Tales within a tale
Thedas, the mythical world of Dragon Age II, totters on the brink of chaos. Its major religion, Chantry, is imploding, leaving many scared and directionless. Dark tensions grip Thedas's capital, Kirkwall – forces which you, as Kirkwall's hero in waiting, find yourself pitted against.
Role-playing fantasy games on PlayStation 3 don't come much more challenging than this. Out go the standard genre conventions, such as endlessly searching for an overarching evil presence, and instead political intrigue and brutal physical confrontation form the backdrop to a decade of upheaval.
Legendary exploits are revealed by your old companion, Varric, in flashback form as he regales a seeker of the Chantry faith. That you become the fabled "Champion of Kirkwall" is known from the beginning of the tale, and it's only as Varric's breathless recollections tumble out that you understand your full role in the destiny of the city.
Will you be remembered as a saviour or a tyrant? In Dragon Age II, your actions are your lasting legacy. Make your choices now, on PlayStation 3.
More on PlayStation Store
Set off into the vastness of Dragon Age II, and discover a world teeming with rivalries, greed and suspicion – and that means an almost endless supply of quests in this mammoth adventure.
And, this web of intertwined stories isn't limited to the Blu-ray disc you slip into your PS3. Once you have signed into your Sony Entertainment Network account, a special access code found inside the box lets you download The Black Emporium, a treasure trove of free bonus content from PlayStation Store.
Nestled deep in the bowels of Kirkwall, the Black Emporium houses a curious collection of unique items to enhance your experience. You'll also receive a gnarly mabari war hound to guard your home, which you can summon snarling into battle with a whistle.
Keep an eye on PlayStation Store for additional content, including the story of The Exiled Prince. Noble archer Sebastian Vael is thrust back into the religious life he abandoned, and you must choose whether to avenge his slain family or wreak holy vengeance on your enemies in Kirkwall.
Become part of the Dragon Age II community on PlayStation Network and enjoy an ever evolving, always involving fantasy.
Joining you on your journey through the townships and wilds of Thedas is a band of warriors, rogues and mages with complex personal stories and simmering loyalties.
You play as Hawke, the fiercely driven, brooding protagonist of Dragon Age II, whose mighty efforts would be pointless were it not for his deadly allies. Chief among these is bullish dwarf Varric, a mean crossbow expert and the perfect foil to Hawke and his devastating melee skills.
Strong family ties mean Hawke's warrior brother, Carver, and his mage sister, Bethany, also lend their impressive skills to the cause, their shared horror at the destruction of their homeland turning them into a formidable fighting unit.
Up to three comrades can join you in on your crusades, and you'll need a potent blend of the warrior, rogue and mage disciplines to overcome the biggest of Kirkwall's many threats: the insane Knight-Commander Meredith.
Band together with the incredibly diverse characters you meet on your adventure and seal your legend in Dragon Age II for PS3.
A war of words
Hone your considerable skills to rip through hostile forces in a gruesomely effective show of strength that will leave your enemies trembling. However, while blood and thunder is perfect on the battlefield, your powers of diplomacy are also challenged in Dragon Age II.
Decide whether you want to be known as a generous spirit in Kirkwall, or a cold-hearted killing machine with no interest in friendship. Each path has its own benefits, with quests unlocked according to the people you get onside.
Dialogue plays a decisive role in the plot of Dragon Age II, with either aggressive or tactful responses possible in conversations. Think carefully before answering – if you offend an ally, they could turn their back on you for good. It makes for an entirely different experience every time you start a new game.
Intrigue and betrayal combine to create a unique atmosphere, within which the white-hot combat of Dragon Age II thrives. Wield mighty blades as a warrior, long range weapons as a rogue and awesome magical force as a mage, then work with your squad to unleash havoc.
The more you play Dragon Age II on PS3, the deeper you are drawn into its affecting story and explosive confrontations, so what are you waiting for? Kirkwall needs its champion.