A new DA Talk on Templars in Dragon Age!
- The Templar Order and its organization
- Lyrium Addiction and Abuse
- Mage Control (Harrowing, Phylacteries, Tranquility, Right of Annulment)
- Role in Dragon Age: Inquisition
Watch it on Youtube: http://youtu.be/WHBsBagM2hs
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In the Chant of Light, it is said that “Magic exists to serve mankind, and never to rule over him.” Today’s talk will feature one side affected by this singular verse, Templars. The military branch serving under the Chantry, tasked with the goal of governing magic use of all mages.
Templars come from a long history of discipline and hardship, originating from the first Inquisition. The group was dedicated to rooting out blood magic and heinous crimes in the Divine Age. An agreement called the Nevarran Accord bridged a partnership with the Chantry and the Inquisition. The higher members created a group called the Seekers of Truth, and with the creation of the Circle of Magi came the Templar Order. The Order’s power varied across Thedas, with little influence in small towns like Lothering, to almost having full control of government in cities such as Kirkwall.
Templars range from the Knight-Divine to the lowest ranked Templar. Composed mainly of humans and warriors, they are rigorously trained and devoted to their cause. Some say that the Templars are given little choice after they take their vows, due to the ritual that involves them taking in lyrium. The lyrium they consume allows the ability to dispel and resist a mage’s magic. However, the power comes at a price, for templars become addicted to the lyrium dust. Without it, they begin to experience withdrawal symptoms like hearing voices and paranoia within a few weeks. To join the Templars is to give yourself to the Order and the Chantry.
Generally, the Order designates itself across Thedas to govern Circle of Magi, locations where mages are held and taught the principles of magic. Templars manage and control mages through multiple ways, ranging from the simplest forms of tracking to the most brutal, near inhumane methods.
When mages are, depending on who you ask, accepted into the Circle, the Templars acquire a sample of blood to be kept in a phylactery. It is described as a tool used to either “track down or remotely cast a spell on a fugitive mage”. In the event a mage escapes, a Templar may use the phylactery to hunt down the mage and either bring them back to the Circle, or kill them if they turn rogue.
To be accepted in the eyes of the Chantry, a mage must undergo a test called the Harrowing. Templars require mages to go through this process, by crossing into the Fade and resisting the lull of a demon. Templars present at a mage’s Harrowing are tasked with killing the mage, if he or she allows a demon to pass through.
However, not every mage even undergoes the Harrowing. If a mage seems unfit to control their own magic, whether they seem influenced or tempted by blood magic, or they are too weak to utilize their power, a Templar will make that mage Tranquil. Tranquility is a ritual that severs the mage from the Fade, ultimately making them incapable of using magic. Further, the ritual renders them emotionless, unable to have their own ambitions or drives. The opinion of Tranquility varies from person to person, from some feeling it a good thing to others stating it kills all freedom. Because of the ritual’s ability to block a mage from spirit possession, Templars see it as a necessary action.
If a Circle of Magi shows itself to be a threat against itself or others, Templars have the ability to invoke the Rite of Annulment. The Rite gives templars the ability to purge a Circle of every mage. Everyone mage is killed in that Circle. Mages live in constant fear of this possibility. Well-known Annulments have been present constantly with the uprising of Circles in the Age of Dragon, from the Annulment of Kirkwall’s Circle, to the White Spire, and at Dairsmuid.
Dragon Age: Inquisition will involve the repercussions of the mage Anders blowing up the Kirkwall Chantry, causing the Mage-Templar War. The Nevarran Accord was canceled and Templars no longer have a sworn responsibility to the Chantry. Some have kept their allegiance to the Chantry, but others have appeared in the latest Inquisition gameplay as Red Templars, the Red Templars embued with red lyrium, the more potent and dangerous type of Lyrium that offers powers that rival even a mage’s. However, this red lyrium comes at a cost, causing psychological and mental instability with its song, forcing the user to lose his or her will. Whether Red Templars are capable of retaining their sanity due to this greater lyrium remains to be seen, but with the ages old matter of Mages versus Templars, the conflict will continue. Whether it will meet a resolution depends on your choices as Inquisitor in the next game. Neither Templars nor Mages are completely in the right - but you must choose who will have a future in Thedas.
The question always is the same, though the subject may be different: What is the goal of Templars in Dragon Age: Inquisition? What are your thoughts?
As we switch back to the last DA Talk, we recall Flemeth and her role for Inquisition. I noted that I would refrain from talking about Flemeth on this channel. Perhaps in a blog post but my thoughts are long and convoluted. But many of you sought to describe your feelings on Flemeth and I thank you very much for joining the conversation. Many of you know that Youtube has changed the comment section, which has made it even harder to interact.
In the case that you cannot reply properly in these comments, or you just hate the new section as much as I do, there are two ways to show up in the next DA Talk. One is by using the “Submit” link in the description, and 2 is by replying to the video post on my Facebook for any DA Talks that show up. I’m not sure how long the current YT comment section will last, but if you’d like to engage in those methods, please do so.
Thank you for watching, my name is Ashe. I will see you in two weeks with the next DA Talk.