The Return Of Cassandra In Dragon Age: Inquisition

by Kimberley Wallace on May 28, 2014 at 11:05 AM

Dragon Age: Inquisition has new characters joining the fight, but old faces are also returning to help restore peace. Recently, we looked at what confirmed party member Varric would bring to the table. Now we're delving into Cassandra's potential and why she's an intriguing character to bring back.

She's A Bit Of A Mystery

We don't know a great deal about Cassandra. In Dragon Age II, we only knew that she was a seeker of the Chantry. We also watched her interrogate Varric about Hawke, believing Hawke may hold the key to preventing the impending war. From her interactions with Varric, it was already apparent that she's strong-willed and that she's devoted to protecting Thedas. In Dawn of the Seeker, she struggled with not letting her fury overtake her, at times being a bit reckless in her pursuit of the truth.

Dragon Age: Inquisition should give us more answers as to why she was so adamant to find out more about Hawke. When we sat down with lead writer David Gaider for our cover story visit, he let on that there was more to her role than was initially apparent.  "She wasn't just investigating; there was more behind what she was doing," he said. "You find that out as the Inquisition comes around."

I'm not only excited to see what Cassandra will add to the overall story, but I also want to find about more about her as a person. I have a feeling she's more than just the disciplined, no-nonsense woman we've seen.

Overcoming Her Past

Cassandra has a complicated relationship with mages, which is part of why she joined up with the Seekers of Truth. When she was young, a blood mage killed her brother before her eyes, and ever since she's held a grudge against all mages. In Dawn of the Seeker, she started to realize that not all mages are bad, but she's still extremely cautious around them. After all, she's seen the ugly side to magic firsthand and knows that too much power in the wrong hands is catastrophic.

With her views beginning to change, it will be interesting to see how much her past plays a role in her ideals in Dragon Age: Inquisition. I suspect her brother will come up at some point; he's the reason she keeps a watchful eye over the mages. At the start of Dragon Age: Inquisition, the Chantry and mages are at war, but the Templars and the Seekers of Truth have also broken away from the Chantry. I imagine watching the whole system come crashing down won't be easy for Cassandra, and I wonder how she feels about the Chantry. After all, the Seekers of Truth must have broken off from them for a reason, and maybe she's part of the reason.

Where Will She Stand?

I'm most looking forward to finding out Cassandra's true feelings on everything. What is her perspective on the Chantry, mages, and the Maker? As noted earlier, she was already starting to change her stance on many of her convictions. Some time has passed since the events of Dragon Age II, and BioWare already hinted that Cassandra has had time and experience to reassess her views. Creative director Mike Laidlaw told us, "To some degree, I think that Cassandra undergoes probably the biggest transformative arc of any character in Dragon Age II."

I think back to the words Cassandra's mentor left her with in Dawn of the Seeker: "Hate will only breed more hate." I don't think she'll be happy with all the conflicting sides and the ugliness that's occurring in Inquisition. I'm guessing she's had enough time to reevaluate her animosity and her focus will be on what's more important: peace. Watching how she's grown and finding out the why behind the change in her ideals should be exciting in its own right.

What Will She Add To The Group?

Dragon Age is all about arguments - characters who all have strong stances and are passionate about getting their views across. BioWare has often used party banter to not only display characters' personalities, but also to let them speak openly about why they support a certain side or issue in the war. We know from Cassandra's interactions with Varric in Dragon Age II that she isn't afraid to give people a piece of her mind, and now they're party members fighting together.

Varric should be a nice option to foil to her uptightness and may even loosen her up a bit. She'll also be quick to call him out on his extravagant tales. This should make for some good party banter in itself, but I'm also interested in how she'll react to new party member, Vivienne. Vivienne is not only a mage, but was a leader in the Circle. Obviously, she's very pro-Circle.  She's referred to as a "fearsome woman," who won't let anyone or anything get in the way of her convictions. Should she and Cassandra disagree - and you know they will - having Vivienne's strong personality go toe-to-toe with the already headstrong Cassandra should provide plenty of fireworks.

Being a Seeker of Truth has also taught Cassandra to suspect everyone. I'd expect her distrust to play a role not only with party members, but also with you as Inquisitor. In all, I suspect Cassandra will act as a voice of reason during the journey, but she also has some reckless tendencies, which are bound to surface amidst catastrophe. 

Are you excited for Cassandra's return? What do you think she'll add to Dragon Age: Inquisition?