What We Want From The Next Dragon Age

With the release of Dragon Age: Inquisitions final DLC Trespasser. It’s time to start looking towards the future. And while whatever the next Dragon Age game may not release for many years to come, it seems like a good a time as any to talk about what we want out of it. Bioware made some massive strides between Dragon Age 2 and Inquisition. from a confined city with repeated maps to a diverse open world style play that took you all across Thedas. So what kind of improvements can we expect from the next game? ‘Trespasser’ left us with questions, but It also left us with a guiding direction. Who our villain or goal will be and where it will center around. Spoilers for Dragon Age; Solas will be our antagonist, the elf mage that everyone either hates or loves will be the source of the next games strife. And a large part of the game will revolve around Tevinter, the long talked about but never seen part of the Dragon Age world. With cliffhangers like those how can you not speculate.

In Depth Main Character Background…
Dragon Age Origins has six different openings that serve as a sort of Prologue. It’s a good way to drop you into the world and give you background on your Race and where they fit into the world. ‘City Elves’ have it rough and you get to see the lives of these characters or family members play out before you are thrust into the life of a Grey Warden. Each intro takes a good hour and a half. Each intro story also plays into the overall plot in a small way once you come across it. Like the Cousland character running into Arl Rendon Howe at the Landsmeet or finding Jowan and Redcliffe when you started as a Circle Mage. Its things like this that Dragon Age Inquisition missed out on. Sure you get a paragraph at the beginning. telling you why you’re at the conclave, and a few Inquisition operations but no real context is giving as to why you are where you are or what your motivation is.

New Game Plus…
While the Golden Nug in Dragon Age: Inquisition is a sort of substitute for a new game plus in carrying your collectibles over. Things like a level cap removal and keeping all the cool gear you have spent hours crafting and tweaking the color of would be an awesome addition. It’s hard not to compare Dragon Age to the Witcher, they were released near the same time and more importantly they were the only two big RPG fantasy games to release these past few months. And The Witcher did something I’ve never heard of by making New Game Plus a DLC add-on that you can get for free. Removing the level cap and letting you carry all your gear over. Plus I don’t want to replay Dragon Age and have to worry about collecting every Wine Bottle or Song again.

More Story Based Side Quests…
Once you enter a map in Dragon Age: Inquisition you see all that room to explore and then you see all the missions that pop up on screen. Well, a lot of those missions were “I lost my ‘X’ find it, and I’ll give you ‘Y.’” not too much depth in that. The Hinterlands alone had me find a Druffalo and then go find a Sheep in the same hour or so. Sure I could’ve done a different mission but why make me find missing animals at all. I’m not a dog pound I’m the Inquisitor! Dragon Age Origins and DA2 had some great light story side quests. After searching Redcliffe Village for a young boy who was deemed lost by his sister you find him and his family sword. He tells you he’s scared of the undead that ravage the village at night and is afraid to show it. After taking him back to his sister you then have the option to help them leave the village or let them keep the sword. A mission like that does nothing for the fate of Denirim in the end, but it does give you a sense of purpose while completing it.

Sure people don’t play Dragon Age for its Combat; I certainly don’t. And its a tricky thing to complain about because no Fantasy RPG does combat ‘Great.’ Save for Kingdoms of Amalur, and that is really just button mashing. But if the DLC ‘Descent’ and ‘Trespasser’ are any indication the future of Dragon Age, we should expect long sprawling combat sections. So how do you fix it? Dragon Age has a large PC playing audience and a lot of them play with the ‘pause and play’ strategy type moves. And console game’s play through the never ending combat type. So in reality they might need to restructure both types of game-play. Something more fluid and arcade’y’ might work.

Cosmetic Improvement…
A cool part of having your own castle is watching it be built over the course of the game. Watching the structure go up and the drapery change over time was a cool way to watch your Inquisition grow. But if the next Dragon Age doesn’t involve a growing army and castle how do you show all that. Well Zagden on Reddit suggested a great idea of watching the city around you grow throughout the game, say it takes place in Tevinter like we all assume it will. So maybe Tevinter is getting ready for an uprising or whatever Solas has planned. Watching the ‘Seasons Change’ so to speak is a good way to show growth and change.

More Party Interaction…
Look Dragon Age thrives on its characters and everything you do with them, so asking for more character interactions is like asking for more cake that you’ve already eaten half of. Party Banter while wandering the wilderness is always encouraged. Listening to Morrigan berate Alistair, Varric telling wild tales to Merrill and Solas ramble about Elves are some of the highlights of the games. And maybe Party-specific missions can extend to more than simply confronting Dorian’s dad in a bar. Sure that’s a big deal to him but maybe it needs more setup and build. A more overall and steady look at each character would be a great way to expand the time you spend with each character.
We have a ways to go until the next Dragon Age game, looking towards the future of Thedas is all we can do now. Weather characters return or move on we have plenty to look forward too. What happens to The Hero of Ferelden, will we ever see him again? Does Varric burn Kirkwall to the ground under his new Viscount job? Can Cassandra Rebuild the Seekers? Does Dorian make any headway in Tevinter? What happened to the Inquisitors’ arm? But that’s just my play through, yours could be completely different.

Special Thanks to Reddit users; LicensedpterodactylBionicWoman89BlackSnowCatZagdenma-ma-ma-macaroniIvdar