Dragon Age: Origins: Awakenings is setting up to be quite the expansion on the already large world of Dragon Age: Origins and that’s definitely not a bad thing. With Awakenings adding new characters, new enemies, why wouldn’t it add new environments to explore and bloody Darkspawn? One new environment is the lost dwarven fortress of Kal’Hirol. BioWare describes it as:
The dwarven fortress of Kal’Hirol was long known as a center of learning for the smith caste. Its workshops are where Paragon Hirol conceived his famous improvements to golem resilience and power, and where Hirol’s favorite student developed a method for storing refined lyrium that is still used today.
These breakthroughs brought Kal’Hirol great prosperity; its passageway are said to have glittered with gold and silver. But the fall of Kal’Hirol is shrouded in mystery. All that is known is that the fortress’s elite one day showed up at Orzammar’s great doors, exhausted and in despair over the loss of their home.
From that description, Kal’Hirol seems to have everything the budding adventurer would want: Riches, mystery, knowledge, and plenty of death to give to those wretched Darkspawn. Certainly, my dwarf warrior will be interested in visiting it, especially if there’s riches involved!
BioWare seems to be very interested in keeping Dragon Age alive as a franchise and with good reason, it is a great game with an equally great story and an expansive world to tell it in. While I am a sucker for fantasy (I play D&D on a regular basis), I still am keeping my hopes up that BioWare will touch upon the world of Jade Empire once more, if only to shut people like me up. However, knowing BioWare, it will not be an effort done lightly and a sequel to Jade Empire will only serve in me hungering for more than they already gave.
Dragon Age: Origins: Awakenings releases the second wave of Darkspawn upon the land of Ferelden on March 16, 2010.