Soulier Than Thou: Dragon Age – Inquisition

Dragon Age: Inquisition’s new trailer makes me think that Bioware’s blood and (b)romance fantasy series has noticed the brooding character standing at the other side of the RPG battlefield. The veteran of a thousand deaths stares back, scars criss-crossing every inch of its face, nostrils included, and then rolls backwards out of the door. Dragon Age looks on enviously. It wants to have cool scars a well – it’s the scars, right? Chicks love the scars – and it wants people to notice when it rolls into a room. That, presumably, is why the E3 video caused me to react with a raised eyebrow and a murmur of “Soul-y shit”.

Returning characters? NO DOUBT. Doomed staggering warriors with a backdrop of flames and ash? YES SIR. Sombre music? AYE AYE CAP’N.

A party of adventurers who run through the wilderness, their animations perfectly in sync with one another? OH SHIT YES.


  1. dE says:

    A video that refuses to load? FULL CIRCLE!

    I’m sorry. For reasons described above I can’t watch the video, but I wonder what Part of “Soulsy” it will be. If it’s the atmosphere, I might actually be a slight bit interested in the third installment. If it’s just “lol we so hard”, then it remains at 0 Hype Level. From the Text I deduce it’s the former. I hope so.

    /Edit after the video loaded:
    It looks… MMO to me. Something about the way everything looks, seems to trigger my MMO response. The beginning does seem a bit soul’y but that dissipates quickly I feel. Dio’s Holy Diver Video is more Dark Souls than this.

    • Rizlar says:

      That video is indeed shockingly bad quality. Didn’t make it to the end yet. :S

      Also I was sure he was talking about that other heavily scarred roll-happy chap. The one with white whiskers and cat’s eyes (not Alvina or Santa Claus, the other one who’s game just became available to pre-order everywhere).

      • dE says:

        The video just plain didn’t load for me. It seems to be fixed now. :)

      • tumbleworld says:

        Dick Cheney(tm)’s Lawyer Hunt?

    • LTK says:

      It seems that E3 has made youtube crap itself a bit. I still can’t watch long videos.

  2. Gamgee says:

    This is the first trailer that makes me NOT want to play the game. It had its own unique style of trailers going on centered around the story that has been built up. Now though? They don’t seem to have any confidence in it with this trailer. Just a cheap looking rip off of Dark Souls.

    • RedViv says:

      This is, for the lack of a better term because brain is nearly molten by the heat wave, a very console trailer.

      • Jockie says:

        I’d say it was more of an E3 trailer – all flash and no substance, desperately trying to bandwagon into markets that are currently in vogue. Console games can have good trailers too, just don’t think I’ve ever seen one at E3.

        • RedViv says:

          Possibly. E3 is a flashy fest where big games boys show their big money has been spent on big effects, after all.

      • PopeRatzo says:

        You don’t get much more console-y than Dark Souls, Eins und Zwei.

        So if you’re going to love DS and complain that DA:I looks too much like it AND that it looks like it belongs on a console, there’s a lack of cognitive consonance.

        • Skiddywinks says:

          You are going to have to clarify what your own impression of what a “console-y” game implies, because I am at a loss here.

          In fact, the idea that Dark Souls is adored the world over still kind of shocks me, given it is a console crowd predominantly.

    • morrolan says:

      Dunno why people want to get up in arms about 1 trailer thats essentially just an advertisement. You get more trailers in depth at other times. At least its made with the in game engine not CGI.

    • WiggumEsquilax says:

      Dragon Age games make advertising for all audiences. DAO was billed separately as an ARPG and a spiritual successor to BG2. Despite not having any ARPG in it.

      Ditto for DA2, despite being only an ARPG.

      Now that Souls’ games are mainstream, they’ll plumb the poor fools in the Souls target audience, who pre-order, of their money too.

      DON’T preorder DA3, it literally could be anything.

  3. Bremze says:

    The new shit, same as the old shit but new.

    • araczynski says:

      but hey, at least its still fresh and steaming with new goodness!

  4. Big Murray says:

    Not its best trailer, but there’s enough other stuff out there to keep me interested in this game.

  5. Utsunomiya says:

    This is a story about how a promising CRPG franchise turned into action crap.
    God, I’m bitter.

    • SupahSpankeh says:

      You’re not alone broseph.

      Am beyond the rage of DA2, am firmly into sadness about how amazing the franchise should have been.

    • PopeRatzo says:

      I enjoyed the combat of DA:O. I don’t mind the action. Considering how far in advance of release this trailer shows up, they’re probably just trying to make it look like all things to all people. There will be trailers that highlight the RPG elements, I promise. Hell, by the time they’re done, they’ll probably have trailers that show the aerial combat between dragons and maybe stealth-based demolitions using mechs or something.

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        kfix says:

        They’ve already shown the bow, so the only thing left then would be the parkour.

        And a dog.

  6. tumbleworld says:

    Aaaaaaa! Uncanny valley lips!

    Man, since Chewbot left, Bioware’s writers have really been drinking the Kool-aid.

  7. araczynski says:

    trailer was ok, sad to see them release it showcasing console graphics, and the worse of the 2 to boot. i.e. no surprise that EA sold out for some shoddy ‘exclusive’ for microsoft, but makes the game look like horse shit.

    pc trailer or it didn’t happen!

  8. InternetBatman says:

    Cinematic trailers for Dragon Age have been so completely unreliable that they’d be better off with a gameplay video.

    • RedViv says:

      But then how would people be able to complain about how oh so far this glorious gem has fallen, when the tactical and strategical gameplay is plain visible for all and not only 20 minutes into some gameplay demonstration somewhere?

      • SupahSpankeh says:

        Didn’t look very tactical to me. More like an RPG which really, really wants to be God of War.

        • Wulfram says:

          I don’t see how it could look very tactical, when it’s just people showing off their attack animations

          • WiggumEsquilax says:

            They said that they’re bringing back the tactical 3D camera, a la Infinity Engine games. They also said that you can play it how you want; if you want an ARPG, that’s okay too.

            Apparently both modes will be balanced somehow? Without turning tactical mode enemies into bullet sponges, or action mode enemies into 1HKOs?

            Yeah, the trepidation is strong in this one.

  9. PsychoWedge says:

    well, if this is their answer to the recent Witcher 3 trailer that blew all our fucking minds than I consider myself astonishingly unimpressed… xD

  10. Laurentius says:

    It’s pretty amazing, EA masters of trashy trailers for DA series now actually has to step down as new master: CDPR and their abysmal pulpy Witcher 3 trailer reigns supreme. TBH in comparison this one almost looks decent and stylish, how things changed in three years…

    • Asurmen says:

      I think you’re alone in the W3 vs this in quality.

    • Orija says:

      I wish I could be a fanboy as well and remain perpetually unaffected by the actual quality of the work.

  11. Mungrul says:

    Let me see if I’ve got this right.
    Wasn’t the premise of the first game to bring the Baldur’s Gate formula back?
    The first game did a reasonable job of that, being an isometric, party-based, real-time-with-pause RPG with strong characters.
    When did they lose their focus so badly and fall into the “Me too” trap of trying to ride the coat-tails of whatever’s popular?
    This series really doesn’t know what it wants to be.

  12. Napoleon15 says:

    There’s one thing I need to know. Does something awesome happen every time I push a button?

  13. rapier17 says:

    Rant mode engaged.

    I knew as soon as I saw the Elf carrying the bow that there’d be a flip with an arrow loosed in mid-air and I was right (and even uttered a mocking laugh)! Because that really makes sense, you know, being able to loose a shaft from a war bow (say 120lb draw weight?) in mid-air after having been disorientated by performing a pointless flip… oh well, that’s the pathetic nature of high fantasy. What’s really cool is not all the flips and so on they seem to have to have in a fantasy game but real martial arts – whether Western or Eastern martial arts they can be absolutely beautiful to watch in motion. The co-ordination, footwork, precision – far superior to any fantasy malarkey.

    Oh well, roll on Kingdom Come: Deliverance.


    After the mess that was DA2 I’m not sure about DA3 and this trailer hasn’t really encouraged me to get DA3. Think I’ll sit on the sidelines and look into it once it’s been released.

    • morrolan says:

      When did this board get infected by RPG codex types? The DA series has never been realistic not even in DAO. Mount and Blade is thataway.

    • milton says:

      Honestly realism is over-rated. I play fantasy games because I want fantastical creatures with fantastical abilities doing fantastical things fantastically.

  14. SupahSpankeh says:

    We’ll always have DA:O.

  15. Shooop says:

    PC Gamer is already awarding it a 95.

  16. anark10n says:

    How does this even compare to Dark Souls outside of a poor emulation of some of its themes, exactly? I don’t see it. Even just comparing trailers. Dark Souls had haunting trailers. This one has … … ah, I see, a Dragon. Is that all it takes to be compared to Dark Souls? Or perhaps you were contrasting it? Or maybe there is another Soulful game you are sitting on and want to keep all to yourself?

    • Rizlar says:

      Yeah I’m not seeing it either. They roll out of the way of some fireballs a couple of times?

      It doesn’t look good for their promises of open world environments though, in that trailer they were looking very much like large, enclosed zones. Like many MMOs. Oh, there’s a castle there, and a village there and you can walk around the back of the castle and everything is enclosed by impassable walls. Great.

      Still, hope it will be a good yarn even if it’s not a good rambling simulator.

  17. SillyWizard says:

    Okay so the Witcher came out seven years ago. That’s, like, 300 in tech-years.

    Why the fuck are these people still magnetically attaching all weapons to clothes in their games?

    The Witcher proved that we have the technology to sheathe blades when not in use.

    Fucking. Use it.

    Motherfucking magnets. HOW DO THEY WORK?!

    • Rizlar says:

      It’s just silly, I agree. A cool sheathe is it’s own reward (because they certainly won’t bother paying the artists or programmers more).

      Buut… playing The Witcher 2 just now I equipped a cutlass and it was just a straight longsword with some notches in, since they clearly didn’t have the time or finances to make different shaped scabbards.

    • Niko says:

      First of all, spot on.

      Second, I’ve got an idea which I’ll spell down using caps lock so somebody important will hopefully see it and then glory and fortune… ahem, anyway: SHEATHES COULD BE NEW HATS (for fantasy RPGs at least).

      Like, you can buy new expensive sheathes for your trusty longsword with which you don’t want to part, encrust them, decorate them with gilded cords, etc.

    • Wulfram says:

      The Witcher doesn’t have much weapon variety, I don’t think (Not played much past the 1st part of the first one). Whereas Dragon Age has a whole bunch of stuff that’d need a whole bunch of different sheathes.

      As long as they’re not magically floating inches away from the clothing, like they were in DA2, I’ll deal.

      • Niko says:

        There was a decent amount of different swords in Witcher 2, and I bet there’ll be much more in W3.

  18. Megakoresh says:

    Whatever. Not interesting. Things I care about in Inquisition:

    Action/Tactical combat modes.
    Open world and character interactions in it.
    Action/Tactical combat modes.

    Cheesy fantasy narration is not among those things I think. Is it? No I think it isn’t :P

  19. knowitall011 says:

    bah, zero gameplay? why is bioware so afraid? I mean this game can’t be worst than DA2. already got witcher 3 on pre order :) Da3 would have to be one of those 10 dollar deals. I got burned by Da2. never again.