BioWare's Greg Zeschuk is aware of the discussion around Dragon Age's curious advertising campaign, which many felt presented the game as an action drama rather than the much more slowly-paced RPG experience it actually is.
The high-contrast, dramatic ads were heavy on the blood spatter, as if to attract a different kind of consumer than would usually enjoy Western RPGs -- and to an extent, that was the intention, Zeschuk tells us as part of a new Gamasutra feature.
"It's interesting to me obviously because of the controversy with it," says Zeschuk of the ad campaign. "I think we were trying -- and we've always said... the real objective for us [was] to show what was in the game."
But he concedes: "Obviously, the advertising wasn't in any way representative of the proportionate time split. Everything from the advertising was from the game, but it was only part of the time. There's a lot of other stuff."
However, it attracted a lot of attention and was effective in that respect, he says. "It got people really looking at the title. I think it probably expanded the audience a little bit into people -- it's one of the hits of the fall, and it's one of the big games -- and they're like, 'Okay, well, it looks action-y enough that I'm interested in it,' and I think that was actually the reason that it worked."
New audiences might have a harder time understanding the tone of the game or being drawn to its more complex elements without the hand-holding presentation, Zeschuk agrees.