Let’s say there are four endings. A Terrible ending, a Bad ending, an Okay ending and a Good ending, depending on how much prep you put in before you go to the final mission. So a little like the last Mass Effect game, except this one will pan out with something a shade more interesting than different flashy coloured lights.
So, let’s say your final mission is a siege of Nightmare’s stronghold, where he’s preparing his ritual to become an Old God. You’ve got your allies, and like Mass Effect 2, you have to assign certain party members to certain tasks, based on their skills.
The Terrible ending would be the one that happens if you both do almost no preparation and if you make all the wrong choices during the final mission. Essentially, an ending which is as difficult to get as the Good ending, but because it requires that you be aggressively terrible at it. In this ending, your entire party dies, and Nightmare becomes an Old God, ruling Tevinter and expanding his armies out across the world. This ending would be non-canon, obviously.
The Bad ending, meanwhile, would be one that happens if you either do very little preparation, make a lot of bad choices, or some combination of the two. Your siege is successful, and you defeat Nightmare, but a lot of your party is dead and his ritual has irrevocably damaged the fabric of reality, causing demons to spill through into Tevinter. With your armies devastated and the Imperium in disarray, it is in no fit state to fend off a demonic invasion, and the coming months and years will be difficult, if the Imperium even survives.
The Okay ending would be one that happens if you’re good, but not quite perfect. Your siege is successful and you defeat Nightmare, but a few of your party members die and again, his ritual has torn open reality, and demons are spilling out. But your armies are okay, and the Imperium is strong and ready to face another war. While the coming months will be difficult, the Imperium is ready to face the threat under your leadership.
The Good ending, taking place if you do a lot of prep and make all the right decisions in the final mission. While reality is torn open, you successfully manage to fend off the waves of demons coming through and close the rift. With you as their leader, the Imperium looks towards a brighter dawn, one of, hopefully but not necessarily, reform. All of your party survives.
And that covers just about everything one might expect from a Dragon Age game, apart from all the things it doesn’t. I’ve enjoyed writing these posts a lot, and should the mood take me might do so again with a different game series.
In the meantime, feel free to look up the previous posts in this series, or eye up Reecey’s Let’s Rework posts for Final Fantasy VIII.