So a friend told me that once I started acquiring NPCCs, I’d keep acquiring them at a rapid rate. So that’s what I’m going to do. First Iron Bull, now Blackwall.
Oh, my god. Iron Bull just complemented Cassandra on her armor, telling her that “most noble women” wear armor with sculpted breasts in the breastplate, which is just silly because it makes them easier to kill. The word “titties” was used. I wish I could remember it verbatim (the internet doesn’t currently have it, either, but it was GREAT). And then he starts hitting on her post-combat that is both awkward and creepy. So I have a socially-awkward gigantic shirtless Qunari in pantaloons following me around. Awesome?
So next stop, pick up a somewhat morose Warden who has no idea where the rest of the Wardens went. But he seems lonely, so okay. That’s Blackwall.
Clear out a bit more of the Hinterlands – no more rifts, only a couple side missions that I can’t complete yet without specific ingredients and the mage plot quest, which I haven’t decided to pursue over the Templar one. We’ll see.
So back to Haven to find more things to do and check in with my new NPCCs. Iron Bull – sorry, “The Iron Bull,” since he apparently likes the article because it de-personifies him (“That really works for me”) – is pretty much a wack-job, but he’s honest and kinda funny. Blackwall is basically the motivated version of Hamlet – lonely, introspective, morose, but gets things done. I like him more than Iron Bull, even though Iron Bull is going to provide me with more entertainment value.
I really need another mage. Starting to regret going rogue this playthrough, but I’ve spend damn near 20 hours in the Hinterlands, so I’m going to keep going with Khaaras rather than have to do that all over again this soon. The horror. It’s not that I have anything against Solas – I don’t – but he just isn’t as entertaining as Iron Bull, Cassandra, and Varric. But I need a mage to light fires and resurrect people, so… I hope I get another mage soon who has more of a sense of humor.
Let’s go to an oasis. That’ll be fun and tropical, right? Or a giant desert wasteland. But I have my bros with me (Iron Bull, Varric, Solas), so it’ll be like spring break, right?
So the Oasis is a lot of sand. A LOT OF SAND. Also, a lot of shards. But, as it turns out, not enough, so I guess I’ll have to keep coming back to open the other doors that require them.
But back to Val Royeaux once someone tipped me off that I have to use fast travel to go upstairs (because that makes perfect sense, right? No. Not right. I should not have to use a magical map to WALK UP STAIRS). Sera is really irritating. REALLY irritating. I’m sure she and Iron Bull will provide me with some amusement, but I might kill her first. Or just never take her anywhere. I mean, stealing guards’ pants? Really?
And then Vivienne’s salon – for a little sanity after Sera. Why does everyone in Val Royeaux wear masks? And ruffs? These people are ridiculous. Okay, Vivienne is rockin’. And she looks much better without the silly mask, although her hat is pretty fabulous.
There are only a few things left before I go deal with either the Mages or the Templars, like sealing a rift. Fun times. First, let’s avoid the dragon. Just not strong enough yet to take that on, and I know I’ll be back in the Hinterlands at some point to deal with the last few quests. Then, Redcliffe Village, a few fetch quests, and now to make the Big Choice.
Well, I think I accidentally ended up going to the Mages. Oops. Turns out, they don’t amuse me at all and I’d much rather have chosen to side with the Templars, given what the Mages have gotten themselves into. So for those of you who have yet to make this choice, take my advice is don’t side with the assholes (by which I mean Tevinter). Up side, I rather like Dorian, Dorian doesn’t like Alexius.
Oh, no. Apparently not. So here’s my choice. I can demand the Mages seal the breach or demand that the Templars do it. The Lord Seeker of the Templars is a jackass, but the Mages have allied themselves with Magister Alexius, who is using creeeeeeepy magic and is probably an evil blood mage. I really REALLY don’t want to enter into any sort of alliance with Alexius. Ever. The very idea of joining with him makes my skin crawl. I also don’t particularly like the Lord Seeker, who needs a foot shoved up his rear end. In other words, I hate all my potential allies.
So I did what any gamer would do and asked the internet. The internet said to go mage, if only because the quest is more interesting. Okay, internet. Mages it is. My advisors do not think this is a good idea – they like the idea of going after the Templars instead. However, that just makes me want to actually try this, although Cassandra’s point – that we can’t let the Magister control the Mages – is really the big seller for me. If the point is that I’m going to take him out, then I’m totally behind this.
While they’re arguing, Dorian wanders in wearing half a shirt. That’s amusing. Also, I have to take him with me. Okay. I can live with that. Who else? Varric and Iron Bull, of course. Because Sera annoys me more than she amuses me, Varric is hilarious, and Iron Bull will provide the most surprising commentary. Should be fun.
Hello, Creepy. (Oh, look, Fiona has a little bit of a spine. Good. Makes me feel better about saving her sorry butt.) Oh, hey, Creepy was involved in the death of the Divine – “The Elder One” was there and Khaaras somehow managed to get in its way. I’m not shocked. I’m guessing this “Elder One” has something to do with the ancient Magister I accidentally raised as Hawke, and Alexius thinks he can save his son (Felix has some sort of illness).
And… someone just shot an arrow into a guard and no one noticed? Okay, that was… and there go the rest of them. Thanks, Liliana. And I think Alexius just tried to poof me out of existence? With a glowing noose? (Thanks for the save, Dorian.) And I fell into the basement? Okay. Let’s fight our way out of here. Fun times.
Apparently we are in another time, according to Dorian. So… Dorian is Dr. Who and I’m totally his medieval Tardis companion. Because I have pretty horns. For what it’s worth, I’m guessing I’m in a bad possible future because there’s red lyrium everywhere. Either that, or the past when the creepy Magisters ruled the world. Either way, bad.
Yup, future. Only a year, though, so that’s not quite as far as I expected, but still. Definitely need to undo this mess. Fiona is being eaten by red lyrium. Iron Bull is weirdly possessed by red lyrium, although he seems coherent enough. Varric is more Varric, although I don’t imagine he’s not really doing much better with the red lyrium.
Okay, Leliana may be the most badass character in this game. She’s being tortured, and while hanging from her arms she STILL kills a guy with her legs. C’mon. Awesome, right? She also appears to be undead. Or close to it. Wow, she’s seriously cold. I mean, okay, not blaming her for that, but she is shutting Dorian down at every opportunity.
Killin’ demons, killin’ soldiers, and hunting down Alexius, who is predictably morose because of course he did it for his son or some such crap. Yup. He’ll do anything. Money, wealth, selling his soul… the usual. Okay, Leliana, we can do it your way and just slit his son’s throat. Sure.
Cue bossfight. Oh – by the way? If you have the chance to get a Jar of Bees grenade from Sera? DO IT. BEES ARE AWESOME.
Okay. Let’s see if Dorian can undo this. (Of course he can.) Oh, hey, Archdemon (Elder One), guess I’ll have to send my friends off to die while Dorian works his magic (literally). Yup. Really depressing cutscene. Good motivation, though.
Yup. My faith in Dorian (or, rather, my confidence that the creators of DAI weren’t THAT cruel) paid off. And Alexius is really kind of a weak disaster area. Pathetic. I feel bad about letting him live, but not because I’m particularly worried about him being a problem. And… Allistair? Okay. Didn’t see that one coming.
I kind of wish I had the opportunity to offer a compromise between “you’re our prisoners” and “you’re our allies,” sort of “we’d like to work with you, but if you go sour, we’re going to kill you.” But no such luck. So allies it is, and half of my companions are now annoyed at me. Oh, well. That was going to happen no matter which one I picked. At least this way Varric still likes me. I generally consider myself on good footing of Varric approves.
Because everyone’s moral compass should be an occasionally drunken dwarf with a penchant for exaggeration.