Fans of BioWare’s Dragon Age series got a nice little surprise today, as the studio dropped a four-minute highlight reel at the all-virtual Gamescom 2020 promising players that the next game is still in development, and that it’s still going to be Dragon Age, even if we do have to keep waiting for approximately a million more years.
Dragon Age enthusiasts (me) have been waiting for concrete news about the next game in the series since 2015, when the Trespasser DLC for Dragon Age: Inquisition all but literally offered itself up as a prologue. Although the existence of some kind of Dragon Age 4 was an open secret, it took years for the studio even to admit publicly there was indeed a new game in development. Instead, BioWare focused on science-fiction properties like Mass Effect: Andromeda and Anthem.
The four-minute video features an array of studio leadership talking in very high-level terms about the game’s development. Everyone featured promises that the game will be chock-full of characters we’ll love, hate, or love to hate; epic boss fights; sweeping scenery; and all the fanciest technology the next console generation has to offer, all of which you’d expect to hear.
It also promises many more of the kind of trademark agonizing decisions that have defined the series to date, particularly in Inquisition. “Choice is a big part of what Dragon Age is as a franchise,” Gameplay Director Andre Garcia says in the video. “The decisions you make can effect change in the world.”
RPG Programmer Katrina Barkwell then expands on this idea: “Decision-making can mean that a party member lives… or that a party member dies,” she intones with the kind of glee that players who have chosen between saving Hawke or saving certain other living Grey Wardens know to both love and fear hearing from the Dragon Age crew.
Details are otherwise light. In small snippets of voice actors recording their lines, the video teases both the return of existing antagonists (hi, Solas, I’m coming for you) and also teases two previously unknown characters: Bellara and a Grey Warden called Davrin. Concept art liberally sprinkled throughout hints at locations throughout Thedas, which desperate, thirsty fans (…still me) are sure to immediately start tearing apart for details and clues while we wait another year or two for more concrete information.