It was with a heavy heart (and a sore throat and a stuffy nose, but that’s beside the point) that I started playing the final DLC for Dragon Age Inquisition. It’s called Trespasser and it promises to give some answers regarding the future of the Inquistion.
I will not be able to keep this review entirely spoiler free, as it is one of the most story intense DLCs that have dropped for the game so far. It’s an epilogue, and it really IS an epilogue. Once you’ve played it, you have to go back to a save game before you started up Trespasser to be able to play with your (old) inquisitor again (that didn’t come out right. You can of course make NEW inquisitors). And you have to have a save game from the end of the game to even start it up. All in all, it’s taken me 125 hours to reach the end game, and with Trespasser, I’m adding another 5 – 10 hours to that total.
With Trespasser (or rather with the patch just before Trespasser) comes the Golden Nug – a beastie in the undercroft that will let you sync all your collectibles across games. It’s both a blessing and a curse. I still miss one of the beer steins from the Deep Roads dammit, but it does help my very completionist heart despite that it feels like I’m cheating when I’m using it. There’s also a wardrobe which will let me change out of the beige suit that has been the standard outfit for the Inquisitor when in Skyhold for so long. It’s nice.
Also, there are now Sigils for the armour. You get both positives and negatives with the sigils, so be careful what you put in there. I had Iron Bull die a million times (Well. Three.) before I realised that I’d made him very vulnerable to rouges and backstabbing by squeezing in a sigil in his armour. Serves me right for not reading properly. I thought sigils would only be available for Trespasser, but it turns out they drop everywhere now. The reason I know this is because I need to play another round of Inquisition with an Elf now. For reasons.
One more thing. You won’t be able to scrounge for herbs and metals and leather while playing Trespasser. There is however a store that will sell you anything, so make sure that you stock up on herbs and whatnot and have a good sized wallet with you to make sure that you can craft everything you want and make sure that your armour is up to scratch. It’s a relief not to have to run to the Hinterlands and Fallow Mire to pick Blood Lotus.
These are just the facts. The truth of Trespasser is much wider than that. This is where the real spoilers start, by the way. After the trailer. I warned you…
Trespasser is ridiculously fan servicey. It’s almost written as a wish fulfilment DLC, at least in some areas. Some areas regarding a certain blonde ex-templar made Commander of the Inquisition’s forces. There was a moment there when I totally flipped, because of questions asked, and answers given. I mean totally flipped. As in shouted out loud. As in jumped around a bit and then a bit more. I also sneezed, but I have a feeling that was not brought on by the question. No one has asked me in real life. Maybe I’ll sneeze if someone does. It’s so cute it’s almost forgivable that the mabari being petted while the question is asked looks slightly demented.
It’s pretty obvious that this is a farewell. As much as I want to, I doubt I would have a spa date with Vivienne otherwise. Or distract the Iron Bull while the Chargers get up to mischief. In a way it is similar to the Mass Effect DLC Citadel, where a plot against Shepard becomes the centrepiece for, well, basically just hanging out. That’s what Trespasser does. It gives you an opportunity to just hang out with your fav friends in the Inquisition. It’s a bit short on the hanging out part though. I understand that resources are limited, but I really miss having conversations with my crew.
Of course, this is not all that happens. There are Qunari involved. Angry Qunari, and Eluvians scattered across a dream landscape that is frankly breathtaking. The chase, because it is a chase, is urgent and driven, and even though the player knows what will happen at the end, the Inquisitor does not. Not only does the story take the player through a bunch of Eluvians and beautiful locations both in and out of the fade, but it also drives the Inquisitor hard. The mark from the Breach is acting up in both useful and scary ways, and this chase becomes all the more real because at one point in the game, the player is almost robbed of control of the mark. I found out the hard way.
For me, the story in Trespasser doesn’t strike me as anywhere near surprising, except for the fact that we end up with another cliffhanger. No. The story in Trespasser is more of a confirmation of player known facts. It’s a meta story that I know or suspect things about, but that the Inquisitor does not have all the pieces to fit together. It is closure, but still not. Unsurprisingly, Solas doesn’t really answer any questions. He just leaves me confused and angry and sad, as he always has done. And with more questions to boot. If this is a build up to construct a villain out of Solas, and to make that villain someone I will engage with emotionally, BioWare is certainly laying the groundwork for it. It is beautiful. It is awesome. I will be totally invested in whatever happens. But if it ends here? No. No, I can not, I will not accept that.
BioWare claims to be a games company that wants to create emotional content for their games. Despite the fact that I felt Trespasser was a little short, a little unfocused, a little too little (because we always want more, despite a certain event with a certain blonde ex-templar) and a little unfair, I do get my answer. But the answer given is a practical one. I do find out what happens to the Inquisition, but just as in the main game, I have no idea what happens next.
Four squealing maidens out of five possible