So here we go again. EA has taken another popular hardcore fantasy game and turned it into a free-to-play mobile title. Last time this happened, we got Dungeon Keeper. Now it's Dragon Age. It can only end in tears, right?
Well, hold your high horses. While it would be a massive exaggeration to say that Heroes of Dragon gets freemium right, it certainly doesn't get it as gruesomely wrong as Dungeon Keeper. In fact, it suggests that EA might finally be getting its head around the idea that a game can use in-app purchases without mooching off the player until they bleed. It's small progress, but progress all the same.
Heroes of Dragon Age is an attempt to retell the history of Thedas via a sort of digital table-top game. Much like a collectable card game, you blind-buy characters and use them to assemble a team of five. It's just that instead of cards, you're buying 3D figurines drawn from Dragon Age lore. From common types, such as generic soldiers and bandits, through to "epic" unique characters like Aveline Vallen and the Qunari Arishok, each has their own traits to consider.