely liked them. After doing what Marjolaine asked, she goes on to say how there is one last task for the night, and that it takes place in the Arl’s estate.

Here, you are to plant some papers in the bedroom of the Arl, and from what Marjolaine says, it has to do with him having mistresses. Seems harmless, right? Wrong. After laying the documents on the desk, Leliana notices that the papers contain the official seal of the Orlais military, and what she has committed can be considered treason. Leliana confronts Marjolaine, and after some words, they go back to retrieve the papers. Here is where Marjoliane becomes a complete back-stabbing bitch: she sets you up. Big surprise.

When you are fleeing the estate with the papers, your party sees Marjolaine who stabs you, and you’re captured. Hurt, both emotionally and physically, Leliana receives some kindness in prison, which helps her escape. Sadly some things have happened to a member of your party, but you gain a new member to take their place, so it all balances out. I will say, that by having three members in my party rather than four, some battles were difficult since I had to drastically adjust my tactics. Fortunately I was able to level up multiple times throughout the DLC, so I was able to beef my characters up.

Once Leliana and her companions break free from the jail, she wakes up in the Chantry. From there she is shown that reformation and change can happen, and she can leave her old life behind. She just has to make the right decision for her. Obviously one would think Leliana wanted revenge, and of course she does, but by doing so, she would be just like Marjolaine. Having a difficult decision to make, Leliana knows that she at least has to fix the damage that was done and retrieve those papers. I won’t say what happens at the end, but if you’ve played through all of Dragon Age: Origins, you pretty much know what happens.

The feel of this DLC was different. It had a very gritty, outlaw style, and at times it heavily reminded me of Kill Bill, but that’s a good thing. Getting to see Leliana kick some ass was awesome too, because it really shows just how drastically her character has changed from her time in the Chantry. Unlike past DLC, Leliana’s Song was fully voiced, and you were given the option to make choices. The soundtrack was different, and brand new. It had this French renegade style, and it really fit with the style of the DLC.

When I played through Leliana’s Song, I put in over 2 hours of gaming, but if you don’t care and skip through the cutscenes, you can finish it in a significantly shorter amount of time, but it is still much longer than the other DLC’s in terms of playable content. I have yet to play Origins, so I have no idea what the exclusive items are, but I know there are at least 3 new achievements you can get in the DLC. One is obtained by doing various acts to a drunk, passed out Captain in Denerim, another is by collecting multiple pieces of leather to create armor, and the final is by completing the DLC.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: If you’re a fan of Dragon Age, get the DLC. It’s that simple. It was a lot of fun, it was nice getting to learn more about Leliana, and the overall feel was fantastic. My only complaint is that I wished it were longer, especially because the price on Leliana’s Song is 560 Microsoft Points compared to past DLC which was priced at 400.

If I had to give it a score, I’d say 7.5 out of 10.

You can download Leliana’s Song for PC here, Xbox 360 here, and for PS3 here.

- Me

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