BioWare has a longstanding reputation of forcing players to make tough decisions. From which love interests to pursue to whose life to save, the developer of Mass Effect, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, and Dragon Age has an undeniable knack for making gamers feel invested in the lives of their characters. BioWare plans to keep that tradition alive and well from the first moments of Dragon Age: Inquisition with the help of a new online tool.
The “Dragon Age Keep” is an online tool that players will use to determine the starting world state before jumping into their Inquisition games. The Keep will give users the opportunity to experience the stories from Dragon Age: Origins and Dragon Age 2 through the application. Consumers preparing to play Inquisition will use the tool to determine their party members, romantic interests (which Inquisition will be taking a new approach to), and other major plot decisions from the first two games.
Mark Darrah, executive producer of Inquisition, announced Dragon Age Keep on the BioWare blog. Darrah explained that the online solution to transferring choices made on current-generation systems to PS4 and Xbox One will “allow players to take their unique world state into any platform (present or future) and even other media.”
The Inquisition team has been hunting down the best approach for transferring save files to the project formerly known as Dragon Age 3 since the company announced plans to release the game on next-gen consoles. According to Darrah, the move to the cloud-based system will help to eliminate the potential logical inconsistencies that could occur.
“An additional benefit offered by moving to the cloud is being able to fix issues in plot logic, which historically we have not been able to do because of client side complexity or platform holder limits. Under the hood, the Keep has a logic validator which ensures you’ll always have a valid world state free from errors and conflicts.”
No answers were offered as to how players will be able to import previous games directly to “Dragon Age Keep.” The team is definitely aware that this is a feature fans want to see. Darrah’s statement explained that the team is still investigating ways in which save files from previous games could be used to populate the initial world state. If the trailer is any sign, once player’s find themselves in the world state they helped created, they should have much more freedom than the previous games permitted.
BioWare is attempting to find a balance between the combat systems of the first two Dragon Age games by mixing action with tactical strategy. The Tactical View, which debuted in the PC version of Origins, will be returning in Inquisition. The tool gives players a top-down view to plan their attacks. Players will also have the ability to switch between characters while paused. This feature is intended to allow for smooth transitions between different types of attacks.
Interested parties can register for the “Dragon Age Keep” beta program now. The full service is expected to launch next year, a few months before the game’s release.
Dragon Age: Inquisition releases in autumn 2014 for the PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.
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Source: BioWare Blog