That’ll Be The Day: The Dragon Age TV Show

By Alec Meer on February 15th, 2011 at 1:30 pm.

Ear we go

We’re in for a whole lot more of this kind of thing, I suspect. Assassin’s Creed 2 did it, Mortal Kombat’s doing it, and now Dragon Age 2 is planning it. As the web becomes ever-more important to marketing games, viral techniques are springing to the fore. And what’s more viral than a video you can embed all over the internet?

In this case, it’s to be a live-action, six-part online TV show set in Bioware’s Dragon Age universe. Both writing and starring in it is actor Felicia Day, a perennial Joss Whedon favourite and creator of WoW player-beloved MMO sitcom The Guild. So it probably won’t be a cheap affair, but what kind of tone will it take?

Well, that’s the thing, isn’t it? I don’t really want to see Dragon Age’s grim and gritty beast-bashing go down the peppy, punny Buffyesque route (much as I enjoy that in other contexts), but then again there are few things as embarrassing as something high concept fiction that takes itself too seriously. Day has done plenty of more dramatic stuff, at least in her acting, so there’s no reason to presume it’s going to be Guildesque. Then again, of her Elven assassin character she told USA Today that:

“Tallis is headstrong, she fights dirty, and she has a really sarcastic sense of humor. I wanted to bring a modern sensibility to a fantasy character in a fantasy world.” Hmm. Mind you, Dragon Age: Origin’s Alistair had a certain amount of that, so it’s hardly unprecedented.

Furthermore: “I am an organic gamer and I love games, and I particularly love this franchise. I put every single effort into making this something that gamers will be proud of. Even though we were constrained a lot as a Web series, none of the people who were involved took that as a constraint. They took that as a challenge.”

She is, apparently, convinced that it won’t be awkward, low-budget gibberish either. “They are going to take this a step above what we have seen on the Web before,” she told USA Today. She’s working with important people who contributed to the likes of Independence Day and Lost, so there’s at the very least a budget pedigree there.

Bioware’s lovely Dr Greg is in accord: “We are really, really excited to work with people like her who have a passion and appreciation for the content and a really good history of quality.”

No specific release date beyond ‘this year’ as yet, but it’s to be called Dragon Age: Redemption and she’s promising to tweet a whole bunch of extra stuff about it today.

There are many more details and another photo in the USA Today feature, and the full, rather awkward version of the above pic in the Day profile here.

I’m looking forward to the first image of a dude dressed as a Darkspawn.

, , .

96 Comments »

Sponsored links by Taboola
  1. Premium User Badge

    TheApologist says:

    Hmmm – my mind turned to Alistair’s character too. If this gets the tone right it could be cool, I guess.

  2. DarkFenix says:

    The Assassin’s Creed 2 one was pretty good, but given how the Dragon Age 2 series has been marketed I’m not hopeful about this.

    • Premium User Badge

      Richard Beer says:

      Agreed. Plus one of the things that made the Assassin’s Creed live video so good was the fact that the actors were digitized for the game, too, so when I watched the movie post facto, I instantly recognised everyone. And they were pretty good actors.

  3. Unaco says:

    Please no.

  4. xmido says:

    Might turn out to be cheesy.

  5. Brumisator says:

    It seems like a simple case of “watch it or don’t”. It’s not like it will have any repercussions on games as a whole or Dragon age games specifically.

    Go forth and do whatever the hell you want, Miss Day.

  6. ScubaMonster says:

    This should be as awesome as Legend of the Seeker!! Because that was totally awesome. For real.

    • Stitched says:

      Please tell me you are kidding.

    • Creeping Death says:

      ….I actually quite enjoyed Legend of the Seeker. It had a certain cheesy charm that appealed to the kid in me that used to love watching horror b-movies :P

    • Friend says:

      I might have had any tolerance at all for Legend of the Seeker if I hadn’t already read the entire book series prior to the show’s release. As is, it came across more as an exercise in how many new and exciting ways the writers could dream up to piss off people who read the books than a real adaptation.

    • MattM says:

      They were trying to piss off people who read the books? What did they do, keep everything exactly the same?

  7. utharda says:

    I’m looking forward to the horrifyingly awkward “sex” scenes.

    • Urthman says:

      I’ve got a few extra spell books Felicia is welcome to have.

  8. Atic Atac says:

    Where’s Claudia Black?

    • WMain00 says:

      Indeed! She was excellent as Morrigan. One of the best voice acts in video games.

    • Pace says:

      Forget voice, we need to see her dressed up as Morrigan.

      Wait a sec, how old is she now?

  9. Kakrafoon says:

    Hmmm, Felicia Day.

    • misterk says:

      …did you mean, “mmmm, Felicia Day?” Because otherwise you seem strangely contemplative. I’m going to assume you did mean hmm…

    • Kakrafoon says:

      Whoops, of course I meant “mmm”. A German “hmmm” can, you are right there, sound either contemplative or approving, depending on the intonation.

    • DeathHamsterDude says:

      In that case . . . Hmmmm Felicia Day!

      I want to marry someone like her. Well, no, she plays MMOs all the time, so it would descend into chaos . . . that or I’d end up playing MMOs all the time.

      *shudders*

  10. Qjuad says:

    I’ll watch this – but through my fingers for the first few minutes.

  11. skurmedel says:

    Will it suck? Yes sadly :D

    Edit: Ok that was a bit harsh. But I’m yet to see a well made “serious” TV-show or movie come from a game. I’ve seen the Doom movie, it haunts my memories.

  12. Binman88 says:

    Felicia Day doesn’t help sell a game to me.

  13. ShawnClapper says:

    Anyone else think Felicia Day looks a lot like Martin Short?

    • Stitched says:

      It’s because she always looks like she is about to smile or burst out laughing.

      Perfect for the awkward Cyd Sherman of “The Guild”. Elven assassin? Not so much.

  14. JackShandy says:

    No no no, internet- Mass effect 2 is the one you want to make into a TV series. The game itself was already cut neatly into exciting 45-minute episodes! While Mass Effect 2 was shiny and perfect in small doses, Dragon Age was awkward and clumsy at first glance, only succeeding as a massive whole. Personally, I’d also say Dragon Age’s lore is a less original take on fantasy than Mass Effect’s take on sci-fi.

    • vodka and cookies says:

      Mass Effect 2 would be nice as a TV show but horribly expensive because of all the sets/props required, make up for humans and CG for the non-human aliens. Only someone with a lot of money to burn could do it.

      Incidentally the model Rana who provided the face for Samara in ME2 will be doing some expensive cosplay to the tune of $5000 as Samara which would be interesting to see how an Asari looks like on a TV show.
      http://www.modelmayhem.com/1049977

    • Nighthood says:

      They’re planning a Mass Effect film. So yeah.

  15. Premium User Badge

    Harlander says:

    I am an organic gamer.

    I’m glad to hear this, because I’d secretly feared that Ms. Day was a gynoid.

    Also, is it just me, or do those ears look kinda.. not good?

    • jamie.heron says:

      @Harlander: For fucks sake man I almost spewed tea over my nice computer screen!
      Also, ehe? I don’t really care what Ms Day does, it’s free to watch isn’t it? Yes? Yay!

  16. Imperialles says:

    I’m a WoW player, and I definitely do not love The Guild. In my six years playing the game I have never encountered anyone with anything positive to say about it (save various blogosphere WoW folk). It really is sort of unfunny.

    • SanguineAngel says:

      As a non-WoW player (but former casual player? I got bored) I find The Guild hilarious. Your 6 year record must now stand.

    • DrGonzo says:

      Nope, I don’t understand why The Guild is meant to be funny. It just seems like a shit ‘comedy’ that occasionally mentions games so we all have to like it, because HOLY FUCK a show mentioned a game(!)

    • SanguineAngel says:

      Well, it’s partly the jokes and awkward social situational humour – much like curb your enthusiasm I suppose. But also I have to admit that I have known people in the past like all of those on the show and it is spooky in it’s accuracy.

      I should be clear that it is not the outright funniest thing I ever saw but for what it is… I find it quite the giggle.

  17. Muzman says:

    “And what’s more viral than a video you can embed all over the internet?”
    o/ Oooh, ooh, I know!
    A virus?

  18. Betamax says:

    No idea if this will be any good, but the DA series certainly suits a Whedon-esque show. The writers of DA have almost all claimed to be fans of Whedon at one point, and several DAO characters were partly inspired by Buffy/Whedon characters, the inspiration can be seen in a big way in the party banter in particular.

    If this was going to be on TV and looked like a low budget cheese fest then I’d be worried, but as a potentially fun tie in web series, why not? We can’t really say for sure what tone the thing will have either, an Elven assassin doesn’t have to be all super serious – Zevran anyone?

    • steamingnewell says:

      “Am I the only one who’s getting tired of seeing Felicia Day and Wil Wheaton EVERYWHERE?”

      No, both such. I hate wheaton.

  19. torchedEARTH says:

    Does anyone remember that TV series Knightmare where the kid has to wear a huge helmet in front of a blue screen?
    I’m just asking…does anyone remember it. Anyway, what are we talking about?

  20. laddyman says:

    My enthusiasm about this game goes down by the second.

  21. Tuco says:

    I can’t really expect anything top quality by this, but I must point that Felicia Day has excellent taste in gaming. In fact she said in an interview for Reddit that her favorite games are Ultima VII: The Black Gate and Planescape Torment.

    • idiotapocs says:

      Bah. When a girl says she likes gaming, she is probably lying. That’s my experience anyway. I’ve been lured to bed by words like, “oh, Dennis Bergkamp is my favourite foot-to-ball player as well!” or “okay, let’s go to your place and play Left 4 Dead”, but all of them were sluts. Not. Anyway, learn from my experience, please and never believe a woman’s words.

    • Tyshalle says:

      She’s a confirmed gamer. Not even the casual kind, but the hard core, plays WoW in her studio trailer between takes kind of hard core.

      Though if Season 2 of the Guild is any indication of her in real life, she’s more of an RPG chick and not big on FPS’s.

    • idiotapocs says:

      Yeah, and she gets lotsa money for being one. That’s not hardcore, that’s merely a pro.

    • Tuco says:

      @Idiotapocs: you are not listening: Ultima VII The Black gate and Planescape: Torment.

      Those are not games which a “poser” would list. The average clueless gamer -like you- barely knows that these immortal classics ever existed.

    • Kieron Gillen says:

      Er… I think idiotapocs is being a hyperbolic troll.

      KG

    • Tyshalle says:

      She makes lots of money pretending to be a gamer? She must be one hell of a method actor!

      Also I suppose if she’s just rolling around in the dough she’s doing SEARS commercials for what? Boredom?

    • idiotapocs says:

      My second statement is a bit trolly, I admit. Humble apologies for that, but the first? I was just talking nonsense about my pathetic love life. Also, you can keep on insulting me, if you like. A clueless gamer on RPS, that’s scifi, isn’t it?

    • Shih Tzu says:

      She also pimped GOG in an interview once, I guess just to give them some buzz.

    • Danarchist says:

      I think if you are at all tired of being pigeon holed in the “lives in moms basement” perception of the average gamer you should support people like her, Mila Kudrow, and Vin Diesel who are open about being gamers. The biggest problem we have is every media outlet out there looks for the most overweight, bad complexion, dirty clothed gamers they can find to interview.

      Myself im tired of the stereo type. Although I do enjoy the fact that people are starting to realize the nerds are the only ones that still have good jobs ;)

    • pipman3000 says:

      but she can’t be a true gamer because she’s a woman she doesn’t play the “right” games/doesn’t spend all day playing games/doesn’t own one of those creepy ball-joint dolls from japan. at least according to them.

  22. Skusey says:

    What’s an organic gamer? Am I one? Should I be one? Words are tricky.

    • Tyshalle says:

      It’s a gamer who only plays free ranged, grass fed games, as opposed to all of the traditional games that are pumped full of antibiotics and fed nothing but old corn, obviously.
      Duh.

    • Gormongous says:

      I have Worms on my gaming shelf over there. Thank heavens, I’m organic.

  23. simonh says:

    Might this warrant a Staring Eyes? I don’t know, maybe?

  24. Dreamhacker says:

    Aren’t you forgetting the STALKER tv-series?

    • Tyshalle says:

      If the screencaps are any indication of its quality, I’d certainly like to!

  25. DaFishes says:

    Am I the only one who’s getting tired of seeing Felicia Day and Wil Wheaton EVERYWHERE? It’s like a stunt that game, TV, and film companies roll out to attract “nerd” attention. Like the one guy who tells the same joke at every party. It’s a really funny joke the first, second and third times, and then it starts to wear thin.

    • bleeters says:

      “Am I the only one who’s getting tired of seeing Felicia Day and Wil Wheaton EVERYWHERE?”

      Yes :(

    • Soon says:

      I don’t know. I hadn’t realised he’d done anything since Star Trek. And I hadn’t heard of Felicia Day until now.

  26. Juiceman says:

    I liked the Dante’s Inferno anime that came out. Could of done without the 20 different art teams that EA hired to do one movie, but I digress. However, my gut tells me this will be cheesy and just embarrassing. If that actress’ show is to be any indication I’d say I’m on the right track.

  27. Premium User Badge

    lorddon says:

    The Guild must only be funny to American sensibilities, I suppose. Most of my friends enjoy it.

    • steamingnewell says:

      I dont like either day or wheaton. I specially dont like wheaton.

    • Martha Stuart says:

      What as opposed to your British Humor? please I understand the British part, but there seams to be a severe lack of the humor part. :)

  28. My2CENTS says:

    Haha that nerd chick from The Guild.

  29. steamingnewell says:

    NO, JUST NO.

    [after defeating a dragon]
    “Now, that’s it for you, you Jurassic Park reject!”

  30. Resin says:

    Awesome. I hope Wade and Heren make an appearance.

    I think Sandal will be awesome as well. They should give him a steamy love interest and a long lost evil twin brother with an eyepatch. “Enchantment? Enchantment!”

  31. Fwiffo says:

    More cynical people might call this project a self-insert fic, voluntary typecasting and pandering to an oversexed geek fanbase.

  32. pipman3000 says:

    buffy the vampire-slayer set in a pastiche of a song of ice and fire, the witcher, and tolkien’s sloppy seconds that everyone has been passing around for decades. that’s it basically.

  33. steamingnewell says:

    I dont get the wheaton fascination. His shows were mediocre borefests of lame jokes. The fact that most tv show makers praise him only shows the amount of incompetence they have, if they only see him as something praise-worthy.

    • .backslash says:

      First, I assume you’re talking about Joss Whedon rather than Wil Wheaton.

      Second, you probably think CSI is the pinnacle of televised entertainment.

      Third, I don’t really like the Guild, but Day was great in Dr. Horrible. So I’m fairly optimistic about this project. Worst case scenario, we’re getting six series of a hot redhead prancing around in revealing outfits.

    • pipman3000 says:

      best case scenario: this dies before it even leaves the drawing board.

  34. steamingnewell says:

    Dont know bout hot. And tv is well, shite. That’s why I dont see why these TV people getting involved in gaming get all that WOW. Gaming doesnt need these TV people. Dont care if they “like” games, they dont know games, they’re not needed.

    • Premium User Badge

      James G says:

      Surely ‘TV people’ are just normal people like us, except with jobs in which they appear on TV. Some of them will know about games, others about 14th century Eastern European Pottery, meanwhile you’ll have a few in to snowboarding, skydiving or erotica involving musical instruments. So yeah, some of them genuinely like games, I’m not sure why their career choice would make you doubt that.

      And regarding TV being shite, well, I must say, most of it isn’t to my taste. But there are a few gems in there. Granted, the only program I’m really watching at the moment is Being Human series 3, but I personally think its bloody fantastic.

  35. FRIENDLYUNIT says:

    Ok if you are excited about this dont look at the other photo over at usa today. Her bra thing looks to be made of plastic. Not good costuming.

  36. Arglebargle says:

    Felicia Day came to a local gaming store recently for an appearance/signing. At the end of her two hours, there was still a big line, and she stayed late, and talked to and signed for every single person in the line. Staff there reported she was very nice, and treated everyone real well. She’s okay in my book.

    And on my video screen.

  37. JonSolo says:

    Those… ears. Are those supposed to be elf ears? She just looks like a really pretty… goblin.

  38. RegisteredUser says:

    This needs moar world of whorecraft.

    What I meant to say was: Felicia, you already have teh happy in your name. Make me happy as well and do porn. I could do with 6 eps of that.

  39. Temperance says:

    I like Felicia Day, also I own a Knightmare choose your own adventure book, and a Hero Quest one.

    What WERE we talking about?