Return of the Bearquisition

CAUTION – This post contains spoilers for Dragon Age: Inquisition. Check out the Dragon Age website for information on the game.

Inquisitor:

Dalya Lavellan ( L24 Rogue)

Total Hours Played:

121.45

Locations:

Skyhold, Hinterlands, Frostback Basin

Mission Report:

It’s been almost exactly 4 months since Dalya beat Corypheus, and I haven’t been back to her saved game because I was fooling around with other Inquisitors, so the first order of business was to give myself a little reminder of who she was.

I started with a re-spec because her abilities were chosen haphazardly as I went along, and I’ve been using a Toxic Archer build with my Canon Inquisitor (Kate) that I really like. We also did some crafting and swapped the Gurgut Webbing for Dragon Scales. We then went to check on the War Table, where the Advisors were discussing Leliana’s promotion. From conversation with a few of the companions it would seem the notion of Leliana as Divine is terrifying everyone. I like the acknowledgment that we’re post end-game, but it seems all unexplored dialogue options are gone as a result. I’m also a little surprised that there was no mention of Solas, or speculation over where he went. Perhaps they’re just trying to spare Dalya’s feelings.

Sadly the A-Team is no more (*shakes fist at Solas*) so Dorian subbed in for a little trip out to the Hinterlands. For some reason I’d given him some ice spells so he’ll probably take the spot permanently, perhaps with a few tweaks to his abilities. Once in the Hinterlands, Dalya took care of a few things she’d missed, like buying the recipe for Antivan Fire and recruiting Corporal Vale as an Agent. A round up of some ridiculously minor quests took them back toward the Grand Forest Villa and into the path of multiple bears who promptly attacked. Ah, the Hinterlands. I also decided it was time to confront the Frostback Dragon and get those remaining shards, so picked up Cass and Bull at the nearest Camp. After pelting us with fire for a bit the Dragon flew off and Dalya was able to get the shards really easily. Rather an underwhelming encounter, but as they had things to do elsewhere we called it a day.

It was now time to take the team to the Frostback Basin where some academic had a lead on the final resting place of the last Inquisitor, and the Avvar were causing trouble.

After a long lecture on buckles, Professor Kenric explained that he couldn’t actually get to the site where Inquisitor Ameridan’s body was buried. It then turned out there were two groups of Avvar to deal with, the Jaws of Hakkon, and another, potentially friendly Hold. And then there were the usual camps to establish, Fade rifts to deal with, missing people to rescue… just another Tuesday in Thedas then.

Since the DLC is called ‘Jaws of Hakkon’ I figure that dealing with them is not going to be a quick quest, so I decided that Dalya needed back up. The beefed up version of the A-Team (Cole swapped out for Cass) set off in search of friendly Avvar. Along the way they dealt with a Fade rift or two (all of which now come complete with those lovely spider-demons from the Nightmare visit to the Fade), and found an Astrarium. I do love Astrariums.

Their route took them through a swamp where scouts had marked the site for what surely should be named Gurgut Camp. Dalya took a small detour at this point to rescue Kenric’s research assistant Colette. Since she’s an elf there was a chance to ask her about the University of Orlais so Dalya took it, and it seems Celene’s pressure on them to take suitable Elven students is working (see The Masked Empire). I did wonder if this encounter would have been different if she’d supported Gaspard. Colette, of course, continued on her journey to a Tevinter ruin, after suggesting that Dalya meet her there to find out more about Inquisitor Ameridan.

With the missing person accounted for it was on to Stone-Bear Hold, where no one would talk to them until Dalya had met with the Thane. She did this by falling off the cliff that was about to be used for a climbing competition – quite the entrance.

The Thane gave us some backstory on the Jaws of Hakkon; according to her, they’re a group of Avvar who choose to worship only one of their many Gods, and are not the first to take the name. Technically Stone-Bear Hold has a peace-oath with them, but the Thane was willing to consider a change of alliance if Dalya found Storvacker, their missing Hold-Beast. A bear. Cue the ‘You know about me and Bears, right?’ dialogue option. Luckily the Thane was impressed, and not overly worried about any threat to her bear.

With the formalities concluded, Dalya and team were free to explore the hold. Ostensibly they were asking for advice on locating the bear, but a few other matters came up: an invitation to challenge the Avvar in their fighting arena, the chance to help with funeral rites by killing Fade-touched beasts – the usual things. Apparently Dalya needs to impress the people too. Their Skald told her all about Honour-Names, so I’m rather hoping she gets one once they’re suitably impressed.

A visit to the Augur gave a little more insight into Avvar religion, and made me wish Solas was still with us; they call spirits ‘gods’ and negotiate with them. The Augur claimed that Dalya appeared to be ‘blazing like a fire’ to spirits nearby, and that while they couldn’t all see her all the time, they do spread the word. Creepy.

I decided they should head for the bear first, which meant another traipse through the swamp, enlivened by Cass asking Dorian about Templars in the Imperium (“It’s all true.”). Dalya found the bear easily enough, but it seemed for a moment that she might have to lead it all the way back to the hold, and I began to have flashbacks to that damned druffalo. Thankfully, once the Hakkonites who’d captured her were down, Storvacker made her own way home, meaning that Dalya could run a few more errands before heading back to the Hold. Including looting the dungeon the bear was in, and tracking Colette to her Tevinter ruin. After their last meeting I half-expected to find her dead, but instead she had plenty to tell me about Ameridan’s companions: Orinna, a Dwarven alchemist, and Haron, one of the original Templars. I suspect that will prove more important than it first appears. We left Collette to it, and headed back to the Hold, via a nasty Fade rift in a Tevinter ruin and the second Astrarium.

The Thane now revealed that the original Hakkonites bound their God in the body of an animal, and the bear kidnapping meant that their successors were trying to do the same. Since we found a poem about Ameridan in Colette’s ruin which mentioned a demon beast in the form of a wolf, I’m guessing we really need that body. The kidnapping broke the peace-oath, so Stone-Bear Hold were now free to work with the Inquisition. The Thane also mentioned that the Hakkonite fortress was behind an ice wall formed by lowlander magic (which we saw on the way over but I forgot to go and look at; also, hello, Westeros!). Next task, work out how to destroy it. In the mean time, since rescuing the bear apparently wasn’t that impressive, Dalya needed to get on with wooing the Hold.

To that end we went off in search of Fade-touched beasts. The first was reasonably easy (a Gurgut), the second, in a canyon we reached via a drain under a fortress (which may be the only drain in all of Thedas), was a Giant Spider, which invited all of it’s little spider friends to the party. Dalya then had to establish yet another tree-top camp, so that’s two of my phobias in the space of about 5 minutes. I can only assume BioWare want me to suffer, as 3 of the 6 camps are on platforms in the trees – because Dalya doesn’t fall off enough things in this game.

I left the team next to the final Astrarium, as a fun way to start today’s adventures. First priority is to get the final Fade-touched beast, and then we’ll consider a jaunt to the island where Ameridan is supposed to be buried.

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