Dragon Age: The Veilguard: We now know how the combat system works – and it will spark debate


Does the new role-playing game take its cues from Origins or Inquisition when it comes to combat? Will it be action or tactical? We have answers that not all fans will like

For ten years, Dragon Age fans have been asking themselves this question:What will the battle system look like in the next installment?There are several camps with completely different wishes: the action fans, the tactics fans, the “I want something completely new” faction.

Dragon Age: The Veilguardwill therefore inevitably offend some fans of the series. At least now we know who they are. Because our editorial director Dimihad an exclusive demonstration of how the fists fly in the new role-playing game.

He saw an hour of live gameplay at Summer Game Fest (and of course there’s the extra 20 minutes that Bioware just revealed), and we’ll explain exactly how the fights play out in this article. You can give us your opinion in the poll below

Slight tip: If you’ve played Mass Effect, you should find your way around pretty quickly.

Action with tactical elements

Let’s rip off the dragon plaster straight away: there is no return to the tactical combat system from Origins. Instead, The Veilguard is similar to the more action-packed Inquisition, but with a few important changes

We now only control our own character directly in battle. We attack at the touch of a button, parry enemy attacks at the right time and hurl our special abilities such as spells or special weapon attacks across the battlefield. Similar to Inquisition, these can be accessed via the symbol rhombus.

We control our two companions (yes, there are now only two instead of three as before) indirectly by pausing the battle and giving them commands. For example, “Use this ability” or “Keep your distance for now”. Just like in the Mass Effect trilogy, only with magic and swords instead of firearms. However, there will probably be many separate combo options:

These tactical breaks should be “vital”, especially on higher difficulty levels, as Veilguard boss Corinne Busche told us at the Summer Game Fest. Perhaps a consolation for all those who had hoped for a return to Origin real-time tactics until the very end.

During the demo, the battles also reminded us of Final Fantasy 7 Remake, which features a very similar tactical break with companion commands. Whether Vanguard’s skills and combo options can keep up with this remains to be seen, of course.

Vote in our poll to find out how you like the first look at The Veilguard’s combat system. Do you think you’ll personally enjoy the battles or would you have hoped for something completely different? And what features would you really like to see – perhaps the return of healing spells or blood magic?