Dragon Age 4 is real and in production at BioWare, we know that much. But what when is the Dragon Age 4 release date? Where will the story go next? And which of our favourite characters will return? While BioWare may be tight-lipped about the sequel to Inquisition, a few pieces of the jigsaw puzzle that is their next fantasy RPG are already floating around the internet. Here’s everything we know about Dragon Age 4.
Related: why Dragon Age’s lore is so great.
Dragon Age 4 release date
Since BioWare have yet to officially announce the game we don’t have a Dragon Age 4 release date yet. However, we do know that the game is being worked on by staff at BioWare. Writing for the game was taking place in May 2017, and at the time development was considered to be in ‘early stages’.
In an interview with Game Informer in June 2018, BioWare’s Casey Hudson said “we do have people who are figuring out what a next Dragon Age would look like,” signalling that Dragon Age 4 is absolutely in development.
Dragon Age: Inquisition began development around early 2011, and released November 2014. If BioWare are planning on a three-year development period again, that would place Dragon Age 4 in a late 2019 release window. However, with so much of the studio working on Anthem, there’s potential for a longer wait.
Dragon Age 4 development
Thanks to Alexis Kennedy revealing that he has written content for the next Dragon Age game, we know that development started shortly before May 2017. We also know that all Dragon Age-related job listings have been removed from BioWare’s website, which could suggest that the final development team roster has been cemented.
On top of that, we know that the project won’t be headed up by Dragon Age series creative director Mike Laidlaw. That is because in October 2017 he left BioWare after 14 years with the company.
A thank you tweet to Laidlaw from Dragon Age executive producer Mark Darrah reads, “I am so excited for you to see what the next Dragon Age will be,” confirming that development is certainly underway something Dragon Age-related.
Yet another announcement further confirmed, albeit unofficially, that a fourth Dragon Age game is in production. Executive producer of the entire Dragon Age franchise, Mark Darrah, tweeted that people were “hard at work” on a new game.
Word from sources within BioWare suggested that the game would be “live”, leading to concerns from players about Dragon Age becoming a Destiny-like multiplayer game. BioWare’s general manager Casey Hudson tweeted about these fears, emphasising that the live elements would be focused on continuing the story after the main narrative is over.
Reading lots of feedback regarding Dragon Age, and I think you’ll be relieved to see what the team is working on. Story & character focused.
Too early to talk details, but when we talk about “live” it just means designing a game for continued storytelling after the main story.
— Casey Hudson (@CaseyDHudson) January 25, 2018
Dragon Age 4 story
While no concrete details of Dragon Age 4’s story have been revealed, we do know that Alexis Kennedy, founder of Failbetter Games, has been involved in the game’s writing. In May 2017 he revealed that we was working for BioWare on a chunk of story and lore. His plotline is said to be separate from the core story, but more substantial than background lore drops. In short: expect characters with dialogue and backstory.
“If you’ve seen a lot of my work before you will probably not be surprised by the choice of subject matter. It’s familiar stuff,” Kennedy told Eurogamer, suggesting that there will likely be a strange, Lovecraftian feel to his section, or at least a focus on death or loss. Perhaps it will be set in the Fade, Dragon Age’s demonic dimension?
Aside from that, any details about Dragon Age 4’s plot are purely guesswork. After the success of Inquisition, it is a sensible bet that the next game could be a direct sequel, as opposed to a largely standalone story set in the same universe as the series has been so far. The end of Inquisition saw trickster elf Solas – revealed to be the god of betrayal Fen’Harel – disappear, and the Trespasser DLC concluded with the Inquisitor vowing to track him down and stop his plan to destroy the world. It makes sense that a sequel would cast Solas as the key villain and deal with halting his plans to usher in a new age for the ancient elves.
Wherever Dragon Age takes us next, we can be certain that the universe has more stories to tell. In August 2017, creative director at the time, Mike Laidlaw, explained in a tweet to a fan that the Dragon Age team had ideas for a “theoretical game five,” and that “[t]here is no planned ending for DA.”
Laidlaw has also expressed that the game may not be the fourth game in the core series, suggesting the Dragon Age game currently in development could be a spin-off, exploring a different area – perhaps even a different time period – of Thedas. Maybe we won’t be tracking down Solas after all.