The lights are on
BioWare has a history of cleverly tackling the challenges of importing decisions from one game to the next. The Mass Effect 2 interactive comic was a smart way to get PlayStation 3 users up to speed, and even became an add-on for the Xbox 360 iteration. Now the studio is getting players ready for Dragon Age: Inquisition (and jumping the generational divide) with Dragon Age Keep.
The Keep will allow players to customize their worlds and experiment with different Dragon Age stories. This set of tools will allow you to identify how you played Dragon Age: Origins and Dragon Age II, address the variety of permutations related to the Warden, Hawke, and the characters and politics of Thedas, and reshape Dragon Age: Inquisition to your designs.
The data will then be pulled down at the start of your Dragon Age: Inquisition game. No save files are required, though BioWare is investigating how they might use them to streamline the Keep process.
The application will also make sure that you don't have any conflicting decisions that might yield errors in the world. This will prevent the types of logic problems that popped up from time to time in Dragon Age II as 600 data points were imported.
Signups for the browser-based Dragon Age Keep beta are open now. It will become available for public consumption in 2014. Be sure to also check out our month of Dragon Age: Inquisition coverage.
Our TakeThis is a very clever way to deal with the problem of cross-generational data imports. Not only does this allow players to continue in the Thedas they've shaped over multiple games and DLC, but it gives new and old players a chance to easily experiment with decisions without replaying the previous games.
I'm eager to mess around with Dragon Age Keep just to refresh myself on the huge number of choices present in both games. For diehards, the beta is the perfect playground (and BioWare will no doubt welcome the feedback).