With the switch to a new engine and new console platforms, the obvious concern arose: how one Earth is BioWare planning on allowing you to import your save games from Dragon Age: Origins and Dragon Age II into Dragon Age Inquisition? Well, BioWare has an answer for you, and it’s called the Dragon Age Keep.
When BioWare released Mass Effect 3, the PlayStation 3 had never received the first two games, meaning players on PS3 had no save games to import. BioWare circumvented this problem by shipping the PlayStation 3 version with an interactive comic that allowed PS3 players to catch up on the narrative of the previous two games as well as make the most important decisions for importing into their new Mass Effect 3 game.
Dragon Age Keep is going to be similar, except it isn’t a comic; instead it’s an entire online system that gets you to create a Thedas world-state to save in the cloud. You’ll basically recreate your DAO and DA2 decisions (including the look of your characters, who you romanced, who rose to power etc.) on the Keep. Once that’s done, you’ll be able to access it at the start of Dragon Age Inquisition irrespective of what platform you’re playing on.
The decision to move to the cloud was an obvious one for BioWare. Aside from keeping your world state nice and safe, it allows you to explore the multiple endings and plot twists that you might have missed due to making alternate decisions. “Moving to the cloud allows players to take their unique world state into any platform (present or future) and even other media,” Dragon Age executive producer Mark Darrah said in an official post on the company blog. “For existing fans, an advantage of being in the cloud is that (if you are ok with spoilers) you can fully explore what-if scenarios, and become aware of events and consequences in our past games that you may not have known were possible.”
Obviously, there is some serious complexity running Dragon Age Keep. As Darrah explains, a single save game file made up of content from Dragon Age Origins and Dragon Age II has as many as 600 data points. With this is mind, there’s still some work to do on Keep, but registration for the beta is open. BioWare expects Dragon Age Keep to be ready and available for everyone a few months prior to the release of Dragon Age Inquisition.