Dragon Age: Inquisition - Preview Roundup
It's been a busy few days for Dragon Age: Inquisition news, and because of this I have a few previews for everybody today. So lets start the first preview roundup.
There was something that went unsaid throughout the whole of the presentation. The name of a game that you’d imagine would be quite relevant. “Dragon Age II”. For some reason it didn’t come up. While BioWare have never openly acknowledged that it was an expansion pack stretched breakingly thin to be a disappointing sequel, there was no subtlety about Inquisition being presented as the sequel to Dragon Age: Origins. Set many years later, and casting you as a brand new character, they promised it would share some characters, but not many, and continue some stories, but not many. Instead the pitch here appeared to be one of a mostly wholly new tale to be told in the setting they spent ten years crafting.
I am told on a regular basis not to get my hopes up for this new Dragon Age entry. BioWare, people say, simply can’t be trusted to come through anymore. Maybe that’s true, but my hopes are high no matter. Everything I’ve seen lately about this game looks terrific, ambitious, and gorgeous.
That being said…I’m wary of buzzwords. I’m wary of over-promises and big ambition from a studio who obviously has the talent but doesn’t always deliver. I’m wary, but optimistic. Many of the right ideas seem to be at play here, and the developers seem to have both the time and resources and the right ideas to make a good game and maybe even a great one.
BioWare wants to replace the claustrophobic basements and tunnels of Dragon Age II with a sprawling sandbox designed to let players create their own stories. The demo BioWare brought to Seattle for PAX showcased a couple different environments: the lush hills of Crestwood and the arid badlands of the Deep Desert. Crestwood alone, according to BioWare, is bigger than all of Dragon Age II while still "not even close" to being the biggest environment in Inquisition.
I learned so much about this game that it's impossible to mention it all, but it's clear BioWare has doubled down on re-inventing the epic fantasy RPG genre. I saw echoes of Skyrim and Baldur's Gate and even Civilization, but Inquisition isn't a clear progression from any genre. Dragon Age: Inquisition will be in a category all by itself when it comes out in the Fall of 2014.
BioWare seem to be really proud of their dragons. There’ll be a fixed number of these in the game, and it sounds like they’ll act as massive boss fights at the culmination of certain areas. They seem a little bit clumsy – they have a tendency to fly leg-first through pieces of tactically scattered ancient ruin, sending bricks and debris in their wake – but it’s nonetheless very impressive. The brief segment we were shown reminded me of the original CGI trailer for Origins, where a dragon battle was a long, mobile, multi-stage affair. Here’s hoping that some of that energy makes it into the actual game this time. In any case, expect to be shown BioWare’s impressive dragon over and over again in the long year before release.
SP/MP: Single + MP