The world of Dragon Age: Inquisition is big. Really big. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the road to the chemist's, but that's just peanuts to Inquisition. It's big enough, in fact, to fit all of Dragon Age: Origins and Dragon Age 2 into it several times over. As you might expect, it's crammed full of quests, fights, diversions and memorable moments, but there's also some stuff in there you might never find. It's not hidden, per se, there's just no great big quest arrow pointing at it, which is exactly how Creative Director Mike Laidlaw wanted it.
"In each level, I wanted there to be at least one cave, one dungeon, one something that no-one tells you to go to," he explained to me. He said that his design team had to "break some old habits" as they were creating the enormous open world that would become Inquisition. Dragon Age: Origins and Dragon Age 2 both made sure the player knew about every last thing they could possibly do, and Laidlaw wanted to make sure not everything was quite so obvious. It meant that there might be content in Inquisition that might never be seen, but it also meant that there was a point to exploring the game's stunning locations beyond just hitting the next point of interest on the map.
Those who've played previous Dragon Age games may be wondering how they'll carry their games over to next ten systems, and the answer is ... you won't. Well, you kind of will. Rather than actually importing a save file, which simply won't be possible, you'll use the web-based Dragon Age Keep to rechoose the various decisions you've made throughout your Dragon Age journey, such as whether your version of Hawke was a mage, or whether Alistair became King. The Keep also checks to make sure that you haven't misremembered and entered in conflicting decisions - Alistair can't be King if he's dead, for example. The Keep is also meant to be forward-looking, adding information from Inquisition to be added to future games in the Dragon Age franchise. It's in beta right now, getting the kinks hammered out in time for Inquisition's October 7 release on PC, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3.