Dragon Age The Veilguard promotional image

The ‘Dragon Age: The Veilguard’ Reveals Gave Us a Lot To Process!

Dragon Age fans are finally eating well after years of begging for scraps from BioWare and EA Games. The fourth installment in the series, previously entitled Dragon Age: Dreadwolf, has been retitled to The Veilguard and is slated for release in the fall. Yes, fall of this year. 2024. Hallelujah!

Recommended Videos

It’s been a decade since Dragon Age: Inquisition won millions of hearts and multiple accolades including the Game Award for Game of the Year, and that timeline is reflected in The Veilguard. The story takes place nine years after the events in the Inquisition DLC story Trespasser, and Solas—the ancient elven god known as the Dreadwolf—is trying to tear down the barrier between the mortal world and the Fade (spirit world), leaving the player and their companions to stop him before he unleashes a maelstrom of demons upon the world and kills untold numbers of innocent people.

Here’s what we know about Dragon Age: The Veilguard so far.

The Dragon Age: The Veilguard trailer introduces new companions

On Sunday, BioWare and EA Games released the first trailer for Dragon Age: The Veilguard, a cinematic look at what’s to come in the fourth game of the series. Fan-favorite dwarf rogue Varric, who’s gone gray since we last saw him as a companion in Inquisition, fights off a group of bad guys in a bar with fellow Inquisition alum Scout Harding. She’s one of seven available companions in Veilguard and—much to this writer’s joy—she’s the first fully romanceable dwarf in the series.

As Varric and Harding fight and talk about the battle to come, the trailer introduces six brand new companions, all of whom are also romanceable. There’s Neve, a disabled private detective and member of the Shadow Dragons, who help freed slaves in Tevinter flee their former captors; Bellara, a Veil Jumper trying to hold back a growing threat in Arlathan Forest; Davrin, a well-known, monster-hunting Grey Warden with a pet baby griffon; Taash, a qunari dragon hunter and treasure seeker associated with the Lords of Fortune; Emmrich, a necromancer (who has a skeletal assistant named Manfred) hailing from Nevarra’s Mourn Watch, which guards the Grand Necropolis and investigates magical disturbances; and Lucanis, a mage killer from the Antivan Crows, which is currently lead by his grandmother Caterina Dellamorte.

BioWare has also released tarot card art for The Veilguard companions, similar to the art from Inquisition, seen below.

  • Bellara's tarot card from Dragon Age The Veilguard
  • Davrin's tarot card from Dragon Age The Veilguard
  • Emmrich's tarot card from Dragon Age The Veilguard
  • Scout Harding's tarot card from Dragon Age The Veilguard
  • Lucanis's tarot card from Dragon Age The Veilguard
  • Neve's tarot card from Dragon Age The Veilguard
  • Taash's tarot card from Dragon Age The Veilguard

The Veilguard gameplay changes up Dragon Age standards

On June 11, BioWare released a 20:22 gameplay video from Dragon Age: The Veilguard that shows footage from very early in the game, which starts in media res as the player—the Rook, who can be from one of six available factions—races through the gorgeous city Minrathous with Varric, searching for both Scout Harding and Neve so they can stop Solas from tearing down the Veil. The footage is “edited for brevity and to avoid any major spoilers,” but it reveals a ton. For example: top-down strategic combat is no more, though players will unlock unique powers that can be used for special attacks as they progress through the game.

Combat is also smoother, faster, and less static than in previous Dragon Age games. The gameplay trailer follows a rogue Rook, who uses both dual-wield daggers and a bow and arrow in combat. Mages can move instead of standing in one place, allowing them to get up close and personal with enemies—a major game-changer for magic users.

The Veilguard is also a mission-based game rather than an open-world one. “Everything is hand-touched, hand-crafted, very highly curated,” director Corinne Busche told IGN. “We believe that’s how we get the best narrative experience, the best moment-to-moment experience. However, along the way, these levels that we go to do open up, some of them have more exploration than others. Alternate branching paths, mysteries, secrets, optional content you’re going to find and solve. So it does open up, but it is a mission-based, highly curated game.”

Regarding side quests and optional missions, Busche added, “Some of them are [highly curated], especially when it involves the motivations and the experiences of the companions. You’re really along on this journey with them. Others, you’re investigating a missing family… and the entirety of this bog is open up to you. You’re searching for clues, finding a way to solve their disappearance. So really it’s not a one-size-fits-all solution. But I do want to emphasize that hand-crafted and curated is our approach.”

Players can still choose who to bring with them on missions, though they can only bring two companions along, which is a drop from the three companions they were allowed to bring in previous Dragon Age games. This may have something to do with the emphasis on combo moves and exploiting weaknesses or overcoming resistances in combat—brief glimpses of the ability wheel (seen below) show how one character can hit an enemy with the first part of a one-two punch and another character can finish them off (or get close).

Dragon Age Veilguard ability wheel preview

Outside of combat, players can still choose the flavor of dialogue they want using a wheel with different emotions, and their choices will affect their companions throughout gameplay. Much like previous games, romances and bonds will depend on character approval, which is determined by the player’s choices.

“Each of the companions that you journey with has really complex backstories, problems of their own, deep motivations. And these play out through some really well fleshed-out character arcs; missions that are unique to them, but ultimately tie into the larger story,” Busche told IGN. “And along the way we’ll make consequential decisions for each of them, sometimes affecting who they are, sometimes heart-wrenching—I’ve cried more than once—and sometimes pretty joyous.”

Previously, characters could carry their choices from Dragon Age: Origins and Dragon Age 2 into Dragon Age: Inquisition via the Dragon Age Keep, a website where you can tie your console and EA Games accounts and register your previous game choices so the world-building would be consistent across every title in the series. The Veilguard won’t use the Keep, but players can still choose what happened historically through tarot cards at the start of the game, with context for those decisions.

Plus, in addition to designing their Rook in the character creator, they’ll also design their Inquisitor. This time around, the character creator sounds like it will fix several complaints from previous games: there are lighting options to help select skin tones, non-binary pronouns and non-gendered character options, body sliders, and good hair. (Finally!) You can play a human, elf, dwarf, or qunari and choose your lineage, class, playstyle, and faction. Rooks can hail from one of six factions: the Shadow Dragons, the Grey Wardens, the Antivan Crows, the Lords of Fortune, the Mourn Watch, or the Veil Jumpers. At least one companion is involved with each, creating immediate ties between the player character and an NPC.

When will Dragon Age: The Veilguard be available?

Dragon Age: The Veilguard is slated for release in fall 2024, though we do not know the exact date yet. It will be available on PlayStation 5, Xbox, and PC via Steam and Epic Games. You can add it to your wishlist or follow Dragon Age on social media for updates.

The Mary Sue is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more about our Affiliate Policy
Image of Samantha Puc
Samantha Puc
Samantha Puc (she/they) is a fat, disabled, lesbian writer and editor who has been working in digital and print media since 2010. Their work focuses primarily on LGBTQ+ and fat representation in pop culture and their writing has been featured on Refinery29, Bitch Media, them., and elsewhere. Samantha is the co-creator of Fatventure Mag and she contributed to the award-winning Fat and Queer: An Anthology of Queer and Trans Bodies and Lives. They are an original cast member of Death2Divinity, and they are currently pursuing a Master of Fine Arts degree in creative nonfiction at The New School. When Samantha is not working or writing, she loves spending time with her cats, reading, and perfecting her grilled cheese recipe.