Dragon Age and Mass Effect games’ relationship key goals was to get laid with an NPC, but that is changing in Bioware’s upcoming game, Dragon Age: Inquisition, according to creative director, Mike Laidlaw.
“The most romantic moment in a video game that I’ve ever seen is when Jackie visits his girlfriend’s apartment in The Darkness….
She baked me a cake, she’s moving in, and you watch possibly the entirety of To Kill a Mockingbird as she passes out on your lap because she’s tired and snuggly. That is amazing.
[That scene] is as close as video games came to that first ten minutes of [Pixar Animation Studios’] Up. Both scenes share the same purpose of making the audience think, ‘I really care about this character – aw, f**k,’ and their motivations change.”
He also cited the platonic relationship Joel and Ellie in The Last of Us has heavily influenced the game, “That’s the thing I think The Last of Us goes right to elemental heartstring moments.
It isn’t exploring romance, but It says these are real people and it’s okay to care about them. I think to some degree there’s a joy to escapism when it’s okay to care. That is something that I think is kind of a single-player phenomenon.”
Laidlaw explains that the relationships in Dragon Age: Inquisition are more organic and “depends on what happens in the game. Let’s not have gifts that buy affection. Let’s not have sex be the end goal.
Let’s instead try and reach for something that’s like genuine affections and let you go up and say, ‘Hey you, we’re going to kiss now.’ And let players enjoy that, and feel like, yeah, that’s a real thing.”
He adds that certain characters are romantically off-limits, some are just-friends and other might not share your sexual orientation. “What the writing team has done is they’ve laid out certain beats which could cause reactivity.”
“Each writer has individually analyzed a beat and assessed how specific characters should respond to you and the situation around them. Some characters may care about something, another may not. How that goes down could affect your long-term relationships — romantic or otherwise.
That’s something I think the writing team’s done a really good job of. Playing with your expectations to some degree, and none of them feel the same,” Laidlaw concluded.
Dragon Age: Inquisition will release on November 18 in US and November 21, 2014 in EU for PS3, Xbox 360, PS4, Xbox One and PC.
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