One of the titles I was most looking forward to getting hands on with was the latest in the series from BioWare Edmonton; Dragon Age Inquisition. Unfortunately attendees were not able to play for themselves, but BioWare GM Aaryn Flynn walked gamers, trade and press alike through an extended demo on stage.
Flynn immediately went into detail on the nine companions available and explained that the character creation system allows for millions of combinations. With nine class specializations, 21 combat trees and 200 spells and abilities, it was demonstrated that your character will play the way you want to play. There are 200 different weapon and upgrade schematics, 150 different types of armour, and 80 materials, each with their own properties. Holy crap that makes for some serious customization!
As Flynn begins the walkthrough we spot he is playing as a female Warrior. Flynn begins in Fallow Mire, a dark swamp which is full of decaying structures and wildlife. A perfect setting for the hordes of the undead wandering around. Rain and fog make for a nice atmosphere, but don’t hamper the view as you can still see your main objective. Flynn explained that the goal of this quest is to rescue some Inquisition soldiers who have gone missing. It doesn’t take him long to learn that a ruined castle called Hargrave Keep is spot where the soldiers are being kept by hostile Avvar barbarians.
Immediately we noticed that the combat system has been vastly improved and looks to flow a lot better especially when switching between companions on the fly to use whatever abilities are needed to help turn the tide of battle. Probably the biggest difference everyone will be keen to try is the addition of a tactical camera view. Switching to this view not only pauses the game but zooms out to a bird’s eye view so players can see the entire field of battle and set tactics based on the situation. In the demo Flynn took us through how we can use Iron Bull (a companion) to hold a particular position, effectively protecting our rear, whilst we set precise orders to other companions. Flynn used the opportunity to demonstrate how to set your Rogue going indivisible to creep up on enemy ranged units, and our Mage raining DPS down from a safer distance.
Flynn completed the quest which resulted in the rescued soldiers heading back to Skyhold, the customizable fortress of the Inquisition. Flynn explained that you’ll be able to upgrade and build a variety of buildings within the fortress including Stables, Armoury, Tavern for relaxing with a drink, War Room and many many more. From what we saw of Skyhold, the further you progress through the game the more the fortress comes alive with soldiers, merchants, visitors, diplomats and of course your nine companions.
That’s just one of the hundreds of stories you’re going to experience in Dragon Age: Inquisition. Great story lies at the heart of every BioWare game. The game boasts nearly a million words of dialogue, making it easily the biggest story that BioWare has ever told. It took a completionist player more than 150 hours to do everything the game has to offer.
Gamescom 2014 guests were treated to the latest trailer for Dragon Age: Inquisition. The trailer showcases what you can expect from the enemy in the game, where the dangerous villains from beyond the Veil were introduced as the new enemies of Thedas.
During the trailer, you’d have noticed that the war between the Templar Order and the Mages has been interrupted by the appearance of creatures coming from the fade and heading to Thedas. Demons, Spirits, Beasts and Dragons all feature in the trailer and they are literally destroying everything within their path.
If you haven’t played the previous Dragon Age titles you may not have noticed a couple of cameo appearances. BioWare’s Creative Director; Mike Laidlaw announced during the EA Press Conference additional details regarding those cameos.
The character of Hawke from Dragon Age 2 is seen in the trailer and a Warden also made an appearance, yet it is not the same warden featured from Dragon Age Origins. In addition, Laidlaw mentioned that the characters that were present in the previous games, those that can be modified before, can still be modified to appear just like how they look when they last appeared.
Dragon Age Inquisition looked fantastic. Beautifully detailed, stunningly scripted and voice acted. From what we saw, it looked like the franchise has not only matured but successfully shaken off the failings and problems that came with Dragon Age 2. We are extremely excited
The release date for Dragon Age: Inquisition is November 18th. It will be available on Xbox One, Xbox 360, and Windows PC. We’ll keep you up to date on news as the date approaches.