When you hear a new game is coming from Bioware, you brace yourself. This is a company that delivers compelling and interesting stories, where every companion is alive and so much more than a character class. The choices are never black and white, and the consequences can reach far further than you ever imagined. It requires an investment, both in time and emotion, that pulls you in and sticks with you long after. Welcome to the Inquisition.

When you launch a new game you’ll be asked if you’d like to import a world state from the Dragon Age Keep. The Keep is Bioware’s website that allows you to tailor your story with the hundreds of decisions (e.g. Is Alistair King? Who did you romance, if anyone? Did you kill the dragon in the Bone Pit?) to ensure that the world of Dragon Age Inquisition is the world you’ve shaped over the hundreds of hours of the previous games, DLC, and expansion packs. When you look at all of the possibilities in the Keep (there are over 300), you can see how modifying even the smallest detail can have huge repercussions on the storyline in Inquisition – encouraging for those who enjoy multiple playthroughs of the game.

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I want to preface this review a bit. Often I remind readers that I do not include spoilers in my reviews, but it’s all the more critical when the decisions carry this much weight. Anything of consequence in terms of story that I will say in my review was already present in my preview. While I have completed the main story thread, there is easily over 100 hours of this game that I’ve not uncovered. I’ll talk about the mechanics, pacing, and some very broad strokes on the overall game, but I absolutely will not spoil anything for you — this is a game that you need to experience on your own. Rest easy, intrepid adventurer; there are no pitfalls or traps here.

The storyline in Dragon Age Inquisition focus on a cataclysmic event: a tear in the Fade causes a massive explosion that kills scores of delegates during a peace talk between Templars and Mages. I mention this small spoiler as it literally happens the moment you hit the start button, before you even exit the opening screen. With tensions already high between these two, you can imagine just how badly they want answers when you emerge as the sole survivor. Clapped in irons, you’ll answer for their deaths — long before you will become Inquisitor, you will be a criminal, a murderer, and a pariah. It is now up to a band of unlikely heroes to prevent the mysterious tear in The Fade from destroying the world of Thedas. That is, if tensions between the Mages and the Templars doesn’t destroy it first.

This is Bioware, so you know that you’ll face a complex web of stories that’ll keep you guessing. David Gaider, long time novelist and writer for Bioware, and his team have penned a fantastic story spanning over 150 hours. Thick with lore and detail, even minor characters have plenty to say. In fact, there are over 85,000 recorded lines of dialogue in this game. Beyond that, there are tens of thousands of words in books, scrolls, plaques on statues, and much more. The world of Thedas has never been this well detailed.

I completed the main story arc and enough side missions to reach that point to make sure I could speak to the evenness of the story itself, as well as the completeness of the ending. I was happy to see that, despite moving to a completely open-world model, the game remains as cohesive and intricate as ever. It wasn’t until over 30 hours into the game that it felt like it truly hit its stride. I won’t ruin it for you, but there is a moment where I felt like it instantly lived up to its namesake. A little further into the main story the game takes a hard turn and gives you a chance to engage in a little traditional diplomacy. In the end, you’ll make decisions that change the face of an entire nation — there are no small decisions in Dragon Age Inquisition. The ending of the game felt comprehensive and complete, tying up some loose ends and fully fraying others on purpose. I feel like Inquisition’s storyline is a masterstroke and easily the best in the series by a wide margin.

Dragon Age: Inquisition Review
Dragon Age: Inquisition is the best role-playing game to come out in the last two years.
Graphics90%
Audio90%
Story80%
Gameplay95%
Pros
  • Massive Open World
  • Deep Leveling System
  • Choices Matter
Cons
  • Uninspiring Story
90%GoTY 2014!
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About The Author

FiLTHY ESKiMO

I'm a game tester, developer and blogger. Love video-games.