"Darkness closes in. Will you stand against it - or lead this world to its bitter end?"
The third installment of the Dragon Age series by BioWare, set to be released in Fall 2014 for PC, Xbox 360, PS3, PS4 and Xbox One. The game takes place across the lands of the Orlesian Empire, the Free Marches, and Ferelden, among others, after the conclusion of Asunder and the Dragon Age II epilogue in 9:40 Dragon, and concerns the on-going war between the Mages and the Templars which began in the second installment.Instead of the Warden or Hawke, the player takes control of a new protagonist, the Inquisitor. Similar to Dragon Age: Origins, players can customize this hero's class, gender, and race (human, elf, dwarf or Qunari). After a cataclysmic event plunges Thedas into turmoil, the Sole Survivor of said event is tasked with rebuilding the ancient Inquisitionnote originally an Anti-Magical Faction from the Divine Age, which merged with the Chantry nine centuries ago and eventually split into the now rogue Templar Order and Seekers of Truth and leading it to restore order and hunt down the agents of chaos.Previews: Official site, "The Fires Above" trailer.
Anti-Magical Faction: The purpose of the original Inquisition, before it joined forces with the Chantry and became the Templars and Seekers of Truth. What path the new Inquisition follows depends on your choices (and the first brand-new companion announced is a mage advocate, although one that previously supported the Chantry and the Circle system before the Templar-Mage war broke out).
DAI is being built on DICE's Frostbite, as opposed to the aging Eclipse Engine.
Elves were redesigned again, to look less human-with-pointy-ears than in Origins, but also less Anime-like than in Dragon Age II.
Beef Gate: Though areas are open, most enemies won't scale to your level, making it hard to access a sub-region if you can't beat the monsters inhabiting it.
Benevolent Architecture: Thanks to the shift to the Frostbite engine, Inquisition now features destructible environments. This includes things like knocking out the supports of a bridge, causing it to collapse from under the archers standing on it, toppling pillars to create cover from ranged enemy attacks, or destroying cover the enemies themselves are using. Presumably, though, it can go the other way, and not all architecture is destructible.
Broken Bridge: You won't be able to access an enemy castle, for example, unless you've first recruited enough forces throughquests to lay siege.
Big Bad: Whomever is responsible for the tear in the Veil.
Body Horror: One of the first boss monsters shown seems to be a human who has been mutated by red lyrium.
Chain Pain: Warriors now have the option to yank opponents towards them using chains.
Civil War: The ongoing Mage and Templar War, an upheaval in Orlais foreshadowed in II and Asunder, and potential elf rebellion.
A wide variety of ornate or otherwise nifty looking one and two handed swords are available for your party to find.
The Red Templars weild glowing red swords that bear a disturbing resemblance to Meredith's red lyrium sword from the previous game. The Red Templar Archers also get similar looking bows, which bear a slight resemblance to Irvine's demonic one from Berserk.
The Conspiracy: The Inquisition is resurrected to get to the bottom of claims a shadowy conspiracy is behind the political strife preceding Inquisition's demonic invasion.
Crapsack World: A cataclysmic event has plunged the entire continent into turmoil, dragons are darkening the skies, and the Mage-Templar War is now just one of many wars that have claimed countless lives.
Deployable Cover: One of the newly added spells creates a wall of ice that your party can hide behind.
Guilt-Based Gaming: A Bioware tradition. The first gameplay demo shows the Inquisitor deciding whether their soldiers should stay with the wounded, protect the nearby village of Crestwood, or push an assault on the attacking Red Templars. The Inquisitor picks the last one - and Crestwood is burned to the ground by the time they return.
Old Save Bonus: All previous world-states will be imported to the game through the "Dragon Age Keep", a web application that will allow players to replicate old save states and generate new ones.
The Order: The Inquisition, an organization formed to restore order and root out conspiracy.
Order Reborn: The original Inquisition was disbanded nearly a thousand years ago.
Party of Representatives: The party members embody different viewpoints and have differing levels of investment in certain issues, as discussed here.
Player Headquarters: The player has access to a central fortress where they can speak to their companions, similar to the party camp in Origins. The fortress is also customizable to some degree, similar Admiral Anderson's apartment on the Citadel in ME3.
Player Party: As in the previous titles, you can switch control to any member of your current party at will.
Powerup Mount: You can now ride horses to get around areas faster.
Romance Sidequest: Various romance options for your main character are available, as in the previous games.
Shield-Bearing Mook: In the same vein as the Cerberus Guardians in ME3. This emphasizes party teamwork - you can't punch through the shields even with magic, so you need to flank or disarm them.
Shoddy Knockoff Product: In-Universe; Word of Godsays that "Hard in Hightown 2", the book next to Cassandra's maps, is an unauthorized sequel to Varric's original. The book had previously appeared in Varric's companion specific sidequest in Mark of the Assassin, where he was furious to discover someone ripping off his work, leading him to collect all the copies he could find at Chateau Haine so he could burn them.
Stopped Numbering Sequels: Originally announced as Dragon Age III: Inquisition, the III was eventually dropped from the title. "DAIIII" as abbreviation was probably a bit awkward.
War Is Hell: Many characters are scarred by the events of the civil war. The first trailer shows the world on the verge of collapse, with a shell-shocked Varric standing amidst a field of dead in Crestwood.
The War Room: The trailer shows Cassandra and her allies poring over a map, which she dramatically stabs. Concept art shows a male Inquisitor stealing her act while his companions (including Cassandra and Varric) look on.