Ancient and Forgotten

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

Inquisitor:

Dalya Lavellan (L27 Rogue)

Total Hours Played:

151.50

Locations:

The Deep Roads, The Uncharted Abyss.

Mission Report:

It quickly became apparent that something was very wrong when we reached the next level. There was no light, but both dwarves were sure that there were creatures of some kind there with us; Valta suggested a torch, to which Renn pointed out that that would only help them see us coming. Worse, Valta suddenly announced that we weren’t in the Deep Roads any more. Dalya led the way, following the eerie firefly lights through the darkness, until we hit an open area, where Renn yelled at them to show themselves. He was answered with a single shot which tore through his armour. The ensuing fight lit up the area enough for us to finally see the enemy – they were dwarves, wearing Lyrium armour.

Valta insisted on returning Renn to the Stone, then the team followed the trail, now lit in places with Lyrium veins, forward.A memory etched into the wall, in a form of dwarvish so old Valta had trouble translating, informed us that the enemy dwarves were Sha-Brytol. The team pressed on, and came to the first obstacle – the enemy blew up the bridge across the chasm. Valta found them a ledge that led down, which was helpfully lined with cogs for our collection.

The route out of this section led to the most beautiful sight – the Bastion of the Pure – an abandoned Lyrium mine where the Lyrium veins grew like trees.We periodically ran into bands of Sha-Brytol, and eventually into a barrier, which could only be opened by dispatching Earthstrikers and looting the keys from them. Valta was upset at having to destroy the barriers, but Dalya reminded her that they had other priorities. I decided they should push on along the main path and come back to the side routes later. The final obstacle was a huge barrier that needed 5 keys – they’d looted 2 from groups on the way down, and I soon realised that the waves of Sha-Brytol would keep coming until the barrier was down, so had Dalya pull out of the fight periodically to loot the fallen (thank goodness for stealth). Eventually we had all 5 keys, and with the barrier down the team just had to clear out the remaining enemies.

The game automatically sets up a camp beyond the barrier, but this one just offers a place to rest. The inventory was full, and we’d picked up some more expeditions, so I sent everyone back to base camp to offload some gear to the merchant, and to set the advisors to work. We had seen a few more of the memories, which Valta translated, and it seemed that the Sha-Brytol were protecting a Titan. Time to visit the final level, and meet the Titan.

The Bastion of the Pure was beautiful. The Wellspring was mind-blowing – light, trees….How had the Sha-Brytol built all this, and where was the Titan? Then Valta realised: we were inside the Titan; we had been ever since she’d announced that we’d left the Deep Roads. A final memory said that the Sha-Brytol drank the blood of the Titan – Lyrium – which raises all kinds of questions about Red Lyrium, and whether the Ancient Thaig that Hawke and Varric visited was another Titan.

There were several bands of Sha-Brytol to fight off, and then the team reached what seemed to be the heart of the Titan. At this point Valta was knocked out by a blast of raw Lyrium, leaving Dalya and friends to fight the rapidly forming Guardian (which looks remarkably like the Rock Wraith from DA2 (just saying)).The Guardian doesn’t move around. It does have rock flails which swipe at you if you get too close, it periodically smashes one of it’s arms down on you, and every so often causes huge rock daggers to burst through the floor. Needless to say, we died pretty quickly on the first attempt. Second time around, I realised that the key was to focus on the Lyrium hearts between the rock flails. The rock daggers are predictable because Lyrium webs form on the floor where they’re about to burst through, so when they start appearing it’s best to stop attacking, and just concentrate on avoiding the daggers while trying to stay out of reach of arms and flails – running a circle round the Guardian kind of works at this point. There’s no supply cache in this area (or if there is I completely missed it), so while I had figured out a strategy, they ran out of potions, and died just as the Guardian was on its last sliver of health. Third time around, I made sure to have Dalya run in and revive the others as soon as they dropped, which helped keep everyone alive long enough to kill the thing.

Stupidly, I wasn’t quick enough to loot the Guardian before the game kicked into a cutscene with a now-revived Valta, whose first act was to blast Lyrium at Dalya. Dalya questioned her, concerned over the effect of the raw Lyrium on her, and her new, apparently magical, powers. Valta claimed that the Titan had recognised her as one of its children, that it had been disturbed by the Breach, not the mining, and would be calm again now that it had forged a connection with her. Dalya also questioned whether the same thing had happened in King Garel’s time, but Valta wasn’t sure. Since King Garal’s book pre-dated the First Blight I think we can safely surmise that Corypheus’ first assault on the Fade caused that disturbance – which raises all sorts of interesting questions about the Dwarves, their ability to work Lyrium safely, and their lack of connection to the Fade.

Valta announced her intention to stay with the Titan. Cass disapproved (of course!), but Dorian countered that it was Valta’s business and he would quite like to see the sun again, while Blackwall pointed out that Valta couldn’t hurt anyone but herself this far down. Dalya turned to leave, then paused to say, “The Shaperate in Orzammar will want to know what happened to you.” Valta answered, “Tell them the truth; you don’t know.” And with that my team left the Wellspring, and made their way back to base camp, to find Harding collecting her winnings, having bet on their return.

With the main Quest finished it was time to open up the remaining expeditions. We opened all the Gates of Segrummar, but the quest remains I the journal, and I wonder if they should have been opened in numerical order – something to remember for next time. The hastily rebuilt bridge across the chasm ended up in another disappointment, as Cass and Blackwall got a little over-enthusiastic and slammed an enemy into the wall, where he’s now stuck, preventing us from killing him, or opening the door. One successfully unlocked expedition did offer closure – on investigating a cry in the dark, Inquisition soldiers found Renn’s body missing from his grave, and the route to the Wellspring sealed up. It was time for Dalya and friends to head home.

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