Dragon Age: The Veilguard Gameplay Shows A More Action-Oriented RPG But With That Familiar BioWare Writing

EA and BioWare has reveal over 20 minutes of gameplay for Dragon Age: The Veilguard, the next game in the RPG series releasing this year.

The gameplay footage of the rechristen game previously referred to as Dragon Age Dreadwolf and informally as Dragon Age 4 shows an abbreviated gameplay at the start of the game. Rook, the customisable player character, teams up with series favourite Varric (now with long black hair, but it’s still him and his crossbow Bianca) and two of the previously-revealed companions, Harding and Neve.

This is our first look at the city of Minrathous, the capital of the Tevinter Imperium, a location previously only mentioned but not seen in past games.

The combat in Dragon Age: The Veilguard is now more action game-style than ever in the series, which started out with a CRPG-esque combat system. You only directly control Rook this time it seems- no party member swapping was shown- and as a Rogue, Rook has a lot of mobility and way, way more animations for attacking than past games. The sequence is also linear set-piece.

There is an element of “real-time-with pause” in the ability wheel. You can pause to select an ability for Rook, and later on your companions, to use. In the accompanying blog post, a screenshot features more of the empty slots filled up. And it looks like the party size has been shrunk from four to three. And the number of abilities has dropped to just three.

Dragon Age: The Veilguard definitely have picked up traits from Mass Effect, it looks like. It’s less clunky RPG, more action game with streamlined ability choices. And to be fair, the last Mass Effect game, Mass Effect Andromeda, did have a good combat system.

Though thankfully BioWare isn’t picking up lessons from Andromeda when it comes to its writing. Characters here speak like comrade-in-arms and thankfully not trying to out-quip each other. And Rook, has strong agency, even outside of the choices you make in the dialogue wheel. The dialogue between Varric and now-baddie Solas conveys that the two had history- and they did, if you’ve played Dragon Age Inquisition, a game that’s turning 10 years old soon.

So, is BioWare back? Let’s wait and see. Expect to see more of Dragon Age: The Veilguard in the news as it ramps up the hype to release later this year for the PS5, PC and Xbox Series X|S.

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