With Netflix Dragon Age: Absolution, BioWare’s fantasy RPG franchise is gradually making a comeback after being in something of a franchise limbo since 2015. The series hasn’t completely disappeared thanks to comics and some books, but absolution marks a real sense of change for the series ahead of the release of its fourth installment, Dragon Age: Dread Wolf. While this game might come out another year or so, this show comes at a time when more game franchises are expanding with (usually) animated adaptations.
as a franchise, dragon time is largely defined by sprawling epics, in which characters travel across the lands to fight a great evil with a cadre of allies and willing organizations. but Absolution, no different than 2011 dragon age II, is more of an intimate affair, the central plot of which revolves around a heist to steal a powerful magical artifact. Speaking to showrunner Maighread Scott recently, io9 revealed that her pitch for the series had a heist from the start. In her words it would be “Reservoir Dogs meets Black Hawk below‘, with all the chaos, betrayal and death that this combination implies.
For executive producer John Epler, a heist story made perfect sense in the world of dragon time. “Robbery is an amazing pressure cooker for emotions, and it’s a lot to see when you see people who shouldn’t be together clash,” he said. They’re fun because of the relationships that are formed (or destroyed) during the events of the caper, and dragon time loved presenting relationships in all their messy glory. Ask anyone who’s played even one game in the series and you’ll probably find them thinking about one special character very different from how you do it.
Epler and Scott knew the importance of relationships dragon time– Scott called them the “second pillars” of the franchise, whether they’re ones that emerge from player input or others that form naturally throughout the story. “dragon time it’s about the people,” Epler continued. “Ultimately, the show is about people and characters making a difference. Many of their effects affect not only the people around them, but also how those relationships manifest themselves in the larger world, and the different types of relationships you can have. Whether they’re healthy or unhealthy, wholesome or weird… That’s part of the appeal: seeing what you do to others and how [the way] if you treat others, there will be consequences.”
There absolution Having a short catwalk to work with (six half-hour episodes versus three games spanning tens or hundreds of hours), Scott knew the show couldn’t have the same sense of place as the games. Instead, the focus was on making the series’ characters and relationships worth investing in and making them feel like natural extensions to the world of Thedas. She described the cast of thieves and mercenaries as “wonderfully imperfect heroes,” particularly elf killer Miriam. “The show shows how growing up as a slave in a Tevinter household really affected her and broke her. But her heroic nature shines through because she’s willing to fight for others, and that’s a theme that runs through everyone Dragon Age.”
Tevinter has been mentioned a few times in the previous games, and in the 2014s it’s more of a menacing presence Dragon Age: Inquisition. but absolution marks the first real jump into the region before players experience it themselves dire wolf. Much like the raid, it was always part of Scott’s original plan to host the show in Tevinter to offer a “small, enticing slice” of the region before game four expands on what we see on the show. Not to mention, given the huge impact Tevinter has on the rest of the world of Thedas, Epler felt the show could be the perfect opportunity to talk about what’s going on over there. “Tevinter has such an impact on the world of Thedas that no other nation has influenced the history of the world as much as Tevinter,” he said. “There is no nation that has so many tendrils in all parts of the world, good or bad.”
Despite the relative proximity to dire wolf, although, absolution Deliberately doesn’t try to use his time to create some sort of canon for players to cling to. Some characters from the previous games show up for a spell, and events are mentioned in general terms, but Epler (who is also known as dreadwolf Creative Director) acknowledged that it’s important to avoid definitive canon. He conceded that it was a “tricky balancing act,” in part because if BioWare made its own canon it risked clashing with the canon players and the studio’s word that might be declared the definitive gospel , is the last thing anyone wants. There was also a desire to make sure absolution stood on its own, explicit ties to the games or not. “There are all these elements that make up Thedas and what’s going on,” Epler said. “We agreed to leave space for these stories to exist and flow into a larger world at large.”
That said absolution Final moments suggest it won’t leave the games completely untouched.
After successfully getting away with the Circulum Infinitum, leaving Miriam and the rest of the heist crew behind, the human mage Hira begins the return trek to meet her true employer: Meredith, the final antagonist of Dragon Age II. Trapped in a crystal prison (known as Red Lyrium in the games) following her loss to that game’s protagonist, Hawke, and voiced by her original actor Jean Gilpin, her return means some interesting things for her absolution future and potential dire wolf.
Both Scott and Epler explained that during the process of conceiving a potential mastermind, the show’s writers wanted someone with “very specific and explicitly stated goals,” let alone someone BioWare hadn’t already locked up elsewhere. When Meredith was thrown in, everyone agreed, as her stubborn beliefs and drive to eliminate magicians clarified her criteria more than any other villain in the franchise. “It became pretty clear that Meredith was the best candidate,” explained Scott. “You had to find someone to hate, and there are few dragon time Characters that people love to hate just as much as Meredith does.”
Scott was evasive for a second season absolution would happen, but she hopes so because she “would hate to drop Meredith back into fandom and then run away.” For her, Miriam has “more stories to tell” and she would be happy to continue those stories in whatever form.
Dragon Age: Absolution‘s The first season is now on Netflix.
Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest Wonder, war of starsand star trek What’s next for the releases DC Universe in Film and TVand everything you need to know about the future of Doctor Who.
https://gizmodo.com/dragon-age-absolution-netflix-scott-epler-interview-1849917253 Absolution Creators on Characters and Connections