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Dragon Age: Inquisition main storyline playable, new screens and assets released

Thursday, 19th December 2013 22:33 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Dragon Age: Inquisition has been ticking along nicely for the past few months, and BioWare has released details of its progress to date, including a fair whack of new assets to drool over.

Writing on the developer’s blog, franchise executive producer Mark Darrah said the team is finishing off a “holiday build” – a BioWare tradition of getting a version of the game as complete as possible, presumably so team members and other BioWare staff can take a look at it during their days off.

The Dragon Age team intends for its Inquisition holiday build to have “the main storyline completely playable from beginning to end”, so it can work on pacing and spacing and “all of the gameplay systems working together”.

It’s also starting work on voice overs and music, balancing classes so they feel unique, and most excitingly, locking down tech and content. To this end, check out images of a tarnish shader, trees, corpses, outfits, faces, and environments. Locations are quite important to Darrah, and he even released a sequence of work-in-progress shots for one location.

“As you can see, an initial screenshot is critiqued and altered to show the goal for the area. This gives the level artist the specific direction needed to take the area to the next level (so to speak),” he said.

Dragon Age: Inquisition is expected on PC, PlayStation 3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One in the latter half of 2014. Elsewhere at BioWare, Mass Effect 4 has also produced a playable end-of-year build.

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10 Comments

  1. lookingglass

    Can. Not. Wait.

    It’ll be good to see Bioware (hopefully) get back to its roots with the new Dragon Age and the incoming Mass Effect Next.

    After the disappointment that was SWTOR and with the exaggerated ME3 ending debacle, these next two games will make or break Bioware as a development studio and as the best storytellers in the business.

    Good luck Bioware!

    #1 9 months ago
  2. TheWulf

    The sequence from concept art to final in-game version (this picture) irritates me, and I’m not just being picky, I have reasons for it. Those reasons are based upon having a sense of aesthetics.

    See, in the art, you have various decals on the stones, and moss atop the stones. I’ve seen that kind of thing done in countless games before, especially Japanese ones. It would have looked pretty. The final version, however, for that lack of life looks sterile and artificial. The rocks just look too flat, colourless, shiny, and new.

    Is this the price we pay for fidelity? Higher resolution rock textures at the cost of other aesthetics? Honestly, I’d rather have lower fidelity settings and better aesthetics. Then again, it might just be the sort of home-grown laziness I’ve come to expect from the AAA industry.

    Still, that progression from concept art to an in-game screenshot is depressingly bad as far as aesthetics go. If they’d actually made it look like the concept art, it would have been quite lovely.

    Skyrim had the same problem. An obsession with fidelity over little touches of details. I don’t care how high resolution a texture is if the detailing of the area that texture resides in is boring. The weird thing is is that Bethesda were better about that in Fallout 3, as there were lots of neat little touches in Fallout 3.

    Obliviion, however, had that same kind of dead newness to it. Something doesn’t look lived in if there’s no life growing and everything looks brand new.

    So, yeah, this is a sterling example of my ongoing argument against putting fidelity over aesthetics.

    #2 9 months ago
  3. Legendaryboss

    EA level of playable? Or Playable? We’ll never know.

    #3 9 months ago
  4. FlyBoogy

    Still didnt see anything that would make me want this. Loved Origins but couldnt finish the demo of DA2

    #4 9 months ago
  5. YoungZer0

    @2: It’s not final, you blabbermouth.

    #5 9 months ago
  6. Moonwalker1982

    Here’s more screenshots.

    http://gamingeverything.com/dragon-age-inquisition-screenshots/

    #6 9 months ago
  7. The_Red

    @5
    That’s the thing. When they are showing that as the final area here, it usually means that in the eyes of team / schedule, that level is finished (Or 99 percent done) and the artists have moved on to other parts.

    Sadly, the final one seems to have missed not only the coloring and texture details, but even some of the notes like pale mortar for red stones or grass growing into the edge of giant stones. That plus the whole crimson-ish theme of rocks and stones has been removed to make way for a much more muted and lifeless (Rainy London Day) look.

    #7 9 months ago
  8. RageOfThorn

    Not next gen material AT ALL ……. Looks like hammered shit.

    #8 9 months ago
  9. ddtd

    @7 – Where does it say the art was final? The screenshots are clearly labeled as Alpha, and this article and the blog state that the environments are a work in progress.

    Also, @2, if you read the blog you would know that the screenshot is not the final result, and that the artist rendition were revisions mocked up OVER the screenshot to show the artists what they need to change. That was the point of posting the screenshot; to give an example of their revision process.

    #9 9 months ago
  10. Phoenixblight

    @7

    Not sure where you got final especially since all the shots say “pre_alpha” ie preproduction. There will be multiple passes before launch.

    #10 9 months ago

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