Art of Dragon Age: Inquisition - Part 1, EGX Presentation Breakdown

A dissection of the latest stills and art from the Dragon Age: Inquisition presentation at EGX. See it on Youtube:


Hello everyone, my name is Ashe. At EGX in London, Bioware presented the Art of Dragon Age: Inquisition, showing a short yet relatively new scenic trailer, and a live demo of the Fallen Mire quest seen at Gamescom and PAX. While a lot of content has been shown before, slides regarding Dragon Age, both new and old, appeared throughout the presentation. Here are 25 important slides to think on.

The first is the Premise of Dragon Age, with concept art that we've seen from all across the Dragon Age universe. A few are well known: the bottom left being the Warden, two spaces right as Hawke. Fenris. Isabela, Anders. Flemeth. Others represent people and races and stem from not only the Dragon Age games, but also other media like the comics, the World of Thedas book, and more. In this part of the presentation, rather early, we see the gist of what Dragon Age is and what are the main drives in creating this world.

One of the Chantry's buildings. To be honest, I felt this could have been the one that Brother Burkel had created with the Hero of Ferelden's help. Just a thought, as the architecture seemed as such.

One area, four different types to describe it. The top left is what we're familiar with, for those who follow Twitter. It's about adding different tonalities in changing the time of day, the atmosphere. Playing with idea of a threatened state or a complacent one. 

We see the stark colors, the shining light, or rather person, amidst the darkness. The people protecting this light. A warrior, rogue, and mage fighting in this foggy, broken state. The shining person seems to be the same one from the latest Enemy trailer, the one that the Inquisitor reaches his hand out to. Many speculate this is Andraste, but there's very little context to go off, other than the fact that the head top looks similar to one that the Divine wears, as well as the Inquisitor being called the Herald of Andraste.

A very war-torn land. Huge dog statue on the top left, which can mean one of two things. 1, in Ferelden and it's a huge Dog Lord statue, or more realistically 2 which is a representation of the Dread Wolf named Fen'Harel. Seems to be a huge crossbow on the right and a singular war banner in the middle. A very torched environment that seems to be less than a day since being burned down.

The underground, with the contrast of blue and red. Most likely reflecting the difference of blue lyrium versus red lyrium. You can tell there's a bridge at the top of the light source, but there's also Dwarven architecture on the right. 

Varric, with a hood on his head (which is something we never saw during Dragon Age 2, by the way. He's in probably the same area, as there's a bridge and, judging by the barrel on that platform, some kind of quarry or construction site. You can see more of the Dwarven statue on the right.

From left to right: Cassandra Pentaghast, what seems to be a male Dwarven rogue Inquisitor, Solas, and Varric. Solas seems to be in front of an old statue, and everyone is looking at him, possibly waiting for a reaction or response. A skull is on the ground to the left of Cassandra, with the moss and flora overgrown. Elven ruins, no doubt about it.

A shot from the Orlesian ball at the Winter Palace in Halamshiral. Lots of well-dressed noblemen and also servants. Something that I'll mention that Masked Empire readers know is that servants will wear a toned down version of their master's mask. So if one is wearing an assortment of pearls with their dazzling silverite mask, the servant will wear a lesser form without the pearls. Probably in a different, cheaper material. You can tell the vibrancy of their attire, with frills and all the more dedication to the small intricacies of wear. As for the dancers, it's curious who is dancing. The man on the left does not have a mask, which could mean the Inquisitor or a foreigner, while the right most likely is of Orlesian descent. And the one on the right has some sort of block tied to their middle finger. It's not elegant, which could possibly mean it's either a magical item, some sort of signifier of that specific person, or a marking.

The next is Val Royeaux in Orlais. You can tell without a doubt that's Orlais, with the red and blue contrasting against each other vibrantly with the gold trimmings.   There's also an attention to proper shrub shaping and gardening, as seen with the leaves and greenery present everywhere. 

Ever the contrast, here's a demon that jumps while in the Fade. While a demon is generally a demon, this one seems to have blue sparks emitting all around its body. It could be magic-related or Fade-specific.

The original concept art for each of the Inquisition's 12. Blackwall, Cassandra, Cole, Dorian, Iron Bull, Cullen, Sera, Solas, Varric, Vivienne, Josephine, Leliana. I'm sure many of you saw this a few years ago.

Facial concepts for each character. Each one individualized to show age, to show experience. Characters that have been bloodied and betrayed...lived multiple roles and lives. Some you know like Josephine, Cullen, Sera, Vivienne, Bull, Solas, and a couple we do not. Perhaps the right being Empress Celene, but also possibly the female mage from the Enemy trailer that was accompanied by the Tevinter mages. The bottom right could possibly be Avernus's son, kept alive by magic. We saw both of them during the E3 gameplay of this year.

A look at the sharp angles of Cassandra's face. She is a very blunt, straight-to-the-point kind of woman. With a no-BS attitude and sharpness, her face represents the edge in her personality. You see this in other characters, like Sera's amiable face with soft shape. Bull's missing eye to draw a rugged and warring kind of style and expression.

The Chantry and all forms and people related to it. You can see the statue of Andraste burning in the middle, the statues on the left representing the most loyal of servants to her. The Divine, the Mothers and Sisters, the Templars...though an unknown gold-plated person in the middle with their hand on their hip. I frankly tweeted about this earlier, as I have never seen such a person in the lore. Or probably forgot. The Seekers are also part of the Chantry, so perhaps an earlier concept. To add, on the right are darker forms normally affiliated with Nevarra and the Mortalitasi, as well as the Imperial Chantry that believes in Andraste, but hails magic.

The next slide is of the Qunari, generally adorned with war paint and lightly clothed. Different characters we've seen, like Tallis in the middle. The Saarebas. Tal-vashoth scattered. The Tome of Koslun at the bottom of the screen. Everything is practical and less concentrated on the aesthetics. But Qunari have their own style.

The Orlesians. The Chevaliers, the nobles, the Empress. Most are masked, though some of the military are not. Rich, highly detailed items and apparel. Key focus on dress for all women. The higher the nobility, the paler the it seems. The blue attire of the Empress is the most stark, though I imagine that color will be purple quite soon.

Tevinter. Dark. Intimate with magic and artifacts of power. The only one we recognize are Dorian and the Venatori masks. What I assume to be Hessarian's statue in the back, as he was the founder of the Imperial Chantry. 

And the style of the Inquisition. Pointy. A mix of different tastes and colors, which I don't think it's proper to attribute any specific color, as the backgrounds for each Inquisitor are different. The front three represent the types of Inquisitor. Then there's Josephine, Cullen, Leliana. The Smith we don't know who is, and though at one point in one of the conventions it was confirmed that Wade from Wade's Emporium is not coming back, we now have someone else distinct to take care of our crafting. Also, to point out, you can see the officer with a red and gold outfit and a blue sash. The same one from the Orlesian ball slide. So...there's that.

Describing the color palette for Ferelden, Orlais, the Inquisition, and Tevinter. The most prominent of all people and probably the most influential factions for Inquisition.

Dragon Age forms its own art and style for different people. It's not just "Orlesian" or "Fereldan", but different people and groups have their own extensions of creativity.

And the final slides, some of the tarot cards describing the companions for Dragon Age: Inquisition. Each companion's cards do foreshadow their own personal back stories, as well as the tribulations that they will face in the troublesome times within the events of Inquisition. Varieties of themes and symbols indicating death, inspiration, hesitations, valor, betrayal, chest hair.  If you know tarot cards, you'll be able to peer more into these themes. Truthfully, all these things have some precedence for each character to come. Even the Inquisitor, who will struggle on his or her path on the way to face the Elder One.

More's to come from EGX - I'll be breaking down the short scenery trailer next that was seen during this same presentation. a later time. For now, take care everyone. My name is Ashe. Fen'harel enansal.