The Dragon Age 3: Inquisition release date is still firmly vague as "late fall 2013," but that doesn't mean we can't enjoy the snippets of info that come our way as we wait for BioWare's follow-up to the woefully inadequate Dragon Age 2: Turd Brigade (unofficial title.) Since we haven't heard about a Dragon Age 3: Inquisition release date in any official sense, it seems a no-brainer to assume that the Dragon Age 3: Inquisition release date will be for the next-gen systems coming this fall. And now, a leak on Italy's Amazon.com site confirms the next-gen arrival of Dragon Age 3: Inquisition, on the Xbox One at least.

VG247 reported on the leak which lists Dragon Age 3: Inquistion for release on the Xbox One. No other details are given on the site, including a price or an estimated release date, but its presence suggests that the game is at least far enough in its production to warrant the post.

So, what can fans expect on the Dragon Age 3: Inquistion release date? A lot, apparently.

BioWare Executive Producer Mark Darrah told the world when Dragon Age 3: Inquisition was announced that "we've visited message boards, read reviews, and we've gone to events to have direct face to face conversations with some of our most passionate fans. We've been listening, and we will continue to listen."

Last year, a panel at The Edmonton Expo also featured BioWare folks who discussed some of the details of Dragon Age 3: Inquisition. First, the issue of game size was addressed. In my opinion, the limited maps and lack of exploration were the single biggest flaw in Dragon Age 2: Poopship Destroyer (unofficial title/Ween reference). Dragon Age 3: Inquisition will feature substantitally larger maps. Kotaku reported that Cinematic designer Jon Perry said "one level in Dragon Age 3 is as big as all of the levels in Dragon Age 2."

Creative director Mike Laidlaw said that "customization is going to be bigger than in Dragon Age Origins," and will include "follower customization." As with everything else, specific details are vague but for everyone who enjoyed building relationships with their followers (i.e. just about everyone who enjoys the Dragon Age franchise) the notion that there will be more options, as opposed to less options, is welcome news indeed.

Then there are the castles. Yeah, that's right. Castles. Apparently the Dragon Age 3: Inquistion release date will introduce fans of the franchise to property ownership for the first time in the franchise. And, according to producer Cameron Lee, there will be a good deal of customization players will be able to do with their castles.

And, since Dragon Age 3: Inquisition is said to be running on DICE's Frostbite 3 engine, fans can anticipate the highest-quality graphics ever seen in the series. Which is crazy pants, since the gorgeous screenshots we've already seen were only on Frostbite 2.0. But that's not all. The use of Frostbite could mean that Dragon Age 3: Inquisition could also support the Oculus Rift VR-headset. An email from Frank Vitz, Creative Director for DICE regarding a research piece on Oculus Rift posted on mtbs3d.com revealed that DICE is very excited about the potential union between Oculus Rift and Frostbite:

From: Vitz, Frank

To: Neil Schneider

Sent: Sunday, March 3, 2013 9:13:55 AM

Subject: RE: Frank, Was This Your Doing?

Man you are good! ;-)

Yes, I am behind this or at least one of the guys on the frostbite team pushing hard for it. I am really eager to see how the Oculus Rift works with Frostbite.

It should be awesome. BF3 in S3D works great and our current version of the engine has all of that support still.

I have one of the first Rift dev kits coming my way in March. We have an internal community eager to work on it... I know of at least four kits on order.

There are multiple titles in the works that would be awesome with the Rift. Of course it will be the responsibility of each game team to ensure that their game works in S3D and with the Rift if it proves to be viable.

The point of the Thesis work is NOT the basic interface with Frostbite...

(we think that part will be pretty straight forward and quick depending upon how the Rift SDK works) the thesis work will be about how to make it work really well.

You and I both know how tricky 3D can be with different kinds of game play cameras. I have worked with several VR headsets in the past and they all fell short.

We have had Master Thesis interns before and it has worked out really well both for them and for DICE, often leading to cool new technology in the engine and a real job for the intern.

We currently have two members of the rendering team who came aboard through the internship program.

Frank Vitz
Creative Director - Frostbite

While this isn't an absolute guarantee that Oculus Rift support will be available on the Dragon Age 3: Inquisition release date, it is an indication that the technology is on the path to receiving next-gen support from individual developers.

Despite the previous problems found in Dragon Age 2: Thunder Dump (unofficial title), fans who were unimpressed by the game's tiny maps and clunky combat system can feel some relief that their gripes were heard by BioWare. Dragon Age producer Mark Farrah posted a letter online during the start of development for Dragon Age 3: Inquistion that was meant to let us know that, this time, things would be different. Here's what he said:

Hey everyone,

We are going to do things a little differently today. Some of you may not know who I am so to start out, I'm going to tell you a little bit about myself.

I joined BioWare in May of 1997 making this year my 15th year with the Company (So, old...). I am a programmer by training and implemented the AI, scripting, and combat systems in Baldur's Gate. After that, I moved into a lead programmer role on Tales of the Sword Coast, BG2, and Throne of Bhaal. I kept my hands dirty during this time; you have me to blame for the wild mage.

After the Baldur's Gate series, I was the lead programmer on Jade Empire, though I made a brief detour to implement the first version of the DM client in Neverwinter Nights.

Then through a weird series of un-relatable stories, I ended up on BioWare's handheld title Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood. I started out as Lead Programmer and finished in charge of the project. Along the way I managed to write a scripting language somehow WORSE than the one in BG, yet at the same time coded a stats system that I am VERY proud of. Fundamentally, the core achievement was that you could not die after you had already; it's surprising how hard that can be to ensure, sometimes.

Finally I moved over to the Dragon Age franchise. I have been the Executive Producer since just before Dragon Age: Origins shipped.

I am part of an active D&D campaign, love collecting pen and paper stuff and like walks on the beach.

Actually I don't like walks on the beach, too smooshy.

Okay, enough about me, why have I called you all here today?

I am pleased to confirm that we are, in fact, working on the next Dragon Age game. Not a big surprise to most of you, I know. We have been working on it in some way for about two years now with the bulk of our efforts ramping up about 18 months ago.

Part of that effort has involved you, our fans, and the feedback you've provided for Dragon Age: Origins, Dragon Age II, and their DLC. We've visited message boards, read reviews, and we've gone to events to have direct face to face conversations with some of our most passionate fans. We've been listening, and we will continue to listen.

Recently, I said that we didn't want to talk about Dragon Age III unless we had something to show. I'm trying to stick to that plan and won't be revealing much today. That said, a lot of information and rumors have surfaced recently and we don't want to hide from them. There are a BUNCH of things that I really want to share with you but I want to do this right, and doing it right requires some more time.

So here's what I can confirm for now:

  • The next game will be called Dragon Age III: Inquisition.
  • We won't be talking about the story of the game today. Though you can make some guesses from the title.
  • This game is being made by a lot of the same team that has been working on Dragon Age since Dragon Age: Origins. It's composed of both experienced BioWare veterans and talented new developers.
  • We are working on a new engine which we believe will allow us to deliver a more expansive world, better visuals, more reactivity to player choices, and more customization. At PAX East, we talked about armor and followers... Yeah, that kind of customization. We've started with Frostbite 2 from DICE as a foundation to accomplish this.

There's much more to talk about, of course, but it will have to wait until it's ready for the prime time.

We are going to be as open as we can. We will continue to have a dialogue with you and answer what questions we can. Keep providing us with your feedback. I'm excited about what we are working on and I hope that you will be too. I know this is going to be hard to believe, but it is just as hard for me not to tell you stuff as it is for you to wait.

With thanks for your enthusiasm, and your patience,

Mark

Want More Dragon Age 3 News?

Dragon Age 3 Release Date Set For 2013: Will BioWare F-k Up Another Sequel?

Dragon Age 3 Details 'Leaked' By Developers: Castle-Building, Follower Customization And Massive Levels Coming In Late 2013

'Dragon Age 3: Inquisition' Release Date News: Oculus Rift Support Planned For BioWare's Next-Gen Sequel [RUMORS]