Dragon Age: Dreadwolf (opens in new tab), the next game in BioWare's hit RPG series, has completed its alpha milestone, general manager Gary McKay announced today—and what that means in practical terms is that the game is now fully playable from start to finish. For the developers, at least—there's still no word on when any of us will be playing it.
"Up to this point, we’ve been working hard on the various parts of the game, but it’s not until the alpha milestone that a game all comes together," McKay wrote (opens in new tab). "Now, for the first time, we can experience the entire game, from the opening scenes of the first mission to the very end. We can see, hear, feel, and play everything as a cohesive experience."
There's still a long way to go before Dreadwolf crosses the finish line, but McKay said getting to an alpha state is a big deal because it means developers can turn their focus to improving graphics, iterating on gameplay, and ensuring that progression, pacing, and "narrative cohesion" all come together properly.
"Now that we’re finally able to experience the entire game, for me, my favorite part is the characters," McKay wrote. "Whether followers, allies, or villains, they’re woven into the game in ways that take a concept that’s always been a part of the Dragon Age DNA—stories about people—and push it further than ever before. The characters help contextualize the world and the stakes, and I can’t wait until we’re able to start really discussing them in depth.
"It’s also exciting to finally be able to bring our fans to parts of the world that we’ve previously hinted at, but never been able to fully explore—like the city of Minrathous, the capital of the Tevinter Empire. We’ve talked about Minrathous in previous games, and now you’ll finally be able to visit! It’s a city built on and fuelled by magic, and the ways in which that has come through in its visual identity, and what that looks like in comparison to previous cities we’ve visited in Dragon Age, are pretty spectacular."
McKay committed to remaining "transparent" with the community as Dragon Age: Dreadwolf continues, and also took a moment to remind everyone that BioWare has other things on the go, including a new Mass Effect (opens in new tab) and continued updates to Star Wars: The Old Republic. He also gently suggested that Mass Effect fans not hold their breath waiting for news on that front, saying BioWare has a team "hard at work envisioning what the future holds for a new single-player Mass Effect game."