BioWare has just released a brand new preview for their upcoming dark fantasy RPG Dragon Age: Dreadwolf. Following on from 2014’s Dragon Age: Inquisition, the developers have teased a cutscene from the upcoming game which, though short, has massive implications for the series.
Due to release in 2023, Dragon Age: Dreadwolf, also known as Dragon Age 4 may well find itself among the best RPGs of all time, should the devs play their cards right. Alleged to be in very good shape by the developers, fans are expecting big things from this latest installment. It’s been just over eight years since the last main Dragon Age release – a long time to be starved of dark fantasy goodness.
However, though it comes in at just under a minute long, this new preview suggests that Dreadwolf will shake up the Dragon Age saga in a big way, whilst also carrying the legacy of the game’s predecessors. Though it may not seem like much at first glance, rest assured that the cutscene is loaded with hints and tidbits.
As you can see, there’s a lot to unpack here. First up, let’s talk about the Veil; the barrier between magic and reality that’s clearly set to play a key part in Dreadwolf’s storyline. It’s a tried and tested fantasy trope of which the likes of Warhammer 40,000, and The Witcher also make generous use.
However, the twist here is that the eponymous Dread Wolf looks dead set on tearing this barrier down (having put it up himself in the first place). The Fade, Dragon Age’s realm of magic, is full of raw emotion and terrifying demonic forces. Though Dragon Age: Inquisition toyed with the idea of reality being breached, a complete tearing down of the barriers between the magical and the real could take the game to some trippy and interesting places.
The trailer also begs the question as to whether or not such a tearing down would even, necessarily, be a bad thing. Is Dragon Age: Inquisition party member and elven god of legend Solas the Dreadwolf a tyrant or a freedom fighter? In typical BioWare style, the teaser invites you to answer that question yourself.
You may well also recognize the dulcet tones of Varric Tethras, a fan-favorite party member from Dragon Age 2 and Dragon Age: Inquisition. As well as giving us a chance to swoon over his velvety voice, the choice to use Varric as the narrator suggests that, even though Dreadwolf is committed to going to bold new places, it’ll still be grounded in the existing continuity that fans of the series know and love.
Mass Effect Andromeda, the fourth entry in the Mass Effect series, met with a frosty reception, not only due to bugs and animation issues but also because of the ways in which it divested itself from the established story of the saga. Perhaps, by sticking with staple characters like Varric and Solas and by grounding itself in the series’ past, Dreadwolf will avoid that particular pitfall and deliver something that satisfies established fans and newcomers alike.