e3 2014
Dragon Age: Inquisition Demo - Your Stories are Thedas' Stories

Carly Smith | 11 Jun 2014 05:20
e3 2014 - RSS 2.0

BioWare's Dragon Age: Inquisition has an expansive world that you affect through your choices.

Time and time again, BioWare has stated Dragon Age: Inquisition is the biggest RPG it has ever created. Beyond the various characters in your party from around the continent, there's plenty to explore in Thedas and plenty to impact. Every location discovered is a part of a larger story.

A hands-off demo demonstrated one way in which the Inquisitor's decisions direct the story of Dragon Age: Inquisition. As a female qunari mage, the Inquisitor is in a heated conflict between the templars and the mages. While traveling on the road, the Inquisitor and company encountered templars itching to take down some mages. Simply throwing spells at the templars are only so effective; using the talents of each party member was essential to quickly stopping the templars. Once the templar had lifted his shield above him, he suddenly became more vulnerable. Literally burnt to a crisp, the templar was no more. But at what cost?

The ongoing templar-mage conflict had already torn apart the area. Actions have consequences, even if what you think you're doing is the right choice.

As with previous Dragon Age games, dialogue in Inquisition can change depending on who is accompanying you. The characters are fleshed out with their own backgrounds, cultures, and motivations, and Inquisition has the largest cast of characters to recruit in the Dragon Age series, resting at nine followers. Briefly shown off in the demo was Dorian, a mage from the Tevinter Empire who wants to restore honor to his homeland. His history with a certain foe added conversation brought in a different viewpoint from the Inquisitor's.

Actions at the war table will direct where the story goes. From there, you pursue objectives and instruct agents to gather resources. On the battlefield, however, is where the details shine through. With the tactics view, instruct individual party members to specific locations and assign targets. Plan out your attack strategy before you resume time and watch your careful planning pay off. Each party member has different helpful skills, such as Vivienne's time manipulation. You can easily switch between controlling different characters and bounce among support, close-range attacks, and offensive magic from afar. Tactical combat isn't required; you can just as effectively play one character at a time. There is no one way to play Inquisition.

Dragon Age: Inquisition is expansive in both the world and your Inquisitor. The ten regions, set across two nations, have local histories that you discover through observation of the environment and brief dialogue from the character inhabiting that environment. The Inquisitor can be one of four races, two genders, different voices, and a more detailed facial customization. In our lives outside of games, everyone is different in mind and body. People have different facial shapes, different principles. Within the cast of characters are people not of the assumed default. There are powerful women, especially Vivienne as an influential woman of color, as well as the massive qunari, nicknamed the Iron Bull. BioWare hasn't been shy about paying attention to diversity. Make the Inquisitor of your choice.

This is the Dragon Age game BioWare has been waiting to make, and it's the Dragon Age so many of us are eager to play. Inquisition launches October 7 on PC, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, and PS4.

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